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Slides for a worskhop for UNSW staff held on 11 May 2009

Slides for a worskhop for UNSW staff held on 11 May 2009

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  • 1.  
    • Welcome and Introductions
    • Wordpress MU: Background and Tech Specs
    • UNSW Blogs Overview
    • UNSW Blogs Policies: Publishing and Management
    • Bangs and Whistles: Plugins on UNSW Blogs
    • (Very) Quick Overview of Template Design for Wordpress
    • Future Development on UNSW Blogs
    • Questions and Discussion
  • 3. UNSW Blogs Overview
    • UNSW Blogs Platform established as part of the TELT Pilot project
    • Allows for the setup and management of multiple blogs for staff use at UNSW
    • Running on the Wordpress Multi-User 2.7.1 platform
    • Customised templates which include University Branding
    • Added functionality including Podcasting &Vodcasting, Web 2.0 tools and social networking (via plugins)
    • http://blogs.unsw.edu.au
  • 4. Wordpress MU: Technical Requirements
    • To run WordPress MU you need webhosting which provides:
        • PHP version 4.3 or greater
        • MySQL version 4.0 or greater
        • Apache mod_rewrite
    • UNSW Blogs is running version 2.7.1 which was released in March 2009.
  • 5. Wordpress MU: Background & Tech Specs
    • Flavours of Wordpress!
      • Wordpress: Supports one weblog per installation, open source, easy to self-host
      • WordPress Multi-User: (WordPress MU, a.k.a. WPMU) allows simultaneous blogs to exist within one installation and managed via one site admin dashboard
      • Other related products include Lyceum (which was designed for enterprise use and has a normalised database structure ) and BuddyPress - a plug-in extension of WPMU that is adding missing community features
  • 6. UNSW Blogs Terms of Use & Publishing Policies
    • The Terms of Use and Guidelines Publishing on the UNSW Blogs platform are currently under development
    • The Terms of Use and Guidelines should allow for flexibility and sharing, as well as ensuring that relevant university polices are met.
    • Consideration should be given to policies for both professional and personal use of online tools such as blog, wikis and social software
  • 7. Existing Policies to Consider
    • TAFE NSW – Sydney Institute’s Terms of Use and Guidelines for the myLearning Platform (Wikis and blogs) See: http://termsofuse.sydneyinstitute.wikispaces.net/
    • BBC Guidelines for Online Publishing See: http://www.bbc.co.uk/guidelines/editorialguidelines/
    • BBC Guidelines for Personal Use of Online and Social Media Sites See: http://www.bbc.co.uk/guidelines/editorialguidelines/advice/personalweb/index.shtml
  • 8. TAFE NSW – Sydney Institute Guidelines
    • See: http://termsofuse.sydneyinstitute.wikispaces.net/
  • 9. Theme Design for Wordpress
    • Wordpress Themes allow for detailed customisation of both the platform at an administration/corporate level, but can also be used to enable a high level of user customisation.
    • Wordpress themes consist of php files and css. (style.css, header.php, page.php etc)
    • Resources for those interested in developing Wordpress Themes is available @ http://wordpress.org/extend/themes/
  • 10. UNSW Blog Themes
    • A small collection of UNSW Blog Themes have been developed and more are on the way!
    • Themes have been designed to meet UNSW Branding obligations, but still allow for a level of user customisation and personalisation
    • Themes are designed for use with a wide range of plugins, plus ‘widgetised’ to allow for extensive sidebar and content customisation.
  • 11. Themes: Course Blog Theme
  • 12. Themes: UNSW Blogs - Simple
  • 13. Template Design
    • Relatively simple process:
      • Create style.css, header.php, page.php etc
      • A huge range of Wordpress Themes freely available which can be used as the basis for development
      • Source code for UNSW templates can be made available for the ‘geeks’ in the UNSW Blogs Community in a sandbox environment.
  • 14. PLUGINS!
    • A wide range of plugins have been installed to extend the UNSW Blogs Platform. A list of Plugins installed on the platform is provided @ http://blogs.unsw.edu.au/unsw-blogs-platform-features/
    • In general, most standard Wordpress Plugins work with WPMU, however there are some exceptions. Additionally some plugins require extra customisation to work on the WPMU platform securely.
    • Plugins can be activated and deactivated on a per-blog basis.
    • "mu-plugins" are generally administrative, and are enabled by default (security features, statistics, user management, tag and category management)
  • 15. PLUGINS: Google Analytics
    • Allows for statistics tracking at both site admin and user level.
    • Plugins in to Google’s freely available analytics tools
  • 16. PLUGINS: LifeStream
    • Allows users to create a stream of all of their online activity via RSS and a range of social networking sites including Facebook, Flickr, mySpace etc.
    • Great way to ‘mashup’ a group of sites
  • 17. Scaleability & Integration
    • Wordpress MU creates new database tables for each blog
      • Enables improved Plugin compatibility
      • Takes advantage of existing OS-level and MySQL query caches
      • Enables segmented user data – which allows for multi-site platforms and ‘blog farms’
    • Authentication: Allows for integration via LDAP enabled directory services
      • OpenLDAP, Apache Directory, Microsoft Active Directory, Novell eDirectory, Sun Java System Directory Server etc
  • 18. Ongoing Development on UNSW Blogs
    • Ongoing development of templates to support various faculties and projects – eg. Faculty based templates (branding) and team or project based templates (TELT blog)
    • Ongoing testing and development of WPMU Plugins to support customised content and social networking/communication
  • 19. Future Development on UNSW Blogs
    • Recommended Strategies for future development:
    • Pilot and testing of of additional and complimentary tools including BuddyPress – a WPMU based social networking platform ( http://buddypress.org/ )
    • Exploration and testing of tools to support and enhance multimedia delivery (youtube integration, media servers, complimentay software to support image galleries)
  • 20. Questions and Discussion!
    • Note: We will publish these slides on the TELT Blog shortly and encourage you to continue the discussion online!
    • UNSW Blogs: http://blogs.unsw.edu.au
    • TELT WIKI – Blogging Resources:
    • Wordpress MU: http://mu.wordpress.org
    • Jo Kay’s Website: http://jokay.com.au
  • 22. Contact Jo!
    • Jo Kay, Freelance Virtual Worlds, Web Design, eLearning & Facilitation
      • Blog: http:// jokay.com.au
      • Wiki: http:// jokay.wikispaces.com
      • Portfolio Site: http:// jaspercat.net
      • Email: [email_address]
      • Twitter: http:// twitter.com /jokay
      • Islands of jokaydia: http:// jokaydia.com
      • Mob: 0405179622