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Flavours of Xerte

January 13, 2009 at 7:52 pm

This is just a quick post to share a document (pdf) I used recently to demonstrate the latest Xerte developments with the other MoLeNET mentors. Version 1.0 of Xerte toolkits is scheduled for release on 29th January and I believe will prove an incredibly popular and powerful authoring solution for practitioners as well as specialist developers.

I’ve been working with the team at Nottingham to integrate toolkits with Moodle and hopefully this will be available in the 1.0 release. Watch the Xerte site for news! http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/~cczjrt/Editor/toolkits.htm

Also sample LO’s here: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/toolkits/RSS/

Thank God for Norton 360! A sobering reminder and question – how do you back up your stuff?

November 16, 2008 at 9:00 pm

About 11 days ago my main Windows laptop froze and it turned out the hard drive had developed a fault. Although of course not life and death it was nonetheless a traumatic experience even just thinking about the implications let alone dealing with them. Now most of my work I store and access from an external hard drive which I periodically backup to another drive but I do/did still store a lot of files on the D partition of the laptop some of which weren’t stored anywhere else. More importantly I store a lot of needed info and even files in my email inbox which typically resides on the C: partition which crashed. I also use an awful lot of different applications, had systems and sites stored on localhost and over the life of the laptop installed and configured a large number of programmes, utilities and updates etc. Now of course I did have an early backup created when I first got the laptop and also some of the files copied or duplicated elsewhere but still would have lost an awful lot of valuable almost irreplaceable stuff if it weren’t for the following:

1. I bought a new replacement hard drive and had a manufacturer supplied recovery disk which I used to restore the factory image.
2. I bought a SATA to USB cable/kit to view my faulty drive and was able to recover all the data from the D partition
3. That D partition also contained a regular back created by Norton 360 so after re-installing Office I was able to restore my email, calendar, contact, IE favourites etc. The more recent stuff I had via my Apple MobileMe account but certainly not everything.

With competing deadlines and family stuff etc it’s taken me about 11 days to get back to where I was before the crash. Fortunately I didn’t lose too much and may still be able to recover some files from the C partition but I’ve definitely learned from the process. I’ve purchased a second SATA drive and upgraded my copy of Casper to work with my Vista laptop and so now have a current duplicate drive which I intend to keep up-to-date periodically. Suffice to say I’ve also still got Norton 360 backing up my important systems and files on a daily basis and I’m going to be more regimental about backing up my external drives. I’m also going to ensure I have similar solutions for my MacBook and eeePC and already do for my desktop PC.

Now you may already be doing all this or have better solutions but if not please use this as a sobering reminder and think about how you back up your important stuff!

Just installed the simple-tags plugin

October 1, 2008 at 1:00 pm

I just installed the simple tags plugin so this is a test to see how it works.

It should help find things more easily on this blog/site by auto tagging but more importantly helping me tag and categorise more consistently.


September 30, 2008 at 9:07 pm

This is just a test post using BlogDesk-button

This is a free Windows based RPC tool for WordPress and other blogs. So far it looks like a really useful and fast way of posting including uploading images complete with alt tags and links etc

Canadian Lake

Using WordPress with an iPod Touch (or iPhone)

September 28, 2008 at 3:41 pm
WordPress App
The plugins and apps for using WordPress with the iPod Touch (and iPhone) seem really great. The first thing I tried was the free WordPress app which seems to work really well including the option to include and upload photos. 
iPod Touch screen showing WordPress App

iPod Touch screen showing WordPress App

The screenshot below shows the write screen.
There are limited options but anything more complicated would probably be best done on a larger screen device.:

iPod Touch WordPress App showing write screen

iPod Touch WordPress App showing write screen


WordPress Theme
Having installed the WP iPod Touch plugin I have to say it seems to work brilliantly. The 1st screenshot below shows the standard blog postings with links to search and also a link to the menu.

WordPress iPod Theme showing postings

WordPress iPod Theme showing postings

This is the menu view showing the icons I chose in the plugin configuration. There’s also a link in the footer to switch to view the site via the normal theme and back again. Although my normal theme seems ok on the Touch this optimised theme does work much better. Thumbs up to the developers for a great job!

WordPress iPod Theme showing menu