Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Well, I just couldn't stand it.

I'd planned to be away for awhile, visiting friends and family, but instead I've had to work a couple of days. Therefore, I thought I'd take a little time to update a couple of things on my blog.

www.moodle.orgHave you ever heard of Moodle? Moodle is an acronym for Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment. What is it? It is an open-source software package course management system. Simply put, you can use it to create online classes. Being open-source, it is free to distribute and use. It is copyrighted, but under the GNU Public License. This means that you can copy and use the work as long as you provide the source to others; not modify or remove the original license and copyrights, and apply this same license to any derivative work. I took an old Dell computer that was originally a 450 Mhz machine, upgraded it a few years ago with a 1 Ghz processor, recently upgraded the RAM to its max of 384 MB, downloaded easyPHP, which includes Apache web server software, PHP, and MySQL. I was completely amazed as I watched the installation work flawlessly. I basically sat back and watched. I did have to edit the config.php file eventually so it could point to an IP address on my LAN, but once I did that I created a few demo courses and logged in from each computer on my home LAN. And doggoned if it didn't work!!! I was very pleased with how simple this process was. Moodle has been compared to Blackboard and WebCT. You can Google them to see for yourself. It is supported by a variety of online users, many of which are developers themselves. You can host your own Moodle site with your own server and equipment, or you can purchase hosting services through a Moodle partner. Visit the Moodle sites and give the demo a try by clicking on the graphic below.

Graphics from Moodle

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