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Suggestions for next version of Mahara

Scot Aldred's profile picture
Posts: 18

20 January 2009, 2:55 AM

Hi I'm new to Mahara, but I have a couple of suggestions that would improve its operation.

1. Open up the kinds of external media that you can embed in a view. What's there is limited--the embed code, or just the URL of slide share for example will not work in the view.

2.  Include the option for emailing a guest invitation for a specific view rather than public URL or Secret URL options.

3. The RSS feeds options for an external Blog seems to be a bit clunky with a fair bit of mucking around for novices to include the feed and have it work properly.

I'm not sure if you have a voting mechanism like then Moodle community for the next bits for development, but if you do this is not a bad place to consider.

I look forward to learning more about Mahara and getting my students to use this tool for a range of purposes, not just as educational assessment.



20 January 2009, 5:36 AM

Hello Scot,

 I discovered Mahara in Sep2008, but I wasn't seriously involved until September 2008. My view is that Mahara has improved notably in the last six month or so-also the community website-, but I do agree with some of the points you mentioned.

Most of the common widgets -Photobucket, Widget, etc- cannot be embeded in the Mahara HTML editor. I am also trying to build a "share it" button that works in Mahara, for social bookmarking, as the code from websites such as doesn't work either.

Other aspect that we need to improve is the themes' gallery. At the moment, there is only  one theme. available. 

I conceive Mahara not as a mere eportfolio platform, but as a personal online space, and in order to achieve this last aim, we need to give more choices to users. They should be able to choose the theme they want, for instance.

In the college where I work, in Scotland, I am promoting the use of Mahara as an online CV, and we plan to use it  as a CPD platform for staff . Mahara can be used as a Staff Intranet, for instance


Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

20 January 2009, 6:31 PM

You're quite right about the themes - I'm hopeful that the next 3-6 months will see us make improvements that'll make it a lot easier for people to contribute extensions such as themes to Mahara Smile
Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

20 January 2009, 6:27 PM

Hi Scot,

First, a general comment - if you have a feature you'd like to see implemented, we would most appreciate it if you could submit it to the feature request tracker (currently on Eduforge) This allows us to keep track of all requests in one place. Sadly it doesn't have a voting mechanism, although people can make their voices heard through commenting of course.

Regarding the requests themselves:

  1. There are security implications involved that mean we can't responsibly allow an "anything goes" policy - but at the same time, people should be able to embed content from sites they trust! There have been some improvements in this area in Mahara 1.1, although I still think there's still a way to go before we get things right.
  2. A good feature request
  3. Suggestions for improvement? In which ways have you found it clunky?
Thanks for your feedback! All the best for your use of Mahara Cool
steve P's profile picture
Posts: 122

22 January 2009, 1:50 AM

I think it would be great if RSS feeds from Mahara blog(s) were also available, so that if a user wanted to use a Mahara blog in the way they might currently use Blogger or WP, it would be possible for the public to pick up their blog's feed (if they've made it publicly available in a view).
Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

22 January 2009, 2:50 AM

Absolutely agreed. I had a go at implementing this before, though I didn't like my implementation so I scrapped it (lessons learned intact!). The other thing I'd like to do to blogs is attach commenting to blogs rather than using view feedback for it. Then we'd have a nice little blogging system Wink
Miren's profile picture
Posts: 10

22 January 2009, 4:14 AM


my main idea for improvement would be the Internalization. The GUI translation tool in the core of the  next version would be fine for the moment, but a real i18n customization of the user language will be even better

Thanks for your job  

Malcolm Smith's profile picture
Posts: 7

23 January 2009, 5:03 AM


Commenting on blogs would be a really useful feature for us. Will this be in 1.1?


Nigel's profile picture
Posts: 1643

23 January 2009, 7:24 AM

Nope. Here's the related feature request. Maybe we can get to do it for 1.2 though.
Scot Aldred's profile picture
Posts: 18

22 January 2009, 6:04 PM

Hi Nigel,

 Thanks for the tip about where to post te suggestions.

 The clunkyness comes in terms of the way you have to find an RSS feed and how then your Blogger Blog postings are then displayed (embeded videos not displayed).  Bloglines for example needs only the URL of the Blog to be input and it then finds the RSS feeds for you. 

Sorry for the non-techie explanation--hope you can understand what I'm attempting to say.  I'll add my Blog to the demo account and make the view public.  See:

Thanks again,


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