One of my favorite pieces of the ds106 fleet of awesome is The Daily Create – something we built together last year to provide a platform for regular creative challenges. While we use it within the ds106 courses taught at UMW, it is a low overhead way for people to participate in our (non-bovine) online community/course.
While one the road yesterday, I picked up some tweets started with George Couros who seemed to be pondering doing something similar
Looking to have a "daily assignment" blog focusing on creation. Thinking of audio, video, photo, and writing. Other suggestions? #edchat
— George Couros (@gcouros) October 24, 2012
which as Giulia Forsythe noted was pretty much what we have built. This led to a stream of tweets of enthusiasm, and I was even starting to say we could build a clone site pretty easy. In fact, part of me is interested in seeing if we can make the site into a WordPress theme/plugin package, which is certainly doable but will require some making some hard coded bits generalizable and configurable.
And while my memory cells were fuzzy at the time, Dr Garcia was right that she had suggested this early, with an idea perhaps of overlaying a way of tagging the challenges to maybe organize them into groups for different age students.
— GNA Garcia (@DrGarcia) October 24, 2012
Yet, on reflecting and getting input form others, I fall back a bit to wondering what is it about the current site that prevents it being used by any level? Yes, there are some assignments (telling a story about car keys) that would cause challenges. There are alos likely other issus on schools where using services like flickr, youtube are blocked.
But we do not have a massive amount of activity; we get more responses when we do a photo Daily Create, like 12-50, but when we do video or audio, we generally see a handful of responses- what is the value of splitting this even more? I see the main value in seeing more interpretations of the assignments, not splintering them into say, Middle School Daily Create and Slovenian Lawyer Daily Create sites.
So my question is, would some of those who expressed interest in this perhaps want to help us review the upcoming challenges and see what it would take to modify them as to not make them impossible for younger students to do?
And really, when I think about it, this is the framing teachers always do for their students- they could easily recast the challenges in a more age appropriate way. Or by adding new ones to the mix .
I am not dismissing the idea, but because it is going to take some development time for which I may not have nor are getting paid to do, I have to ask why not find a way for one site to work for more people rather than creating copy sites that are relatively similar?
Also, I have to say, the one kind of challenge I would like to add but has baffled me is something that is written. There is no way for our site to easily aggregate stuff written at remote web sites, and I cannot think of something that is like a YouTube or flickr of Written Things. About the best might be something that is submitted via a form to the Daily Create site. It has to be something we can have a widget or gadget to easily display, like the ones we use fot the services currently supported (and if there is a viable alternative for soundcloud that provides an embedded player based on tags, I am keen to know).
I am wide open to ideas here, and am not trying to clutch on to the Daily Create, but I might need to hear a stronger case as to why a separate site is needed.