SocialCalc on Sugar Version #5 Released


SocialCalc is a spreadsheet activity developed for functioning in the Sugar environment, OLPC's software paradigm. Initially coded by Dan Bricklin of Software Garden Inc., the OLPC part was started by Manusheel Gupta, Managing Director of SEETA with K.S. Preeti, community friend of SEETA and alumnus from Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology and Luke Closs from Socialtext Inc. under the guidance of Walter Bender, Oversight Board Member at Sugar Labs.

Math on the XO laptop

The main idea of the SocialCalc is to include features that enable children to use features of Spreadsheet activities. Tabulation feature enables us to enter data in a tabular format and edit it. The activity facilitates sorting of data, comments to increase understanding, clipboard functions, etc. SocialCalc supports graphing features.

Calculations feature enables us to perform mathematical calculations. The most unique feature is Collaboration, the ability to support sharing of data over the network and multi-user editing. Interoperability is another important feature. It supports interoperability between SocialCalc and Excel (.xls) and SocialCalc and Lotus Notes (.wk3 and .wk4).

A number of features have been introduced:

  1. Localization in different languages
  2. Ability to read and edit single sheet Excel .xls files
  3. Sharing of activity over mesh network
  4. Ability to read and edit single sheet Lotus notes
  5. Optimization, sheet extents will include just the part that has data.

SocialCalc offers opportunities for participating in a number of initiatives:

  1. Develop teacher training videos for SocialCalc in their local languages;
  2. Develop interoperability between SocialCalc and Excel(xlsx format), Google Spreadsheet, Open Spreadsheet
  3. Features to modify the charts
  4. Integration of SocialCalc with other Sugar activities
  5. Development of 2-D, 3-D area charts
  6. Creation of shapes
  7. Creation of templates
  8. Localization

Version #5 has been possible due to the efforts of Dan Bricklin, whose guidance has been integral its development; Vijit Singh; Luke Closs and K.S. Preeti, developers' of the JS-Python communication; Nicholas Doiron, author of graphing features; Mahesh Sharma, who developed interoperability; Claudia Urrea, Reuben Caron, Diksha Khatri, Lakky Rawat and Sakshi, who localized SocialCalc.

If you want to give your feedback, join the group on ScalableC, if you are a member there. If you are not, please ask for an invitation at with the message "Interested in joining SocialCalc on Sugar group". You can also contribute by writing to

Manusheel Gupta is Managing Director of SEETA


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