Release, release, release…

This was a big week for Sakai releases. First, the Sakai 2.5.4 maintenance release is finished and, once a little more testing is done on the release artifacts, we’ll be making a formal announcement of its availability. When we started the process of formal maintenance releases, we weren’t sure how many in the community would appreciate these efforts because we though many were just following the maintenance branch. We’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback about the practice, however, and the Sakai community is beginning to rely on the maintenance releases, which is great.

Also, Sakai 2.6.0 Beta has been released and is appearing on QA servers.  The 2.5 series is also where we first introduced the formal beta and release candidate releases (see related post from 1 year ago). Of course there is no use for a beta version if you don’t have someone willing to run the software and, again this year, we all need to thank University of Cape Town for playing this role. In concert with the maintenance releases, we believe the quality and reliability of official Sakai releases has never been higher–an important goal for the Sakai Foundation over the last year. Hopefully this is helping everyone spend more time on high value activities on campus…we know this is critically important in these difficult economic times.

Finally, we’ve made a release of an early (very early!) prototype of Sakai 3 available. This release does not reflect the final intentions of Sakai 3 but we thought the community might like to start playing with what has been built so far. We hope that more people will take a *close* look at what we have throughout the process and begin to get involved in building Sakai 3. A few important caveats about this release. First it is built on the current Sakai kernel rather than K2, although the plan for Sakai 3 is to build on K2. Second, there has not been formal QA on the code and so you can expect many bugs and incomplete feature. For more information see the release information page.

These three releases underscore the increasing maturity of community software development practices. It is great to see something as visionary as Sakai 3 making progress at the same time as the more prosaic but critically important work of maintenance releases. Not to mention the important progress the community is making on new features available in Sakai 2.6. We have lots of room for improvement, of course, but I’m very pleased to see these things come together this week. My thanks to everyone who has been working on these projects!

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