MOO blues

MOO blues

Wow, Pyra’s T1 provider bites. God knows what the problem is, but blogspot has been down for days, and the folks at Pyra seem to be pulling out their hair. And of course Ev is in Amsterdam living it up, so the others are left to fend for themselves. At this point they’re begging anyone in the area who thinks they can bring the T1 back up to take over. ISP wanted: Pyra and thousands of bloggers need you!

I’m preparing for that class tonight…what a mess. First, I didn’t realize that the GUI won’t allow for multiple initial dig points for classes….never assume you understand something, that’s what I learned from that. So the system will allow for only ONE point from which to dig. So I set all the four rooms I want them to dig from to public_hub = 1 (Thanks to Brin) , so that anyone can add an exit from and to those rooms, and changed the building instructions to ‘manual’ (text @digging) instead of GUI. They can do the describing in GUI, and the @dig in text. It’ll work. 🙂 Oh, and as I type that….another of the wizards got around to changing the GUI to allow for multiple initial dig points. Right now. Just now. Am I going to go back and fix what I just fixed? No way. Screw it.

And…I just met a student from this class online who is bringing on two OTHER students to be the research subjects for his/her own personal project, without getting permission to do so. And this thing starts tonight. What have we learned?

1) It’s GREAT that profs and students are interested in using the MOO for a variety of reasons. And clearly there’s lots to be developed and lots of good ideas to follow through on. And even though this class might be tricky, I think it will be a success in some way or other…probably not the way it was supposed to be a success.

2) teachers of all shapes, sizes and colours should have a TUTORIAL before the even DECIDE to teach inMOO. Not that the moo is that difficult, but you’d better have a grip on the space before you hop on in. I suggest that teachers have a quota of things to do before we even LET them bring their classes on. That’s probably a little harsh. But seriously. It could go something like this:

– build a room.
– add seats, details, and room noises.
– upload a picture.
– add a picture to your room or character.
-change your player messages.
– send MOOmail.
– page someone.
– build 3 different kinds of objects.
– describe 2 other projects on the moo.

I mean, it could be something we SUGGEST teachers do before they bring a class in. Because we can’t hand hold everyone from beginning to end….I don’t mind being helpful, but there comes a point…

Patty and Jim didn’t really have a clue what was going on with achieve either, but they were ALWAYS in charge of that class and were ALWAYS in control of what went down. And they also knew when to step back and bring others in to teach the stuff they weren’t clear on. (Unlike this current class, where I am the ‘help’ and wasn’t even invited to the initial moo introduction class.) And they sat back and listened long enough to get a grip on the space and to know how much they didn’t understand about it. I have to say I’ve never had a more inspiring conversation than explaining how things work on a moo to Patty, in terms of it being an object oriented space as opposed to a website, and then watching her digest that and come up with how to use this basic nature of the space in really creative ways….she truly is a remarkble teacher, and I’m coming to apprieciate that more and more. I mean, to be open enough to listen and learn and digest….she has some GREAT ideas for doing moo projects with students, and she while she talks about herself as a techno zygote, she was with us on that wavelength 100% about the possibilities of the moo and turned around and gave the kids the most amazing set of guidelines that were totally workable and totally true to the space. So she’s not just a good teacher, she’s a good learner. Maybe that’s the key….

I suspect that because of that openness, the triangle kids are going to have a better understanding of the MOO as an educational space than these OISE graduate students will….now that’s telling.

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