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Do It Yourself LMS: Open-Source and Hi-Tech Possibilities


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Examines the basics of using open-source Learning Management Systems. Explores the two most popular open-source LMS available: Moodle and Sakai.

Published in: Business, Technology
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Do It Yourself LMS: Open-Source and Hi-Tech Possibilities

  1. 1. Do-It-Yourself LMS Open-Source and Hi-Tech Possibilities Matt Crosslin UT Arlington, UT Brownsville
  2. 2. Open Source vs. Proprietary
  3. 3. What is Open Source? <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Access to source code </li></ul><ul><li>Usually free, but don’t be cheap! </li></ul><ul><li>True open-source vs. opening up the source code. </li></ul>
  4. 4. What is Proprietary? <ul><li>No access to source code </li></ul><ul><li>User pays for a license to use a copy </li></ul><ul><li>User does not “own” the program </li></ul><ul><li>Cost of support is usually included </li></ul>
  5. 5. The Battle <ul><li>Open-source seen as valiant under dog, bravely fighting the evil proprietary empire. </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Battle <ul><li>Proprietary seen as the shrewd business company being constantly undermined by those pesky open-source people. </li></ul>
  7. 7. My Position? <ul><li>Always a need for something ready to go </li></ul><ul><li>Open-source better fits the needs and nature of true academia </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t support one LMS over another </li></ul>
  8. 8. Open Source: Benefits & Criticisms
  9. 9. General Benefits <ul><li>Cost </li></ul><ul><li>Access to source code </li></ul><ul><li>Customization and growth </li></ul>
  10. 10. New Breed of Instructional Designer <ul><li>Can create any type of instruction needed </li></ul><ul><li>Not limited by tools available in the LMS </li></ul><ul><li>Comes from educational background </li></ul><ul><li>Well trained in open-source applications </li></ul><ul><li>Need BOOKS written on quick customization techniques. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Analysis of Criticisms <ul><li>Open source is not secure </li></ul><ul><li>Open source is not mature </li></ul><ul><li>Open source is not compatible </li></ul><ul><li>Open source has no support </li></ul><ul><li>Open source can’t handle large stuff </li></ul>
  12. 12. What is Do-It-Yourself Open Source?
  13. 13. Answer: ALL Open Source is D.I.Y.!
  14. 14. Hosting a Site <ul><li>Platform – Java, PHP, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Storage size </li></ul><ul><li>Bandwidth </li></ul><ul><li>Tools – phpmyAdmin, Control Panel X, etc </li></ul>
  15. 15. Mixing With Other Applications <ul><li>Authentication issues – how one program can talk to another </li></ul><ul><li>Integrated vs. side-by-side </li></ul>
  16. 16. Customizations <ul><li>CSS files for styles and size </li></ul><ul><li>Header and footer files for overall look </li></ul><ul><li>Creating new features </li></ul>
  17. 17. Support – Where To Get Help <ul><li>For the real DIY – forums </li></ul><ul><li>Online documentation </li></ul><ul><li>Paid support (personal support is never free) </li></ul>
  18. 18. Moodle
  19. 19. Facts About Moodle <ul><li>Created by Martin Dougiamas </li></ul><ul><li>Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment </li></ul><ul><li>Uses PHP and a database, like MySQL or postgreSQL </li></ul><ul><li>Based on social constructionist pedagogy </li></ul><ul><li>8779 registered sites, 3,964,855 registered users </li></ul><ul><li>Largest site: Online Campus of Open Polytech of New Zealand with 8282 courses and over 54,000 users. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Martin Dougiamas
  21. 21. Possibilities <ul><li>Can create custom features – blogs, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Can create custom blocks – Skype presence </li></ul><ul><li>Integrates well with other open-source stuff; also can support side-by-side very well. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Sakai
  23. 23. Facts and Features <ul><li>Began at University of Michigan and Indiana University </li></ul><ul><li>Uses Java platform </li></ul><ul><li>CMS and Research Collaboration </li></ul>
  24. 24. Possibilities <ul><li>Can create custom features </li></ul><ul><li>Not on the same platforms as most open-source, so integration is more difficult. </li></ul>
  25. 25. Web 2.0 and the Future of Open-Source
  26. 26. What is Web 2.0? <ul><li>The Web As Platform </li></ul><ul><li>Harnessing Collective Intelligence </li></ul><ul><li>Data is the Next Intel Inside (database management) </li></ul><ul><li>End of the Software Release Cycle (perpetual Beta) </li></ul><ul><li>Lightweight Programming Models (RSS, open-source) </li></ul><ul><li>Software Above the Level of a Single Device (iTunes) </li></ul><ul><li>Rich User Experiences (Google Maps, AJAX) </li></ul>
  27. 27. Open Source and Web 2.0 <ul><li>Read/write web – users define what they see, have more input </li></ul><ul><li>AJAX – already being implemented into Moodle (drag and drop blocks) </li></ul><ul><li>Writely, AjaxLaunch, and ODEO – side-by-side integration </li></ul>
  28. 28. Links <ul><li>Open-source definition </li></ul><ul><li>Moodle: </li></ul><ul><li>Moodle Philosophy: </li></ul><ul><li>Sakai: </li></ul><ul><li>O-Reilly What is Web 2.0: </li></ul><ul><li>Writely: </li></ul><ul><li>Odeo: </li></ul><ul><li>AjaxLaunch: </li></ul>