Owen G. McGrath

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Free and Open Source Software (FOSS)/Open Educational Systems development projects abound in higher education today. Many universities worldwide have adopted open source software like ATutor and Moodle as an alternative to commercial or homegrown systems. The move to open source learning management systems entails many special considerations, including(More)
Usage data captured and logged by computers has long been an essential source of information for software developers, support services personnel, usability designers, and learning researchers [1, 2]. Whether from mainframes, file servers, network devices, or workstations, the user event data logged in its many forms has served as an essential source of(More)
Established best practices in software development tend to assume that a product's intended stakeholders (i.e., users, customers, and clients) are fairly well known and generally accessible. This paper outlines specific issues faced by those who conduct requirements analysis in the context of open source projects in which the user communities are widely(More)
The U.C. Berkeley E-BABEL project centers on an internet portal for university-level foreign language learners. With E-BABEL's integrated set of linking and communication tools, foreign language instructors are able to offer their students well organized ways on the internet to use, encounter, and reflect upon the language they are studying. Built using the(More)
With the rise of cyber-infrastructure in higher education research and teaching, new challenges surface when it comes to understanding users and usage. How, where, and when user activity gets captured and analyzed in academic online systems is particularly critical in internet-based systems. The flexibility that these open systems allow for in promoting(More)
This paper describes the practical application of four visualization techniques that have been developed to deal with high-volume, large time-scaled, and high-dimensional data sets that are characteristic of Internet-based user activity. Visualization techniques can be useful for monitoring and studying online user activity in settings where many thousands(More)