OLC Live

My favorite part of any conference is talking to people. Catching up with friends, chatting with people after a good presentation, and drinking in the excitement in the hallways fill me with ideas to take back home.

For OLC Innovate 18, I wanted to bring this knowledge sharing into the digital space. OLC Live is an attempt to create the space for you and everyone else following the conference from home to join in the conversation.

Starting Wednesday morning, I will be partnering with Autumm Caines, Dave Goodrich, and Kelvin Thompson to host an online conference room. Using a room provided by zoom.us, we will interview many of the conference organizers and presenters. These guests will share their work and talk with you.

In addition to interviews, we will also host open discussions around the key themes of the conference. Based on the program we’ve picked out a few of those themes and invited experts to lead the discussions. We are also leaving plenty of time open so that you can lead the discussion.

On Thursday, at 11am, we will open the room for an Innovate Unconference. We will gather topics on Wednesday and Thursday, and then use Zoom’s breakout rooms to set up round table discussions. Participants can join whatever conversation they want, and share their questions and experiences. I hope we can lure some of the on-site conference participants away from the sessions in Nashville to join in as guests in the unconference you create.

OLC Live is about innovating a pathway to bring virtual participants from the back conference room to instead lead the conversation in their own space. I can’t wait to see you there.

Week in Review: 3/26-4/1

Interactions

One of my favorite things about my job is that I meet with people from a variety of departments and offices across campus every week to brainstorm and build all sorts of projects. This week, I had meetings every day.

I have been working with Prof. Honorée Jeffers on a couple of websites and some course design throughout this academic year. Meeting with Honorée is always one of the highlights of my week. As much as she’s a gifted storyteller—she was recently recognized with the Harper Lee Award—she’s equally gifted at flattery, and I always walk away from our meetings feeling like I revolutionized the internet and lassoed the moon.

I also had brainstorming meetings for new websites for an upcoming conference and a history database. I love brainstorming meetings, because I get to throw out all sorts of ideas and then sit back while someone else decides what they want to actually implement.

At the end of the week, Keegan and I met with Stacy Jacob from Slippery Rock to discuss research in gamification and gameful learning. Keegan and I need to start writing more, so I’m hoping that we can find some partners like Stacy who will line up prompts for us, give us deadlines, and then hold us accountable for saying something interesting.

New Tech

On Monday, I attended a demo by CodeOcean that Sarah Clayton arranged in the library. Unlike GitHub, which hosts code, CodeOcean allows you to stand up an environment in the cloud to run the code. You can import python or most other open language code sets into your account, tell the system what environment you need and then allow people to run your code for themselves. This improves transparency and reproducibility in code-based research. I really like this concept and have already recommended it to one of the professors who’s looking for ways to share code with and among his students.

I stumbled across Notion.so this week and have already spent a ton of time playing with it. Basically, it’s a cross-platform service that’s designed to be a personal or team dashboard. It combines the functionalities of Trello, a rich-text note taking app, and a wiki. You can embed files or link out to files. I’m using it for personal organization right now to help me make sense of my files that are spread over my local hard-drive, Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, and Apple Cloud.

What I’m Reading

I’m trying to read a book every week this year. This week I read The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn at the recommendation of both my sister and dad. The book plays off of Hitchcock’s Rear Window. The narrator is a recluse who hasn’t left her house in quite a while and has spent her time watching Hitchcock and other classics. One day she sees something horrible out her window, and the reader is left trying to decide whether to trust the narrator and her view on the world.

I so enjoyed the novel that I read it in one sitting, probably the first time I’ve done that since Harry Potter 7. I’m not a movie buff, so many of the allusions went over my head, but I still found it a gripping and sad story about mental illness and trust. I really recommend this book.

My Top 3 Goals for next week

  • I need to plan out the 3rd Annual OU Creaties for this year. Every year we honor the best students and faculty who created the best new websites and web content in OU Create. I thought last year was a great success, so I’m going to build off of that and add on 3D printed trophies and one or two other new features.
  • Keegan and I need to draft an abstract for an article on our GOBLIN Faculty Learning Community.
  • We are getting closer and closer to OLC Innovate 18. I am running a new online portion of the conference called OLC Live. This week I need to line up the interviews that we will do with keynotes, organizers, and presenters at the conference.

Photo of the week

This photo is actually from last Saturday, but close enough. I got a decent shot of my daughter and my dad walking to the playground together.


Code Ocean

Sarah Clayton in the libraries organized a demo for Code Ocean today. The company offers reproducibility as service allowing you to upload or import code and data in a variety of open source languages and run it on their servers. The most common use case would be someone publishing their code and data along-side a journal publication so that readers can test it for themselves.

Below are a couple of versions of their interface as embeds. I like how you can manipulate the code, run it, and see the results in situ. I’m particularly interested in how this might be used in place of a GitHub gist to teach both code and the various scientific and engineering concepts that the code facilitates.


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