Like Sakai, this tiger is alive, staring directly at you, and ready to spring

Sakai is alive and well and on the move

Rumor of Sakai’s demise is grossly exaggerated. Au contraire, it’s alive and on the move. Continue reading Sakai is alive and well and on the move

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All the Connecting Dots

We’re planning an upgrade of our LMS. Consider these “dots” and their connections: The old gradebook is out. No further development. When do we take it away from our instructors? How many times do we notify them first? We’re in the middle of changing video on demand (VOD) providers. The old one was to have been available ’til Jan. 2019, but the old one does not provide a standard LTI integration and therefore isn’t ready for the upgraded LMS version. Also, there is no straight migration of content between the old VOD and the new one. Our instructors want to … Continue reading All the Connecting Dots

What I Didn’t Know About Using Community Source Software (Sakai) in Higher Ed

“How to set expectations for change management,” – that’s it. That’s what I didn’t know. Consider the kinds of changes one habitually takes from a vendor of proprietary software which you maintain in your own higher ed Data Center. The hypothetical change is New cool features advertised to you, or… Bug fixes (you’d found them or you hadn’t, in other words, you cared deeply or not at all), or … Enhancements. Qualities of the change: The change has already been deployed and tested many times over by the software vendor in environments, with data, very similar to yours. You schedule … Continue reading What I Didn’t Know About Using Community Source Software (Sakai) in Higher Ed

It’s a media, media media world.

If you’re doing academic research, you can now cite a Tweet. From the MLA: If you do project management, make it visual. In my workplace we’re seeing these “SCRUM boards” on every available wall. Some even include “buns in the oven” (the photo of the ultrasound is an example of media embedding): If you want to make a point, use an Infographic (fancy name for a collage that’s informative, right?) : Marketers always use media, your technology project might want to use it to help spin the change: Continue reading It’s a media, media media world.

Stalking Sakai

I’m new to the open source model. To supporting it. To participating in the community. To seeing how it’s built and how features are added. But I’ve been watching for nigh unto 15 years. And I’m here to tell you: higher ed is generally bullish on software derived from this open source model. It’s almost as if open source were the answer to all the budgetary , visionary, and advocacy issues we all face. From Community Jr. College to State School to Private – we’ve summoned open source to give us more freedom, more features, more revenue, more integration points, … Continue reading Stalking Sakai

Blackboard, SunGard and rSmart : A Client’s Take on Support, Oh My.

“Support” in the context of this posting is that service for which a client contracts that includes a way to report issues to a vendor such that the vendor is expected to respond with a resolution. That’s just basic, right? Unfortunately with technology vendors the evaluation of which vendor to choose for ones initial purchase is so complex that it can not and does not include an evaluation of the structures and process the vendor has in place to provide that support. This leads to wide disparity among technology vendors as to how they resource support and what they think … Continue reading Blackboard, SunGard and rSmart : A Client’s Take on Support, Oh My.

Making this easy: LMS Evaluations

My brain just did a flashback as my fingers poised over the keyboard ready to begin this post. The song, “War is a Science,” from Pippin has started to syncopate through my skull: the rule that every gen-er-al kno-ws by he-art: it’s smarter to be lucky than it’s lucky to be smart!   I value ‘smart’ (O how I value smart!) but  in my experience we overthink LMS evaluations. It’s not about a Request for Proposal process. It’s not about a comparison of features. It’s not about the best software package out there. It’s not even primarily a decision of … Continue reading Making this easy: LMS Evaluations