Thursday, January 19, 2006

My New Favorite Quote

“I'm not going to tell the story the way it happened. I'm going to tell it the way I remember it.” - Finnegan Bell in Great Expectations

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Moodle Is The New Orange

I stumbled upon a great open source project yesterday called moodle. Moodle is a web based Course Management System (CMS) for creating and maintaining online courses (e-learning, I suppose). It boasts a metric ton of features without being too bloated. The features come in the form of modules and there is a fair amount of them out of the box. Some of them include: Lesson, Quiz, Book, Grade book, Calendar, Forum, Glossary, Survey, Wiki, Workshop, and Assignment. Each of these modules has quite a few settings and can be a little confusing to set up. I had a little trouble setting up a test course the way I wanted. Perhaps it was the shear number of settings but I think it was just that it doesn’t do everything one could think of. However, most of the screens contain a pop-up window with help that is actually informative. After spending some time with it, I feel right at home. I’ve also had some time to think about what I’d like to see in the future. It’s nice to see this project under active development. I really look forward to the future of moodle.

Below I’ve listed some features I’d love to see:

  • Integrate Flickr accounts directly into the Resource manager
  • Somehow integrate Lesson/Book and Quiz together so I can have a required Quiz at the end of a Lesson.
    • Currently, Lesson puts a quiz question at the end of each page. Book doesn’t have a quiz feature.
    • Once the student starts the Quiz, the Lesson/Book is no longer available until the completion of the Quiz.
    • The Quiz review page should have links to the Lesson/Book page on which the answer is found.
  • Provide RSS feeds for new entries to modules

I’ll post more ideas as I think of them.

In the mean time: Bravo, moodle team. Bravo.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Jabber Client Concept

I share a lot of files with my cube mate at work. We have an internal jabber server running but I hate using the file sharing feature. Half the time it doesn’t work because the other person has to correctly accept the file (which means re sending if it gets screwed up) and, when the person isn’t there, no one clicks “Accept.” I would like to be able to cut-and-paste things I find interesting to send to my buddies around the office. I want to do this without having to use the file transfer feature. The pictures below pretty much sum up what I’m looking for:

Jabber Concepts - Images

Jabber Concepts - Movie and audio clips

Jabber Concepts - Web sites

I think it would mostly consist of providing interfaces for enclosures—like RSS. I think it could be done with some Flash (for media controls) and C# (my language of choice). Any takers?