Anita and I kicked off the day with our Managing Banner Security presentation. This was fun. We thought we were in a nice 150 person room, but no, they moved our session to a 400 seat auditorium. It went well and we had plenty of questions at the end of it. Next, I stopped in the exhibitor hall and I had a couple people from our session stop me and ask questions there.
I attended Erin’s “Shake the Roots: Portal revamp in 5 steps” session. I went just in case of technical questions. Erin described our portal upgrade and redesign. She did a fantastic job. I only needed to help with one question about our strange e-mail configuration. I got comments from a few schools about how good her presentation was.
Next, I went to “UDC User Interface Roadmap.” SGHE is focusing on creating a better user experience and better navigation. They’re also trying to make their products appear more “unified.” This is involving a switch to Flex in some areas and/or the use of AJAX in others. They are also trying to make better use of CSS to make the existing SSB pages fit in more. The presenter suggested getting familiar with Eclipse/Flex Builder and perhaps Eclipse/Aptana for AJAX development.
Finally, I went to The Future Banner Architecture. This covered some of that same territory at the UDC technical opening session but more in depth. A few concepts that they’re focusing on are SOA, configuration and extensibility. They developing with a model-driven-architecture implemented with Spring/Hibernate/JPA. He talked about some of the development benefits SGHE is getting from this, such as design-by-contract and the use of mock objects. They are also working to consolidate business rules and making it easier to manage and modify them – this fits in well the “configure-over-program” methodology. I’m liking what I’ve heard. They’re sounding more like the Pragmatic Programmers, which should be a good thing.