Sugar was designed for One Laptop per Child, an ambitious plan to produce inexpensive laptops for schools in the Global South. The interface emphasizes community and ease of use, with bright, clear icons that show children their classmates’ locations. Sugar is an early example of the participatory character of Web 2.0, from its focus on sharing and collaboration to its Linux-based open-source code. Despite its energy and vision, the program ultimately crashed and burned for reasons including hardware glitches, political quicksand, and the failure to grasp the real needs of its intended users.
Gallery label from Never Alone: Video Games and Other Interactive Design, September 10, 2022–July 16, 2023