Advanced planning for Halloween - The top 10 sci-fi horror films of all time
Advanced planning for Halloween - The top 10 sci-fi horror films of all time
Q: What do these three things have in common?
Imagine yourself back in the 2002-2003 academic year. There is no MySpace yet, let alone Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter. Most websites are being created by typing HTML markup or using desktop programs like Dreamweaver. WordPress doesn’t exist yet and won’t support more than a single blog for another three years. Moveable Type and Manilla (early blogging systems) are available, but don’t support the unicode character set needed to properly display text in foreign languages. Each summer numerous faculty would work with students in LIS to build a class website, a process that required many meetings as the faculty member developed the content, then gave it to the student to put on the web. Changes to the content required yet more meetings.
In June 2003 after about a year of development we launched Segue, a content management system that has supported our learning environment for almost a decade. Segue was designed to meet two specific needs. It allowed faculty to create and update their own course websites on their own schedule without requiring a continuous back and forth with support staff. It also allowed web content to be created in all of the languages taught at Middlebury, even Japanese, Chinese, Russian, and Arabic.
Years later unicode support has become common and there now exist a plethora of learning management systems to choose from. In May of 2009, Middlebury decided that Segue had completed it’s tour of duty and that it was time for decommissioning. Today, August 31st, 2012, Segue has served its last page and is now offline.
We want to take this moment to thank Alex Chapin, Adam Franco, Gabe Schine, Christopher Shubert, and Dobromir Radichkov, who developed Segue over the years and supported the service as a resource for our curricular environment.
A: All three occur today.
Want to have better meetings? Ditch PowerPoint – For some, a PowerPoint presentation causes them to automatically tune out. Here’s what to do in your meetings instead.
The Classic, Beautiful and Controversial Books That Changed Science Forever - Without the work of intellectual giants like Einstein, Newton and Darwin, we might still be in the dark ages. But how many scientists still read the dust-ridden texts where these luminaries first expounded their theories? Here’s the story of 10 famous publications that spun the scientific world off its orbit.
The Middlebury community has a strong culture of creating and sharing, whether it is a story on the homepage, an exhibition at the museum or a project in MiddLab. These sites balance visual appeal to keep our visitors engaged with what we are doing, with organization that makes the the abundance of information easy to find. Aligned with these goals is integration of social media elements that allow internal and external visitors provide comments and additional information and we push content to audiences in Twitter and Facebook.
We have been tracking activity across our web sites since January, giving us some good information on how our web sites are being used. Here are some high level stats based on data collected from January 1 – June 30 2012 across over 550,000 pages.
Unique Visitors: 2,236,190
Page Views: 12,227,234
We are averaging over 3 pages per visit, with the average visit lasting over 3 minutes.
No surprise that the most visited page in our web presence is the homepage, receiving over 2,000,000 visits during the 6 month period. Placement can change based on the time of year, but the other top pages include academics, athletics, the portal pages, the online directory, and our login page.
To support these types of web sites and pages we have a number of platforms that we use.
Drupal – an application framework that we use to build CMS applications for the Midd and MIIS main sites, Davis United World College Scholars, Davis Projects for Peace and the Museum. Content is a mix of static (text, images and media stay the same until someone changes it) and dynamic (feeds of information update from other sources, like 25Live and blog rss feeds).
WordPress – self-service and flexible platform, supporting over one thousand sites. Provide the ability of the site owner to change the look and feel through a number of themes, and turn functionality on and off as needed. WP allows for the display of dynamic and static content. A number of plugins allow for pushing content to social media platforms, as well as pulling in content from resources like Google Maps.
Kurogo – modular framework for adding condensed views of content throughout our web presence, currently drives the mobile dashboard, the portal and the constituent gateways. The service contains very little content, almost all of the text, images and media are pulled from other sources.
There are other platforms that either support the presentation of web content, or provide a presentation for information that lives in another system.
Calendar: 25Live – generates the main calendar view, as well as spuds for individual departments. Provides a presentation layer for information in R25.
Course Catalog – Presentation layer of course information stored in Banner. Also provides course listings for academic departments and faculty.
Dining Menus – Presentation layer for our menu system
GO – a shortcut service and a way to keep persistent urls as web sites change. The addition of QR codes for every shortcut has made this a valuable tool for our print media.
Mediawiki – rarely used to build a web site because it is not easy for a wiki owner to provide an appealing look and feel, but the tracking and discussion features are useful for a site that requires a lot of collaborative editing for all content. This is the same platform that runs Wikipedia.
Middmedia – an interface to media storage, it provides embed code for audio and video streaming as well as direct links for download.
This post is a follow up from the Middlebury’s Web Presence – A Few High Level Snapshots post. Next up will be an overview of our curricular platforms.
Did this 1985 film coin the phrase ‘information superhighway’ and predict Siri?
AT&T posts semi-futurist video about the melding of computers and telecommunications
55% of adult cell phone owners use the internet on their mobile phones; that is nearly double the number that was found 3 years ago. More at Cell Internet Use 2012 (Pew Internet and American Life Proejct).
Here’s Why Google and Facebook Might Completely Disappear in the Next 5 Years – We think of Google and Facebook as Web gorillas. They’ll be around forever. Yet, with the rate that the tech world is moving these days, there are good reasons to think both might be gone completely in 5 – 8 years. Not bankrupt gone, but MySpace gone. And there’s some academic theory to back up that view, along with casual observations from recent history.
Queen’s researchers create life-sized 3D hologram for videoconferencing – Just when you thought the present was beginning to be what you imagined the future would be like, a research team at Queen’s University has created a human-scale 3D hologram pod that allows people in different locations to videoconference as if they are standing in front of each other.
Elsevier Experiments With Allowing ‘Text Mining’ of Its Journals – an agreement has been negotiated between the University of British Columbia and Elsevier “that will allow UBC researchers to dig into Elsevier content for research purposes.” … This has ramifications for digital humanities, among other things.