Posts by Joseph Antonioli


Sunday Morning Maintenance

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

On Sunday, February 24th, during downtime we will be changing the url of our WordPress instance from “” to “”

The following message was sent to WordPress site owners on Thursday, the 22nd:

Thank you to everyone who participated in our survey on the change from “blogs” to “sites.”

On Sunday, February 24th, during downtime we will be changing the url of our WordPress instance from “” to “”

What you need to do: NOTHING
This change only affects the url in the address bar of a browser, you do not need to move any content in your site.

Will your links still work? YES
We will be setting up a redirect so that anyone trying to visit a site using “” will be redirected to “”

Can I still track visits to my site using Google Analytics? YES
Last January we made a change to have all Middlebury web applications crawled using one Google Analytic account. You will simply need to add the “” address in your segments.

Will this change my site or url if I use another address? Like or NO
Sites that have their own url, their own subdomain, will not be affected by this change.

Please send questions about this change to Joe Antonioli.

Infrastructure Maintenance for Moodle and Measure

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

We have received a message from Remote-Learner, our Moodle hosting company, that they will be doing some maintenance to improve the security of the service. Expect disruptions in service between 1-6am on Saturday, February 16th.

Dear Valued Client,

In order to install new security upgrades and additional security features, Remote-Learner’s IT technical support division has planned a five-hour maintenance. During the maintenance period internet connectivity may be briefly disrupted several times on February 16th from 1:00 am EST to 6:00 am EST.

The new upgrades and security features will provide additional hosting security for clients.  Ultimately, we believe that you will be pleased with the security updates, and we ask in advance that you accept our apologies for any inconvenience you may experience. We welcome your feedback on our efforts to continue to provide quality customer service and we request that you direct any questions and concerns related to this scheduled maintenance to Remote-Learner’s support division.


The Remote-Learner Team

A web site by any other name…

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Owners of blogs & web sites on Middlebury’s WordPress site were asked their opinion on a proposed change in the URL (address) of the site from “” to “”. The change was proposed to the Web Prioritization Committee as a way “…to provide faculty (and others) using WP as a content management system, personal website, research portfolio, conference proceedings, or other collection of information with a more neutral-sounding domain name than “””

We’ve had 179 responses to our two-question survey, which went out to 929 WP users.

The response to first question shows a 63% agreement rate (or an 85% non-disagree rate).

siteSurveyResultsThe second question was an optional “Why?” “Why not?” comment, and many respondents took the opportunity to explain their choices. There were 79 comments.

Typical of the “yes” respondents’ comments:

“Absolutely agree. While this does not change the essence of the thing, what something is called still carries a great weight – “sites” is a much more versatile term and lends greater freedom to this URL series. “

“ A blog has a reputation as something homegrown, of someone writing their thoughts on a particular topic. Sites sounds more like a neutral label as just something listed online. I like it.”

“I do not like to think of my site as a blog, as it has a lot of information that is not chronologically-ordered. This would be a terrific change!”


Some comments expressed valid concerns, here they are with an explanation of the impact:

“I think we might need to update every single go link for all the middgoal posts and middstart posts we have out there. Who knows what links the students have been promoting… Seems like a major pain for what really is a minor change. If there is a workaround for this that I don’t know about, then go for it.”

“I have been working for a long time at having people connect to my blog.  If you change it, all those links will be broken, and with it I will lose readership.”

There will be a permanent redirect for the new URLs, anyone clicking on the old URL will still visit your site. Also, sites with their own URL (,, etc.) without “blogs” in the URL will not see a change.

“…will this mess up google rankings, searching, etc.?”

There may be a minor impact on rankings, but factors like credible resources linking to your site have a higher impact. In addition, because of the change we made last January, you can still track your site in Google Analytics.


The Web Prioritization Committee approved this change at the January 24th meeting, we will let you know when the change will take place.


Friday Links January 4, 2013

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

The 10 hottest 10 Things lists of 2012 – Favorite posts this year included several IT career topics, along with Windows 7 speed tips, HTML5 tags, development project mistakes, and cross-platform tools.

Friday Links December 14, 2012

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Marginalia, or The Roger Williams Code: How a team of scholars decrypted a secret language—and discovered the last known work of the American theologian. (via Slate)

Ithaka, the non-profit organization that brings us JSTOR, on Supporting the Changing Research Practices of Historians: This study, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, uncovers the needs of today’s historians and provides guidance for how research support providers can better serve them.

3D Printing:  Wondering what this technology is all about?  Read the latest CQ Researcher report “3D Printing: Will it revolutionize manufacturing?“  Trivia question: How was this technology used in the latest James Bond thriller “Skyfall”?

Some faculty and students have been reluctant to post undergraduate theses to Scholarship at Middlebury in part because they fear it could jeopardize their ability to publish the findings in journals later on. A report published in the Chronicle of Higher Education indicates there isn’t much cause for this kind of concern. (Read the comments too, where the validity of the conclusions is debated.) Putting Dissertation Online Isn’t an Obstacle to Print Publication, Surveys Find.

Friday Links – October 26

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

10 IT Relics I Really Miss – Do you remember the days of BBSes and shareware subscriptions, magazines full of BASIC code for your CoCo, and true desktop cases? Take a techie stroll down memory lane.

Upcoming webinar: Beyond publish or perish: alternative metrics for scholarship presented by NISO.

Moodle Update

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Remote-Learner, the company that hosts Moodle for us, will be performing a minor update at 2am this Saturday. We expect the total downtime to be less than one hour.