Fotograaf: onbekend

dhr. A.M. (Alan) Berg

  • ICT Services

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    Weesperzijde 190  
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    Weesperzijde  190
    1097 DZ  Amsterdam
    T: 0205252942
    T: 0622455121


Alan Mark Berg Bsc. MSc. PGCE

was the Sakai Foundations Quality Assurance Director for two major software releases (Sakai 2.7, 2.8).  Since 1998 Alan has also been the lead developer at the Central Computer Services at the University of Amsterdam. In his famously scarce spare time, he writes computer articles, book reviews and recently co-authored two books on Sakai a Community source learning Management system. He has also written a third book about Continuous Integration and Quality Assurance.

Alan has a degree, two masters, and a teaching qualification. In previous incarnations, he was a technical writer, an Internet/Linux course writer ok a product line development officer, and a teacher. He likes to get his hands dirty with the building and gluing of systems. He remains agile by ruining various development environments with his proof of concepts that are better left in the darker shadows never to escape.

I am also currently member of the committee that steers the technical road map of Sakai and a member of an Innovation Work Group for ICT at UvA.

Note: Sakai is a Learning Management system is used in around 360 higher educational bodies around the world. Approximately 5 million students use the system.


  • PGCE (Bolton)
    Teaching qualification, specialisation computers and networks
  • MSc - Experimental Science (UMIST)
    3 years research on dislocations in Silicon
  • MSc - Microelectronics with Computational Engineering (Surrey University)
    Miniaturised part of a satellites motherboard
  • BSc - Physics (Essex University)


Jenkins Continuous Integration Cookbook

Sakai Courseware Management - The official Guide

The book was a large effort, which I also coordinated, spanning the whole of my Sakai fellowship year. It was written with the aid of the Sakai community with approximately half the words written by myself.

Sakai CLE Courseware Management: The Official Guide

AWARDS: Sakai Fellowship

Sakai Fellowship for work on automatically finding defects in software. Static code review was used as a basis for finding immediate issues.


Quality Assurance

  My Continuous Integration book. A set of recipes that allows you to get things done and quickly.

Alan's Second and third Book

And the second version of the book became a second book:

Sakai Courseware Management: The Official Guide

This book is the officially endorsed Sakai guide. From setting up and running Sakai for the first time to creatively using its tools, this book delivers everything you need to know.

Written by Alan Berg, Senior developer at the IC ( ) and a Sakai fellow and Michael Korcuska, the executive director of the Sakai Foundation, and with significant contributions from the Sakai community, this book is a comprehensive study of how Sakai should be used, managed and maintained.

Sakai represents a Collaboration and Learning environment thatprovides the means of managing users, courses, instructors, and facilities, as well as a spectrum of tools including assessment, grading, and messaging.

Sakai is loaded with many handy software tools, which help you in online collaboration. You can improve your coursework using features that supplement and enhance teaching and learning. You can use tools that will help you organize your communication and collaborative work.

The book opens with an overview that explains Sakai, its history and how to set up a demonstration version. The underlying structures within Sakai are described and you can then start working on Sakai and create your first course or project site using the concepts explained in this book. You will then structure online courses for teaching and collaboration between groups of students. Soon after mastering the Administration Workspace section you will realize that there is a vast difference between the knowledge that is required for running a demonstration version of Sakai and that needed for maintaining production systems. You will then strengthen your concepts by going through the ten real-world situations given in this book.

The book also discusses courses that have won awards, displays a rogue's gallery of 30active members of the community, and describes what motivates management at the University of Amsterdam to buy into Sakai. Finally, the executive director of the Sakai Foundation looks towards the future.

A step-by-step, practical guide to using, managing, and maintaining Sakai.

As part of our Open Source Project Royalty scheme , Packt is paying a percentage of every book sold directly to the Sakai Foundation. On top of this, Alan Mark Berg and Michael Korcuska, the authors, are donating all royalties that they receive for this book direct to the Sakai Foundation.

What you will learn from this book :

  • Set up, maintain and run Sakai in your learning institution
  • Explore the underlying technologies involved and use them to their best effect.
  • Discover what tools exist and how to employ them effectively
  • Design a great online learning experience
  • Use web services to connect to other systems
  • Understand how Sakai can scale to support hundreds of thousands of students
  • Learn best practices to avoid common pitfalls


The book takes a step-by-step, practical approach and is filled with examples and illustrations.

Who this book is written for

This book is written for a wide audience that includes teachers, system administrators, and first time developers. It will also appeal to the Sakai open source community, potential community members, and education's decision makers.


Please note: due to the work on the two editions of the book and the QA director role, by necessity the last two years have been rather quiet on the book review and magazine writing front. I expect this to change in the coming period


Book reviews for the FreeSoftware Magazine


1. Book Review: Sakai: Free as in Freedom written by Charles Severance

1. Ruby by Example: Concepts and Code by Kevin C. Baird
2. Professional Plone Development by Martin Aspeli
3. Java EE 5 Development using GlassFish Application Server by David R. Heffelfinger
4. Perl by Example, 4th Edition by Ellie Quigley
5. Practical Guide to Ubuntu Linux by Mark G. Sobell
1. Moodle Teaching Techniques by William H. Rice IV
2. Attack Detection and Response with iptables, psad, and fwsnort byMichael Rash
3. Security Data Visualization by Greg Conti
4. Pro Tomcat 6 by Matthew Moodie
5. Practical Ruby for System Administration by AndréBen Hamou
6. Virtual Honeypots: From Botnet Tracking to Intrusion Detection by Niels Provos, Thorsten Holz
7. SQL for MySQL Developers: A Comprehensive Tutorial and Reference by Rick F. van der Lans
8. Linux Appliance Design byBob Smith, John Hardin, Graham Phillips, and Bill Pierce
9. Professional Search Engine Optimization with PHP: A developer's Guide to SEO by Jaimie Sirovich, Cristian Darie
10. Linux Programming by Example by Arnold Robbins
11. Qmail Quickstarter by Kyle Wheeler
12. AJAX: Creating Web Pages with Asynchronous JavaScript and XML by Edmond Woychowsky
13. Practical Subversion, Second Edition by Daniel Berlin and Garrett Rooney
14. Pro Open Source Mail: Building an Enterprise Mail Solution by Curtis Smith
15. Wicked Cool Java by Brian D. Eubanks
16. Integrating and Extending BIRT by Jason Weathersby, Don French, et al
17. A Field Guide to Reporting by Diana Peh, Alethea Hannemann, Nola Haque
18. Agile Java Development with Spring, Hibernate and Eclipse by Anil Hemrajani
19. Red Hat Fedora Core 6 Unleashed by Andrew Hudson, Paul Hudson
20. Pro Apache XML by Poornachandra Sarang, Ph.D.
21. The Definitive Guide to GCC, Second Edition by William von Hagen
22. Embedded Linux Primer by Christopher Hallinan
23. Self service Linux by Mark Wilding, Dan Behman

1. How Linux Works by Brian Ward
2. Wicked Cool Shell Scripts by Dave Taylor
3. OpenVPN: Building and Integrating Virtual Private Networks by Markus Feilner
4. Moodle E-Learning Course Development by William H. Rice IV
5. AJAX and PHP: Building Responsive Web Applications by Christian Darie, Bogdan Brinzarea, Flip Chereches-Tosa
6. Pro Perl Parsing by Christopher M. Frenz
7. Pro PHP Security
8. Pro MySQL
9. Java 6 Platform Revealed
10. User Mode Linux
11. Linux Patch Management
12. UNIX to Linux Porting by Alfredo Mendoza et. al
13. Code Quality: The Open Source Perspective
14. Linux Troubleshooting for System Administrators
15. Linux® Debugging and Performance Tuning: Tips and Techniques by SteveBest
16. The Linux® Kernel Primer: A Top-Down Approach for x86 and PowerPC Architectures
17. Managing and Customizing OpenCMS 6 Websites by Matt Butcher

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