Saturday, 25 April 2009

E-Learning Conference at Plymouth

I attended the Plymouth e-Learning Conference this week, and was spoilt with a broad range of speakers from around the world (proceeding available as a PDF). There was very much an emphasis on integrating software packages, making them much more student centred and institution specific.

The keynote talks Day 1: from Mike Blamires (video) that included a welcome from Michael Totterdell, Pro-vice Chancellor of the University of Plymouth. Day 2: Graham Attwell (Video).

Steve Wheeler summaries the event on his blog.

Monday, 20 April 2009

Windows 7 Beta, any good?

I finally got around to installing Window 7 Beta (64bit) on my home PC and joined the Microsoft beta testers. In a nutshell I am finding it surprisingly good, and importantly very stable. The only issues I found was that the operating system got a little confused between my two on board LANs, nothing that the on board troubleshooter couldn't work out... But this glitch kept re-occurring... One for the Microsoft people to work out on the driver front.

What about using and installing software?
Well all the Microsoft Office 2007 components work beautifully. There was a slight glitch after putting on Adobe Web Standard CS3 suite, as I later discovered that the control panel was not functioning properly. It was all down to Adobe Cue, however disabling this by renaming a file did the trick!

To be fair on Win7 (it is in Beta) and Adobe (only meant for Vista at most) so I was very surprised that so many applications actually worked. All this aside Win7 is in fact a very stable and fast booting/shutting down operating system. Everything Vista was meant to be. So far so good :)

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

tulip - What is it?

What is it? - ‘tulip’ stands for ‘Teaching and Learning In Plymouth’ and it’s simply an alternative name for the Student Portal, including all Programme and Module sites.

Why bother renaming? - When the new Student Portal launched two years ago, it was the only University web system powered by the SharePoint framework. Staff got used to calling it “SharePoint” to distinguish it from the “old” Student Portal.

As other internet based systems move to SharePoint (eg, intranet, official documents system) and we get new spaces like “MySite”, it’s going to get very confusing if we keep calling everything SharePoint. Hence, it was suggested that each area should have its own name and brand to help us identify it. The name ‘tulip’ was chosen in a student competition.

I don’t use tulip, what does it look like? - Typically, the tulip logo appears on programme and module sites (displayed in the top left of the screen). See example below: