Developer Area/Developer Meetings/83

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Agenda for the 83rd Mahara developer meeting on Tuesday, 16 February 2021 at 7:30 UTC

We will meet using Big Blue Button (Kristina will initiate the call).

Our #mahara-dev channel on Freenode IRC will be our backup or in case there are problems with the web conferencing tool and we'll need to chat to resolve it. If you don't have an IRC client, you can join us using your web browser.

  • Chair: Kristina Hoeppner
  • Minute taker: Robert Lyon


  • Items from the last meeting: Résumé block continuation
  • Chat channel: Matrix?
  • Mahara and Git submodules (currently, plugins are missing a few things to use them as submodules)
  • Mahara 21.04 release
  • Next meeting and chair


  • Chair: Kristina Hoeppner, Catalyst IT, Wellington, New Zealand
  • Minute taker: Robert Lyon, Catalyst IT, Wellington, New Zealand
  • Fergus Whyte, Catalyst IT, Wellington, New Zealand
  • Ghada El-Zoghbi, Catalyst IT, Sydney, Australia


Recording of the meeting


No time yet to look into the following:

  • Résumé block continuation - presenter was not attending

Moving from IRC chatroom to Matrix

Discussion about changing to a more modern public channel for #mahara and it was felt that Matrix chat channels would give us the following benefits

  • More modern look and feel
  • Works on mobile devices too
  • Has more features
  • Scrollback / channel history so one doesn't need to be online all the time to see people's chat / requests.
  • Is open sourced

Should we make Matrix as our preferred channel for interactions with the community? Everyone in meeting said "Yes, lets go with Matrix!"

Action item for Kristina: mention in next newsletter, update wiki to mention Matrix instead of IRC

Join us on Matrix.

Git submodules

Ghada talked about the use of git submodules and how they can make integration of third-party code easier.

She mentioned how Catalyst Australia are using them and how they get benefits from them.

If you wanted to have customisations then it's best to fork the third-party party module and use the fork as the submodule.

One of the drawbacks is needing to set up the third-party modules in such a way that they are not relative to the root of the Mahara code base. E.g. have - 'cats/lib.php' rather than - 'htdocs/module/cat/lib.php'

So if we are to use submodules we will need to develop a way to easily deal with this so that we can tell third-party module maintainers what they will need to change to get things working without too much pain.

Ghada mentioned a downside with submodules is that they are advanced git - so there is a steep learning curve to getting to understand them.

Pulling submodule updates can lead to floating commits rather than being cherry-picked onto the actual branch

Fergus mentioned the use of subtrees within Catalyst New Zealand and how the differ from the submodule way.

Action items: - Look into subtree vs submodule benefits - Look into the effort to change a third-party module to be a submodule

21.04 release

Things we are working on to get into the next release

Verification and assessment work, which is currently in development for a client, but hopefully will be finished soon and once that is done then things will be up-streamed into Mahara core

New submissions plugin that adds a comfortable management of current and already released group submissions by providing a sort and filterable table in its own group tab including direct access to the portfolios respective their archived version.

Fegus to upstream Moodle changes for so that assignment submission from Moodle can be done via webservices

Sorting LTI 1.3 work so that we can upstream that allowing Oauth2 / LTI 1.3 webservice integration

Action items: - need to work out what versions of PHP / OS / DB we need to support - need to work out full list of what is yet to get in - need to do more testing with different LTI 1.3 endpoints before we can release work

Any other business

Due to the awareness around Black Lives Matter movement we need to make sure words we use in Mahara are more inclusive. One of the parts of the project that need fixing up are around the naming of git branches.

Action item: Change repository branch names from 'master' to something more inclusive

Next meeting and chair

Tues April 13th 7:30pm NZ

  • Chair : Robert Lyon
  • Minute : Kristina Hoeppner