I was recently presented with an opportunity to read and review the book, Moodle Administration, by Alex Büchner. This book, which is published by Packt Publishing, is described as “an administrator’s guide to configuring, securing, customizing, and extending Moodle.” Packt Publishing also has several other Moodle Books.
I’ve never read any type of Moodle book before. Most of my learning has come from researching online or trial and error so I’m excited to take some time to read a full-length guide about Moodle. One good sign about this book is that it looks like this book has received a lot of positive feedback in other book reviews (Moodleman, Kassblog, Patrick Malley).
Being a Moodle admin in our district, I am eager to gain knowledge over several topics regarding Moodle. Our district has been using Moodle for almost 1 year now, and with staff spending hours creating and editing courses I think it’s my responsibility to make sure our Moodle site is reliable and well maintained. Looking through the complete table of contents it seems like this book will help me do just that.
I plan to write a few blog posts with short reviews on things I find interesting while reading this book and I will write a complete review after finishing the book. I’m very excited to dive into this book and learn a bunch of new information. Stay posted for the upcoming reviews on this book.
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Packt Publishing Moodle Books
Blog posts from The Global Classroom
I recently downloaded and installed Moodle 2.0 dev. I have not investigated every new feature and update but my early exploring left me quite happy. Moodle 2.0, in my opinion, is going to be much improved from earlier version upgrades.
A few things that I like in my early exploration:
- HTML editor 2.0 – The look of the editor is more pleasing to the eye. A few features are added like tables, layers, handling of Word documents, better for HTML code editing, better options for inserting images and media. Read more about the HTML editor 2.0.
- File API – The look and structure of file management feels a lot different. A good different. When uploading an image (within the Editor) it opens a new window which a much better interface. I think users will fidn this new look easier to follow and understand. I had to add the “local files” repository and “show” it to be able to upload files within ‘site files’ then use it when in the Editor. I also had to “show” the “upload a file” to allow users to upload a file within the Editor. Looking at the documentation for the new File API there are a lot of improvements with file management and linking to files with the HTML editor. They may be still working out the kinks but I think this is going to be one of my new favorite upgrades.
- Repository API – Just looking at the repository possibilites excites me because it includes interaction with other software and sites like: YouTube, Alfresco, Flickr, Box.net, Picasa and more. Read more on the Repository API coming in Moodle 2.0.
- Portfolio API – Moodle 2.0 is going to be able to integrate with Mahara. It looks like it can also integrate with Picasa, Google Docs, Flickr, Box.net or you are able to do a file download (not sure how this works?). I have not worked with portfolios but I would think this will be a great resource for students. Read more on the Portfolio API documentation.
Those were the main areas of improvement I saw and that I think will be some of the best improvements. I only spent a day looking through Moodle 2.0 dev and it’s hard to know all the ins and outs of the new features and the new processes without having a real Moodle site to work on.
I have been expirementing on my Moodle Development site. I will continue to explore Moodle 2.0 Dev and review the above improvements (and more) on another blog post. This was just a rough review of my initial thoughts.
Check out the Moodle Docs Roadmap to Moodle 2.0 for further Moodle 2.0 information and updates.