Game over man, game over!
Well folks, we've reached the finish. Cheers!
I had high expectations coming in to this, and although a lot of things didn't work out the way I expected or would have done them myself, those expectations have been surpassed in other ways. The technology applications, the tools themselves, and the prevailing modes of thought about integration, collaboration, and the future have brought me back to currency more comprehensively than I ever expected. I needed that. What I'll take away above all is the applicability and openness of web working, Web 2.0, or whatever umbrella you might want to put all we've studied under. I'm practicing that right now, having left the office at lunch time so I could more productive on some much needed administrative duties without my phone ringing and the other non-stop distractions inherent at the office.
What worked, what didn't... that's an important question. The presentation of more theoretical material in the books versus the brief instruction and more immersive approach to using the technology also worked nicely, putting the work in immediate context. The weekly blogs were glue between these, and to me very effective. Twitter worked much better than I would have expected. After getting it running full-time, I can see it's niche and envision it being useful after this class too. The Flickr/Creative Commons/copyright segments were eye-opening, critical stuff that will only become more important. All the other apps, tools, and sites (and I include Thinkature here, I maintain that was a useful exercise because it partly worked, and tech failures are very much to be expected IRL) served well. I never would have run across Digsby either, and that's the greatest connectivity tool I've ever used. I run Gophermail, Gmail, my work email, Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, AIM, and GoogleTalk whenever my laptop's online, and there's no way I'd check all of these even once a day otherwise.
I think we could have made the site look and work better, and the usability test drove that home (note: I did not have the prereq. course, so that was an entirely new challenge last week and I learned a lot just doing that alone). I think we have volumes of great material there though, and summer editing is going to have a really nice subject on which to practice. I'll be saving the URL and seeing what they come up with...
The last bit from Connect! was a good refresher of the philosophy and practical approaches to web working, and fit in neatly. I really dislike the phrase "bring x full circle", but that is the apt description for this final reading. Personally, I'd been paying attention to everything else for long enough that I hadn't thought about those contextual points for a while. Reading those two chapters now is going to significantly improve my retention and clarity on the subject material after the course is done.
I could go on and on but the points are made. My apologies for being so late on this final post as well, that was me not paying attention and I do feel bad for that, especially on this subject. My thanks to each of you for your participation, contributions, and feedback over the semester, and I wish you all the best of luck in STC and whatever else you're up to next. I'm often up for a good discussion on technology and the like, so feel free to look me up online if you're in the mood.
à plus tard...