Archive for the ‘blog’ Category

Week off…

Tuesday, June 28th, 2005

Just so you know… incsub is offline this week moving into / renovating it’s latest, um, premises :o)

Anything urgent you can contact James on +61 (0)405 703 923

Making a difference

Monday, June 6th, 2005

Got this email today which I reprint, very happily, with permission. As much a testament to the spread of open source, the difference a little empowerment makes and the vitality of this teacher!

“Hello James,

It was a long semester. I have really learned alot using TikiWiki, WP Blog, and Moodle. In a year end technology training, I demonstrated Blogs, and Wikis to the teachers. I even taught a 3 hour session on using them in the classroom. The teachers were do excited about it, they asked the technology director if our district could set them up a server to use Moodle. He promised them he would “look into it”. I am not as optimistic about that. I hope I am not using too much server space. I have tried to watch what I upload. My using Moodle has caught on in other areas. The neighboring school system called me after hearing I had Moodle in my classroom and asked if I could show them how to use Moodle. They set up a server and sent me an admin account. http://moodle.columbus.k12.nc.us/moodle . I was also featured in a state wide professional development session and the professor that served as the interviewer for the program went home set up her Moodle site. http://www.bookosphere.org/moodle/

One more spin-off from you letting me use your server to learn about Blogs, Wikis, Moodle. The educational staff at NCNERR http://www.ncnerr.org/ will be meeting this week to discuss adding Moodle to their teacher outreach to help educate teachers and provide distance learning for professional development.

Not bad for a country boy school teacher and a Aussie from down under! What is it…the wings of a butterfly can cause a Hurricane to form on the other side of the Earth.

Thanks for making a difference in the way I teach. Hope to be able to continue using the Moodle. As soon as I get my server running, I will backup what I have and try to move what I have somehow to our school’s server. I have no time line as to when anything will be ready. I will contact you as soon as I hear anything. All that server stuff is out of my hands. All I know is that my students love Moodle.

Thanks,

John”

:O)

Using Blojsom for students blogs

Monday, May 30th, 2005

It looks like of late there has been a fair bit of noise around and interest in using Blojsom for student blogs. As it’s also it’s the only one that I didn’t get to test-drive when thinking about student blog systems a bit back I thought I’d have a roll over some systems that are using it, the system itself and invite you to have a peek under the hood at the IncSub install.

The two institutions that I know of (thanks for the comments guys :o) using Blojsom are Zane State (Blogs @ Zane State College) and USC with Blog do CETA (here’s an example).

As my Spanish isn’t so hot and as Zane look like they’re a fair bit down the track it’s probably best to focus on them as they look like they’ve got:

-LDAP integration (First Name / Last Name / Zane State ID > Username / Password e.g. Mary / Contrary / 88361 > mcont361 / 88361)

&

-Some good introductions to editing blog settings, posting, adding attachments, changing themes and using RSS.

I really like this, it’s smooth, straightforward and looks like it’s working well. It would be great to have some sort of portal to other blogs linked in to this, a way of finding similar Zane students (and others in similar disciplines) and collective aggregation built in and so on but for a first functional step this is pretty cool.

Am not so sure how keen I am on Blojsom itself though, here’s why:

-Adding a blog entry is painful… you have to code the entire thing (including breaks!) using some pretty tacky tags and then there’s a range of meta options which have no explanation / links to explanations or options for essentially enabling them

-Some of the navigation is painfully over complex (for example you have to go through a category system to get to posts you might want to edit)

-Despite the very high level of tech proficiency you’d need to be comfortable with this tool there is no simple way to edit the templates. In fact, getting your head around installing templates or plugins is something that does not come easy.

-Maybe I’m spoilt but the lists of plugins & extras for Blojsom looks pretty slim and fairly tricky compared to, say, WordPress.

-I’m pretty sure I installed the ‘multi-user’ blog version and yet there is no clear indication as to how I might bring this into being (without going into the databases & hacking code) and even if I did do that there’s no seeming way to get a ‘Create your own blog’ page (you have to have created them all first yourself for people to login)… and that’s a big downer as the vast majority of users here are not going to be doing LDAP)

So, interesting experiment but no thumbs up from me I’m afraid and Apple users… don’t get too excited about the new built in blogging tool!

Would love to hear what other people think! If you have a minute and would like to see what it’s like from the backend I’m making the account publicly accessible here. Login: default Password: blojsom

Blogsavvy: Your professional blogging consultant

Wednesday, May 18th, 2005

Blogsavvy - your professional blogging consultantDrumroll please… I’d like to introduce a new blog… my new blog to be precise!

Blogsavvy is part a creature of me wanting to write about blogging a lot more, part result of my belief that blogs are here to stay and are capable of making an enormous positive difference in a range of spheres and part me thinking that this might be what I really want to do!

It’s going to be a blog about blogging, about blogging for Education, Business, Communities, a Cause and even for Money.

The business model goes like this… if you’re interested in what I’m writing about and think I know what I’m doing then you can hire me to do blog workshops, assist with developing your blog strategy, come up with and implement blog solutions and even do you some savvy blog design.

incorporated subversion remains by blog, IncSub will remain (and hopefully grow through this) the focus for online education and organisational learning and the free-for-teachers model is never going to end there. But I really really dig blogging, I’ve enjoyed putting Blogtalk Downunder together like you wouldn’t believe and I rather want to do this professionally… perhaps even full time down the road!

And if you could give me a leg up and share a link to the site through your blog, then you’ll be giving me a great start and I’ll love you forever (again :o)

Using Weblogs - A Second LTUG Workshop

Wednesday, May 11th, 2005

This workshop looks at the possibilities and challenges in the use of weblogs in education… I’m running it in about 45 minutes and have put up, for yer pleasure, the slides and audio recordings for each one (done rather late last night, excuse any uming and ahing).

So if you’re interested, here it all is… (bar the questions / discussion / comic mishaps which face these things live :o)