This week, we are focusing on Edwiser RemUI – The first ever user-centric theme for Moodle. A theme that has made it possible to transform Moodle’s clunky look into a clean interface, both for the Administrators as well as Users.
As you know, at-least once a year Moodle undergoes a major release. These releases often have several changes to its core, sometimes rendering third-party add-ons useless.
So, when we were notified about the release of Moodle 3.2, we saw a sudden influx of caffeine intake among our developers who were already cranking their keyboards and working on Edwiser RemUI to make it Moodle 3.2 compatible.
All that hardwork finally paid off, and we are happy to announce the release of Edwiser RemUI 3.2 – a revamped, feature rich version of the original Edwiser RemUI that’s compatible with Moodle 3.2!
A note about the version number…..Now, you maybe wondering why the version number has jumped from v1.1 to v3.2. Well, with this Moodle update, we decided to synchronize our versioning system with that of Moodle.
So, from now on Edwiser RemUI will follow the version 3.2.xx pattern unless Moodle v3.3 drops, then it will follow the version 3.3.xx pattern.
Now that the confusion is cleared, let’s head over to the meat of this post – Edwiser RemUI 3.2 features!
Edwiser RemUI 3.2 Features at a Glance
Moodle 3.2 has to be one of the major updates that Moodle has undergone in the past few years, understandably they have put a lot of work on improving the UI, but have they been taking inspiration from Edwiser RemUI? That might be for you to decide 😉
Here’s quick rundown of the new features added to Edwiser RemUI 3.2.
End-user focused changes:
- Action menus added to pages.
- Admins can view User’s enrolled courses, grades and notes.
- Sidebar status save.
- Mini Sidebar added & Flat navigation added.
- Open add blocks section in Modal.
Developer focused changes:
- Fully compatible with Moodle 3.2.
- Optimized theme JS & CSS.
- Child themes support.
- Increased page load speed.
Let’s have a look at those feature in depth; we will briefly go over each new feature.
Action Menus Make Navigation Easier
Action Menus are like quick access menus, we have integrated most of the frequently accessed menu items inside Action Menus.
These are then present on every page of Dashboard. The menu items are dynamic and page specific. This reduces the number of items in your sidebar.
Administrators Can View User’s Enrolled Courses
Administrators have access to the list of registered users.
From there, they can view a user’s enrolled courses. He can track their progress and manage their notes.
In short, an admin can control the profile of a user.
Note: We have already released the above 2 features, those of you waiting for the remaining, we plan to release those on Feb 28th 2017. Mark your calenders!
Persistent Sidebar State
Not really a feature, but more of an UI improvement. You can Hide/Unhide the sidebar on your dashboard.
The state of this sidebar is saved across every session, i.e even if a user logs out and logs in again, the state of sidebar is saved.
Mini Sidebar with Flat Navigation
Mini sidebar is essentially the collapsed version of your main sidebar. The sidebar is fully functional, the icons remain and on hover the menu title expands.
The sidebar navigation now has the flat layout. See it in action below.
Add New Block Sections in Modal
Now you have an option to add blocks to your Modal view. These blocks can range from “Comments” section to your list of “Badges”.
You can add a section by clicking on the “Add a Block” button on the sidebar.
Fully Compatible with Moodle 3.2
Edwiser RemUI 3.2 was built with Moodle 3.2 in mind, which means every new element added in Moodle 3.2 is now compatible with RemUI.
Changes have been made to both Admin as well as User panel to make it more clean and 3.2 friendly.
Optimized Theme JS & CSS
Optimization of code is a tricky business, it takes a lot of effort to tweak the code to your liking but to optimize it without losing the operability? It’s a daunting but necessary task.
This enabled us to do the following.
Increased Page Load Speed
Page load time of any webpage depends on the number & size of resources that loads with it, so by optimizing the code, we drastically decreased the size of our code and increased the page loading speed.
Not only is increased page load speed important for a better user experience but also search engines now use this as a parameter (a very important one) to determine the rank of a page in its search engine results.
Child Themes Support
Child themes have become the industry standard for CMS themes. The main reason being the advantages it has over editing the main theme.
By uploading a child theme, you can change the layout and design of your CMS without messing with your main theme options.
Consider the scenario wherein you have customized your main theme to your liking, but the theme gets an update from the developer. Now this update will overwrite your customizations.
But if you make these customizations to the child theme then you don’t have to worry about theme updates breaking your site.
Moodle 3.2 was a big update, we recommend you move to this latest release as soon as you are ready.
Although you don’t have to worry about missing out if you are still running the older version because Edwiser team is still working on, and supporting Edwiser RemUI 3.0 & 3.1 for Moodle 3.0 & 3.1.
Let us know what you think of Edwiser RemUI 3.2, share your comments below.