MoodleNet v0.9.4 alpha update

Today, the team is pleased to have released MoodleNet v0.9.4 alpha.

Functionality added:

  • Create a unique @username
  • Update profile header image (via URL)
  • Reset password (via email)

Karen and James, our new backend developers, are now up-to-speed with MoodleNet. Ivan, our UX designer and front-end developer, has been working on a new approach to MoodleNet’s user interface to make it much more conversational.

Mayel has been working on Moodle Core plugins and exploring fork/remix/share functionality. We’re looking forward to sharing more details about all these things soon!

MoodleNet v0.9.3 alpha update

The MoodleNet team is pleased to announce the release of v0.9.3 alpha. It’s also World Turtle Day!

Functionality added

  • Users can enter location in profile

UI tweaks

  • New icon to represent ‘Communities’
  • Header image in profiles
  • Improvements to dark theme

Bug fixes

  • Clicking ‘Load more’ no longer takes you to the top of the list

Ivan, our designer and front-end developer, is updating our styleguide, which will make it easy for admins of federated instances to customise the look and feel of MoodleNet.  

We almost had usernames ready for this release, but want to do some more work on that. Once we have introduced usernames, you will (eventually) be able to @-mention other users. We’ll also make it easy for users to change the default header image in an upcoming release.

MoodleNet v0.9.2 alpha update

Screencast overview of MoodleNet v0.9.2 alpha

Today, we’ve recently released the latest iteration of MoodleNet. Version 0.9.2 alpha is focused on UI tweaks and bug fixes. Thanks to Ivan for his hard work on this!

UI tweaks

  • New, separate settings page (instead of pop-up modal)
  • Moved ‘new community’ from icon in menu bar to top of the ‘all communities’ feed
  • Updated login page graphic

Bug fixes

  • Various bug fixes

We’ve also manually updated ‘featured’ communities and collections, which we’ll continue doing every release until this is automated and algorithmic.

In addition, this past week we’ve also been issuing this badge to testers:

MoodleNet Experimenter badge

The team is currently hiring a replacement to Alex for the backend developer role, so Doug and Mayel are spending time screening applicants and interviewing this week and next!

MoodleNet v0.9.1 alpha update

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Yesterday, we released MoodleNet v0.9.1 alpha. As we were tweaking the previous version right up to the workshop at the UK & Ireland MoodleMoot last week, this release is primarily bug fixes and small tweaks.

The most noticeable difference is on the home page for logged-in users, where featured collections and featured communities are displayed prominently. Right now, these are hard-coded, but in future will be both under the control of the federated instance administrator.

Dark mode continues to be the team’s favourite, but we’ve also tweaked the light mode to be more accessible! We’ve scheduled the next update, v0.9.2 alpha, for Tuesday 7th May.

MoodleNet v0.9 alpha update

After some extended testing, we’ve just released MoodleNet v0.9 alpha in preparation for the workshop at this week’s UK & Ireland MoodleMoot.

Functionality added

  • Dark mode
  • User’s latest activities on profiles
  • Timeline (latest activities of user’s followed communities and collections) on home page

UI tweaks

  • New UI (without sidebar)
  • Moodle brand and colour scheme
  • Link to code of conduct from user menu

Bug fixes

  • Various small bug fixes

In addition to the above, we’re still working on search, federation (the ability to have separate instances of MoodleNet that can communicate with one another), and of course Moodle Core integration.

We’ve almost completed our Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) with Moodle’s Privacy Officer and external Data Protection Officer (DPO). We’ll be sharing that with the community for feedback.

The first first release that features federation will be called ‘beta’, so the next scheduled release will be MoodleNet v0.9.1 alpha.

MoodleNet v0.7 alpha update

MoodleNet v0.7 alpha login page

A couple of days ago the team deployed MoodleNet v0.7 alpha, which includes the following new functionality, UI tweaks, and bug fixes.

Functionality added

  • Timeline views
  • User profile pages

UI tweaks

  • New discussions view
  • Improved login page

Bug fixes

  • Fixed ‘a few seconds ago’ bug
  • Various small bug fixes

Note that the timeline views aren’t exactly as we want them, so we’re tweaking them over the next week or so.

In addition, we’re working on our Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) with Moodle’s Privacy Officer and external Data Protection Officer (DPO). That will be finalised before we launch the first beta next month.

We’re currently working on:

  1. Federation — the ability to have separate instances of MoodleNet that can communicate with one another.
  2. Moodle Core integration — add a resource from MoodleNet to a course in a Moodle course.
  3. Refactoring and code clean-up — ensuring MoodleNet runs as quickly, efficiently, and bug-free as possible!

The next release, v0.9 alpha, is scheduled for week beginning 8th April 2019.

MoodleNet 0.5 alpha update

MoodleNet responsive view

This week, we are releasing MoodleNet v0.5 alpha, which includes one of our most-requested features: a mobile web view! We’ve also implemented a bunch of UI tweaks and bug fixes.

Note that, after testing using BrowserStack, pretty much every combination of mobile device and web browser works except Apple’s Safari and Microsoft’s Edge browsers. This is due to a combination of some issues around supporting web standards, unfortunately.

For the moment we suggest that the community use other, more standards-compliant browsers to access MoodleNet. Some excellent choices include OperaMozilla Firefox and Google Chrome.

We didn’t manage to sneak in an ‘activity’ view for this release, but we’re working on it this week. This will allow you to see everything that’s happened within a community recently (e.g. new user/resource/collection added, new discussion thread).

MoodleNet 0.3 alpha update

Update: check out this five-minute overview video on YouTube!

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As MoodleNet progresses and the team get into more of a rhythm, we’ve started working in two-week sprints. For the next few weeks, up to the beta release at the UK & Ireland MoodleMoot, we have plenty to do!

Earlier this week we released MoodleNet v0.3 alpha in preparation for inviting a new cohort of testers. It includes the following new functionality, UI tweaks, and bug fixes:

Functionality added

  • Collection-level discussions
  • ‘Profile & settings’ to update name, description, and avatar
  • Guide to Markdown next to text input boxes

UI tweaks

  • Tweaks to fonts and colours to improve accessibility
  • New approach to discussions, which now act more like threads
  • List of communities indicates number of collections contained by each

Bug fixes

  • No longer have to refresh to see added community/collection
  • Can see all communities again (fixed pagination)

We’ve removed edit functionality from MoodleNet at the moment in preparation for moderation. In future, you’ll be able to edit and delete comments and resources you add, or those in a community you moderate.

Given the amount of time between now and the beta launch at the UK Moot, we’re going to focus on what we consider to be essential to the core value proposition of MoodleNet:

  1. Federation — the ability to have separate instances of MoodleNet that can communicate with one another.
  2. Mobile view — MoodleNet accessible and usable on mobile devices.
  3. Moodle Core integration — add a resource from MoodleNet to a course in a Moodle course.

Thank you to our testers, who are doing a great job of asking questions, reporting bugs, suggesting functionality, and filling in surveys!

Evolving the MoodleNet UI

We’re a week into the initial testing of MoodleNet and are already getting some fantastic feedback from testers!

MoodleNet current (early Feb 2019)

While there’s a long way still to go before we can open registrations, things are really starting to come together in terms of the user interface (UI) for MoodleNet.

The above screenshot was taken today. Even in this very initial version, the feedback we have had from testers has been mostly positive. Our anonymous survey to ask for their first impressions included responses such as “nice interface”, “attractive” and “clean and clear”.

MoodleNet staging version

Our designer and front end developer, Ivan Minutillo, isn’t content to rest on his laurels, however. The above screenshot is taken from our staging server and shows an iteration of the UI that we will make available to users over the next few days.

As you can see, there are many improvements, including:

  • Image width
  • Placement of ‘Create a community’ button
  • ‘Overview’ tab in communities
  • Indication of community members
  • Dark sidebar
  • Use of gravatars

MoodleNet - future mockup

Ivan hasn’t stopped there, either, though! Although the above mockup isn’t coded yet, this is the direction we are currently thinking of heading with MoodleNet. As you can see, the sidebar now includes ‘MoodleNet’ at the top, there is search functionality (which we will be doing across federated instances) and the whole experience feels much more refined.

Whether or not you’re part of the initial testing process, we’d love your feedback on this! Do you like what you see?