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Grouper Call 20-Jan-2010


Tom Barton, U. Chicago  (Chair)
Gary Brown, Bristol
Michael P. Pelikan, The Pennsylvania State University
Shilen Patel, Duke
Tom Zeller, U. Memphis
Chris Hyzer, U. Penn
Keith Hazelton, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Steve Olshansky, Internet2
Emily Eisbruch, Internet2 (scribe)

*New Action Items*

[AI] (Chris) will work on the script for the Grouper release in Subversion.
[AI]  (TomB) will update the Grouper roadmap with items discussed on the working group calls.

*Carry Over Action Items*

[AI]  (TomB) will take necessary steps for release of Grouper 1.5.1.[AI] (TomB) will investigate starting work on uPortal / Grouper integration
[AI] (Chris) will start researching integration of Grouper with KIM workflows.

*Opening the Grouper Wiki for Editing*

SteveO will open the Grouper wiki for any authenticated user to edit. This will facilitate some expected wiki contributions from individuals who don't currently have edit privileges. SteveO emailed the Grouper-dev list.

Core developers should be alert for suspicious changes on the wiki. It is possible to put a "watch" on wiki pages, in order to recognize if wiki editing is being misused.

*Inheritance for Attributes*

Grouper features effective memberships, with inheritance of roles and permissions.  Should Grouper also have effective attributes, so that attributes on stems could be inherited by the groups created under them?

Chris noted that the lack of effective lists was a problem in how privileges were originally set up. (If we query whether someone has view privileges on a group, we have to query if they have view / read / update / admin. This is not set up on a default basis.)

A use case for effective attributes: An installation of Grouper has distinct constituencies that are segmented out in different folders. When doing membership, they might want subject lookup to only show certain subjects in each group. So, with effective attributes, the subject search constraint attribute on the stem would be inherited by folders and subfolders.

A set table could be used to map the stem hierarchy.

Issues could include managing:
- inheritance overrides
- inhibitors
- accumulated values
- multivalued attribute
- possibility for collision

Models include:
1. AD model: Lots of inheritance and inheritance filters
2. SUN model: Little inheritance so attributes need to be "stuck on"

Inherited attributes could make it more complicated to declare the intended use of an attribute. However, there are UI features that could make it clearer - perhaps there should be a Create Stem Screen that lists the inheritable attributes. Using a template approach ("new stems for this VO will have the following values") would be simpler in some ways than inheritance, but could be inappropriate for certain use cases and be more chaotic/harder to maintain.

Gary suggested a reference (back pointer) to the original attribute rather than a distinct attribute. This way the attribute is maintained in a single place.

Chris leans towards an approach where the inheritance strategy is specified in the definition of the attribute. Possibly there could be a help button that shows the path for where the attribute came from. This would be similar to effective memberships.

*Grouper 1.5 .1 Release*
Release scripts need to be reworked for the subversion environment.
[AI] (Chris) will work on the script for the Grouper release in Subversion.

Decision was to retag the software and make it 1.5.1. No one has the previous 1.5.1 build , so there is no need to increment the numbering.

Tom will let people know when Grouper 1.5.1. is available.


During last call's roadmap discussion, the issue was raised of a rule-based way of doing dynamic memberships. What are other suggestions?

  • Gary suggested adding to the roadmap a more complete Quick Start, i.e., providing a better example with more features, including hooks, and some form or ldap you can provision to, web services client example, etc.
  • Keith suggested:
    • integration of Grouper with Kuali enterprise workflow
    • Grouper  / YAWL interface

[AI]  (TomB) will update the Grouper roadmap with items discussed on the working group calls.

Next Meeting: Wed., February 3, 2010, noon ET

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