Archive for December, 2008

Thinking about usability

Today I’ve spent some time looking at MDL-6160 from a usability perspective. Tim and Petr had added a new feature to Moodle 1.9.4 – email notification of course requests – and I suggested possible forms for the admin setting. The issue has lots of votes, which is probably why Tim and Petr chose to fix it.

I also created a new issue in the tracker – MDLSITE-591 – Create a welcome template for new Moodle Docs contributors. I added regular documentation contributor Chris Collman as a watcher, hoping he’d like to help. Sure enough, within a short time, Chris had come up with some suggestions.

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As usual, I’ve been helping with the weekly code review. Kudos to Tim Hunt for resolving tons of issues in the past week and for ensuring changes are fully documented.

The Moodle 1.9.4 release notes seem to be shaping up nicely – much better to note items as they are added to Moodle, rather than waiting until just before 1.9.4 is released.

Moodle 1.9.4 has a new language pack – Kazakh, the official state language of Kazakhstan. Thanks to Калима Туенбаева and to translation coordinator Koen Roggemans for his assistance. Kazakh will be available on the language packs downloads page and installed on moodle.org in the next day or so.

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Using Moodle recent activity

I’ve been catching up with Using Moodle recent activity today – rating any useful posts which I come across (to identify useful posts for newcomers to the forums and also to help determine particularly helpful Moodlers), deleting duplicate posts, occasionally moving a discussion to a more appropriate forum and replying to one or two posts. Fortunately spam on moodle.org is quite rare. (Any spammers I come across have their accounts blocked by setting their authentication method to No login.)

I’ve also approved some entries in the moodle.org front page databases. The Moodle Jobs database now has plenty of interesting-looking Moodle-related jobs offered and wanted.

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Our Moodle Developers site seems popular already, and a number of developers have offered to help evaluate the Introduction to Moodle Programming course. The site is networked with moodle.org for ease of access and also to help investigate and resolve any networking issues. Please help us by reporting bugs and/or commenting on open issues. Of course I couldn’t resist having a play around with the site, adding a Planet Moodle RSS feed block etc.

I’ve also added further suggestions to MDLSITE-132 about improving moodle.org so that people can easily find what they’re looking for.

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Today I received a backup of the Introduction to Moodle Programming course, developed at Humboldt State University in collaboration with staff at San Francisco State University as part of their Mellon Award for Technology Collaboration. I restored the course to my local 1.9 site and then to our newly created Moodle Developers site. The plan is to use the course to encourage and support new Moodle developers, such as GSoC students.

I’ve also made a start on some documentation about Increasing privacy in Moodle.

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This is my first ever blog entry! After encouraging Planet Moodle to be set up, I figured I ought to be contributing too.;-)

Planet Moodle aggregates developer blogs, so people can find out what Moodle developers around the world are working on. If you’re a Moodle developer and would like your blog to be added to Planet Moodle, please let me know.

As it’s Tuesday today, I’m helping with the weekly code review. I’m also going to make sure Petr’s latest privacy improvements (MDL-15785) are fully documented.

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