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Association Francophone des Utilisateurs de Logiciels Libres

French speaking Libre Software Users' Association

Promouvoir les logiciels libres ainsi que l'utilisation de standards ouverts.

The AFULTab contest

Because free software was born with the hackers community, because innovation and free software are almost always synonyms, because free software users want free software in all their digital devices, the AFUL is launching a contest to free the Tablets!


This contest will demonstrate that it is possible, in record time, to offer a fully functional Tablet for both professional and private users, by the exclusive means of software and applications under a free software license.

We will thus show that it is possible:

  • for any company and any government to deploy for his personnel or civil servants (police, army, justice, diplomacy) a reliable working environment without any back-door;
  • To make available to the general public an open environment capable of promoting the innovation by all and for all.

General rules

Install in less than 6 months a good quality Tablet currently on the market with free software (operating system, applications) that will allow professional and home use, in online as well as offline mode.

Target usage

In order to allow everyone to innovate in their own way, the contest gives a list of target uses as a rough guide. No one of these is mandatory. However, projects that will cover them all will have more chance to be selected and to win. The contest is also open to new and innovative uses and unconventional technological approaches. The jury of the contest will indeed take into serious account disruptive approaches, even if they lead to a lesser coverage of the proposed target uses.

Here again, in order to foster innovations, no precise technical criteria are provided. We could have specified some standard and norms, but we prefer those standards and norms to be proposed and justified by the candidates.

Minimal hardware

  • 8" screen or more
  • Resolution of 1024x600 or better
  • 16GB of internal storage or more
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g or better
  • 8h of battery life or more

Ideal hardware

  • HDMI output for external screen
  • External keyboard and mouse support
  • External memory storage (ex. SDHC)
  • Bluetooth
  • GPS
  • Video camera


The features listed below should be available in online mode (with internet access) as well as in offline mode (without internet access).

  • Web browser HTML5/CSS3 with a fast JavaScript engine
  • Message reading and writing (message may be email, RSS feed, tweets, SMS, etc.) with support for many standardized formats for messages and set of messages.
  • Visualisation, modification and creation of office documents in many file formats, in particular the office formats standardized by the ISO or the OASIS.
  • Reading and organisation of multimedia files (sound, video and photo) in a number of formats, in particular open multimedia formats. The video player will ideally be able to play smoothly video file without conversion in usual resolution such as 720p.
  • Reader for eBook and other digital files in wide variety of file formats.
  • Terminal access allowing a command line interface.
  • Personal calendar with task and alarm manager.
  • Contacts directory.


  • Every system and application software should be under a free software license, if possible compatible with the GNU GPLv3 license.
  • Non-free firmware is tolerated


  • Automatic software update is under the control of the user who can block any update as he chooses,
  • Possibility to reinstall the system from an external medium (USB stick, CD, DVD) or from the network.
  • Access to new applications through a "catalogue" or "application market" style user interface.
  • Booting in less than 20 seconds from the first button push to the display of the working environment.
  • French language support.

Modalities for participation

  • The contest is open to all (professionals, private people, groups, etc.) without any constraint regarding country or number of participants in a given project.
  • Participants have to send an application document describing their project to before December 16th 2011, 12h00 (Paris time).
  • The application form should contain at least:
    • The name and coordinates of the applicant or the representative of the team.
    • The brand and model of the chosen Tablet
    • The open operating system chosen (ex. GNU, GNU/Linux, BSD Libre, Haiku, ReactOS, OpenSolaris, Android, WebOS…)
    • A short text explaining in what respect and how the project will meet the contest requirements
      • In case of application for financial support from the AFUL to participate to the contest, more complete details and information should be provided to enable assessment of the seriousness and the quality of the project.

Project funding

The number of project participating to this contest is not limited; however, AFUL wish to allow everyone, especially the better project to participate.

Therefore, AFUL will financially support, with an endowment of 800€, a limited number of candidates to allow them to participate to the contest. The association is committed to help two projects from its own treasury and other by patronage (some sponsors have already contacted the association and allow financing more projects).

If other sponsors wish to give a financial support to the contest, and therefore allow more participating project, please contact us by mail at

The projects financed by the AFUL will be selected on the basis of the information provided in their application by a panel of members of the association composed of specialists in electronics, programmers and users. The main selection criteria will be the quality of the chosen touchpad, the disruptive technology, the usability (effectiveness, efficiency, satisfaction) and the user experience detailed in the application form.

On November 11 2011, AFUL is able to give financial support to 5 participating projects.

Obligation for the project financed by AFUL

  • The association, or the sponsors, is and will stay the owner of the touchpad provided.
  • In case of project failure (if the touchpad was not freed):
    • The Tablet will be reset to factory defaults parameters;
    • A document detailing the reasons for the failure will be produced. It will explain, exhaustively, the work done, the time spent and the problems encountered;
    • The bills or proof of payment will be given to the association;
    • The association keep the right to claim to the candidates the remainder of the money provided taking into account the work actually done in the context of the contest;

One contest, one winner

The freed Tablet must be sent to AFUL before May 1st 2012, noon (Paris time).
Tablets arriving after this date will be disqualified.

AFUL must also receive a set of documents containing: 

  • A description and explanation of the work done, the difficulties encountered, the technological choices, the specific developments done, or any other information that may be useful to the jury.
  • The list of software components and their licenses.
  • The files and the detailed explanations needed to reproduce the "liberation" of the touchpad.     

Evaluation criteria 

To choose the winner of the contest, the jury will focus on: 

  1. The respect of the contest criteria
  2. The usability and the user experience
  3. The innovative contribution to the state of the art
  4. The choice of the Tablet

Winning prize

The winner of the contest will receive the unique prize consisting of a sum of money pooled by AFUL and other sponsors who decide to support this contest.

On November 11th, the final prize is 1400€.

If any sponsors wish to give a financial support to the contest by raising the final prize, they just need to contact us by mail at

Sponsors of this action:

     Association: L'Association Francophone des Utilisateurs de logiciels libres (AFUL) OW2 Logo
     CompanyLogo Nexedi Logo Henix
     Private people : Jean-Luc Raffaelli, Laurent Séguin

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