This is part of a blog series of short profiles on plugin developers within the Moodle community. Today it is Michael de Raadt.

Name: Michael de Raadt
Twitter: @salvetore
Blog: http://salvetore.wordpress.com
Source Code: -

Tell us something about yourself

I’m a regular guy. I have a wife and two kids and live in Perth. My background is in the academic sphere where I taught software development for many years and conducted research around novice programmers. I have been working for Moodle HQ for almost a year now.

When did you first start programming?

Ah, the good old days. I remember writing programs in BASIC as a young fellow. In those days you couldn’t just download games. Through high school I enjoyed programming in competitions and went on to teach programming and run such competitions. I enjoy writing Moodle plugins as it is a great way to share my code and teaching ideas.

When did you first encounter Moodle?

My department ran a trial and I ended up chairing the trial.

What did you use Moodle for?

I grew from a teacher to a developer over time as I saw the potential to create plugins to improve student learning.

What was your first Moodle plugin? Why did you write it?

I wrote a clock block as a learning exercise, but the first plugin I shared was the Progress Bar block.

What is your latest Moodle plugin & why did you write it?

I wrote the Peer Review assignment type as a better way to conduct peer assessment. I still need to update that one.

What would you say to someone who is considering writing a Moodle plugin?

First see if there is not something similar to your idea already available. As far as development goes, it’s getting easier. Decide what type of plugin would suit you best and look for an example to work from.

There are lots of good examples out there. Don’t be afraid to ask questions on the forums; there is plenty of experience out there.

Documentation is improving, as is the consistency of the codebase.

Final Thoughts

Please share your work on the Plugins repository. In the end, your efforts will be appreciated and will help teachers and students around the world.

Some Plugins

This is a list of the plugins that Michael has contributed to that are currently (Jan 2012) in the Moodle plugins database. To view all these in the Moodle.org Plugin database check this page

Progress Bar
A time management tool for you and your students. Read the Review
Simple Clock
A simple JavaScript clock that highlights the time difference between a student and the Moodle server. Read the Review.
Unanswered Questions
Allows users to see forum discussions that have gone unanswered, Read the review

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