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This is the main information page for the Sakai Product Council. The Product Council functions within the Sakai Product Development Process. To understand the Product Council you should be familiar with the process itself.

Product Council Role

The Sakai Product Council will act on behalf of the entire Sakai community to ensure the exceptional quality and cohesiveness of Sakai product releases in their support of varied teaching, research and collaboration needs. It does this formally by determining those projects which will go into a release, and informally by advising projects as they progress from R&D to production-ready maturity. The Product Council will undertake its work:

  • by employing the expertise of its members
  • through direct consultation with experts in the community
  • with reference to best practices for technology, pedagogy and standards
  • by establishing and communicating clear and objective criteria
  • with a transparent process that allows review and comment from the community

Product Council Members

The initial product council members, whose term will last through the 2.7 release, are:

Nate Angell – Nate works with clients in education and open source communities for rSmart, a Sakai Commercial Affiliate. Nate previously led web communications at Portland State University and at the Oregon Museum of Science & Industry. Nate holds an MA in film, television, and digital media studies from Brown University.

Noah Botimer – Noah is the ePortfolio Technical Lead for the University of Michigan. He is an open source and open education advocate. Before joining Michigan, Noah helped establish a campus-wide Sakai course and ePortfolio environment at Saginaw Valley State University.

Eli Cochran – Eli joined UC Berkeley and the Sakai community two years ago as a user experience designer and Javascript programmer on the Fluid project. After more than twenty years experience in interface design and development, Eli feels that successful systems must be more than understandable and usable, they must also be beautiful and fun.

Michael Feldstein – Michael is Principal Product Manager, Academic Enterprise Solutions at Oracle and the author of the e-Literate weblog. He is a frequent invited speaker on instructional technology and has been interviewed about e-learning by media outlets including The Chronicle of Higher Education, the Associated Press, and U.S. News and World Report.

Clay Fenlason – Clay is serving on the council in his role as Sakai Product Manager. Clay has spearheaded Sakai adoption at both Boston University and Georgia Tech, and has been both a Sakai Fellow and a Sakai Board member. When he is not devoted to the Sakai product, he is the Director of Educational Technology at Georgia Tech.

David Goodrum – David is Director of Academic and Faculty Services for University Information Technology Services at Indiana University. In addition he chairs the functional requirements committee as well as the support and implementation team for IU's implementation of Sakai.

John A. Lewis – John is the Chief Software Architect for Unicon and a 17-year veteran of the software engineering industry. His passions include open source and agile methods. John is active in several higher education open source communities, including uPortal and Sakai, and serves on the Board of Directors of Jasig.

Stephen Marquard – Stephen is Learning Technologies Co-ordinator in the Centre for Educational Technology at the University of Cape Town, where he leads the team responsible for the University's popular and widely-used Sakai deployment known as Vula. Stephen is a Sakai Fellow and serves on the Sakai Board of Directors.

John Norman – John is the Director of the Centre for Applied Research in Educational Technologies and 'Head of e-Learning' at the University of Cambridge. CARET provides infrastructure and support to the campus for the use of technology in teaching, learning and research, including the deployment of Sakai campus-wide. Prior to this he had experience as an engineer and medical devices entrepreneur on 3 continents. John chairs the advisory board for OSS-Watch and is an advocate for open standards and open source software in higher education.

Unknown User ( – Max is the technical team lead for enterprise academic services in ITS at New York University and an active member in the DIY technology communities in New York. She has managed the Blackboard implementation at NYU since 2001, most recently acting as the technical lead for an enterprise upgrade impacting 110,000 users. She also led the Sakai pilot at NYU in 2007. She received her M.S. in Computer Science at NYU's Courant Institute.

The Sakai Executive Director will also serve as an ex-officio member of the Product Council.

Product Council Structure & Governance

See Product Council Structure and Governance

Product Council FAQ

See the Product Council FAQ

Product Council Meetings

See Product Council Meetings

Product Council Reports

Communicating with the Product Council

The Product Council is made up of active community members. They are expected to follow the lists and Council work should be done on the public lists as much as possible. Comments or questions therefore should be sent to Sakai's email lists. For process issues "" is appropriate. For technical issues use "". For design issues use "". More specific discussion may take place also on more specific lists (eg, portfolio discussions on "").

The Product Council started with a dedicated email list (intended mainly for logistical issues) with a public archive, but later decided to retire it in favor of conducting all general council business via the existing, open general Sakai "" list.