Press "Enter" to skip to content

Author: mcmorgan

Bypassing the Customizer

If you are trying to add links to develop a blogroll and aren’t seeing a way to do it, you might be on the WP Customizer page.

If you’re seeing this

But you want to see this



Then do this:

Edit the url in the address bar of your browser:

To look like

That is

Then bookmark that page to get back to it when you need to.


Attribution Helper Bookmarklet

Here’s the bookmarklet I use for embedding Flickr CC images to blog posts. It comes from Alan Levine (@cogdog), and is a project he started on GitHub.

To understand Alan’s whys and wherefores, have a look at his documents.  Alan also includes a couple of video tutorials linked off this docs.

In this class, we’re not looking at the don’t-make-me-think, ready-for-prime-time kind tools.  We’re looking behind the screens, where the really interesting stuff goes on.  Take the time to consider the documentation and you’ll bring a lot away with you.

Weblogs Bootcamp Week 2

24th July 2017

“24th July 2017” by themostinept is licensed under CC BY-SA

BookCamp Week 1 is winding down or up – and you should be making a few posts to become familiar with the WordPress interface and the process of posting. You should also have a Twitter account set up and chosen a gravatar.

We meet on Tuesday to compare notes and start the second week of BootCamp.

Before then, you should visit your neighbors: The blogs that have checked in are listed in the blogroll. Visit, leave a comment …

See if anyone has tied their Twitter account in to their sidebar yet, using the Twitter widget. Have a look at how others are handling their About page.

See you tomorrow, 12:30.

Blog icon, site icon …

A student asked about the blog icon I mention in the StartUpExercises:

On the checklist it said to add a blog icon, but I can’t seem to figure out what that is. What exactly should I be looking for?

I dug around and found that WP has changed the term.  It’s now called a site icon.  See this page on WordPress Support: five step blog setup.  It’s a small square icon that appears in the browser address bar.
It’s not necessary to have a site icon, but it helps visitors distinguish your blog from others in their bookmarks and elsewhere.

Welcome to Weblogs and Wikis

Caution: Plastic Child

“Caution: Plastic Child” by mcmorgan08 is licensed under CC BY-SA

It’s spring semester, and Weblogs and Wikis is back for the 15th time.  I introduced the course in 2002-3, just after Blogger was introduced, and blogs were starting to be noticed by the media. Wikis were generally unknown outside of CS circles.

(Just for some context: MySpace was founded in 2003; Facebook showed up in 2004; Twitter was introduced in 2006.  The wired telegraph was invented in 1837; radio in 1895.  Hypertext: conceptualized in the 1940s. Demoed in 1968. Proselytized in the 1970s. Internet: Developed between 1966 (NLS) and 1983 (DARPA). The web was proposed in 1989, from a system devised in 1980, although it wasn’t widely known outside of CERN. Txting was limited to 160 characters and done on a number pad.)

I’ll use this blog for announcements and as a center for your blogs and projects.  Once you have a blog set up on WP, you should Follow this blog to be notified of updates.

For this week, read the CourseStatement2018 and start the BootCamp2018 exercises. Once you have a blog set up, add a comment to this post including a link to your blog so I can add you to the list of posters.  Also, email me with the link to your blog – just in case.

Bernstein on notes as sketching

Bernstein on notes as sketching exercise

from Tinderbox Way 3rd

Sometimes, we need to know quite a lot in order to understand what we don’t know.

Kumiyo Nakakoji (now at the Kyoto University Design School) calls this representational talkback. 17 The writer seeks a way to represent the problem space, sketches notes that describe an initial approach, and then reviews the notes as if approaching the problem anew. If the representation is good, the problem now seems simpler. If the representation fails to make sense, that incoherence often suggests a new and better approach to the problem.

In this way note-taking can be like sketching, a private exercise to improve the acuity of our perception and to focus our understanding. Our sketches often focus on small detail: a study of a hand, say, or the weathered wood of porch behind a Gloucester drug store. We don’t draw these studies because we expect the image to matter, but because sketching these things with care and attention will improve our eye. By learning to draw the hand or the mountain, we polish our ability to draw anything. The process, not the picture, matters.

No new directions in annotation

Web writing is annotation.

Annotations Are the Original Web Writing

The fact that more or less anyone can publish to the web often makes people think that self-publication is its main use. And maybe that is its most common use. But the propleptic visions of Vannevar Bush and Douglas Engelbart, writing in the 1940s and 1960s respectively, remind us of the primary importance of annotations.1

In these early imagined futures of computing, Bush and Engelbart focus on the ability to mark up a document of some sort, the ability to formally instantiate that marked-up document, and the ability to share that with others—each of these three abilities are still fundamental to the way we interact online with text, images, sound, and video. They can also be invaluable aspects of web writing for the liberal arts.

from Web Writing:Why and How.

Notes on Pisteis Exercise

1 To get started, you have to isolate a claim that the page makes. The more specific the better. State it. Be ready to change it if need be.

2 Isolate the elements of the page – images, text, design, menu texts, layout, footer information, and other elements – that you think have some influence on how the claim is connected to presuppositions – some elements to work with.

3 Then analyze how these elements work to prompt the intended audience to connect the element with the claim you have isolated, using ethos, pathos, and logos as your analytical terms.

Need to start with a claim – and a consideration of whether it’s a direct or indirect claim.

Make a textual version of the argument first – then detail its presentational design.

A Note on Procedural Literacy

The Clearance of the Porcelain Dogs
The Clearance of the Porcelain Dogs flickr photo by mcmorgan08 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

We don’t need no coding knowledge to read. Except

In this view, programming has almost no connection with theoretical and philosophical considerations, with concept and aesthetics, with a design focus on human action and interpretation. This attitude is often adopted by new media scholars and practitioners, including game designers and game studies scholars, who may assume that the “mere” technical details of code can be safely bracketed out of the consideration of the artifact. …

By procedural literacy I mean the ability to read and write processes, to engage procedural representation and aesthetics, to understand the interplay between the culturally-embedded practices of human meaning-making and technically-mediated processes. With appropriate programming, a computer can embody any conceivable process; code is the most versatile, general process language ever created. Hence, the craft skill of programming is a fundamental component of procedural literacy, though it is not the details of any particular programming language that matters, but rather the more general tropes and structures that cut across all languages.

Procedural Literacy: Educating the New Media Practitioner – Michael Mateas | ETC Press