Welcome, Guest. Please Login
Tinderbox
  News:
IMPORTANT MESSAGE! This forum has now been replaced by a new forum at http://forum.eastgate.com and no further posting or member registration is allowed. The forum is still accessible via read-only access for reference purposes. If you wish to discuss content here, please use the new forum. N.B. - posting in the new forum requires a fresh registration in the new forum (sorry - member data can't be ported).
  HomeHelpSearchLogin  
 
Pages: 1
Send Topic Print
teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox (Read 5176 times)
Steve Scott
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 169

teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Jun 06th, 2014, 12:22pm
 
Graham and I were having a conversation over here: http://www.eastgate.com/Tinderbox/forum//YaBB.pl?num=1347447038/18#18 which I thought that I would split into a new topic.

Here is a workflow that I have used (and am developing) for classroom use.

1. Students have a class webpage filled with links to various resources.  One of the resources links to a file that I keep on dropbox which is shared publicly called, calendar.html. I have another file for other links, let's call this resources.html

2. In Tinderbox, I have a container filled with various notes (assignments, projects, etc.).  When the container gets exported, it overwrites the prior calendar.html file or the resources.html file.  There is a css file that also gets exported, so the calendar.html file always looks good.  (There was a discussion on the thread linked above that was discussing Marked- I adapted one of the styles from Marked).

How does all of this help?

I can be in the middle of teaching and change a few due dates on assignments.  Because, I have the whole process planned out using keyboard maestro, I select F1 and everything gets exported to its proper place and synced to dropbox.

It comes down to this. . .

"We are behind schedule---I'm going to give you another day to finish the assignment." I make the change in TB, hit F1, wait 10 seconds and say, "Please refresh your browser to see the adjusted due date."

Mark Anderson was instrumental in getting me set-up with the tbx side of things.  My next step is to add markdown into the system.

Steve
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Graham Smith
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 66
Somerset, UK.
Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #1 - Jun 6th, 2014, 1:04pm
 
Steve,

We use Blackboard across the University,  and as far as I can work out there is no easy way of updatings things the way you are doing.  In fact there seems no easy way of doing anything in Blackboard. You either type directly into pages within BB, or upload files, that are then linked to from a BBC page. One if get incredibly irritating aspects of BBC is that you cannot copy and paste in it, everything needs typed from scratch.

However, and not related to TB, you can link Blackboard to google apps, and this would make things much easier to manage. The google apps can be embedded in BB and appear as if they had been written in BB.

My plan was to try and manage the modules I teach from within TB, writing up documentation using MarkDown, export to Marked for conversion to Word for import into google, and into PDF for printing or downloading.

I am still trying to work out how best to do all this, but TB seems to offer a good way of keeping together the vast amount of bits and pieces that you need to try and keep track of when you are teaching, and Markdown, gives the flexibility of easily and quickly turning text into whichever format seems to be flavour of the week.

At the moment, I certainly see TB at the centre of whatever, I eventually come up, and certainly keen to hear how others are using it for teaching.

Thanks,

Graham

Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Steve Scott
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 169

Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #2 - Jun 6th, 2014, 2:09pm
 
Quote:
We use Blackboard across the University,  and as far as I can work out there is no easy way of updatings things the way you are doing.


We use Moodle which I also don't like.  So on my Moodle landing page I have created external links that open up in new pages.   So, I am compliant in using the system that everybody has to use, but my work go around is to store all of my documents in dropbox. This allows me to rapidly update anything from any application. Most of my colleagues spent so much time uploading files to Moodle, while I just save everything into dropbox in various forms. From a student perspective, they are using Moodle. On the back end,  I have created a system that works for me.

Quote:
You either type directly into pages within BB, or upload files, that are then linked to from a BBC page. One if get incredibly irritating aspects of BBC is that you cannot copy and paste in it, everything needs typed from scratch.


Have you checked out keyboard maestro?   It could help you work around the crazy structure of blackboard. So, for example, you could assign 1 keystroke to do the following:

- open the file you just exported in marked
- highlight and copy all document text
- pause until you find the window in blackboard that you want to "type" into.
- when you're ready,  type all of the text you had previously copied
- hit the submit button

yes, it takes a while to think through this automation, but every time I run something like this I stretch and smile.  From blackboard's perspective, it would think you are "typing from scratch" but at a 1 million words a minute.

or, you can create a very similar workflow that puts everything into Google documents.

Quote:
TB seems to offer a good way of keeping together the vast amount of bits and pieces that you need to try and keep track of when you are teaching, and Markdown, gives the flexibility of easily and quickly turning text into whichever format seems to be flavour of the week.


I agree wholeheartedly.  Although I am still fumbling TBX, let me know if you need help or if you want to brainstorm solutions.

Steve

Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Graham Smith
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 66
Somerset, UK.
Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #3 - Jun 6th, 2014, 2:50pm
 
Steve,

Before I forget, how are you including the quotes in your reply, I can't see any obvious way of doing this.

I like the idea of Dropbox as a back end to Blackboard, because it is an immensely time consuming tool to manage, but Google also offers a potential solution.

I will certainly give keyboard maestro a go. If I can get that working as you suggest, that would be a tremendous saving.

Thanks for your offer of help, I may well need it.

Graham

Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Steve Scott
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 169

Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #4 - Jun 6th, 2014, 3:19pm
 
You can quote by highlighting text and hitting the icon to the right of # on the top row.  The one with the paper and and the blue arrow.  It wraps your text in Code:
 [quote]the text between the quotes appears in the quote box [/quote] 



Yet another case for Markdown which is simply

Code:
> This would become a quote in markdown! 



Have you used Google Drive on your computer?  You can drop files into it and then it will sync online.   You can possibly update files to that folder.  I don't know if it creates a new URL every time you overwrite the document.
Back to top
 
« Last Edit: Jun 6th, 2014, 3:20pm by Steve Scott »  
  IP Logged
Graham Smith
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 66
Somerset, UK.
Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #5 - Jun 6th, 2014, 3:36pm
 
Quote:
You can quote by highlighting text and hitting the icon to the right of # on the top row


I think I have that now, and yes I have google drive installed, and looking at that will be part of the "grand plan" once marking is out of the way.

Thanks,

Graham
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Steve Scott
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 169

Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #6 - Jun 6th, 2014, 3:47pm
 
. . . but working on the grand plan is so much more fun if you have a pile of papers to avoid!
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Graham Smith
Full Member
*
Offline



Posts: 66
Somerset, UK.
Re: teaching workflow: tinderbox to dropbox
Reply #7 - Jun 6th, 2014, 3:53pm
 
Quote:
. . . but working on the grand plan is so much more fun if you have a pile of papers to avoid!


What do you think I am doing now Smiley
Back to top
 
 
  IP Logged
Pages: 1
Send Topic Print