Affinities affinities affinities…

As expected, the whole uPortal affinity thing is really drawing folks out of the woodwork. For those of you who came in late, uPortal uses a totally different scheme from the old portal to determine who sees what content. Let’s take the “Faculty Options” channel as an example:

Portal You see faculty options if…
old myUMBC You are in AUTH_CLASS or TEACHER SIS tables, or have faculty LDAP affiliation
uPortal You have faculty, staff or instructor LDAP affiliation

As I said… totally different. Now.. most folks who need faculty options will satisfy both portals’ conditions, and will see the content in both portals. However, there are always special cases, and as expected, we’ve run into a few. First, not everyone in AUTH_CLASS has one of the three magic LDAP attributes. Case in point, the education department has graduate assistants that do course authorizations for them. These people need to see the faculty options, but don’t get them in uPortal.

What we really need to do here, is rethink how we’re doing some of these affinities and who’s seeing what content. Some of this will just involve creating new PAGS groups to correspond with various affiliations. But, we may also need to create additional affiliations in LDAP to cover certain cases. Membership in AUTH_CLASS would be one of those cases. uPortal allows me to specify Person Attributes based on DB queries, so for some of these I might be able to go that route. But I’d prefer to keep this totally LDAP based.

In the meantime, I’m making things work for these people by granting them temporary staff affiliations in LDAP. Can’t have them unable to do their jobs while we’re figuring this out.