Need Help, Suggestions!

Hello blogosphere, I have a question.

We’re putting together something called the Digital Internship Project which will focus on supporting a group of 15ish preservice teachers as they move through their internship/practicum experiences. What we would like to build is a supportive online community for these students which would allow the following:
– personal blog spaces
– sharing of digital artefacts/learning objects (lesson plans, units plans, presentations, etc.)
– shared wiki space
– content aggregation
– probably a bunch of other things I’m not thinking about right now

So, any ideas of where to start. Of course, I’ll only use free/open source tools for this because I am sure there is something out there. Is there one solution (e.g., Drupal, Elgg) which will do all of this well without tons of modification? Do I need to be splicing a few things together?

I have a few ideas already, but would love to hear from others before I move heavily into one direction.

Thanks for your ideas.

ServerAtSchool 1.0 Launched

ServerAtSchool 1.0, a free, Linux-based server product designed for elementary schools, is now available.

The ServerAtSchool project is a Linux network server designed to work together with Windows workstations, offering features that were developed especially for use in primary schools.

Services include a web server, a website content management system, a mail server, a flexible user management tool, a chroot jail for users, hourly backups of user documents, nightly (off-site) backups, spam control, a name server, DHCP, a printer server, web mail, virus scanning, a firewall, a database server, a file server for Windows clients, a time server, and a secure shell.

This looks like something I’ll have to explore next year with my preservice teachers, in a demo environment. It looks promising from what I see on the site and may be ideal for those looking for a good approach to serving and managing documents, and developing a web-presence in elementary schools.

Find out more at:

Google Calendar Launched

This week has been rough on me in terms of technology. My domain went down this week, apparently because an old Moveable Type cgi script had been spammed to death, and took down my host’s server. The same day, my PowerBook’s harddrive blew up, and I’ve lost my most recent email and my iCal schedule. While this could have been tramautic, luckily I sent the most recent version of my dissertation to my Gmail account literally minutes before my hard drive failed.

Since I’m out of a scheduler for now, I checked out Google’s new calendar service, and so far I like what I see. You can import iCal files (or other format’s I assume), and the best part is that you can share your calendar with others. This would be great for small groups, families, or groups of students who don’t have access to corporate solutions like OpenTime, etc.

Anyways, check out the latest service in Google’s entourage. If you are not overly concerned that this company will soon have access to everything you produce (email, blogs, calendars, file storage, contacts, etc.), then you’ll likely find it quite useful.

Speech Accent Archive

This is pretty cool!

The speech accent archive uniformly presents a large set of speech samples from a variety of language backgrounds. Native and non-native speakers of English read the same paragraph and are carefully transcribed. The archive is used by people who wish to compare and analyze the accents of different English speakers.

Yea, I haven’t been much of a blogger lately … been too busy with some important writing, but I promise to emerge soon. However, this was too neat not to mention.