CUNY Technology Group

Public Group active 1 month, 2 weeks ago

Thoughts on functions

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  • #12413
    Joe Rosenberg
    Participant

    As I have been exploring the commons & wiki, I realize that I do not have a clear understanding of the relative functions of the commons & wiki–although not completely unfamiliar with a wiki, I am very close to a novice. At the very least, we need to have guiding directions so people will know where to go to do certain things. Even the difference between a forum (and within a forum, e.g., what is a tag?) and the wire is not clear to the uninitiated. More broadly, I envisioned a place where one could convene a discussion forum that would include a place to post docs or links–is this a group? The wiki? Does the Moodle have functions that the Commons/Wiki does not have?

    On a more impressionistic level, I sometimes have a constrained feeling exploring the commons & wiki, as if I am operating in narrow spheres and unsure of how to expand outward. The remedy? Perhaps more easy to find directions, perhaps some redesign, I am sure others have ideas.

    Joe R.

    #18513

    Hi Joe,

    I completely agree with you that a help system — by which I mean not only how-to tutorials in the form of screencasts, videos, and screen captures — but also directions and notes to guide people as they use the Commons — is my highest priority. I’ve already asked Karen and the ITFs to work on this, but I’m not sure where they are with the project right now. This is definitely something we should talk about on Friday.

    Matt

    #18514

    Hi Joe,

    I completely agree with you that a help system — by which I mean not only how-to tutorials in the form of screencasts, videos, and screen captures — but also directions and notes to guide people as they use the Commons — is one of our highest priorities, and certainly a necessity before we move from Alpha to Beta testing. I’ve already asked Karen and the ITFs to work on this. We definitely need to discuss this on Friday.

    Matt

    #18515

    I bet there are a few Common Craft instructional videos that would help with introductions to blogs, wikis, etc. in general. More specifically here, once the navigational elements are more standardized between the different components of the AC, I think we’ll lose some of that feeling of constraint.

    #18516
    Karen Greenberg
    Participant

    Your points are critically important. However, I think the confusion that some of us are sensing (and the problems we’re having trying to navigate inside each of the two separate parts of the site and back and forth between them) will not be resolved simply by explanations of all the terrific opportunities for meaningful communication and interaction (including the blogs and wikis) that the site provides. The Tech Fellows and I are doing what Matt asked us do to so; we are also trying to develop explanations of why the navigation is different in the two parts of the site (and why each requires a separate log-in). But the reality is that they can’t be “standardized” because they have significant design differences that will always be subject to the “workarounds” that I think are causing what Joe elegantly expressed above as “a constrained feeling . . . as if I am operating in narrow spheres and unsure of how to expand outward.” We may have to learn to live with this feeling because a site created from different pieces of software cannot be a transparently cohesive space where users can slide into and between the different sections seamlessly to find what they want and expand on it in the way they want to.

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