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1.1 History of Manyex

If you ever had to teach a course where a lot of tests had to be administered, you will agree that it is useful to have a way of creating tests in an automatic way so that the instructor can dedicate his or her time in thinking the questions and the answers and minimizing the time spent in formatting the tests.

If furthermore you have to create a lot of permutations of tests (sometimes the same test) to minimize cheating, which sometimes is unavoidable if the tets have to be administered in a packed room where students have no chance but seeing what their neighbours are writing, the formatting demands increase a lot and the chance of introducing mistakes in the questions is exacerbated.

Commercial applications to create tests are quite expensive, sometimes licensed based on the number of students taking the test. But public domain tools to format tests abund, including some very nice LaTeX styles, so it is surprising that something like Manyex has not be developed before.

One of the first open source contributions is much ( developed by Mihalis Kolountzakis. Manyex extends the capabilities of much, including exercices of a much complex structure, for instance with different questions that can be set up to be permuted or not, and including also the capability to create html forms, that is tests to be administered throught the web. It does not include, as much does, the possibility of grading a file where the instructor has coded the answers of the students. Students can be asked to fill a form that can be later scanned mechanically for the answers, but this facility is not included in Manyex. Web tests can be graded more directly, since they can generate a file with the answers that can be later graded by any appropiate application. Manyex also includes the possibility of generating nicely formatted answers to the tests. Problem sets for homeworks or quizzes can be also created from the same database of questions.