Late 2019 Software Community Health Metrics - OAE

Late 2019 - Software Community Health Metrics - Open Academic Environment (OAE)

Status: Graduated Incubation

Background and Objectives:

The Open Academic Environment is a multi-tenant platform aiming to support academic collaboration and networking. Specifically, OAE provides tools and services that can be used in the context of a class, of a formal or informal group outside a class or of such a group outside an institution.

OAE is widely used by staff in French higher education in the context of research and other inter-institutional collaboration. The project is now examining future directions which bring OAE closer to students and to learning.

New Technology/ies since last report:

OAE has a fairly complex technology stack that includes Express / NodeJS, Cassandra, Redis, Etherpad, Ethercalc and Elasticsearch. The project development environment requires docker and contributions are submitted via Github.


Date of First Release Date of Last Release Number of Releases
2009 10 December 2019 73 (6 in 2019 alone)




Commits in 2019 Frequency of Commits
239 (backend) plus 88 (frontend) = 327 total Daily


Number of Contributiors in 2019


Numbers of sites in use (estimated)
1 (ESUP-Portail)



The OAE project team currently includes a designer and a developer, who work closely to one of ESUP’s stakeholders on all matters regarding deployment and infrastructure.

OAE is a simple to use software tool built on top of a 10-year-old complex (yet well-designed) stack. Although it is currently driven forward by a small team, that hasn't prevented making great strides recently, both in terms of development (including architectural changes, new features, code quality enhancements, maintainability improvements, etc.) and methodology (CD, CI, DevOps and GitOps, etc.).

The increase of 75% in the number of yearly commits when compared to last year can attest the project is slowly but surely gaining momentum while it prepares for the challenges ahead. During 2019 there have been a total of six releases - three patches, two minor and one major - which is an excellent average rate of one every two months.

2019 OAE Highlights:

In 2019 the OAE team welcomed a design intern to help redesign its frontend and made this effort a high priority goal of the project. The upcoming new design is more than just superficial skinning, but rather a complete overhaul of the user experience (with new features and new target audiences in mind) built on top modern core technologies and standards.

Behind the curtains, the team pressed further to make OAE easier to maintain, deploy and upgrade. As part of this effort, OAE now has a brand-new continuous deployment mechanism and a refined continuous integration flow, which are part of the latest 16.0.0 release "Harpy Eagle".

This major release focused on making the architecture simpler and easier to maintain, fixing security vulnerabilities, developer ergonomics and overall polishing.

Future Plans:

Future plans include the implementation of the ongoing redesign, the development of new user-facing features and possibly the integration of a third-party office suite.

List and link to repositories and downloads:



Frontend redesign: