Skip to the Main Content

Note:These pages make extensive use of the latest XHTML and CSS Standards. They ought to look great in any standards-compliant modern browser. Unfortunately, they will probably look horrible in older browsers, like Netscape 4.x and IE 4.x. Moreover, many posts use MathML, which is, currently only supported in Mozilla. My best suggestion (and you will thank me when surfing an ever-increasing number of sites on the web which have been crafted to use the new standards) is to upgrade to the latest version of your browser. If that's not possible, consider moving to the Standards-compliant and open-source Mozilla browser.

March 14, 2003


Elizabeth Lane-Lawley takes a look at open-source courseware. Inspired by the suggestions in the comments thread, I took a little twirl through some of the offerings and came back rather disappointed. None of them have the power and flexibility that MovableType brings to weblogging software.

What makes MT great is that it is template-driven, with a clean separation between function and presentation, and between “administrative” and “user” interfaces. It doesn’t matter whether your site is baked (purely static pages) or fried (dynamic pages, generated on the fly) using php or something in between. Everything from the overall structure to the minutiae of styling is easily customized. And with a well-thought-out plugin API, there’s a lively community busily adding plugins for new functionality.

One of the more promising-looking courseware packages is Moodle. Right now, it’s user-friendly, but quite inflexible (so much is hard-coded into the modules). The author has bold plans for Moodle 2.0 (XML, XSL and CSS), which should be very exciting. If they come to fruition, it could be pretty neat.

In the meantime, I will persist in my palaeolithic ways, painstakingly chiselling hieroglyphs into stone (or something like that). Hey! After the recent scandal, at least I have SSL enabled on golem now.

Posted by distler at March 14, 2003 11:52 PM

TrackBack URL for this Entry:

1 Comment & 0 Trackbacks

Re: Courseware

I was equally unhappy with the options I found, and ended up creating my own MT-based system.

Posted by: Liz on September 24, 2003 6:24 AM | Permalink | Reply to this

Post a New Comment