The Bad News and The Good News

Two weeks without a post deserves some explanation, and the reasons for my recent absence are both not so good and really great. First the not so good news – I just got out of hospital after another bout with Crohn’s Disease. I luckily managed to escape the surgeon’s knife for now (having had the good fortune of meeting a surgeon reluctant to operate!) and we’re hoping that a new course of medication and a new diet will help things in the long term. I am almost back up to speed now, so here’s keeping my fingers crossed!

But the other reason for the lack of posts is that I’ve been extremely busy with what I’ll call the “great news” – at the start of February I embarked on a brand new project with the folks at BCcampus, Open School BC and a group dedicated to Telelearning-in-Health across the 5 BC Universities. I am project managing the implementation (and I stress that word) of a learning object repository infrastructure that will serve the needs of these varied communities in B.C. It’s been in the works for a little while now, but I wanted to wait until it was firmly under way before announcing it. We’ve got a fairly aggressive timeline (project is scheduled to end September 2004) and so we are ramping up right now to identify key requirements and assess the existing open source options. It is a hugely exciting opportunity both in the work I’ll get to do and in the people I’ll get to work with – the various partners involved end up touching most of the educational institutions in BC in one way or other, and there is just a ton of great experience across this province to tap into.

I am fortunate that these folks agreed to a 4-day-a-week-deal which will allow me to keep working with my friends and colleagues at Edutools – we continue to add new reviews of Course Management Systems there, and are also looking to some exciting new projects in the near future, so I’m really pleased to be able to work on both projects.

So hopefully you’ll start to see more posts again, though at the current pace of things will likely still be a bit sporadic. I expect I’ll end up publishing a project-based blog for the LOR implementation, if only for my own tracking purposes, and when I do I’ll share that URL as well. – SWL

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