A Million Blue Pages

Wed, 05 Mar 2014

Platform and Teaching Updates

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I've been making some incremental improvements to the code here at AMillionBluePages.net, and I'm happy to announce to significant steps forward. First, visitors can now browse page-by-page views of nodes, and leave comments by page in Disqus conversation threads. For example, click on the number 5 from the table view to browse all seven nodes created for Page 5, and below all of the embedded thumbnails, leave feedback or comments using Disqua. Also, if you're a creator of one of those nodes, you can use Disqus to sign up for updates about that page. The whole system is a bit loosely-coupled, I'll admit, but I think it has great potentional for cross-curricular conversations.

A second important technical update is that the code for this site is now being cloned in GitHub, which may be of interest to you if you'd like to see how this all works or if you'd like to set up your own version of what we're doing here. There's a lot of messy code, too, as you'll see, so if you see opportunities to clean up what I've written or improve it in any way, I'd very happily consider your pull request. There are many features I'd love to implement, but I just don't have the time or skill to get it done, so by all means, jump in. Similarly, if you just have an idea for an improvement or you see a bug, you can use the issue tracker in GitHub to let me know.

A teaching update is in order as well, as Mary Holland's and my students have completed their initial contributions. So far, this amounts to currently 376 nodes spread across 214 of House of Leaves' pages, which is an amazing amount of work already. I look forward to Steven Lemieux's students contributions in the near future, and I'm hopeful that we can use AMBP to foster opportunities for conversation between campuses. Along those lines, my students are on Spring Break right now, but when they return, we have another week scheduled for HoL discussion (awkward timing thanks to all the snow cancellations we've had). I originally wanted them to submit brief reflective statements to account for their creative work on this project, but I think now it might make sense to do some of that publicly via Disqus threads.

There's a lot of good stuff happening here, and I'm proud of the work mine and Mary's students have been doing. If, by the way, you or your students would like to contribute, you're all very welcome to, and do let me know if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions by getting in touch via email, GitHub or the comment thread below.

posted by zachwhalen at: 13:02 | path: /news | permanent link to this entry

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