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Development history
The original version of LODE was developed in 2003 by Mauro Dolzani on Delphi+Windows as his Bachelor Thesis. The client part was based on a combination of Java applets and Javacript.

The system was inspired by a similar system called e-presence and produced at KMDI (Toronto) by the group of Prof. Ron Baecker. e-presence is a nice, powerful system that is now partly in the public domain. The reason why we developed our own system was the need to better satisfy certain e-learning related requirements. This issue is discussed  in a paper (see the PAPERS section).

Mauro then developed a second, Linux-based version. Delphi was in fact a poor choice for maintainence (it would have been difficult to find people with the right knowledge to develop it further). We moved onto Linux because we preferred to have an open platform.

A new Java version of the acquisition system was developed using part of the work done by Andrea Mittesteiner during his Bachelor Thesis (2007). The first Java interface for the acquisition system was coded by Anna Trifonova.

A new Flash-based client has been developed by Marco Cattani (2007). We moved onto Flash because the interaction between Java and Javascript was less than solid, and by using Flash we did not have to request the final user to download a massive JRE and to make sure that Javascript was enabled on the browser. Flash installation is seamless and at that time Flash was really an universal platform, even though Actionscript is not really great for development and maintanence... But this was or problem: the final user had an easy life.

A set of tools for transforming from the older formats to the new ones has been developed in Gabriele Dorigoni's Bachelor thesis (2007). He also made a prototype for annotating the lectures with user comments.

Jovan Stevovic
in his Bachelor thesis (2008) has developed a tool for porting  the presentations to Symbian-based mobile phones.

Besides directing and supervising the whole project, Marco Ronchetti has coded the current Java+QuickTime based Mac version. The decision to move the acquisition on the Mac was due to the headache that we had guaranteeing that all acquisition peripherals worked easily on Linux and Windows. On the Mac it was so much easier!

In 2009 Mattia Colombari has developed a system for automating the creation of a course web site (such as this) for publishing the lectures recorded with LODE (This work was his Bachelor thesis).

In 2010 Alberto Zanella examined the accessibility issues of the LODE client, and modified it so as to be usable by sight-impaired people and by persons with other types of disabilities. The work was done as Bachelor thesis.

In 2010 Antonio Mattei developed a module for exporting LODE lectures in iTunesU, and a version of the LODE client for the iPhone, where the Flash-based interface cannot be used. The work is documented in his Master thesis.

Matteo Matassoni is presently working at a JNI replacement of the QTJava libraries, since Apple deprecated its own Java wrapper for QuickTime...

Giorgio Pretto is investigating if we can replace Flash with HTML5 on the client. Flash has been an excellent solution until Steve Jobs banned it from the iPhone... now it does not look so "universal" any more!

 


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