“On this day”

Facebook’s “On this day” often throws up things I’d totally forgotten about. Today’s was work related, and, in many ways, it’s still as relevant now as it was 7 years ago:

I’’m recently starting to think more and more about Web2.0 and teaching; more specifically how much is actually “web2.0” (on the assumption it can be defined) and how much is what I’’m getting the students to do (or, indeed, what I, as I extend my own knowledge am doing). Is just looking at videos on YouTube any different from looking at them in the VLE? What happens when they start to upload them / attach them to a discussion posting in the VLE?
So, (and I think this is where my research is increasingly going)

  • Who should the audience be? (self / select group/ class / uni / world … and various stages in between!)
  • Where should it be hosted? (What backup do we have if it goes down [internal or external!]
    • Who’’s funding the hosting?
  • Why are we using it? Is it primarily to gather information; to disseminate; to organise personally; to collaborate (because we have to?)
    • Are the roles of all users the same – or does the original user have a different reason to all/some of the audience
  • What do we want to do? (Before/during/post using tool?)

Clearly, there are a lot of overlaps … but equally as the task/meaning etc., becomes more important, so the actual tool may become less important.

I’d also written about writing a blog post .

I was on the train yesterday, with very poor mobile broadband – so thought I’d test out Blogging from Word, by creating a post, in order to posting it when I got back here.


Some of the issues I had weren’t Word’s fault – this laptop has a (finger print print controlled) Password Bank. It was desperate to save my blog details – the very reluctant to let me edit them when I realised I’d got the URL wrong.


That sorted, I then managed to publish it! Awful! The formatting was sucked in from Word, badly. It couldn’t cope with lists at all. Finally in desperation I saved it as text, opened in Notepad & pasted in here.


Am going to experiment with Google gears instead!

[Here, in this case, referred to Facebook]

Google gears has long since vanished – and I can’t remember the last time I wanted to blog offline, but I’d probably just use Evernote or so & then paste in later.

And, on the subject of “On this Day” – it was June 2nd that snow famously stopped play in a cricket match in Buxton. The reason I can remember it is that’s my Dad’s birthday – and I was heading back to school after half term, insisting that, as it was the Summer Term, I had to wear summer uniform. My mother argued it was snowing, and not to be so silly. I won the argument. And shivered!

Uni's Closed – but how did you know.

Following a post from Brian Kelly, I started thinking about how University of Portsmouth let students/staff know that it was closed today.
We had a number of sources:

I guess some will also have had the news second hand in some way; e.g. re-tweets, via friends in Facebook, via Victory if staff put information up there etc.,
What I’m not sure about is which route staff/students actually used. I’ve asked on twitter – so far everyone who is on Twitter used it – and also one other staff member via email – which is how she found out. (And how many haven’t investigated, so have a cold walk in)
Unlike Bath, we don’t have text messaging options – which would be useful today I think, as not all staff/students have access to the Internet at home.

Social Conferencing.

Alt C used Crowdvine to get some social networking going during the conference – it was Ok, though I have seen better Social networks (mind you, I’d far rather Crowdvine than Ning!) I’ve just seen the website for Handheld Learning – which seems to be a very useful site – as it’s got some social tools (fora etc) but also the presentations / photos/ videos all on the same site. Useful info too!

Via Stephen Downes.

Jane's E-Learning Pick of the Day: Slideshow of the Day

Jane Hart’s “25 Tools” is today’s Slideshow of the Day

Of those she lists:

  • Firefox – yes (and Flock)
  • Delicious – got an account, but never use it.
  • Google Reader – yes, embedded into my iGoogle page (& now into Vista’s Sidebar)
  • Gmail – yes – again into iGoogle (though not the Vista sidebar … but I have added it to my OLPC as an application)
  • Skype – yes, but not often, as we’re not meant to use it at work; so tend to use FlashMeeting instead for work.
  • Google calendar – to an extent – but it doens’t integrate with either the Groupwise or the WebCT Vista calendars (and they don’t with each other, either)
  • Google Docs – yes (yet another gadget on the iGoogle page)
  • iGoogle – see above!
  • Slideshare – yes (though I have looked at others)
  • Flickr – yes (even got a pro account!)
  • Voicethread – that’s a new one – but it sounds good 🙂
  • WordPress – need I say more? (Though I do like Elgg)
  • Audacity – yes.
  • YouTube – yes
  • Jing – I’ve recommended it in the past, though tend to use Captivate, just because we have it on the machines.
  • PBWiki – got an account, though I’ve used Wikispaces more with students (and hope to have a local install of MediaWiki for next academic year)
  • PollDaddy – I’ve heard of this, but not really investigated, as though I’ve read about quite a few online survey tools – I’ve not had to use one in anger … yet (and as I do a lot of work with our Perception server, I know that tool really quite well!)
  • Nvu – I’ve got this installed; however, it’s not been updated since 2005, and I’ve also read that Kompozer is where they are now doing the updates, so that’s what I’m using more now as an alternative to Dreamweaver etc.,
  • Yugama – another one that’s new to me. Seems to be an alternative to Flashmeeting etc., I may have to investigate (and you can have up to 10 people for free, which is more than Elluminate’s Vroom)
  • Ustream – heard of, watched, but not tried broadcasting. Yet!
  • Ning – guess it had to come up. I really don’t like Ning. Though I know many others do. Oh well.
  • Freemind – I’ve used it, and quite like it – though tend to use Inspiration more. (Just wish either made as good use of the stylus input on a tablet as Mind Manager can.)
  • eXe – really must re-test this, now that we have a version of WebCT that it works with. Looked a really useful tool when I looked before (until I couldn’t import anything!)
  • Moodle – I wish …
  • Twitter – using it, but hardly what you’d call a devotee.

This seems to be a generally comprehensive list; of course, there are things I’d have put in instead, but there again, she did create it from others’ recommendations.