Sunday, April 20, 2008

Sakai Uptake?

I was wandering through the vast terrain of Sakai technical documentation this weekend. There really is a lot of it. It's all presented rather flatly, if you will. Flat, and wide. And gray.

I'm giving a talk @ Stanford on the "the Sakai Architecture" for the standard set of blind men. Each of them represents a different set of stakeholders for Stanfords stovepipes. So I'm not quite sure which "Architecture" to speak to.

But enough about me.

Looking at this project I started wondering about the uptake of this codebase. There's a lot of stuff here, and it covers a wide set of concerns. A new comer may well feel as the early paleontologists did, pondering bits of fossils mixed in with contemporary remains. What to make of all this?

How many new institutions have come into the fold this last year?

The coders stand a fighting chance due to the Cafe (BOOT) work. But how do the rest of the folks reporting to the deciderators? And jeez, the deciderators?

Just asking.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Geek display of shell history

So inbetween building contractor consultations and spring skiing I've been dorking in a desultory fashion with Grails. And reading Planet Mozilla. huh, look at what the cool kids are doing; shell histories.

santoku:~/dev/stan_event_grail/stan_event_admin casey$ history|awk '{a[$2]++ } END{for(i in a){print a[i] " " i}}'|sort -rn|head
132 cd
104 ls
66 grails
30 emacs
24 ../stan_scripts/
23 find
18 more
15 ./
10 cp
9 pwd

I guess that means I'm mostly lost :)

I've been building (HA! as if building describes this painless process) an administrative UI for our event buss 'buffer'. That's what the
  • cd ( "where has grails put all this stuff?")
  • the ls ( "what's in here?" )
  • the grails ( "do that again!" )

are about. Emacs is just, well, emacs.

the script is how we do our builds; it creates a common environment and set of commands for our QA folks. Sadly in the little time I had to try to jam the grails app into sakai I was too put out by all the version collisions so I punted on that. is another common environment and management script for running our sakai builds.

I took existing Hibernate config files and rolled them into this Grails stuff. The table space is dirt simple, but the experiment was so painless I'm thinking of moving to some Course Management stuff. We're always dorking around with SQL ( don't let old timers tell you you don't need SQL to deal with Sakai ) to update stuff so a little side tool is warranted.

We've got a guy (Jeff Vance) who is mongeling around some BIRT scripts for reporting against Sakai, and so I dropped this Grails app into his tomcat last night. No Problemo. A Sakai "Web Content" tool takes our Support crew over to the Grails app. Nothing fancy with Auth at this time, but I'll probably just use the Tomcat Kerberos stuff I've wrapped around the BIRT tool and extend it into this Grails app.