Simple fix so people don't lose edits when both TA and instructor are editing separately

Idea created by David Haussler on Nov 17, 2018
    • Cynthia Hollingsworth
    Both my TA and I work separately, occasionally editing the class syllabus. Several times one of us has wiped out the edits made by the other. Very, very frustrating. I know you don't have the number of engineers sufficient to make something a slick as Google Docs to allow multiple people to edit the same document without stepping on each other, but there is a very simple bug fix and a simple feature add that will help. Here is the scenario.
    My browser has a tab open looking at the class syllabus. Not editing it, just looking at it.
    Meanwhile, at another location, my TA edits and updates the syllabus on his laptop, maybe spending an hour doing so.
    The next day I want to make edits. I ask the TA if he is finished with his edits and make sure is he not editing at this time.  He says he finished and submitted his edits yesterday, and it is OK for me to edit now.
    I go back to the tab in my browser session for Canvas from yesterday and make some edits to the syllabus and then save my edits.
    All of my TAs edits from the previous day are wiped out.
    What happened?
    There are two scenarios in which this occurs. I've been burned several times by each:
    1. I forgot to hit refresh before doing my edits.
    2. The TA forgot to submit their changes.
    There is a simple fix to the first problem: Canvas should force a refresh of a file before allowing somebody to edit it. I consider this a bug. It happens to me using Firefox, but I assume it can happen in other browsers too. It seems a major priority to fix this bug as it is destructive and has a simple fix.
    The second problem could be fixed by adding a feature that puts some kind of mark on a file that is being edited by somebody, so when anybody else requests to edit it, they will be warned that it is already being editing by another person at that time.