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INFORMATION ABOUT OPTIMA UPDATE summer/autumn 2012

NEW FEATURES

VIDEOCHAT Videochat object

Videochat is a video conference tool in Optima which enables a video connection between several locations. The object has two modes: the Chat mode can be used in meetings between two people or small groups. All users have access to both a video and an audio connection (if a user doesn't have a camera, only audio). In the Lecture mode, only one user has a video and an audio connection and the rest of the participants listen. A user who has administrative rights to the object can book sessions, define the participants and define the length of the session. A text chat is available in the sessions, as well as a Notes area and a Files tab from which participants can open files which the administrator of the object has defined to be shown there.

In the autumn of 2012 the Videochat feature is in a testing/piloting phase on the optima.discendum.com server. Read more (in Finnish).

Note! Optima Videochat needs a media server which means that the feature is not available on all Optima servers.

When the Videochat feature has been enabled in an environment:

The user can create Videochat objects when in Workspace tools > Workspace level profiles > [Profile name] > Other objects > the option User can create videochat objects is selected.

You can create a Videochat object in New object > Communication and interaction > Videochat object.

The session in a Videochat object is booked in the calendar.

A Videochat session is joined by clicking the object or via a general calendar.

RSS RSS object

With the RSS object you can collect news feeds provided by different sites into one view. You can define the number of news items to be shown for each feed and whether the only the subject or both the subject and description of the feed are shown.

To create an RSS object, go to Add a new object > Other objects > RSS object

In use: When the User can create RSS objects option is ticked in Workspace tools > Profiles > Workspace level profiles > [Profile name] > Other objects

kooste Collection

Collecting material to one single view is done with a completely renewed collection tool from now on.

The new Collection feature allows you to collect different materials, announcements, info on new objects and user cards (user information) from the learning environment. You can also add material from outside sources such as Google Docs, Slideshare, YouTube and Twitter. The view can be divided into pages which you can name. This feature provides workspace administrators versatile possibilities to gather important information into one view.

Note! The old compilation object is no longer available. (Already created compilation objects can be used.)

To create a Collection, go to Add a new object > Other objects > Collection

In use: When the User can create collections option is ticked in Workspace tools > Profiles > Workspace level profiles > [Profile name] > Other objects

mp3-soitin Mp3 player

Using mp3 files is even easier than before. Once you have uploaded an mp3 file into Optima, it is played via Optima's own player. In other words, you do not need to download the file to your computer to listen to it. In case you wish to download the file, click the Save to your computer button in the top frame.

UPDATES AND IMPROVEMENTS

PalautuslaatikkoNew features of the Return box: Return groups, public peer review and the possibility to link streaming objects

Return groups

Returning items in groups has been made easier. The new return group feature allows you to define the other groups members when you are returning a file into a return box. This automatically registers the file as produced by several users. When the examiner grades the file, the grade is automatically assigned to all users belonging to the group.

Public peer review

Peer review can be set as entirely public. In this mode, in addition to seeing the comments on your own file, you can see the comments written about other users' files.

Streaming objects in a Return box

Streaming objects can now be returned into a return box. This returned item can be an audio or a video recording made by the student. The user must have access rights to the original file in order to return the item into the return box. If the original streaming object is deleted, it will no longer be visible in the return box either.

Returning to your own account from a test user view opens up the current workspace

The test user feature has been modified so that when you return to your own view from the test user view, the workspace in which the test user view was initialised, is opened. This makes it easier to switch views within a particular workspace.

Adding members to a workspace

In the first update this year, the interface for adding members to a workspace was renewed. This feature has been further optimised and in environments containing the most users and groups, the adding of groups has been made faster. Also, when you are using the dynamic search based on last names, you can see a user's email address when hovering on top of a search result with your cursor.

Subject of reminder messages

Optima sends reminder messages to the users' email addresses once a day if this function has been activated. It is also possible to send timed notifications from a calendar and about announcements. Until now, these messages have had the default subject lines "You have mail in Optima" and "Announcement from Optima". These subjects can now be freely modified.

This function is found in Environment tools > Actions > Subjects for reminder messages

Including the recipient list in the "Send notification" function

The "Send notification" function can be used to send an email message to a selected group of users which includes a link the object in the learning environment. Now it is possible to include the list of recipients in this message.

Order of messages in reminder emails

The content of the reminder messages has been modified so that private messages are placed on top and the rest after them. Also, messages sent to the same discussion list are grouped together.

User card tabs

The user card has been divided into tabs in the administrator view. The first tab is an overview of the user's information, on the second tab the user's information can be updated and on the third tab the user's group memberships can be modified.


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