Friday, March 28, 2008
Friday fun — image editing online, new browsers & more
Flock aims to take searching and browsing on the 'net social. I dunno, sometimes I'm not interested in being social — I just need to find something quickly.
IE8 is now in beta and sounds like it will be rolled out with new versions of Windows and sounds like they will continue to move down the standards compliancy road.
Firefox 3 is beta, too and has been hyped as nexgen searching (whatever that may mean).
Google suggest is kind of cool but kind of annoying (sometimes I just want to find things and I don't want to be bothered.) Of course, at some point, it will just give up with trying to help you, too.
Seven online image editing tools in case google's picassa is just not enough.-----
Searching Internet Archive by CC Licensing
Because I can never remember where these are located on the webpage (FAQs, actually)
I'm snipping this out for myself with the search links, of course (i.e., just click the link to execute the search in IA). The IA has great stuff for digital collagists, movie makers, & other arty folks.
I used stuff from the Prelinger Collection to make my movie about cataloging and also for my digital collage on communication.
Can I search by Creative Commons License?
Yes, you can. But it's a little complicated.
Here's how to break it down. See the license types at creative commons. When you want to find all of the items that have a certain license, you'll plug their abbreviation for it into this search query:
So if you're looking for Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives (by-nc-nd), you'd put this in the search box: /metadata/licenseurl:http*by-nc-nd/* And you'd get about 33,000 items back.
If you want to use this in combination with other queries, like "I want by-nc-nd items about dogs" you'd do this: /metadata/licenseurl:http*by-nc-nd/* AND dog And you'd get 195 items. The AND tells the search engine all the items returned should have that license AND they should contain the word dog. AND has to be in all caps.
Just to make it easier, here are the basic searches:
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
My e-portfolio in drupal (beginnings)
Although I still have lots more work to do it, I managed to get drupal upgraded to 6.1. As I stated in one of my previous drupal posts, the difference between 4.7(? I think that was my latest version pre-upgrade) and 6.1 is amazing. It looks like on the "to do" list for the upcoming upgrades is a WYSIWYG theme editor. Whoa. Would that it ever make it easy to use Drupal! The only real problems that I had with Drupal was that my custom created theme using the Zen theme module (nod to CSS Zen Garden) didn't work. Oh, and I then had to re-do my modules.
This is just a sketch at this point. I'm missing so much content, but at least I have some of my projects in the portfolio, as well as a brief CV.
I'd love some thoughts or feedback.
Monday, March 24, 2008
drupal - what it is & how it works (overview)
For those unfamiliar with Drupal it is a largescale opensource CMS for a website which is used by the likes of Tim Berners-Lee.
Drupal is scalable and modular built which even includes design elements. Each Drupal website is like a house built out of legos — just like legos fit together to create something (a working door, a roof, etc.) which then creates the overall house, the modules fit together to create larger functionality, which in turn, creates the website.
Sounds confusing? Not really these days. The initial versions of Drupal were not so user friendly — figuring out which module went with which version and which module was needed for which functionality was sometimes hard (and complicated!). Early themes were very bland and all had a very Drupalesque view. At that time, it was very easy to figure out if a site was running Drupal. If the look didn't give it away, then the urls (node!) would!
The latest version continues to move forward — even the actual Drupal website is getting more user friendly. Although the ability to search for modules by version at the website has existed for a while, it now clearly states which module (or theme) works with each version. Upgrades are getting easier to do, too. With the creation of the Zen theme (CSS based) and with some of the newer themes also supporting CSS, getting a more personalized look is becoming easier, too. The Pathauto module (version 5+) allows the user to create personalized and relevant URLs, e.g., mysite/resume vs. mysite/node/1
Finally, Drupal continues to shine at what it has been good at: providing web editors with a means to design a website by moving the construction and design away from the content creation. By having the content creation separate, adding content to a Drupal website can be a simple as posting to a blog. Of course, user authority levels and passwords are part of that, too.
Drupal does lack in some specialized functionalities such as creating an e-publication and e-portfolios. Given that Drupal is highly customizable and many of the modules can (and do) work together, there are many different ways to create more specialized functionalities such as e-publication and e-portfolios.
Drupal also has limited support for crosswalking third party applications. However, it does seem like support for third party applications is becoming more common, and with widgets being developed (or already available) for many of the common web 2.0 sites (flickr, youtube, etc.) it is easy enough to incorporate those bits of code into Drupal.
Drupal has recently branched off into a commercial project which is working with Millenium (III). I hope that there is no negative impact on the opensource project, as there has been with Joomla (a rival opensource CMS, for which most of the advanced functionalities are fee based).
Drupal screenshots including behind the scenes are here.
Oh, and my little e-portfolio.
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
So, I decided I would put all of Powerpoint handout stuff into my website to make it a little more interactive and interesting than just downloading a Word doc. I couldn't quite figure out how to dump a Word doc into drupal and in looking around on the messageboard I discovered I was 2 versions behind anyhow. Isn't that the way of the world? Anyhow, I upgraded to the latest version, and wow, is it a BILLION times better. My only complaint so far, is that I am having problems getting the Zen template (based upon CSS Garden!) to work. So, I am stuck with a modded template that belongs to someone else. Oh well. The second reason I decided to work on my website/drupal installation is that my original idea was to use it to build my e-portfolio, but I hadn't really done much with it.
I received some inspiration this afternoon (Weds, 3/19/2008) at an Emerging Educational Technologies workshop taught by David Noah from the Center for Teaching & Learning. His presentations/workshops are always interesting. Although they are based strongly in educational theory, he is a creative and forward thinking person. So, the discussions are always food for thought! He also talked some about e-portfolios (in addition to all of the Web2.0 stuff, second life, etc.), which made me think: where I am with my e-portfolio?-----