Moodle Hack/Doc Fest, 6/28/11: Day 1

Moodle Hack/Doc Fest officially got underway on Tuesday, June 28th, 2011 It. was a packed day filled with Moodle 2.0 wrangling, documentation work, and demonstrations of Git, Language Lesson, and Amhert College’s flash audio solution.


Git for Version Control Moodle Core switched from CVS to Git for version control with Moodle 2.x. As such there’s a lot of interest among the developers about Git. Charles Fulton of Kalamazoo College provided us with an overview of the tool, which led to a further discussion of differences between Git and SVN as well as strategies for setting up repositories. The presentation is available online via Prezi.

Audio Recording Tools: Carleton College and Amherst College presented on their respective audio/video tools for Moodle. Carly Born presented on Carleton’s solution, called Language Lesson, lets faculty create assignments which allow students to record audio and video files via a plugin, and then submit those files to Moodle. The files can then be played back via Moodle, and commented on by the faculty member. They are in the process of adding the source code for the project to a branch in CLAMP’s SVN repository.

Howard Hanna (Amherst College) presented on their tool as well, which relies Flash to record audio and video as part of a forum response, and saves the file to a Flash Media Server.

Groupings: The devs created a new option for Moodle groups that automatically creates a grouping when you create a single group. This streamlines the group creation process for those who only need to create a single group. The code’s been developed for Moodle 2.0; they’re backporting it to Moodle 1.9. Learn more in tracker:

Upgrading modules and blocks to Moodle 2.0: We now have a document that outlines the process in Google Docs; Sarah Ryder will be presenting on the process at 11:30 p.m., Thursday.

Randomizer We’ve long wanted a tool that could take a course’s data and randomize it so we could share it with others for debugging. This capability is now built into the Moodle 2.1 export tool, and the devs confirmed it is working as expected.

Lesson The devs are working on an enhancement for Lesson (for Moodle 1.9 and 2.0) that prevents it from randomly shuffling the question list.

Signups Williams College will be presenting on their Sign-up tool (a potential replacement for Scheduler) and their People block (which includes a picture gallery view for course participants) at 1 p.m., Wednedsay afternoon.


On the documentation side of the event, much of the time was spent digging further into Moodle 2.0 and organizing existing documentation. They’ve begun creating feature and gripe lists to keep track of things they like and dislike in Moodle 2.0. Any bugs discovered are going into the Redmine tracker.

A contingent is working through the CLAMP Triage Google Doc verifying bugs in Moodle 1.9 and 2.0 for the Devs to tack. They also began discussions of how to publish documentation from Moodle.

The doc’ers have spent considerable time attempting to understand the File Management system in Moodle 2.0. They are creating a suggested workflow for faculty to add a resources to a course, and will be trying out the Link Repository type. Bren Campbell (Brandeis) will be presenting on file management at 1 p.m., Thursday.

New Issues for Rabble-rousing

We continue to add issues to the rabble-rousing queue. Check it out and vote for the issues that affect you: