Friday, March 19, 2010

Social bookmarking for the nation

An impact project that several of my students are currently working focuses on social bookmarking: the ability to save and share useful websites. Incredibly there is no central place for students and teachers from schools up and down the country to share websites that are useful for learning. Think about this: students doing a year 10 project on ponds finds a really nice website that has animations and definitions that helps her to complete the project. Not only should she be able to save the site for herself for future reference, but she should also be able to share it with her friends, who should then be able to give her feedback on whether it is useful or not. Thumbs up or thumbs down would be enough. Sites like or exist for the world to be able to do this, but sites for learning present a couple of different challenges: i) the need for cyber safety and security around online stranger-danger, and ii) the need for classification around curriculum and NCEA levels.
We want this to be a project that other schools can hook into, so some kind of federated identity and access management is required (we don't want to be issuing people with yet another username and password; their school credentials should be enough) and, of course, it needs to be open source. The short-list for solutions boils down to two at this stage: Pligg and Drigg both of which support OpenID as an authentication method.

It's quite an exciting thing for a bunch of 15 and 16 year-olds to be building and gifting to the nation. I'll let you know how they get on. And of course, if you're interesting in signing your school up for it, let me know.

1 comment:

  1. We where very interested in reading this, as we are putting together a site to fill the gap you mention.

    Check out

    Let me know an email address and I'll flick you an invite.