Developer Area/Developer Meetings/70

From Mahara Wiki

< Developer Area‎ | Developer Meetings

Agenda for the 70th Mahara developer meeting on Tuesday, 19 March 2019, 7:00 UTC

We will meet using Meet.Catalyst (a Catalyst staff member 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: Rebecca Blundell


  1. Topic from previous meeting: Kristina to look into recording the meetings
  2. Progress on Mahara 19.04 (Kristina)
  3. Progress on the removal of triggers (Kristina, Robert)
  4. Next meeting and chair
  5. Any other business


Kristina Hoeppner, Mahara project lead, Catalyst NZ, Wellington, NZ (chair)
Rebecca Blundell, Developer and Automated Tester, Catalyst NZ, Wellington, NZ (minutes)
Cecilia Vela Gurovic, Developer, Catalyst NZ, Wellington, NZ
Kevin Dibble, Developer at LearningWorks and music enthusiast, Mahara community member, Hamilton, NZ
Gregor Anzelj, Computer Science teacher, Mahara community member working on isolated institutions and portfolio moderation, Slovenia, Europe

Meeting summary


We trialled a recording of this meeting to see if it would be useful for the minute taker. There is the possibility of also making the recording available online, but no decision has been made on this.

By not using headphones, Kristina was able to record the meeting on audacity despite it being limited to recording one type of input (her mic) at a time.

Progress on Mahara 19.04

Good progress has been made and the majority of new features have been committed.

There are a few exceptions, still in progress, particularly Gregor's work on isolated institutions and page moderations and Rebecca's SmartEvidence editor.

Lisa Seeto has been working on a few new features, most notably consolidation of navigation to make things easier to find:

  • “Find groups” and “My Groups” have been merged into “Groups”.
  • “Find people” and “My friends” are being merged into “People”.

We will ideally be finished merging everything for 19.04 by the end of next week (29 March 2019) so we can produce the first release candidate then, or at the latest by the beginning of April. It looks like we'll be aiming for the end of April for the release.

Kevin mentioned that the letter icon in the version he has been looking at had the search box overlapping it. Kristina said this is a known issue which may already have been fixed in one of the un-merged Bootstrap 4 patches.


  • Liam to look at Kevin's CSS fix to confirm whether it is needed
  • Kristina to complete Bootstrap 4 upgrade documentation

Removal of DB triggers

Triggers cause problems on cloud infrastructure (AWS and Open Stack.) This is particularly an issue with Elasticsearch. We planned to remove triggers for 19.04, but due to the complexity of the work, that's not going to be possible. It is still a priority, will be available for testing as soon as it is completed and should be able to be back-ported to 19.04 if Mahara master hasn't moved on much in the meantime. Current progress

Kevin asked how triggers will be removed on an upgrade. Bob would need to answer that question. Here is the related patch: Kristina says Kevin is welcome to help test it and give feedback to us once its no longer WIP (work in progress), if he would like to. He can add himself to the list of reviewers on that patch to be notified when changes are made. Kevin is a MySQL user and notes that there is an issue with the way MySQL creates triggers (under the current user) and doesn't migrate that to the root user when the site is moved to another server. Cecilia notes that we have functions to drop the triggers and recreate them which may be useful.

New proposed features

Email notifications for submitted portfolios

Kevin has been working a lot with District Health Boards (DHBs) using Mahara for portfolio assessments of nurses. A group of DHBs went away from using SmartEvidence and started sharing everything with the group without awareness that everyone in the group could then see their assessment.

Professional Development Recognition Programme (PDRP) for nurses is quite long-winded, with 4 stages: Notification, review, peer assessment and validation. It's a three-yearly cycle. Because after it gets marked it's three years before they need to look at it, it's important for the nurses to have an email trail they can look back at to see when each stage of the assessment process occurred. That feature is being tested currently and Kevin would like for it to be integrated with Mahara core if that makes sense.

Kristina: This needs to be looked at from a wider community perspective, but notifications for submitted portfolios sound like a good idea in general.

Plugin to automatically add a visitor to the right institution

Ko Awatea LEARN is a Totara site integrated with a multi-tenanted Mahara site. When users go from the Totara site to the Mahara site, they need to arrive at their institution, rather than a big generic one. Kevin has written a plugin that queries the calling website and adds them to the right institution based on what domain they come from or what 'audience group' they belong to. For instance, an integrated Totara site shares the user's audience group with Mahara which creates the institution and adds the person to it.

The only issue with automatic sign-in is if a person changes their name and/ or email address, they have a new user created when they log in, as the username is the email address. This is not yet resolved. Kevin is going to see how LTI works with this as it looks like LTI has an associated id, rather than just the username(email).

Action: Kristina to review whether another client has resolved this issue.

My learning plugin

Gregor has updated his self-directed “My learning” plugin for 18.10, which will be available publically soon.

It has a two-step process:

  1. The user creates a goal for something they want to improve or learn.
  2. There are five tabs which can be used for: Recording prior knowledge, setting goals, process for reaching goals,

evidence of results and self-evalution.
This can then be displayed in the users' pages.

Action: Kristina to work with Gregor to get a paragraph in the April newsletter so that people will know about it and can use it.

Next Meeting

Next meeting:
Thursday, 2 May, 7:00 UTC
Next chair - Rebecca
Minute taker - Cecilia

Action summary

  • Liam to look at Kevin's CSS fix to confirm whether it is needed.
  • Kristina to complete Bootstrap 4 upgrade documentation
  • Kristina to review whether another client has resolved this issue.
  • Kristina to work with Gregor to get a paragraph in the April newsletter so that people will know about it and can use it.