Australian Moodle Moot 2016

by Donna Benjamin

There’s a lot happening in the education technology conference space in the next few months. Here at Catalyst we are passionate about all things elearning, so we are always keen to hear what others are doing, and share our experience with the EdTech community.

Next month, two of our team members head to Perth to speak at MoodleMootAU. For the very first time, Australia’s premier Moodle community event is heading home to HQ, and we are delighted to be taking part.

Having already spoken at the UK and US Moots, this will be Matt Porritt’s third Moodle event this year.

As a solution architect, Matt gets to design Moodle implementations from the ground up so they’re optimised for performance. But we’re often working with systems that have grown organically over the years. It’s not always obvious to see what’s causing bottlenecks. Benchmarking your Moodle can help you watch out for gotchas and better yet, do something about them.

Matt will be talking about Moodle Performance Testing and Benchmarking.

In many educational organizations, Moodle is a mission critical part of the Educational and IT infrastructure. With an almost 24x7 flow of activity from a wide range of users and team members.

Our learners are used to working with super-snappy solutions like Facebook and Google and don't ever want to be waiting for a page to load. Learners waiting are learners not learning.

Performance (or Load) testing your Moodle allows your organization to be clear on the load tolerance and capabilities of the LMS and also encourages decision makers and administrators to care more about metrics such as average page load times.

This presentation will cover a load testing overview, testing strategies and lessons learnt from load testing and benchmarking Moodle instances. This includes experience from testing Moodle instances that see several million page views per day.

This presentation will include:

  • Terminology: What is load testing, performance testing, Moodle benchmarking?
  • Why load test? What are the things that you get for your efforts.
  • How to load test? Methods and strategies
  • What to use? Tools in performance management and load testing

Brendan Heywood on the other hand will be making his MoodleMoot Debut, but he’s no newcomer to Moodle. As one of Catalyst’s senior elearning developers, Brendan has deep experience peering under the hood of some pretty serious Moodle sites. He has had eight plugins published in the Moodle plugin directory and is a Moodle core contributor.

Brendan will be talking about running Oodles and oodles of Moodles

Having multiple environments to safely isolate development, testing, and production Moodle instances is standard best practice for any system. The ability to develop and test on data that accurately represents your current production gives you a lot of flexibility. However working with lots of environments while managing data, security and configuration introduces some challenges and can be initially daunting for Moodle Administrators.

In this presentation we share some of the processes and tools we’ve evolved to help us manage multiple environments, and show how you can use them in your own organisation:

  • Pipelined deployments to each environment and continuous integration
  • Refreshing data from production back to staging and other environments
  • Cleansing sensitive data before sharing it with developers or testers
  • Isolating configuration between environments
  • Avoiding confusion between environments

This presentation will be of benefit to Moodle developers and administrators looking to improve their development and management processes around multiple environments.

MoodleMootAU is a great opportunity for professional development for moodle practitioners of all kinds. It brings together educators, administrators, developers, and decision makers to share expertise and drive the development of the world’s most popular open source learning management system. We can’t wait to be there, and hope to see you there too!