[apereo-announcements] March/April 2017 Apereo Newsletter

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[apereo-announcements] March/April 2017 Apereo Newsletter

Apereo Newsletter
March/April 2017

From the Editor
1) Open Apereo 2017 Conference
2) Proposals for Showcases Reception at Open Apereo 2017 Conference
3) 8th Spanish Sakai Valencia, another successful S2U meeting
4) ESUP-Days /Apereo Paris January 31, 2017
5) Unicon Publishes Learning Analytics Adoption and Implementation Trends Article
6) Best Practices with Git and Github Webinar Video online

Upcoming Events
7) Apereo Community Lightning Talks April 27, 11 a.m. EDT
8) uPortal Collaboration at Open Apereo 2017 

Project News & Releases
9) First Xerte Online Toolkit hackathon in Edinburgh
10) Release of the Karuta Open Source Portfolio Version 2.2
11) New Members Elected to Sakai Project Management Committee (PMC)
12) News from the OpenCast Community
13) NYU skin contribution to Sakai
14) ELMS:LN Joins Apereo Incubation Process

From the Editor: 
The Apereo newsletter provides an important opportunity for communicating within and across the many projects in our community. This is your vehicle to share what you're doing and invite others to join. Our newsletter is also an important place for sharing strategies and success stories for pursuing an open source philosophy in educational technology.

We are looking for contributions of all kinds -- examples might include (but are not limited to) articles, video clips, screencasts, graphics, or short announcements on:
-- How you’re using software produced by an Apereo community at your institution
-- Major releases or minor tweaks
-- Ideas for new projects you’d like to get feedback on or gauge interest in
-- Important discussions of general educational technology issues that emerge on community email lists

Contributions of all lengths, from snippet to think pieces, are welcome. 

NOTE: We are especially looking for Case Studies of any length for our next issue. Have you undertaken an upgrade, implementation, feature rollout, or redesign? Tell us about what you did and what you learned! 
-- Lucy Appert, Newsletter Editor  

1) Open Apereo 2017 Conference June 4-7, Philadelphia, PA
The Open Source Conference for Education
June 4 - June 7 at the Sheraton Society Hill Hotel in Philadelphia, PA

The conference program is now available for Open Apereo 2017. The program includes many sessions ranging across all Apereo projects. Learn the latest project news and see how peers are using these tools to improve teaching, learning and research on their campus. Presentations will focus on leadership, advocacy, analytics, teaching and learning, identity management, and technology.
Don’t forget to register today to take advantage of the early bird pricing (must register on or before May 5)

There are many things to see in Philadelphia! Check out the website for ideas to get you started at https://www.apereo.org/conferences/open-apereo-2017#travel.

We look forward to seeing you!
Ian Dolphin, Executive Director, Apereo Foundation
Laura McCord, Open Apereo 2017 Planning Committee Chair
Jennifer Cummings, [hidden email]
2) Proposals for Showcases Reception at Open Apereo 2017 Conference: DUE April 12
We are currently accepting proposals for the Showcase Reception, to be held during Open Apereo 2017 on Tuesday, June 6th from 5:30PM - 7:00PM.  This is a great opportunity for you to…

        • Demonstrate a new tool or enhancement
        • Showcase a case study, project outcome, or course design
        • Give a poster presentation
        • Knock our socks off with something cool and exciting!

The deadline to submit proposals for the Showcase Reception is April 12. The program committee will review and accept submissions once the call for proposals has closed.  The committee expects to have all proposals reviewed and final acceptances by the beginning of May. If you need to make any changes to your proposal, before the cut off day of April 12, please contact [hidden email].

        • Develop a presentation title that communicates the core topic of your showcase demo.
        • Use keywords to describe the content of your demo.
        • Write a short, concise, easy-to-read, and print-ready abstract.
        • Spell out all acronyms the first time mentioned.
        • Use a clear and direct writing style.
        • Describe the larger implications of your demo's subject
        • Persuade the reviewers of the value of your showcase demo's content.

Submit your proposal today at http://tinyurl.com/n4jrret !
3) 8th Spanish Sakai Valencia, another successful S2U meeting
The Opencast summit 2017 together with the 8th Sakai Spanish Users (S2U) meeting took place March 1-3, 2017 at the Universitat Politècnica de Valencia, Spain.  We had a chance to learn about the state of the Apereo Opencast project and also strengthen the links within the Spanish Sakai project community.

The S2U is a group of Spanish Universities and commercial affiliates that work together to improve Sakai and collaborate with the community as a coordinated team. The aim of this group is to join efforts when working in Sakai fixes and improvements and to share experiences from their institutions.

The team holds an open weekly meeting in Spanish to discuss the relevant topics that affect Sakai. This time, it was a great opportunity to have the meeting face to face. Also, we had the chance to talk to the meeting's special guests, Charles Severance and Ian Dolphin. During this meeting, we talked about the future of Sakai and internationalization issues that concern all our institutions. We also conducted a complete review of the processes and workflows that the S2U is currently following, in order to find better ways to contribute improvements and fixes to the worldwide Sakai community.

Thanks to everyone who attended and looking forward to future collaboration.
-- S2U Team
4) ESUP-Days /Apereo Paris January 31, 2017
As mentioned in a previous edition of this newsletter, the ESUP-Portail Consortium and the Apereo Foundation organized a joint conference on January 31st in Paris.  With more than 110 attendees and dozens of people watching the live broadcast, the ESUP-Days /Apereo Paris event was once again an undeniable success, thanks to the speakers' expertise and insight. The range of topics covered throughout the day and the quality of each session were especially appreciated by the participants. 

Having said that, we are glad to let you know that this one-day conference was recorded in its entirety and that you can now (re)watch for yourself each and every session given that day, either in French or in English. 

Come visit our website  to download the presentation materials (slides, notes,...) and/or access the captured sessions. Be sure to check them out to learn more about projects (CAS, uPortal, Karuta, OAE, Pod, etc.), discover new initiatives (Learning Analytics in France) or simply hear speakers share their stories and valuable practical experience & knowledge.
5) Unicon Publishes Learning Analytics Adoption and Implementation Trends Article
Lindsay Pineda, Senior Implementation Consultant at Unicon, and Patrick Lynch, a UK colleague, traveled throughout the UK in 2016. Lindsay and Patrick conducted readiness assessments to determine the organizational and technical considerations institutions needed to address to pave the way for successful learning analytics initiatives. 

The article includes observed organizational trends among institutions in regards to culture, process, and communication. In addition, they discovered technical trends related to aspects including data, infrastructure, and integration. The article explains the trends in detail, along with an outline of the readiness assessment process and the concluding results on how ready the institutions are when it comes to learning analytics. Read the article and download a copy of the article PDF at www.unicon.net/about/articles/learning-analytics-adoption-and-implementation-trends
-- Lisa Di Pietro
6) Best Practices with Git and Github Webinar Video online
Video from the Apereo Webinar on best practices with Git and Github is now available on the Apereo YouTube channel at youtu.be/l-5N89Rpsq0?a . Thanks to Matthew Buckett, University of Oxford and Sakai PMC, and Misagh Moayyed of the CAS PMC and Unicon for an informative session. Suggestions for other topics are always very welcome. Please send them to [hidden email]
Upcoming Events

7) Apereo Community Lightning Talks April 27, 11 a.m. EDT
Please plan to join us on Thursday, 27 April 2017, at 11 am Eastern [1] for a Lightning Talks presentation covering a number of ideas in the Apereo community.

Ideas being pitched:
  • Sakai Student Grade Report Visualization - Alan Regan, Pepperdine University
  • Sakai EvalSys Tool -the provisional tool in Sakai that provides functionality for campus wide course evaluations, ad hoc surveys, and other survey functions - Martin Ramsay, LAMP Consortium
  • Reimagining the Sakai Manage Tools feature - Matt Burgess, University of Virginia
  • Sakai CLOG contrib tool enhancement - CLOG is a Contrib tool that can be used in Sakai for blogging. - Robert Hackey, Providence College
  • Sakai Simplified Installer Packages - Yonah Feinstein, Pepperdine University
  • Student interactions with Sakai xAPI and Apereo Open LRS - Pat Miller, Notre Dame

The session will be recorded and published on the Apereo Youtube channel [2].

NB: Though all these talks are Sakai related, all Apereo projects are invited to pitch ideas at Lightning Talks. Please contact [hidden email] to indicate your interest in making a pitch at a future Lightning Talks event.
-- Apereo FARM group
8) uPortal Collaboration at Open Apereo 2017
As you plan your travel to Open Apereo, consider staying for the uPortal Collaboration days Wednesday afternoon and Thursday immediately following the conference. This is an opportunity for people with an interest in uPortal to gather, discuss, and work together. In the past we have used this time for ad hoc discussion on topics of interest, hashing out the road map, working together on mutual problems, or demoing and getting feedback on projects we are working on back home. Whether you are a developer, administrator, designer, or project manager, bring your laptop and spend some quality time discussing and working with other uPortal colleagues!

What would you like to see happen during this meetup? What would you like to work on? What would you like to discuss? Please add your thoughts to https://goo.gl/HYVe88 and plan on joining us!
— uPortal Steering Committee
Project News & Releases

9) First Xerte Online Toolkit Hackathon in Edinburgh
We are very exited about the work done during the first ever Xerte Online Hackathon held March 14 - March 17 in Edinburgh. Developers from the UK, Norway, Belgium, and the Netherlands gathered in Edinburgh during these 4 days to meet each other and coordinate plans for the next release(s).
Subjects being discussed and worked on included  (in no particular order):
  - Update of Look and Feel
  - More logical rearrangement of the many optional parameters 
  - New page types
  - Tracking and reporting (and xAPI support)
  - New themes and adding themes for Bootstrap template
  -- Tom Reijnders
10) Announcing the Release of the Karuta Open Source Portfolio Version 2.2
The Karuta project, under the umbrella of the Apereo Foundation, is pleased to announce the release of version 2.2 of the Karuta Open Source Portfolio. Karuta offers a simple and flexible way for portfolio designers to customize portfolio workflows for learning, assessment, reporting, and showcasing. This fifth release of Karuta has undergone extensive testing and includes many features useful for a full implementation. 

  • Designers can set the maximum number of words in a text field.
  • Users can click on the text editor for a full page view.
  • Designers may grant users permission to invite others via email to edit their portfolios.
  • Reports can be used in much more sophisticated ways to create dashboards and aggregated reports.
Admin and Designers
  • Designers can use batch files to create users and portfolios and to share portfolios with roles and/or individual users.
  • In implementations of more than 100 portfolios, the admin page is optimized by limiting the loading of portfolios to only those projects that are open.
  • The admin and designers can search portfolios by code, and users by login, first name, and last name.
  • There has been a complete reorganization of the karuta-core code and files configuration.
  • Float support in reports allows the export of data using semicolons or commas.
  • The batch process can be used to create and edit user groups for sharing portfolios, as well as to launch javascript functions for ad hoc development..

Karuta Benefits

Simple. Teaching and learning (T&L) designers can quickly build portfolio workflows by creating pages, adding different resources (text, document, comments, rubrics, embed resources, email, etc.), and assigning their use to various roles (student, evaluator, etc.).
Flexible. Karuta has no a priori structure. The T&L designer has full control and can build sophisticated portfolio workflows and reports with a minimum of training. No code development is required. All types of portfolios are supported (learning, assessment, showcase, etc.).
Iterative. Karuta is built for quick review and revision. Design a portfolio, test it in faculty meetings, make changes, run a small pilot, check the data in reports.
Powerful. Karuta has advanced features for creating rubrics, user menus, summary pages, forms, help, reports, sharing, and peer evaluation.
Mobile Device Ready. Karuta is responsive design-ready and can be displayed on computers, tablets, or smartphones.
Multilingual. Karuta can support many languages and has already been set up for English, French, and Japanese. Language customization can be accomplished quickly. A special version of Karuta supports portfolios with multilingual interface commands and forms, images, or documents made available in a chosen language.
Technology. jQuery javascript front end, Twitter Bootstrap, MySQL, ORACLE,  REST API. 

Participate as a student, classroom teacher, or supervisor in different types of portfolios. Or design your own portfolio process.

Get the documentation for installation: https://github.com/karutaproject/karutaproject/wiki
Follow us:
    On Google+: KARUTA ePortfolio
    On Twitter: KarutaOSP
Get in touch: [hidden email]

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We would like to acknowledge the financial support of our current partners: Kyoto University, IUT-2 Grenoble, and HEC Montréal, and the work of individuals who are responsible for this fifth release:
Olivier Gerbé, Nobry Ouk, and Isabelle Roy - HEC Montréal
Janice Smith and Sean Keesler - Three Canoes LLC
Thi Lan Anh - ePortfolium
Eric Giraudin and Marc Vassoille - Institut universitaire de technologie IUT-2 Grenoble.
-- Janice Smith
11) New Members Elected to Sakai Project Management Committee (PMC)
I am pleased to announce four new members elected to the Sakai Project Management Committee (PMC). Here are the new members and the nomination details for each:

Wilma Hodges, Longsight
Wilma has been a long-time community supporter and Apereo Fellow. She leads the documentation effort, participates in the Apereo FARM effort, leads the Sakai Virtual Conference, and participates in the Sakai Marketing effort and other community activities.
Dede Hourican, Marist
A long term community member, Dede has most recently directed focus on quality assurance with participation in the Sakai QA committee, bringing a team of Marist student employees to bear on the process, and teaching them about open source software, global communities and building future sakaigers.
Diego del Blanco, Unicon
Diego has been very active in the Sakai community for some time now and is an Apereo Fellow. He has been a regular attendee of the weekly calls, made significant contributions to Sakai 11, and put in some large features for 12.
Shawn Foster, Western
Shawn is highly active on community calls, provides code contributions, and is tightly connected with the very important usability and accessibility efforts within the Sakai community.

PMC membership is reflective of significant contributions to the community and a dedication to the shared goals of the Sakai community.

In terms of what PMC membership "means", the PMC members are already active members in the various groups in the Sakai/Apereo community (QA, Core Team, Marketing, FARM, Accessibility, Teaching and Learning, etc.). Most of the decisions about Sakai are made in those groups without any need for the PMC to take a vote or render an opinion because we believe that those closest to the actual work should make decisions regarding the work whenever possible.

The PMC gets involved when there is a significant or broader issue or a decision needs to be made regarding Sakai's direction or resource expenditure by Apereo on behalf of Sakai [3]. The PMC does all of its work in full view of the community on a public list [4] except for votes on new PMC members.

Please join me in thanking these new PMC members for their past, present, and future contributions to Sakai and welcoming them as the newest members of the Sakai PMC [5].

P.S. We are still updating the web site with pictures and bios for the new members.
-- Chuck Severance
12) News from the OpenCast Community
--  2017 Opencast Summit
More than 80 registered participants joint the 2017 Opencast Summit at Universitat Politècnica de València, which saw the first day as a joint meeting with the Spanish Sakai/Apereo community, with 15 institutions represented. We had a packed programme well-fed from 50 proposals plus a second "unconference" track composed of a dozen suggested topics. Plus there was time to meet, talk, and discuss informally, not least thanks to our hosts at UPV. Recordings are available at
–Olaf Schulte

-- Funding of core positions
The Opencast Board succeeded in collectively funding two core Opencast community positions for 2017: Thanks to the University of Manchester, ETH Zurich and a number of other institutions, Greg Logan now serves as a full-time Opencast Community QA Manager. Additionally, ELAN e.V. (University of Osnabruck) has confirmed Lars Kiesow will continue his work for Opencast and the Opencast community, helping with release management, managing Opencast infrastructure, and documentation on a part-time basis.
–Olaf Schulte

-- Opencast Adoption
For smaller Open Source products, marketing and advertising is a tough job on a variety of grounds, lack of resources being one of them. What Opencast struggled with even more though was the lack of information on how much traction the product has, i.e. how many users we have. In the early days, Opencast (Matterhorn) used to ping back home every now and then, so we could estimate figures based on that. The feature was disabled, however, at the request of the community a couple of years later, so any inquiry as to the adoption Opencast had to remain unanswered - or was based on assumptions and gut feelings. Things changed once the University of Osnabruck set up their Opencast RPM to support institutions with their installation process. It proved to be very successful despite the fact one had to register for that RPM -which today is one of the two sources we have when it comes to Opencast dissemination. We of course do not assume any use of the RPM is equivalent to "using Opencast", but it's not only "better than nothing" but also a vantage point when it comes to improving the installation process. The other source of information is our Nexus proxy which most standard installations will call for Maven dependencies - we take that as an indication Opencast was built. Again, this is not adoption in terms of "usage"; but together, these sources of information let us know we're not alone - and they help us produce wonderful maps:
–Olaf Schulte, Lars Kiesow

-- Save the date: Meeting of the German speaking Opencast community
The annual meeting of the german speaking Opencast community will be on November 6th and 7th at the TU Ilmenau. If you are interested, please save the date.
–Rüdiger Rolf

-- Opencast Board Elections
The current Opencast Board has been confirmed by the community for another year with over 90% approval. The main focus on the upcoming period will be to update the Opencast governance structure.
–Rüdiger Rolf
13) NYU Skin Contribution to Sakai: Video Resource
Over the past few weeks, the NYU team, Longsight, and others have been contributing elements of the NYU skin back to community master. We’ve done so based on discussions at Sakai camp and in various community calls, as well as in response to requests from individual institutions. The goal is to provide improved usability and a clean, modern look and feel for the default Sakai 12 skin.

To provide an overview of these contributions, Kyle Blythe has put together the following video. It walks through various elements of the skin and the rationale behind design choices:  

Please let us know if you have any questions. Note that we’ll be submitting additional skin-related pull requests this week and next.

Also, thanks to Sam/Longsight, Adrian, and others who have helped in moving these changes into master. 
-- Jeff Pasch
14) ELMS:LN Joins Apereo Incubation Process
 ELMS Learning Network is the latest software initiative to join the Apereo Incubation Process. ELMS:LN is an open source technology platform designed to foster and sustain online education innovation. Rather than providing a tightly bundled all-inclusive set of tools, the platform focuses on providing an easily extendable suite of tools that can be tailored to individual approaches. ELMS LN is designed to be developed collaboratively while sustaining individual permutations of the system,  rather than the creation of a single expression of a technology.
ELMS:LN leverages the work of the Drupal community, and is being used and developed by multiple departments at Penn State University and West Virginia University.
Ian Dolphin, Executive Director of the Apereo Foundation, welcomed ELMS:LN into the Apereo community: “As we reach beyond the Learning Management System and towards a next generation learning environment, we need to draw together the experience of several approaches to increased flexibility. ELMS Learning Network will make a valuable contribution to the Apereo community, in addition to making connections to significant numbers of potential adopters internationally”.
Bryan Ollendyke, ELMS Learning Network Lead said: "I'm excited for our community to be receiving guidance and mentorship from acceptance into Apereo's incubation program. This is a big next step for ELMS:LN in platform and community maturity. I was incredibly impressed by the quality and openness of the Apereo community when I attended last year. This is a great opportunity for cross-community collaboration and the innovations that stem from them!"
More details of ELMS:LN can be found in a white paper at https://psu.app.box.com/s/3318wac7ob987bxpwb2olf1fv8uskauy
Further details of the Apereo Incubation Process can be found at 

The Apereo Foundation - http://www.apereo.org/
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