Transforming your staff's potential

Monday, March 23, 2009 Tidbits: Open Source

Here is the periodic sampling from my favorites list. This time I chose the tag "Open Source." This is what I found I have:

Geek to Live: 6 ways to find reusable media: Resources for copyright-free content.

Innovation Happens Elsewhere: This open source book is intended for anyone considering using Open Source. It describes what open source is, discusses business reasons for using open source, and describes how an open source project works in a day-to-day manner. It will help you decide on whether open source is right for your project, and, if so, what steps you should take to proceed and some mistakes you should avoid.

Cultural and Organizational Drivers of Open Educational Content: This essay, in PDF format, by Malcolm Read presents the benefits of open educational content and argues for its use.

Top 40 Free Downloadable Open Source Social Networking Software Vivalogo Resources: Vivalogo's list of best free, downloadable, open source social networking software.

OER Commons: This initiative provides support for and builds a knowledge base around the use and reuse of open educational resources (OER). As a network for teaching and learning materials, the web site offers engagement with resources in the form of social bookmarking, tagging, rating, and reviewing.

Moodle: A free, open source course management system for online learning.

Insoshi: An open source social networking platform.

OpenEd Practices: A community of practice for teaching and learning with open/community-source tools.

Sunday, March 15, 2009 Tidbits: Storyboard

Here is the periodic sampling from my favorites list. This time I chose the tag "Storyboard." This is what I found I have:

Creating Scripts and Storyboards for e-Learning : From Kevin Kruse at E-Learning Guru, an article on the major elements of storyboarding.

Quick Tips for Effective eLearning Storyboarding : From ASTD, a presentation handout in PDF format that was used as part of a larger training on storyboarding. It includes 7 activities to guide the group through analyzing storyboarding challenges and developing an action plan.

Really Fast Storyboarding for E-Learning Projects - DSA Learning & Performance Tips Newsletter : A post by Thomas Welsh on using SnagIt and MSFT Word to create storyboards.

Storyboards and eLearning (Pt. 1) : From eduTech Geek, a post that answers the questions: 1) What are eLearning Storyboards? and, 2) Why should a storyboard not include transitions, hyperlinks or animations?

Storyboard Template : From Xinsight, a downloadable storyboard template in PDF format.

Free Online Graph Paper / Storyboard Paper : From Incomptech, a storyboard paper generator.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Finds: Information Architecture

Maya, a design consultancy and research lab, posted a great essay, deconstructing the concepts of "information" and "architecture" (with the help of two wonderful videos), and discussing the implications for constructing information architectures that keep the information itself relevant and pliable for future evolution and uses.

They call out the problem with subjugating the information to the delivery format and/or current purpose:
"Often we find that an existing system has been built as a monolithic solution
that jumbles the raw plumbing of the system with the business process and the
user interface. Unfortunately this leads to a brittle solution that can’t evolve
with new user interfaces, new underlying systems, or new business realities."
They advocate for deep analysis of the current (or proposed) system to identify and separate the information from the system and business process, then redesign so the information is independent from the latter two factors, to facilitate its re-purposing over time in meaningful ways.
"When we say Information Architecture (IA) we are really talking about
everything you can define about a solution without specifying the underlying
system (the raw plumbing) or specifying the particular user interface that will
be employed to deliver and manipulate the information. By thinking about the
architecture of how information is used, how it flows, and how it fits within
the user’s world (its context), you can capture the essence of how to build a
system that is not only intuitive but futureproof."
As the worlds of Web 2.0/ social media / communities of practice / wirearchy / open source continue to evolve at an ever-increasing rate, the pressure to separate information from it's delivery form and method will become increasingly crucial to allow for its effective re-purposing, use, as well as its own evolution.

This is a tall order. How do we deliver on it?