Ideas for Sakai U-Camp & Programmer's Cafe

Aaron Zeckoski aaronz at
Mon Oct 15 12:35:51 UTC 2007

Ok, after a little brainstorming we are thinking that we should
attempt something like a code sprint for the afternoon session. The
idea is that we either pick small scale issues or make up an exercise
and work on them in small teams. The teams would be made up of a
couple experienced people (hopefully a designer and developer) and
some less experienced members. Probably 5-8 people in a team.

An alternative would be to simply demonstrate the process of designing
and developing in Sakai for all the developers with a precompleted

If you have an opinion about which one is more valuable to you as a
developer or designer in Sakai, please speak up. If you think they are
both bad ideas and we should just do a presentation or something else
entirely then please make suggestions.


On 10/9/07, Colin Clark <colin.clark at> wrote:
> Hi everyone,
> Aaron Zeckoski and I have been chatting about some new ideas for the
> Sakai U-Camp and Programmer's Cafe at the upcoming Newport Beach conference.
> We've been talking about the prospect of having a small collaboration
> where developers in the advanced Cafe stream will implement
> functionality in Sakai based on wireframes by real designers.
> I'd like to solicit wider feedback and suggestions on these ideas. The
> initial still very drafty suggestion is:
> * 9 am - 11 am: Design, accessibility, and testing talks and discussions
> This session will largely be focussed on topics of interest to
> experienced UX folks as well as those interested in learning more. The
> familiar U-Camp format.
> * After lunch - 2 pm: U-Camp collaboration with the Programmer's Cafe.
> based on a design problem we work out and design for in advance of the
> conference, we'll work with the advanced Cafe developers to implement
> our designs.
> This will require us to organize well in advance so we have time to put
> together a relatively small project, do the user research, and come up
> with a design. Perhaps there is some bite-size work from the Fluid
> summit that we could work on for this project.
> UI designer/developer types will likely want to stay in the Cafe for the
> afternoon to help with the implementation work.
> * 2 pm - 4:30 pm: Back in the U-Camp, more UX-specific activities.
> Perhaps something intersecting with teaching and learning? Or UX
> walkthroughs of Sakai? Other ideas?
> * 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm: Combined session demonstrating the results of the
> implementation. Identifying next steps and people to carry this work
> forward if desired.
> I think that we still need to work out a lot of the details for this
> sort of plan. It's hard to do any sizable amount of implementation work
> in an afternoon, so the design problem would have to be very small and
> worked out ahead of time.
> More importantly, we've found in Fluid that the most productive way to
> work on UX issues tends to be a close collaboration amongst a small
> group of designers and developers who work as a team. Unfortunately this
> initial idea for a U-Camp/Cafe collaboration doesn't really take this
> approach into account, and I'm a bit troubled by the process.
> Thoughts? Suggestions?
> Colin
> --
> Colin Clark
> Technical Lead, Fluid Project
> Adaptive Technology Resource Centre, University of Toronto
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> fluid-work at

Aaron Zeckoski (aaronz at
Senior Research Engineer - CARET - Cambridge University
Sakai Fellow - []

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