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Fall 2007 Fluid Summit

Where and When?

September 24-28, 2007
Usability Lab, Room 307, Bissel Building
Faculty of Information Studies, University of Toronto
140 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

More Information

Overview

The Fluid Summit is an opportunity for members of the community to get together in a face-to-face environment to discuss and make progress on core issues related to technical architecture and user experience. This summit is intended to be a working meeting, combining relevant presentations with focussed discussions and collaborative work. By the end of the summit, we plan to have built consensus and defined concrete directions in several key areas:

  • Cooperating technologies with the Fluid framework (client and server)
  • Future component design and development
  • UX Walk-through protocols
  • User testing
  • Security policies

This meeting will also afford the rare opportunity for the design and architecture to discuss and work on issues together in the same room. A portion of the summit will likely be dedicated to discussion of component design/development plans with the whole group.

Planned Agenda

User Experience

1. UX Walk-throughs
By August, we intend to have completed a first round of user interface walk-throughs of at least Sakai and perhaps uPortal. The August summit will give us an opportunity to review the material gathered, refine our protocol and reporting process, and prioritize the issues collected to date.

  • Refinement of walk-through protocols and reporting process
  • Review and synthesis issues gathered to date
  • Synthesize cross-cutting UX issues across projects
  • Discuss and refine accessibility heuristics
  • Identify potential "componentizable" solutions and create design plans for upcoming components (including design patterns, scenarios of use, etc.)
  • Share results out with the community

2. Component Design Process
As we look towards designing new Fluid UI components, we need to plan a basic process and set of criteria for designing them in a fully usable and accessible way. We'll review Daphne Ogle's proposal for this process, and then share our recommendations for how best to design Fluid components.

  • Daphne will present a proposal for a working process for future component development
  • Discuss persona and scenario requirements for component development
  • Share out a set of recommendations for design process with the community

3. User Testing
As components like the Lightbox begin to mature, we need to ensure that our work is regularly tested for usability and accessibility by real users. Shaw-Han Liem will present his test plan for the Lightbox, and Mike Elledge and Daphne Ogle will present a proposal for long-term user testing strategies within Fluid.

  • Daphne and Mike Elledge will present a proposal for user testing vision and protocol
  • Shaw-Han and Daphne will present a user test plan for the Lightbox
    • Refinement of the plan
    • Delegate distributed, in-context testing of the Lightbox
  • Identify upcoming priorities for user testing within Fluid

4. Review UX Deliverables and Create a UX Release Plan
The community needs a stated release deliverables for the Designer's Toolkit and other user experience activities. The group will review our stated project deliverables, prioritize them, and draft a UX release plan for review by the Fluid community at large.

  • Go through the UX deliverables as stated to Mellon
  • Assess, prioritize, and delegate responsibility
  • Share a draft UX Release Plan with the community

Technical Architecture

1. Client-side Toolkit Review

2. Server-side Presentation Frameworks
The current plan for Fluid is to support two primary server-side presentation frameworks: RSF and Spring Web MVC. We'll discuss this plan and the potential for allowing developers to add bindings to other frameworks as needed.

  • Antranig will present his work integrating Spring Web MVC and Spring Web Flow with RSF
  • Overview of Spring MVC (Ray?)

3. Review of Architecture Plan
Colin Clark will articulate the latest refinements to the Fluid architecture plans, and the group will identify areas that need further refinement.

  • Roles and Responsibilities for Client and Server
  • Types of components and their relationship to the server
  • Transformation engine architecture

4. JavaScript Strategies for Portals
Portals represent a particularly complex environment for dynamic HTML and JavaScript. We'll discuss the best strategies for encapsulating and isolating JavaScript logic within portlets, Sakai tools, and in the portal frame itself.

5. Overview of uPortal Presentation Layer (DLM, etc.)

6. Fluid Project Security Policy
One of the early stated deliverables for the Fluid Project is a comprehensive security plan. Based on a proposal from the ATRC team, the group will discuss and draft a community security policy and testing strategies for UI security.

  • Security policy for reporting and handling security vulnerabilities within the community
  • Testing and architectural strategies for security

7. Coding Session

  • Ideas:
    • Porting the Re-orderer to YUI, JQuery, Prototype/scriptaculous, etc.
    • Converting PreferAble from JSF to RSF and Spring MVC
    • Work on new, small Fluid components: eg. date widget, tree component, etc.
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