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Re: [school-discuss] I think this is the "killer app"

The new ISO is ready for download.
This is the last demo before final release.
Final release should take place after new years eve, with the repository in place and all final updates completed.
This new ISO works with intel and nvidia graphics cards, as well as other off brand chipsets.
It should work on 32 and 64 bit intel or AMD CPUs.
After completing the repository, I will compile a list of suitable hardware.

The link is here----   http://www.mattech.exhspace.com/mattech/Linux/2009/small.iso

This is for demo only, and should not be installed on any machine.

If you have 1gb of ram or more, try the "copy2ram" option at startup.

The username is "user" and the password is "user"

Merry Christmas


From: Bill Fitzgerald <bill@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: schoolforge-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Sunday, December 21, 2008 9:15:56 PM
Subject: Re: [school-discuss] I think this is the "killer app"

Hello, all,

Some thoughts below --

Les R wrote:
> Hi Marilyn,
> Once you 'create a course' in Drupal,
This assumes we can define what actually constitutes a course, and that the definition of a course will hold true across numerous contexts. For the sake of this conversation, let's assume that we all agree that a course is a collection of resources placed in a specific order to guide learning towards a clearly articulated goal.
> how do you package it up so that
> others may use it, perhaps in other systems besides Drupal?
That's the easy part, in Drupal, anyways. For those unfamiliar with Drupal, one of the more popular modules is the Views module. The Views module allows you to create flexible queries across data sets (and in this case, a data set would include a course) and output that format in a variety of ways. For example, you can create a view that creates an ordered list, a csv file, a doc file, an rss feed, etc. You can also develop additional view formats that display your data in different formats, such as embeddable widgets. There has also been some work to wrap rdf metadata around views output, which gives a great deal of flexibility.

You can also export data by (ab)using the theming layer. Drupal's theming layer is incredibly flexible, and in the right hands can be made to do amazing things. In the wrong hands, it can be made an instrument of godawful hackery.

For an example of how Drupal can be used to build a LOM repository, see http://www.jem-thematic.net/node/715

>  What
> elements are portable, which not. 
Within Drupal, access to objects can be controlled in a variety of ways; by role, by user, by using groups, by using workflow states, to name a few. The best method would be determined by the specific use case.
> So, I don't necessarily think this
> is 'site based', or at least exclusively to a large degree. There
> could be a variety of components in a variety of standard package
> formats, depending on media type, etc.

I agree -- but I also don't think that you need to buy into the SCORM rabbit hole. The common "standards" used to make "learning objects" portable are poorly implemented at best, and are generally used by larger vendors as an additional means of ensuring that content created within their system stays within their system. This gets back to defining what your "course" will be, and knowing the platforms and standards you will support for delivering the courses.

As one example, the SWORD project uses the Atom protocol to attach metadata to objects. Atom is far more lightweight than SCORM. See http://www.ukoln.ac.uk/repositories/digirep/index/SWORD

So, the mechanisms for transporting data are pretty well developed.

As to the "killer app", I think we're more likely to find a unicorn than a single application that revolutionizes teaching (although, amazingly, just about every vendor on the floor at NECC might tell you otherwise). But, applications like Les's OpenAdmin get us closer; individuals like Matt, who make the time to work on a tool that others can use free of charge -- these things all bring us closer, as they show what can happen when people are freed to interact with the code however they want.

And to echo what other folks have said: documentation, documentation, documentation. The importance of good, clear docs can't be overstated.


> My 2 centimes worth.
> Les Richardson
> Open Admin for Schools
> 2008/12/21 Marilyn Hagle <marilyn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>:

>> Hi there everyone!
>> I was prompted to share this most recent project of mine after reading this
>> thread.  I would like to partner with a local school district and apply for a
>> grant to put this in motion.
>> http://highschoolcourseexchange.org
>> What do you guys think?    I hope to personally teach vocal
>> music/theory/composition and to assist an art teacher with digital graphics/3D
>> animation and assist a theater teacher with digital audio/video (Gimp, Blender,
>> Audacity, Cinelerra).
>> I am motivated by my own children who are dyslexic and attend a school district
>> that does not offer much for high school students.  My kids are 7 & 9, so I
>> have a few years to get this going.
>> Opinions please!!!
>> Marilyn

Bill Fitzgerald
FunnyMonkey -- Click. Connect. Learn.
ph. 503 897 7160