Developer conference May 2006

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Developer meetings > May 2006 conference notes

Moodle 1.6


  • Gustav is handing over the Quiz module to the Open University on Tuesday 23rd May 2006
  • Tim Hunt will be the main person working on quiz
  • 1.6 quiz is much cleaner, set up for growth, enabling questions in different modules, developing assessment type using questions
  • Comment from Mike: Hopefully more modules will use questions in future e.g. Questionnaire module


  • 1.6 theme upgrade documentation
  • Unfortunate that theme developments were reverted - better to have tested more before committing
  • Currently problems with a "you are here" link and the jump link between blocks (see skip-block feature new in 1.6 forum discussion), images in navigation not so nice and the alternate icon set is incomplete
  • Lots of deprecated tags still in 1.6 - these should be cleaned up for 1.7, using a page in Moodle Docs rather than the bug tracker

Moodle 1.6 code

  • Comment from Gustav: Lots of different styles of code - difficult for newcomers to know what to copy
  • Reply from Martin: Database module should be a good example with classes, plugins etc.


  • 1.6 should be released as soon as possible
  • Petr currently working on security bugs
  • The advice to backup everything before upgrading should be reinforced
  • Big sites will take a long time to migrate the database to UTF-8

Moodle 1.7

Database schema

  • Database support to be extended to SQL server and Oracle
  • Single system, one file in xml format; things more automated and regular
  • Explicit sql must be cleaned up, isolated in lib, pull out generalised sql and put in core file, may still need switch statements
  • Eloy working out the issues - see XMLDB Documentation
  • Comments from Tim Hunt: datalib is big, getting even bigger, should we split? Should make sure unit tests are run on each database.

Roles and permissions

  • permissions = capabilities
  • The Open University (OU) have extended Martin and Shane's initial ideas
  • Site, course and activity level roles
  • Moodle HQ will do the work (funded by OU)
  • Currently polishing the general spec, publishing it soon - see Roles
  • Comments from Matt Oquist: OU proposal not generic enough, need ownership and permissions on a fine grained level, seems illogical to have separate permissions system for repository and roles - see Roles and Permissions architecture forum discussion
  • Comment from Gustav: We should consider how Boddington (UK Open Source VLE) handles roles - see flash movie demonstrating roles interface
  • post conference comment from MD, proposed by skodak: a flag to mark capabilities as "potentially insecure" would be a good idea

Additional comments

  • Gradebook needs fixing (changing from 'pull' to 'push'), anyone interested please get in contact, would love it to be in 1.7
  • Unfortunately dfwiki not in 1.6 - interface better but still needs work, hopefully it will be included in 1.7
  • Please can everyone add hacks, plugins, modules etc. to the Modules and plugins database (just need to allow different people to edit database entries)
  • SCORM 1.2 and AICC supported, but not yet SCORM 2004; new SCORM maintainer, Sadiel, a Moodle Partner (David Puente and team)
  • Re. web services, see Web Services in forthcoming Moodle forum discussion
  • Comment from Mike: Contracted to do web services (gradebook, enrolments etc.), standardised IMS enterprise, working demo, want work to be right for everyone - see Web Services API
  • RE. Google Summer of Code, 60 applications! Next year we must be organised, more opened up, more mentors, with projects in all areas of Moodle; potential for 30 or 40 projects; the Summer of Code gets bigger and better every year - it should be part of the Moodle calendar; anyone wanting to mentor existing projects, please contact Martin - see Student projects
  • Comment from Tim Hunt: If 1.7 is to be released in September, how do we stop people starting big changes in August? Mozilla is a good model for releases, how about a public list of key bugs to fix before release?
  • Reply from Martin: Accessibility and Sourceforge cvs caused 1.6 delay, need everyone's help with releases, use bug tracker advanced search
  • Comment from Tim Hunt: OU Open Content Initiative using Moodle to present stuff, October deadline then a series of releases