Completed project: ITNow 2.0 custom IT Notices RSS feed

Primary UITS contact: Mark Lynch

Completed: March 3, 2008

Description: This project enhances and expands official UITS IT Notices by providing RSS syndication only for selected services.

The current IT Notices RSS feed publishes all notices to all subscribers. ITNow 2.0 makes RSS syndication available on a service-by-service basis, so customers can construct a custom feed that contains only their topics of interest. It generates a single RSS feed that maps to one or more services based on a customer's menu selections. It does not require authentication or attempt to use information about user status to tailor content.

Outcome: This project will provide a convenient, comprehensive way to generate a custom RSS feed for UITS IT Notices. Customers can visit the website and build an RSS feed on a service-by-service basis or by service grouping. More importantly, it also provides a centrally managed notification system that can display service-specific messages from within a particular UITS service.

In addition to existing IT Alerts and Announcements, another type of notice, called Service News, was created to provide a channel for service-related news items that do not rise to the urgency of an Alert or Announcement. This will extend the feed to include other support content of timely interest to the IU communities, while still giving customers control over the subject area of the notifications they receive.

ITNow 2.0 has the ability to define service dependencies, so subscribers will also get notices about foundational services without getting multiple copies of that notice, even if they are subscribed to several related services. (For example, a subscriber to both OneStart and Oncourse will get only one CAS notice, even though both services depend on it.) This helps eliminate the possibility of missing an important service notice while minimizing message duplication.

Milestones and status:

  • June 15: Code complete
  • June 16-July 13: System testing and modification
  • July 16-27: Test deployment
  • August 1: Alpha production service established
  • September 1: Quality review completed
  • October 24: Additional notice type added
  • October 26: Beta production service established
  • December 12: Final testing completed
  • December 13: Staged production service introduction
  • December 13-January 18: Comments and suggestions reviewed for incorporation
  • January 19-Feb 8: Test site modified based on user feedback
  • February 11-12: Final changes made and code moved into production
  • February 13: Official release and announcement to IU community

Comment process: Email Mark Lynch.

Benefits:

  • UITS services have an RSS feed that can be placed within an application that delivers only news about that particular service. Embedded feeds can be configured to show Alerts, Announcements, or Service News, singly or in combination.
  • The ITNow 2.0 input process enables UITS to use a distributed means of gathering service news, which can then be vetted and published centrally.

Project sponsor: Sue Workman, Associate Vice President for Support

UITS participation:

  • Support Center
  • Online Support
  • Support Systems and Licensing
  • Communications

External resources:

  • Faculty reviewers
  • Student reviewers
  • LSP reviewers

Approach: This project is proceeding through multiple steps:

  • In the first step, development staff partnered with the Support Center for the primary design, coding, and testing. The Support Center contributed throughout this period with critical requirements, content, ideas, testing, and feedback.
  • The second step built on these requirements by teaming with Online Support staff to extend the service content and coordinate with other IT communication efforts.
  • The third step was a review by the User Experience group and project participants and the implementation of the changes and improvements that resulted from that feedback.
  • The fourth step was a soft launch to specific constituencies outside of UITS, followed by a general release and promotion.

Required effort: Approximately 500 hours of development time over a 14-week period were required to design and code the initial version of this service.

This is document avbi in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2015-09-30 00:00:00.

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