Thursday, June 23, 2011

bringing technology to #ISTE11

We've had some discussion in my office about what technology to bring to the ISTE conference. Here are my thoughts and what I'm bringing.
  • iPad (or other tablet) for attending sessions
    • with audiobooks, books, and videos
  • laptop or netbook for writing and Skype/Google Talk
  • iPod Touch for walking around at night, and probably for the plane rides
    • also with audiobooks, books, and videos
Calling home:
Skype - for video calls between computers, iPad 2, iPhone, TVs, etc
Google Talk - free calls to Canada and US phones from within Gmail, free video calls to computers

And I'm leaving my phone at home, since even with a US plan it's still about $40 for 40 minutes and $30 for 0.01 GB of data.

While I'm at #ISTE11, I'll be posting to Twitter (@misterhay) and this blog.

Monday, June 13, 2011

amusement park accelerometer data

I collected some data with my phone accelerometer using the app AccDataRec. I've graphed all three axes on each of the spreadsheets in this Google Docs folder.

The best one is the Flying Galleon. I cropped off the messy data at the start and end so it's a nice sinusoidal curve.

Feel free to share and use these however you'd like.

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Friday, June 10, 2011

setting up Moodle Language Lab

Moodle Language Lab is an activity module developed (and being developed) by Campus Saint-Jean and that:
replaces the traditional cassette tape language lab. There is a module for students to record themselves and teachers to review and grade the work. This version also includes a class monitor. So, if a teacher uses it inside the classroom, he/she can monitor student progress the same way they used the traditional language lab by listening to live streams of the students, responding live to students, giving a thumbs up and so on.
It also offers an integration with the Moodle WYSIWYG, allowing recordings to be done virtually in any activity or resource wihtin Moodle. This feature has been used in our classes throughout the past year. For example, we had an oral forum instead of a written forum. Professors would leave spoken messages in the grade book.
It requires three programs running on a server (on the same server or separate ones):
  1. Moodle 2.0.x
  2. Red5 Media Server (version .8)
  3. Palabre XML Socket Server edit: Palabre is no longer needed
Here's how you can set up the three parts of Moodle Language Lab on a Windows server. The process will be similar for other operating systems.

  1. Download version .8 from (I recommend the ZIP file, and 1.0 RC1 worked for me)
  2. Unzip the files into some folder (not publicly accessible)
  3. Install Java, if it's not already installed, and make sure your JAVA_HOME variable is defined
  4. Run Red5.bat
  5. Go to http://localhost:5080/ to test that Red5 is running, and click "Install a ready-made application"
  6. Install the oflaDemo
  7. Make a note of the server's Internet-accessible IP address (or FQDM)
  1. Download the source files (Windows installer didn't work for me), untar into some folder (again not a publicly accessible folder)
  2. Install Python (2.7 or so)
  3. Edit the Palabre\etc\palabre.conf file, these are the two lines that I changed
    • ip = 
    • alloweddomains = #put your own value(s) on this line
  4. Run
  5. Test by running one of the Palabre clients
  6. Make a note of the server's Internet-accessible IP address (or FQDM)
Moodle (this is just pasted from the Developer's readme file)
  1. copy all folders (filter, mod, lib ) into the appropriate moodle(root) folder.
  2. Login to Moodle with admin rights.
  3. In the Site Administration block, click on Notifications. This will setup the database tables for the languagelab module
  4. In the settings block, select Site administration -> Plugins -> Activities Modules -> Manage activities -> Language lab -> settings
  5. Enter the IP address or the FQDN that you noted previously in the appropriate fields and save changes.
  6. You're done. Go into a course, turn editing on and add a language lab activity.