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    Th04 Social Th04 Social Presentation Transcript

    • Spark Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration David Grogan Manager, Curricular Technology Group UIT Academic Technology • Tufts University
      • What is Spark?
      • What do we hope it will be?
      • How is it used?
      • What’s under the hood?
      • What’s next?
      • Questions
    • What is Spark?
      • An extensible suite of highly flexible, web-based tools for communication and collaboration that support teaching, learning, research, and other co-curricular activities.
      • A little history … APT Grants
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is Spark?
      • Freely available to entire community.
      • Tool set currently includes:
        • Wikis (Confluence)
        • Blogs (MovableType)
        • Podcast Publisher (homegrown)
        • Forums (JForum)
        • Maps (Google Maps/homegrown)
        • Media Annotator (homegrown)
        • Coming Fall ‘09: SparkMeeting
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is Spark?
      • Launched in August 2006.
      • Continues to grow in features and use.
      • Won a Campus Technology Innovators Award in 2007.
      • Core project team includes:
        • Project manager
        • Lead developer
        • Interactive media designer
        • All sharing support roles
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is Spark?
      • Baseline features of the commercial/opensource products we use:
        • Must allow for LDAP integration.
        • Must allow for customization of interface.
        • Must have robust API.
        • Must have access to source code and database.
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is Spark?
      • Common features across tools as implemented in Spark:
        • Single sign on using Tufts LDAP directory.
        • Easy one-click creation of new items.
        • Tufts directory integrated for setting individual permissions.
        • World, Tufts-wide, and private permissioning.
        • Tagging
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is Spark? Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What do we hope Spark will be?
      • A Tufts-based localized network of people and ideas.
      • (getting there slowly)
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Wikis
      • As of 6/13/08
        • 688 Wikis
        • 9787 Pages
        • 3945 Users
        • 19.31 gigs of attachments.
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Wikis
        • Rate of New Wiki Creation
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Wikis
        • Wiki Page Edits
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Wikis
        • # of Unique Users Making Edits
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Blogs
      • As of 6/13/08
        • 352 Blogs
        • 3568 Entries
        • 2061 Authors
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Blogs
        • # of new blogs
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Blogs
        • # of new entries
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Blogs
        • # of new authors
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Podcasts
      • As of 6/13/08
        • 53 Channels
        • 226 Episodes
        • 47 Authors
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used? Podcasts
        • # of new channels and episodes
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • How is Spark being used?
      • Forums use is negligible.
      • Maps and MediaMarkups are new tools with little data as yet.
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Evolution of our systems infrastructure
        • We started small, using VMWare for 3 development systems and 3 production systems (wikis, blogs, spark)
        • We expanded incrementally, adding development and production VMs for new services (forums, pod/vodcasts, maps, media-markup) as needed
        • We've used central resources whenever viable (network storage, authentication)
        • We've upgraded cautiously (creating just-in-time staging clones for upgrades) with end-user involvement and careful consideration of tradeoffs
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Virtualization is one of our keys to staying agile, keeping costs low, and maximizing scalability within our constraints.
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Next generation infrastructure:
        • Greater utilization of central resources
        • Better support for dev-test-staging-production workflow and automation
        • Explore opportunities for improvements in performance, load balancing, availability, change management using advanced VMWare functionality
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Typical Tool Development Effort:
        • 5 Pages, 3500 Lines of Code
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Development Approach
        • 1.5 Programmers, Designer, Manager, Sys. Admin Support.
        • 2 Calendar Months
        • Dev server, Test server
        • JSP, Tomcat, MySQL, YUI, JIRA, SVN, etc.
        • Secret release
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Development Challenge: Always Something New!
        • MediaMarkup uses Adobe Flex
        • SparkMaps uses Google Map API.
        • Always incorporating JavaScript libraries.
          • Drag and drop, Ajax tables, etc.
        • Impacts: Schedule, Plan, Design, Staff
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What is under the hood?
      • Future Directions
        • Ajax is good
          • For the user and the code.
        • Focus on reducing LOC for tools.
          • Shared Java database layer.
          • Shared JSP files.
        • Stick with existing technology suite.
        • Automated testing?
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What’s difficult?
      • Supporting people beyond the basics.
      • Finding ways to market the site to students.
      • Competition from freely available 3 rd party sites (e.g. Google, Wordpress etc.)
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What’s Next for Spark?
      • A new user interface.
      • Bring activity to the front.
      • Start connecting people and content.
      • Better communication and outreach.
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • What’s Next for Spark? Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration
    • Any Questions?
      • Contact: David Grogan ( [email_address] )
      • Some of my own
        • What are you doing with these tools?
        • How have you been successful in marketing tools to your students?
        • How have you been successful in scaling support?
      Spark: Web 2.0 Tools for Communication and Collaboration