My Favorite Talks on Fosdem 2013

Saturday and Sunday 2-3 February I attended the yearly Free and Open source Software Developers’ European Meeting (Fosdem). There are 5000+ people that visit this free congress that is organized in the ULB campus buildings by a team of volunteers and sponsoring from some big companies like Redhat, Google, HP, O’Reilly and others.

The reason I visit Fosdem is to get inspired and to re-fuel my enthusiasm for open source software and technology in general.  There are over 450 speakers and many parallel sessions to choose from. The atmosphere is very friendly and relaxed, the level of knowledge of technology is usually very high amongst the visitors and most have active jobs in IT as developers, systems operators and researchers.

Browserinfo Block

When developing themes or plugins for Moodle displaying the Browser info can be a nice tool. Creating this block only took a few minutes. I will not share it on Moodle.org because it is really too simple. If you want, download it from: http://theming.sonsbeekmedia.nl

 

Moodle 2.4.1 PHPxref Code Documentation

When developing for Moodle a best practice is to use the libraries available when writing your code. When you write a Moodle plugin: a block, module, report, custom certificate or whatever you will need to use Moodle libraries to communicate with the Moodle core.

Moodle has many libraries that are always available in your plugin. These libraries are stored in your lib folder. Others need to be included in your plugin using a require_once line or similar.

Finding your way in Moodle code takes time, reading the dev documentation on Moodle.org is a good start an working on copies of existing plugins helps you get started quickly.

New Version of the Moodle Bootstrap Theme

I am happy to announce a new version of the Moodle Bootstrap theme. This new version contains a few improvements:

  • Now really resonsive on mobile devices
  • Contains the bootstrap collapsed menu (only when jQuery is enabled)
  • Has a improved Gradebook view (no transparent hover overs)
  • Has a improved Quiz layout
  • Is tested on different browsers (oops no IE yet)
  • Has a improved Data mod layout
  • Uses the Bootstrap tabs
  • Is tested for Moodle 2.4
  • Has options to use glyphicons for moodle 2.3 in the settings menu
  • Has the option to add your Google analytics key. This theme enables improved Google analytics reporting:for more info check: http://basbrands.nl/2012/04/18/google-analytics-with-moodle/
  • Spanish translation thanks to Maximino Ameneiro Gómez

Moodle Bootstrap Theme

Last week I have created a new theme for Moodle, the Moodle bootstrap theme.

Bootstrap is a CSS / Javascript framework for easy webdevelopment. It is packed with features: A responsive grid, typography, form controls, dropdown menus and much more.

Moodle offers a excellent theming engine that allows developers a lot of freedom when creating a cust theme / template. You can actually make any Moodle page look exactly how you want it to look.

Some Tips on Moodle Theme Development

In my work I often have the opportunity to work on themes. I love doing them because you get to work on expertise’s like PHP, HTML, CSS and JavaScript programming. For themes you are working on the front-end part of the application. The more knowledge you have on user experience design, new webdesign techniques and graphics tools the better. The best way to learn how to do it is to look at other designs, code and read lots.

In this post I have written some do’s and don’ts on theme development based on my personal experiences as a theme designer.

Google Analytics With Moodle

A better way of using Google analytics with Moodle.

View more Presentations from Bas Brands

At the Ireland & UK Moodlemoot we presented on the Google-Analytics reporting we had implemented for the Moodlemoot site. Over on his blog, Gavin explains/shows on his post(link), you can do nice reports with G-A however this requires some changes to Moodle. This post will focus on what we code we used and how it works to achieve that type of reporting.

Drag&Drop Design

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Moodle2 linkedIn Authentication

Moodle LinkedIn exampleDownload from Moodle.org

I have created a Linkedin authorization plugin for Moodle. This enables you to login to a Moodlesite using your LinkedIn username and password. After logging in your firstname, lastname, current posistion, country, city and profile picture are shown in Moodle. This plugin mainly targets companies that use Moodle for eduction.

The plugin is available for Moodle 2 and newer, you can find it in the Moodle Plugin Database.

 

 

 

About Me

I am Bas Brands, webdeveloper at BrightAlley and Sonsbeekmedia in the Netherlands. I have been working in IT since 2002, starting as a Unix sysadmin at Sun Microsystems and now working as a software / webdeveloper.

My main interests in IT are Open Source Software,  plugin development for Moodle and Joomla, and theme development. I specialize in Moodle theme development.

I like to chat about: Brazilian music & arts, books, any kind of music, indy movies and (life) hacking tip ‘n tricks

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