woensdag, november 29, 2006

Sakai Webinars by Unicon

Yesterday I received an email from Unicon, Inc. inviting me to attend one of their upcoming webseminars on Sakai. I do not have the time right now, but maybe you have the time. Then please read on:
"Unicon offers Webinars for anyone who wishes to attend. However, seats are limited and an RSVP is required to reserve a seat.
Upcoming Webinars Provided by Unicon
Sakai Guided Tour Webinar. 11/30/06 (Tomorrow!)
Sakai Cooperative Support Webinar. 12/14/06
Sakai Guided Tour Webinar. 12/15/06"
So, if you are interested, please follow the link above to register.

dinsdag, november 28, 2006

Sakai: measuring against Educause

Charles Severance wrote an interesting post on his weblog. He reflects on the status of Sakai (the product, the community, the maturity etc), in relation to the attention that was given to Sakai during the last three annual Educause conferences.
In essence Chuck concludes that we have become just one the options within the playing field. Just saying that Sakai is opensource doesn't win any contract any more. Check out Dr. Chuck's Web Log: Status Update: "So I take the occasion of Educause to reflect on things to make sure that I remain grounded in what we are doing and why we are all here."
Here is my little reflection on the status of Sakai. The time is now to indeed change some things: more emphasis on communication (or 'marketing') is one of the things that is on the top of my mind. But also the pure product information on Sakai (what is available? in which version of Sakai?) should be readily available. Quite a few of the questions that were asked during my presentation and demo (text is in Dutch, but presentation is in English) at the Tilburg University yesterday were exactly of this nature. For example: "There is no versioning capability within the Resources tool? How can we then seriously consider Sakai? Blackboard already has versioning, and this is a requirement for us!" Fortunately I could answer that in Sakai 2.4 we will have versioning. But how sure is this answer?
I guess, maybe, just maybe, we should have some sort of product manager role within the community that really can take responsibility for the product releases... My impression is that we still let releases happen too much dependant on the availability of developer resources. Just my 2 cents...
If you have some more spare time, then I would recommend to start reading the great conversation developing on the Sakai dev list on the 'need' for a 'community roadmap'. Check out the public version of this thread.

vrijdag, november 24, 2006

Sakai SIG NL at the Podium

Today I have presented for the Podium group of ICT experts of 7 different institutions in The Netherlands (University of Utrecht, University of Maastricht, Wageningen University and Research Centre, Free University of Amsterdam, Leiden University, University of Groningen, University of Twente). There were very relevant questions by the audience. One of the most prominent ones: "How do you go about with migration from Blackboard to Sakai (or any other VLE)?" I have referred to Confluence.
Check out the attachment at Sakai op het Podium, if you are interested. Next Monday I will be doing a reprise, based on the same presentation, at the Tilburg University.

donderdag, november 23, 2006

Vertaling = Acceptatie

Een goede vertaling is het eerste wat gebruikers en geinteresseerden zien. De kwaliteit, volledigheid en consistentie hebben effect op de acceptatie van Sakai in het Nederlandstalige onderwijslandschap. Regelmatig onderhoud is noodzakelijk, want functionaliteiten komen er bij of worden gewijzigd en kennen dan slechts de Amerikaansengelse taal.

Hoe gaat dat vertalen met een community? Hoe voorkom je verschillen in vertaling en schrijfstijl wanneer meerdere mensen zich bezig houden met vertalen?
De Nederlandse stijlgids en terminologielijst op de Sakai-wiki kunnen deze (ver-)taalkwesties oplossen.

Geef je mening over de koers, lever commentaar en schrijf mee aan deze fundamenten op http://issues.sakaiproject.org/confluence/x/7W4.

woensdag, november 22, 2006

We had a great meeting today!

Today we had our 3rd face-to-face meeting of the Sakai Special Interest Group The Netherlands (Sakai SIG NL). We had quite a bunch of new people at the table, which is great. We even had some Belgian collegues from Gent. There were some great stories and experiences that were shared. I was pleasantly surprised by the great number of institutions that are working with OSP, mainly due to the efforts of Portfolio4U.
I have tried to capture most of the meeting in the notes. Check the website for all the nitty gritty details. I am awaiting eagerly the stuff that Jaeques and Ferry shared with us :-)
For (y)our convenience here are some URL's that were mentioned today:
  1. Translation of Sakai into Dutch: http://issues.sakaiproject.org/confluence/x/7W4
  2. Overview of all QA servers to be found on http://issues.sakaiproject.org/confluence/x/ZT8
  3. Styleguide for the Dutch translation: http://issues.sakaiproject.org/confluence/x/8G4
  4. Our wiki: http://www.sakai-pilot.utwente.nl/sakaiwiki/
  5. Video Alfa College (featuring Jim Doherty): http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3462508180886557891
See you all next time, on Jan 31, 2007!

vrijdag, november 17, 2006

Sakai SIG NL: Agenda for 22 november 2006

{Dutch} Iedereen is welkom op 22 november 2006 in Utrecht. Agenda voor 22 november 2006: "De agenda voor onze derde bijeenkomst is bekend. Zie het attachment. We hebben een aantal nieuwe gezichten aan tafel en er is een interessante bijdrage van Walter Brand (Memotrainer)."

donderdag, november 16, 2006

SURF Onderwijsdagen 2006: Sakai stuff

The last two days have been quite busy for me, as I was visiting the SURF Onderwijsdagen, the largest conference and tradefair regarding ICT in Education in The Netherlands.
I had tried to prepare myself properly with regard to sessions that I would like to participate in, but this proved quite difficult because of the clumsiness of the conference website. And during the conference the sort of same feeling struck me: so many people, the lack of food during lunchtime, the very crowded trade floor and the heat in some of the conference rooms! Maybe the conference needs a different format.
Anyway, this blog is about Sakai in The Netherlands! I had some interesting conversations with regard to this subject during the conference. Let me share with you some new insights and interesting developments.
First of all I had a chat with a representative of Dokeos Nederland. This was after the very interesting presentation by the Vrije Universiteit Brussels (in Belgium). They have implemented the Dokeos course management system (opensource ofcourse) and have formed a large consortium with mainly Belgian partners, but also partners in Chile, Spain and France, to sustain developments for Dokeos. This reminds me a little of the Sakai Foundation, although there are major differences regarding governance I think. And ofcourse the scale is much smaller. To the best of my information some of the institutions on the partnerlist are also using (of have used or evaluated) Sakai and/or OSP.
Then I talked a while with a representative of a large community college who just have dediced to go with Sakai. Great news!
And thirdly I got introduced to a university in Belgium, that is using WebCT right now. They are very keen to get more insight in the possible alternatives. And since there is quite an active opensource movement in Belgium, they are seriously considering Sakai and other opensource systems.

vrijdag, november 10, 2006

OSP within the Netherlands

OSP (Open Source Portfolio) might be relatively unknown, but sometimes you can read something about it, even within The Netherlands. There are two things I would like to point to. [what follows is partly in Dutch]
1. Zo schrijft Wilfred Rubens: Ervaringen met eportfolio bij Gilde Opleidingen: "Na een selectieprocedure is gekozen voor Open Source Portfolio (OSP), dat geïntegreerd is binnen Sakai. Gilde Opleidingen heeft ook binnen OSP een web-based formulier gemaakt dat deelnemers moet aanzetten tot reflecties."
2. Jim Doherty (Portfolio4U) has been interviewed by Chuck Severance regarding their experiences with OSP. I hope to see the video real soon!

donderdag, november 09, 2006

{Dutch} Ga je stemmen of kom je naar Utrecht?

De uitnodiging die ik het gemaild naar iedereen waarvan ik veronderstel dat ze enig belang zouden hebben om op 22 november aanwezig te zijn. Ook lezers van dit weblog (die de mail niet hebben ontvangen), mogen mij mailen of ze gaan komen!
From: Koopal, W.Y. (Wytze, ITBE)
Sent: Thursday, November 09, 2006 10:10 AM
To: {removed}
Subject: [Sakai SIG NL] Ga je stemmen of kom je naar Utrecht?

Hallo mensen,

De tijd schrijdt voort. Het is herfst geworden. Volgende week zijn de SURF Onderwijsdagen. Op 22 november gaan we stemmen voor een nieuwe Tweede Kamer.

Maar he, wat zien we daar in onze agenda's staan? Op 22 november is ook de derde bijeenkomst van Sakai SIG NL. Ik hoop dat deze datum ook in jullie agenda's is terecht gekomen. Zo niet, dan hierbij de herinnering!

Op 22 november zullen we in ieder geval 1 of 2 praktijkverhalen gaan horen mbt het gebruik van Sakai. De agenda voor 22 november begint dus vorm te krijgen. Het 'rondje langs de velden' is natuurlijk ook een agendapunt, evenals een staande lunch. De definitieve agenda zal uiterlijk op 16 november op onze website (elearning.surf.nl/sakai_nl) verschijnen.

Graag hoor ik via een kort antwoord (svp voor 14 november) op deze email of je ook van plan bent te gaan komen op 22 november.

Wytze Koopal
University of Twente
SURF Sakai community manager, The Netherlands

dinsdag, november 07, 2006

Must-reads on Sakai

On our website (of the Sakai SIG NL), I have created a short message (in Dutch) a few days ago with links to three important documents regarding Sakai.
The most readable (at least for me) is the document that Charles Severance wrote with Joseph Hardin, entitled "Strategic Directions for Sakai and Data Interoperability". (direct link)

vrijdag, november 03, 2006

Sakai 2.3.0 is available!

Today, Nov 3 (2006), Sakai 2.3.0 has been officially released!
Sakai 2.3.0 is the first release to promote successful provisional tools to the enterprise bundle (Rwiki and Calendar Summary). It also includes three new provisional tools. Sakai 2.3 introduces a significant number of feature enhancements to existing tools as well, along with over 450 fixes. See the release notes for more details. You can also download a Sakai Demo
Sakai has not yet been thoroughly tested with either Firefox 2.0 or IE7, though early testing has not revealed any issues.