Depot updates coming this week (and, what’s next for Depot?)

The latest round of changes to Depot is anon. Here’s a rundown of what’s new.

I’m relatively happy with how the new state standards support is shaping up, but reserve the right to tweak it based on feedback we get from Virginia and from you. Drop me a line if you want to explore adding your state’s standards to what we’ll be indexing.

State standards are the big new thing, but along the way I’ve added a few other little updates here and there:

Resource posting and editing

First, resource posting and editing has been cleaned up quite a bit. Particularly, if you’re a Safari user, you saw a lot of ugly orange boxes during the process. They’re reduced now. Compare the old:

depot-upload-old.jpg

to the new:

depot-upload-new.jpg

Much friendlier, huh? (The astute reader may note that this is the interface I used when creating the Sharing Content Enhancement examples in Depot series of videos a few weeks back.)

Bearing good news

Speaking of ugly orange boxes, their usage across the site has been reduced. Now, if Depot is giving you good news, it delivers it in a pleasant, encouraging green hue. So this:

depot-bad-news.jpg

is now this:

depot-good-news.jpg

Bad news is still orange, but we try to keep the bad news to a minimum.

Other stuff

  • I’ve added a button to the Public Folder on the dashboard, making it easier than ever to begin browsing publicly-shared stuff.
  • The ratings interface is a little cleaner now. The box has been moved over to the sidebar and looks a little nicer, if you ask me.
  • Issues we’ve been having with RSS have been addressed, I think.
  • At this point I’m planning on moving these changes to the server this Thursday evening, March 27. Update: Sorry, this didn’t happen tonight. I’m going to shoot for sometime this weekend. Note that standards won’t quite be ready for prime time at that point–I still need to import the standards themselves into the system, and then we need to designate someone to apply those standards to individual resources. This will be a gradual process, but one that should be interesting and help make Depot even more useful.

    What’s next?

    Aside from tweaking the new state standards features as needed, I’m going to be taking a little break from Depot to work on other things–namely, Dossier and our long-awaited single sign-on system. However, look for better support for tags, or keywords, sometime down the road as the next big update.

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    Aaron Sumner

    Aaron Sumner is the Director of Technology for Research and Development at the University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning. He has worked in web development and instructional technology since 1994.