PoodLL (plugin)

PoodLL quiz drawings get lost

 
 
Picture of Peter Halverson
PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

Hello,

PoodLL drawings are really impressive!  I want to use them in my classes so...

I have installed PoodLL Recording quiz question type  qtype_poodllrecording Add-on 2014050100, in my Moodle 2.4.9 (Build: 20140310), and tried using it with my students.  I made some quiz questions where they draw graphs in a poodll whiteboard window.

It works great at first, but when they go to the next page of the quiz, then return, they lose their work!

More precisely, their work has been transferred to a copy that is above the whiteboard, and the whiteboard itself is blank.  Now when they go to the next page and then return, both the copy and the whiteboard are blank.

It seems that when you leave the page, poodll records whatever is on the whiteboard, and then wipes clean the whiteboard.

I doubt this is the intended behavior?  Shouldn't it keep the students work in the whiteboard, so that the student can continue his/her effort?  That's what the other quiz question types do.

By the way...  What does the "save" button do?  I don't see any effect.

Thanks for the great work,

Peter Halverson


 
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Picture of Justin Hunt
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

Hi Peter

That sounds a bit bad alright. 

The student can't leave the page and then return to continue drawing where they left off. That is because the drawing is just saved as a JPG image (not as a series of strokes). That will change sometime this year, because the new literally canvas whiteboard gives us much better options in this area.

But the student's drawing should not be cleared unless somehow they save the blank drawing. The save button sets the current drawing as the "response" for that question. Internally we need to create the image file, save it in the Moodle draft files area, and set the filename as the question response. The save button does that. 

But since students always forget to press the save button, I implemented an autosave feature. This checks for canvas changes every X ms and if it has changed, saves it. Possibly this has gone haywire in your case for some reason. In the PoodLL filter settings you can change the value of X ms, and if you set it to 0 then there will be no auto save at all. 

Try that and let me know how you get on. Also does selecting a different whiteboard (probably literally canvas) in the PoodLL filter settings alter the behaviour? Also please make sure you are using the latest PoodLL filter. 

 
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Picture of Peter Halverson
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

Hello Justin,

I tried your suggestions.  Here is what happened.

First, I have the version of poodle from about a week ago.   Version 2014050100

Setting Autosave to 0 did disable autosave, and then clicking "save" became important.

However the basic problem persists.

Changing to "literally canvas" causes this error when attempting the quiz:  Coding error detected, it must be fixed by a programmer: Cannot require a CSS file after <head> has been printed.

Changing to "drawing board" makes the quiz question look different, but the problem persists.

What I don't understand is why there are two images when the student returns to the page with the poodll question.  See attachments.  Picture 1:  Student response.   Picture 2: after leaving and returning.  Picture 3, after leaving and returning again.  Notice that in picture 2 the drawing has been moved into an upper box.  Then in picture 3 the student's response has vanished.

Sincerely,


Peter H.


 
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Picture of Justin Hunt
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers
The reason you get a picture of the previous response, is that otherwise students can worry that their picture was not submitted for some reason, and go and draw it again. I suppose it would be even clearer, if we  also hid the whiteboard and showed a button to restart it. 

The 3rd picture where the drawing vanishes has to be a bug. I will look at later this week and report back. Sorry I can't work more quickly on it.

Justin
 
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Picture of Justin Hunt
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

OK, this was indeed a bug. The fixed version is now on github. 

https://github.com/justinhunt/moodle-qtype_poodllrecording

After I have given it a thorough test, I will upload it on Moodle.org.

 
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Picture of Justin Hunt
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

OK the fixed version is now available from Moodle.org. 

The problem with literally canvas whiteboard when used in a question type was in the PoodLL filter. That is fixed but not updated on Moodle.org yet.  If anyone needs that please get it from github:

https://github.com/justinhunt/moodle-filter_poodll

 
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Picture of Peter Halverson
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

Dear Justin,

Thank you for working on the Poodll drawing bug.

I went ahead and installed the most recent Poodll plug in files, but the bug has actually gotten worse!

I upgraded all of the poodle files that I originally installed.  The new versions are:

filter_poodll_moodle27_2014051700

qtype_poodllrecording_moodle27_2014051700

tinymce_poodll_moodle27_2014050100

(And I am still running Moodle 2.4.9 (Build: 20140310) )

The behavior now is that the drawing is created (Picture 1, from my previous posting), then when the student clicks "next" the status of the question is "Not answered".  When the student goes back to the the question, the Poodll whiteboard is blank (Picture 3 from previous posting.)  Picture 2's state doesn't happen.

So...  sorry but there still seems to be some sort of bug.

Sincerely,

Peter Halverson

 
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Picture of Justin Hunt
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

Peter

I went back and tested and couldn't recreate the problem. But it does seem consistent with the behavior one would expect if autosave was off and the user did not press the save button. Can you confirm that is not the case?

Thanks

Justin

 
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Picture of Peter Halverson
Re: PoodLL quiz drawings get lost
Group Particularly helpful Moodlers

Hi Justin, and anyone else interested...

OK...  I was able to get the new version of Poodll drawings to work.  The final hurdle or problem had to do with file permissions.

To find the error, I looked in the Apache error log file.  This file is separate from the error logs in the Moodle directory.  On my hostmonster account, the error log is in

/usr/local/apache/logs/error_log

The file contained errors like this:

SoftException in Application.cpp:256: File "/home/halverph/public_html/moodle/filter/poodll/poodllfilelib.php" is writeable by group, referer: http://www.halverscience.net/moodle/mod/quiz/attempt.php

I fixed the problem by changing all the Poodll files' permissions from 775 to 755

and also all the Poodll directories permissions from 664 to 644

The unix shell commands to do this were to go into the public_html/moodle directory and entered these commands.   (Caution!  Make sure you have a good backup first.)

[halverph@server moodle]$ find . -type d -exec chmod 755 {} +
[halverph@server moodle]$ find . -type f -execdir chmod 644 {} +

That got things working.

This permissions problem has come up before, when installing the STACK question type.  I think it happens because some web servers are more fussy than others with regard to permissions and other factors related to security.  I guess Hostmonster is being super-careful.

Now my students can enjoy drawing graphs!

Thanks...

Peter H.

 
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