Updating Card Sets

  • Michael Backus

    Michael Backus - 2009-01-27

    I'd like OpenCards 2.0 to implement some sort of card updating system. Currently I have a card set that I share with some people. Unfortunately, when I make changes to this card set, other people who are using my old set can not easily adopt the changes I make to my new set (they either have to add these cards themselves to the file they are already using, or start using the new card file and lose all the information that has been saved over time regarding how well they know various cards). I'm envisioning a system whereby two card files are synced by looking at the slide's contents.

    I understand that a much easier way to do this would simply be to create a new card file each time, but there is one major drawback to this approach. In order to ensure that I'm not duplicating cards, I put all of them in one card file (since I have just over 2000 cards this has become a real issue).

    • Holger Brandl

      Holger Brandl - 2009-01-28

      Hi Michael,

      this idea requires differnt things:
      First, it would be necessary to calculate some kind of hash value from a slide. This is necessary to detect which slides are new and which are'nt. Unless users don't change anything on a slide, this could be caclulated by including the different shape's positions, their type (text, image, ..) and their textual content.
      Next, OpenOffice would need to provide an API to copy slides. Unfortunately this is not the case yet.
      Finally, we would need some user interface in OpenCards to make this functionality to the user.

      Because this is more than I develop in the next future, I'm hoping that other extensions can fill this gap. Currently I'm focusing on the most wanted features for OpenCards: tagging of arbitrary shapes as questions, and learning in presentation (full-screen) mode. Both are making good progress, and are currently being tested by myself.

      Possible workaround: There are already some extensions that provide a version control for OpenDocument files on a content level. For instance it would be interesting to see if http://extensions.services.openoffice.org/project/OOoSVN could fix this. It was one idea behind OpenCards from its beginning, that it should benefit from tools around the OpenDocument-format. Maybe OOoSVN is one such tool. :-)

      Because the OC serializes the learning data to the odp-files themself, the setup I would propose is as follows:
      1) remove all learning data from the odp-file you would like to share
      2) add it to a subversion
      3) check it out a one version for learning
      4) check out a - let's say- content version and add some slides.
      5) Use OOoSVN to checking the content version
      6) Update your learning version with OOoSVN, which should just add the new slides.
      This should do the trick for for as many users as you like. The only thing that is not optimal is that the maintainer needs to keep two files  uptodate: the learning version, and the content version (where new content can be added periodically). And: Don't let OpenCards process the content-version, because this might corrupt the embedded learning models of the subscribers. 

      You're welcome to ask questions. :-)


    • asdf asdf

      asdf asdf - 2009-02-20

      I have the same problem as Micheal with updating card sets when sharing with other people.  Anybody have another solution to this problem?

      • Holger Brandl

        Holger Brandl - 2009-02-20

        What's with my proposed solution. Have you tried it?



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