I suspect that if you have bookmarked me (first off I’m honored, secondly, I’m honored!) you will want to continue to follow me at the new home. So: Robot Vs. Robot. Please come visit me, adjust your feeds/bookmarks/rabbit ears for best reception. I’m also on Twitter as @dietsociety.

picture of an empty box

Pursuant to my previous post about D2L, apparently in the near future they’re going to break out of their frames. Yay for accessibility! Of course, this is according to the Twitterverse, but they’re getting their information from the Fusion conference. That is all.

OK, so the problem I’ve been having is apparently because of a MediaWiki setting. Freakin’ great. Admin level settings force the page to not be embedded. I have to wait a couple weeks to see if the admin wants to change that setting, or if I have to use some other product.

Hmm, I suppose I’ll look back at this moment in a few months with a hearty guffaw, and muse “Oh Jon, there’s such a simple solution.” These are truly “first world problems” if I’ve ever heard them. Oh yeah, Barry Dahl’s video is incredibly useful, except it doesn’t actually show how he embeds the wiki in D2L – it basically shows you how to embed stuff in a wiki which is embedded in D2L. Close to what I need. Yes, I’ve e-mailed to see if Barry can help sort out my muddled mind, but venting never hurts.

EDIT: After a brief phone call, he’s still baffled, I’m ready to tear my moustache out.

I’ve been trying to embed a MediaWiki in my proposed D2L version of my Searching The Internet Effectively course. I’d like to constrict the opening of this page to remain in the frameset that D2L exists in so students can pop back and forth between the content that’s in the course, and the wiki to add their own content. Every method of embedding I’ve tried opens the wiki in a new page. I’m beginning to wonder if the damn thing is set to automatically open in a new page…. or maybe Firefox is overriding some weird thing. First of all framesets?? Give me a break. If framesets get deprecated anytime soon (as they should) D2L is in for a major redesign. Talk about a total head-scratcher.

Also, I hate IE. I thought when I got out of web design as a career that I could learn to like, accept, ok not hate IE. Wrong. IE is crap. IE 8 is OK passable, except that when you useĀ  the TinyMCE editor in D2L in an IE browser (IE 8 included), it strips out co-ordinates of an image map. And other attributes of the object tag. WTF??

So, as part of the ADED 4F35 course at Brock University, I had to articulate my personal teaching perspective. Of course, being a punk, and holding those idea(l)s closely, I had to tie educational theory into my personal life. Here’s the video. I was really unimpressed with the idea that my creative side (a huge part of who I am and the part of me that I most value) had to write an essay. Blah. Thankfully there was an option to do something “creative”. I didn’t do so well on the marking rubric for APA citation… but really does that stuff matter? I guess if I’m writing for publication… which I’m thinking I might do.

My Teaching Perspective Is Based on Who I Am from Jon Kruithof on Vimeo.

Not that anyone is particularly following me – couple of quick updates to shock people I guess.I know, I know, good blogging etiquette is to maintain contact, but when you have very little to say, is there a point to add to the chatter? I don’t suspect that it’s good to blog for blogging’s sake… yet that’s kind of what this post is. Conundrum wrapped in an enigma packaged in a problem, neh?

1. I hate that whatever edublogs did borked my ability to track information in Google Stats. It was a good way to discover what was going on, and make new contacts, read new insightful things… yeah. Bummer.

2. I’ve been slaving away at creating, compiling and documenting “stuff” on D2L, or Desire2Learn (for those who don’t follow LMS’s).

3. I did a presentation of “research” (and I use research in quotes only because there’s no real research going on, it’s pseudo-research where we plan our research but don’t execute it) using some Presentation Zen techniques and people were really blown away with it. Thank you Garr Reynolds. I tried to be conversational, or as conversational as the subject matter (student perceptions of multimedia instruction in an e-learning) would allow. I tried to get people involved with their experiences with my subject topic, which is a good engagement strategy regardless.

3a. On the same note, um and so are my enemy in public speaking. You’d think I’d have learned that after many years presenting and practicing presentations, I’d be able to consciously stop saying ummmm. Guess not. Maybe I’ll video capture myself and see how many times I do speak of mine enemies.

4. An interesting old concept popped up again. I was watching a newish documentary called “Punk’s Not Dead” which actually does a pretty convincing job of saying it’s underground (well, shocking). I’m waiting for the documentary that treats punk like Ken Burns did with jazz… there’s a depth there that can be mined for sure. Anyways, one of the arguments of the new school of punk, bands like Sum 41, My Chemical Romance and The Used is that they are quick to embrace corporate sponsorship which they feel can be co-opted and used to promote their message. This argument has been going since Bad Brains and Husker Du (and before them, Sex Pistols, The Clash, Sham 69) signed to major labels.

A nice parrallel to edupunk, some of whom reject the Blackboard LMS model and distribute the learning across several free, open resources (Moodle, Pageflakes, RSS feeds, blogs).With that said, I think there’s a value to having a centralized point of entry. Is there an answer to the criticism? Well, sometime you have to work in a system; education is certainly a system. The end result of the system is what’s important, not necessarily the means.

5. When Mohawk decided to go with Desire2Learn, the other competitors were Blackboard and Angel. Funny how in hindsight, there really was only two competitors.

6. Even though I’ve been thinking about transferring this blog, resurrecting my other blog and adding a third blog about Hamilton punk and putting them all under one umbrella/domain, I still haven’t been overwhelmingly motivated to do so. Maybe in the Fall.

Things here are busier than ever. I’ve actually taken time to keep up with Twitter (@dietsociety) which is easier and requires less context than I like to give with a thought out piece. I’ve been slugging away at an e-learning survey for the College and working on my two courses (Fireworks and Searching The Internet Effectively) that I’m teaching and working on two courses that I’m taking (Academic Research and Critical Reflection in Adult Education through Brock University and Sociology I).

I’m also involved in the work that goes into preparing for Connections ’09 which is our in-house e-learning development conference (primarily for faculty at the College). We’ve already announced our new partnership with Desire2Learn, so training for that will occur soon, then the real work begins… ah not a lonely moment. I suspect I’ll try to participate in CCK09, and I’ll be meeting George next week as he’s the keynote for Connections. I’m sure he loves the name of the conference!

There’s a lot of talk out there amongst y’all about distributed learning. Considering that we’re on the web and all, that’s a fairly insightful statement. Crowd sourcing was an interesting concept that I hadn’t heard about before, of course I’m not up to date on my marketing theories. I started thinking about how this is partially a business to individuals relationship and how it really emphasizes the power of crowds. Of course, marketing has always been about public opinion and (in my opinion) the power of many to influence.

Originally I read crowd sourcing as crowd surfing, which in my head, could describe the way individuals survey ideas on the web. Pick and choose from search results, go on facebook and ask your network of people questions, search on twitter for tweets about it, read wikipedia – you get the idea. Anyways, like a crowd surfer – you ride the crowd like a wave, eventually crashing to the floor when you have enough information to make a concrete connection to reality again – whether that’s to buy a product, engage in a service, or not do any of that at all.

I like that description of how online activities work sometimes. Plus it’s a nice tie-in to edupunk.

Hi all… I haven’t lost touch with my educated self, I’m just bogged down in facilitating the Searching the Internet distance ed course, taking the Brock Workplace Learning course and up to my neck in SQL statements putting together a giant database of courses for the institution I work for. Plus there’s some big plans going on here with the consolidation of LMS’s that might happen over the next four years. Anyways, lots of work, and not many new insights for the last couple weeks.

Well, it’s not week 6 anymore, it is in fact week 7. I have to say I was skeptical coming in to using Twitter, not believing it to be very useful at all. In fact, I’ll have to conclude that it is useful – just not in a work sense for me. I don’t think I’ll get much out of Twitter for work – except a link here and there to new websites, maybe a few days before Ed Tech Weekly gets to them (which reminds me, need to listen to that soon). In connectivist terms I’m strengthening some connections as well as gaining a bit of depth behind the ideas that people have put forth.

With all that said, I like it, despite the almost constant barrage of marketing (which is like real life, I suppose), it’s a fun diversion from work, or to tap into some other level of work-related thought. So my conclusions? Well, useful informal tool – that could have some learning application (you could run a daily message from a Twitter account to broaden vocabulary, or to clarify jargon). I would be interested to see if students would feel that it was an infringement of their personal space, creepy treehouse syndrome if you will, seeing as Twitter can be a one-way subscription – the account broadcasting can be a generic non-receptive node.

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