cc licensed ( BY NC SD ) flickr photo shared by hermitsmoores

This is a last little bit of code I wanted to bang out today (for more on this statement, see my next blog post). We have over 3800 examples that people have shared for the ds106 Assignment Bank. The way these get here are that people set up their accounts on ds106.us, and once we get their blog feed URL, as long as they use the proper assignment tags, we are able to syndicate the examples in automagically.

IN a few cases, people may just do a single ds106 assignment as part of a class or a workshop (e.g. as Dean Shareski’s students have done), but without getting their work on blogs we can syndicate, these one off pieces of work cannot be part of the collection. Or in some cases they use weird platforms (I am looking at you weebly) that do not support tags.

So I had the idea a while back to connect a form where people could submit examples for these edge cases. I just got it working with a bit of hacking around. My first hope was to have the form appear in a lightbox over the assignment page, but getting dynamic data to populate the gravity form tags was not working.

I went the lesser route, of setting up some external parameters I could pass to a second form page. If you go to any assignment now, there is an extra link on the left side that gets you to the new form.

The form will add info as the same post type of the syndicated examples, apply the tags. The main page script will even use the email address to locate a gravatar.

This is still just an experiment; there is always the potential for spam or just stuff that is not relavent. We still prefer people to get on the ds106 bus and do their work by blogging and tagging.

It is almost worth it just to see what I can do under the hood with the templates. For those that are curious, I set up a blank wordpress page that uses a custom template, and I have set up the site to be able to pass a query variable in the URL that contains the id of the assignment, so the new page can reconstruct the info. The form is generated by gravity forms, where I pass it through php the values for the tags the item needs.

If you give it a try, please do something real!

Profile Picture for Alan Levine aka CogDog
An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.

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