9.30.2015

Moodle: Styling Issues with Safari

I recently helped an instructor who was having an issue in Moodle. The instructor was running a Mac laptop with the latest version of Yosemite and accessing Moodle through the Safari browser. She was using the newer Atto text editor in Moodle.

The symptom of the issue was that the WYSIWYG text editor was not applying a style (color, in this case) to some text. The instructor selected the text, selected the desired color, and then nothing happened. The same thing attempted in Google Chrome was successful. As always, Firefox is the preferred browser for accessing Moodle. Google Chrome seems to be stable as well (I primarily use Chrome).

9.18.2015

HashtagTodo

I recently came upon a tool that allows me to use my Google Calendar as a To-do list, called HashtagToDo (#todo). I have been using it for a couple of weeks now. You can see how it works with your calendar here. So far I like it. It is nice to be able to put to-dos directly into my calendar. I really like that any tasks that I don't complete are automatically moved to the next day. I actually made a separate "to-do" calendar so that 1) I could make it a different color from my regular calendar, and 2) so that I could hide it if I want. This also allows me to not share all my to-dos with anyone that has access to my regular calendar.

This tool is very easy to set up and use.

  • To connect the tool to your calendar, just sign up with your Google account. The settings allow you to determine which calendars work with HashtagTodo.
  • To create a To-do just add "#todo" (without the quotes) to any calendar item. This will create a check box for the item. Once the to-do has been completed you can add an 'x' in the check box to mark it as complete. That's it!

As far as any minuses...
I previously used Google Tasks and enjoyed the ease with which I could move an email to Tasks. Any time I want to do that now I have to do manually (copy/paste the email URL into the event description). This isn't, however, enough to keep me from using HashtagTodo. One thing that might be a nice feature to add is making completed tasks fade out like past events. I think that that would be an easier visual cue that something is completed versus looking for the 'x'.

HashtagTodo

9.15.2015

Smallpdf

One of my colleagues (Meghan Dowell - thank you!) shared this site with me. I haven't had much time to try it out, but it looks very promising. It appears to be free (they do accept donations) and the site supports drag-and-drop. Click the conversion type you desire and then drag and drop the file into the designated area.

Click the link below to try it out:
http://smallpdf.com/

9.11.2015

Japan Cities in Transition Blog

I was reminded again today of the awesome work that is occurring on (and off) the Beloit College campus, in particular on the Japan Cities in Transition blog, In Search of Modern Japan. This is the second year for this blog with a total of eight students studying abroad in three different universities in Japan.

The purpose of the blog is to:
"help them [students] explore the city as concept, the city in practice, and the city as imagined by its inhabitants. Through the experience of writing this blog, we hope all students in this class can understand more fully the rich diversity of experiences that await them." It is a great privilege to read through the students experiences and see them process, analyze and evaluate those. Please check out the blog and/or, better yet, comment and interact with the students. I know they would enjoy the feedback and interaction.

In Search of Modern Japan