A Hub for The Circle

VCU is reading The Circle by Dave Eggers. All of the first year students will read the book in addition to a number of different faculty members and it’ll play various roles in various classes. So all that means lots of potential for interesting connections but very, very little consistency or hope for consistency.1 The usual things that help you structure a site an experience like this aren’t going to happen but I would really like to allow people to engage with the larger community around this book. That’s the whole point of everyone reading the same book! So I’m relying on the basic blog-based aggregation hub option. The plan is for it to be a lot like the #thoughtvectors site which Alan has explained at length. People can enroll via a Gravity Form that’ll get them tied to their teacher/class and/or we can cherry pick anything with the #VCUcircle2 tag from the Rampages community feed. That is pretty standard these days. 🙂 But a major uniting factor in these sites is usually common assignments or common frameworks. Lacking that, I looked for other options. The interesting option here is the ability to unite the conversations using the page numbers of the physical book which seems counterintuitive but has the potential to be pretty neat. I see it as an […]

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Weekly Web Harvest (weekly)

A Fun-Stopia for Today’s Busy Citizen — The Message — Medium “Most people I ask seem to be OK with the idea of a little slavery in exchange for happiness-on-demand.” tags: weekly circle vcu technology dystopia lego Science Studio “Finding the best multimedia about science on the internet, so you don’t have to.” –not that I’m adverse to looking but this is an interesting collection tags: science media weekly tweet Letters and Photos – WINDOWS FROM PRISON GMU “If you could have window in your cell, what place from your past would it look out to?” This question is asked to individuals who are from Washington, DC but sent to prisons across the country. The corresponding photo requests were then fulfilled by students at George Mason University and Duke Ellington High School and mailed back to the incarcerated participants. tags: photography prison windows weekly tweet A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace “Governments of the Industrial World, you weary giants of flesh and steel, I come from Cyberspace, the new home of Mind. On behalf of the future, I ask you of the past to leave us alone. You are not welcome among us. You have no sovereignty where we gather. “ tags: cyberspace declaration barlow eff freedom weekly Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

The Tao of Posts

I’ve been having quite a few conversations around student portfolios eportfolios online representations of their learning over time. These conversations have mostly centered on using WordPress and, almost inevitably, the first instinct is to create a series of pages that are aligned to either courses or assignments. Those pages usually contain a number of different pieces of content. That structure makes the most sense to people who are used to building websites in the Dreamweaver/static paradigm. I don’t think this is the right path in most cases. It’s easy in the short term but starts to limit you (absent lots of work) in the long run. Strange that I don't really know what a web page is anymore. Individual tweet? Blog post? Flickr image? #vcuols — Tom Woodward (@twoodwar) May 14, 2014 At the heart of this is the issue that “page” is hard to define. In the broadest sense anything I can address with a URL is a webpage. That’s a big bucket. WordPress makes things more complex by including a way to create pieces of content called “pages.” Pages are usually contrasted to posts. I usually described1 the page/post difference was that posts were pieces of content that flowed with the timeline (more ephemeral but archived) and pages were pieces of content you wanted to be more permanent/static. […]