Opencast 2.3: Release Notes

Enabling external interoperability.

Opencast 2.3 introduces the new external application API to more easily connect to and integrate other tools like learning management systems. It also continues the work of improving the administrative user interfaces and other parts of Opencast by fixing over 100 issues.

New Features and Improvements

  • External API - While Opencast always was very strong when it came to the integration of third-party systems, the introduction of this brand new state-of-the-art API enables integrators to deal with even more complex integration scenarios. Its key feature is the support of versioning: Multiple different versions of the API can be offered the same time, enabling service providers to upgrade the API without breaking external dependencies. With fine-grained, easily customizable per-user access control, a comprehensive documentation and its ease of use, this new API builds a solid basis for the future of Opencast - Integration has never been more effective and fun!

  • Event Statistics - The statistic counters that display statistics of events and allow the user to quickly apply filters have been significantly improved by both using the screen estate more effectively and better fitting into the overall UI design. Besides this, support for role-based visibility and optimizations to improve performance in large-scale scenarios make this useful feature even more useful.

  • Capture Agent API - The capture agent API now better supports ad-hoc recordings by allowing capture agents to start (create), stop and prolong immediate events. Besides this, the missing parts of the JSON interface have been completed.

  • Admin UI Style Guide - A comprehensive style guide for the Admin UI has been written and made publicly available to help to maintain the high level of graphical design in the future.

  • Enhanced Themes - In addition to intro and outro movies, themes now also support titles: Metadata can be rendered on top of an image that can be uploaded or extracted from the recording. This image is then converted to a movie and rendered into the final video so that Opencast can render self-describing videos. The default workflow has been extended to support this kind of enriching recordings with metadata out-of-the-box.

  • New Workflow Operations Handler - Two new workflow operation handlers have been added

    • WOH export-wf-properties enables Adopters to make workflow settings persistent for later re-use
    • WOH import-wf-properties can load those persistent settings back into workflow instances to be used
  • Improved Workflow Operation Handlers - Some existing workflow operation handlers have been improved resulting in more flexible and powerful processing capabilities

    • WOH segment-video has been significantly optimized to provide better video segmentation results. In particular, it handles (accidental) processing of non-segmentable content vastly better
    • WOH publish-engage, retract-engage, publish-configure and retract-configure have been optmized to perform significantly better when it comes to publish/retract a large number of files
    • WOH theme supports more settings of themes that can be used to control the flow of workflow operations
  • New Language Supported - British-English has been added to improve the localization for non-US English speaking countries, in particular when it comes to non-US date formats.

  • Maintainability - By removing obsolete legacy code throughout the Opencast code basis, updating various libraries, improving the documentation, design and performance, we continuously ensure Opencast's maintainability

For a completed list of changes, have a look at the changelog.

Additional Notes About 2.3.1

Opencast 2.3.1 fixes a critical issue with publication on distributed systems as well as two security issues and several minor issues.

Additional Notes About 2.3.2

Opencast 2.3.2 is a bug fix release that fixes some minor issues of Opencast 2.3.1. For more details, please have a look at the changelog.

Opencast 2.3 Release Schedule

Date Phase
October 1st 4th Feature Freeze
October 1st 4th - 23th Internal QA and bug fixing phase
October 10th - 16th Review Test Cases
October 17th - 23th Documentation Review
October 24th - November 14th Public QA phase
November 15th - 28th Additional bug fixing phase
November 21th - 27th Translation week
November 28th - December 11th Final QA phase
December 13th Release of Opencast 2.3