Sakai 3 Visual Style


As part of the the Sakai 3 project (I should say, the 3akai R&D project that we intend to form the basis of Sakai 3) and the overall UX initiative, the Sakai Foundation, University of Cambridge and Georgia Tech recently engaged a User Experience Design Consultancy in the UK create a visual design.  The Sakai wiki contains a description of the process and the initial results, but here’s a quick screen shot of the dashboard:

Sakai 3 Dashboard Sample

Sakai 3 Dashboard Sample

I’m personally very pleased with the direction this is heading and is an important step on the path towards delivering Sakai 3. Please take a look and let us know what you think.  I hope to be demonstrating this “in action” at the 10th Sakai Conference in Boston, which is now less than 2 weeks away!


Josh Baron’s Sakai Webinar

As you may have read in a previous post, Josh Baron held a webinar about Marist’s move to Sakai last week. It was attended by over 80 people from the Educause CIO email list.  I, personally, was laid out in bed with the flu and missed it!

But you can see a recording of it here. And the Sakai wiki has a list of questions (and answers) that were asked during the webinar.

Thanks to Josh for doing this! And thanks as well as to Lois Brooks,  Mathieu Plourde, Michael Feldstein and Anthony Whyte for helping field questions. The best marketing for Sakai comes directly from those who have adopted Sakai.

Google Wave in Sakai

Wave in Sakai

Wave in Sakai

A cool pic and post from Victor Maijer about getting Google Wave in Sakai. Of course it’s not a deep integration but nice to see nonetheless.

Sakai on Educause CIO List

No good deed goes unpunished.  I’m sure Josh Baron is feeling a little like that after his innocent comment on the Educause CIO email list generated over 35 on-list responses. There were undoubtedly many other off-list responses directly to Josh.

It started like this (the list archives are public, so you can see for yourself):


Looking for some guidance on a breakdown of roles and responsibilities for a Moodle Implementation team.  I will not be assimilated by Blackborg!  Any help is always appreciated.



To which Josh replied simply:


We’re in the final stages of a college wide transition to Sakai which has gone very well.  If you are interested in another open source option at all let me know as I would happy to share our experiences.


And hence followed the flurry of “I’m interested” and “me too” emails. So Josh finds himself hosting a webinar on Thursday, June 18, from 12 noon – 1 pm EDT  to discuss Marist College’s Sakai transition. You can sign up here. Continue reading

Sakai Book Now Shipping

I wrote a few weeks ago about the new Sakai book entitled Sakai Courseware Management: The Official Guide (available from Packt Publishing). Well I’m happy to say that the book is now available for shipping and that some sample content is available:

sakaibookcoverOne nice thing to note is that Packt is donating a percentage of revenues to the Sakai Foundation. Alan and I are also directing our royalties to the Sakai Foundation. So its a small way to support the  project itself.

Packt is offering a 10% discount via its website and those that are attending the 10th Sakai Conference in Boston will receive a discount code for another 5% off. The discount code will be sent to conference registrants by email sometime next week when Mary gets back from a long weekend (during which she is supposed to be staying off email!). If you can’t wait just send me a note and I can send it to you.

Continue reading

Sakai 3 as Mac OS X?

Michael Feldstein over at e-Literate has a clever blog post comparing Sakai 3 to OS X.  I think it is mostly spot on. Personally, I was one of the “new adopters” of OS X–I was using Windows during Apple’s transition from 9 to X. When I moved back to the Mac I never ran things in compatibility mode (or whatever it was called).

You could find other similar platform changes that would be comparable, but I like the one Michael’s picked because for a few of reasons:

  • It emphasizes the fact that we are trying to “leapfrog” the current generation. There are risks in trying to do this, of course, but Sakai is in a great position to take on those risks.
  • It acknowledges that Sakai 3 won’t be functionally equivalent on day one but that for some that won’t matter. It depends on what functions you’re already relying on.
  • And that there is a big difference between porting a capability and re-imagining one. The real promise of Sakai 3 will be fulfilled with the re-imagining and that won’t happen overnight.

One important difference, of course, is that Sakai is an enterprise system and an OS X is a desktop system.  So the decision-making on transition will be much more deliberative and, in general, conservative. This means our transition can be more gradual. OTOH if I really hated OS X I could have reinstalled 9 and waited. I don’t think that’s an option here–once a school rolls out Sakai 3 they won’t be going back….

Sakai Conference Attendance Very Strong!

Things are shaping up very nicely for the 10th Sakai Conference in Boston.  Over 400 people are currently registered! It’s going to be a well attended and very exciting event, which is especially gratifying because I know budgets are especially tight this year. The program looks fantastic, with keynote speaker Vijay Kumar, a full slate of pre-conference workshops on Tuesday and over 100 other sessions.  The venue looks fantastic and Boston is a great city. Now let’s hope the weather cooperates…

If you’re thinking of coming but haven’t registered yet I have some good news. The hotel group rate has been reduced to $184/night (for a standard room) and extended through this Friday, June 12th. So don’t hesitate.

You can register at the conference website.
And don’t forget to get yourself a room at the hotel.
Hope to see you there!