2nd Edition

The 2nd Edition of ESaaS is in preparation. The goal is to have  beta versions of the new material for Fall 2019 and revise it in time for a 2nd Edition release for Spring 2020.

There will also be important changes to how the supplementary resources (SPOCs, exercises, etc.) are made available in conjunction with the 2nd Edition, so if you’re an instructor using any of these resources, please read on.

Changes to Content: “API First”, separation of COD and CHIPs; reviewers needed

An executive summary of the content and format changes to the book can be found here; comments welcome. Briefly, virtually all code examples will be removed from the book and moved into CHIPs (Coding/Hands-on Integrated Projects), leaving the book to cover only COD (Content-Oriented Didactic material), and the exposition of SaaS Architecture is being rewritten to a much more “API first” view, resulting in significant new material and some material moving to other chapters. An updated TOC will be published on this site shortly.

We are looking for help developing additional CHIPs and reviewing new material. Please contact Armando (fox@berkeley.edu) if you are willing to volunteer.

Changes to Distribution: Free PDF download, Hardcopy & Kindle sold via Amazon

We will provide a free download of the PDF of the book. The printed version and Kindle version will be sold exclusively through Amazon. There will also be a version of the book integrated with edX (see below).

The First Edition had been translated into several languages; we are looking for volunteer translators for the 2nd Edition. Since we plan to give it away for free, we can only offer “psychic income” for translation. Contact Armando if you’re interested (this won’t happen until the production content is mostly frozen).

Changes to MOOC: Integration of book and exercises using Codio

We are working with Codio to integrate the book into their platform so that switching between COD and CHIPs is seamless. We hope to have a couple of example chapters showing off this integration available by Fall. Contact Armando if you’d like to be a beta tester. The Codio infrastructure is integrated with edX so will be available to MOOC learners, but note that edX’s new policies mean that auditing and using built-in autograders will no longer be free for most learners. That said, the CHIPs will still be available as standalone GitHub repos for those not wishing to use Codio; however, autograding will probably not be available in this format, since for reasons of economics we need to standardize on one platform and technology stack to handle our in-class, MOOC, and SPOC autograding, and that stack will likely include Gradescope/Codio integrated with edX.

New app for tracking and handing off NGO project customers

In addition to the already-available Course Question Bank, we have developed a new app ESaaS Engagements to track student projects and iterations. The idea is that clients can be shared/handed off across different courses at different universities. Please send Armando your GitHub username if you’d like to be added as teaching staff to either of these apps.

Changes to SPOC Usage

Since 2012, Berkeley has provided zero-cost access to SPOCs + autograders to other instructors. However, Berkeley can no longer bear the direct expense of maintaining the autograders (we rely on MOOC revenue to neutralize those costs, but it is barely breaking even and the campus taxes that revenue). In addition, because of GDPR, Berkeley is legally responsible for GDPR compliance with every single non-Berkeley instructor and enrolled student in a SPOC. (For the MOOC, it is edX’s responsibility.) We do not have the resources to handle this.

Therefore, current SPOC users will be grandfathered for use of their existing SPOCs with the current-generation autograders and exercises until the 2nd Edition goes into production in 2020, under two conditions:
(1) Instructors will be required to attest that only their own enrolled students and teaching staff have access to the SPOC, and that none of those individuals are covered by GDPR. For unfortunate legal liability reasons, this is non-negotiable.
(2) Use of Codio and the autograders will require a per-student payment. We’re negotiating the exact amount but are aiming for about US$30 per student. Keeping in mind that this includes access to the online textbook plus the autograders and complete IDE, and that the PDF version will be free, we think this is not an unreasonable ask.

We are working with edX on getting “private cohorts” to work within the MOOC so that SPOC instructors can have full visibility into their own enrolled students’ progress, autograder data, etc. within the MOOC, but this will still require the students to enroll in the paid track of the MOOC at the (hopefully) reduced “BerkeleyX SPOC” rate we are negotiating.