· The Real? Story
· As Courseware
Please send your questions and we'll add them to this list.
- Who's Tom March and why's his name all over this Web site?
- Tom March is the director of ozline.com Pty Ltd, a Web Strategies Consultancy headquartered in Australia's beautiful Southern Highlands. He's a former Pacific Bell Fellow at San Diego State University's department of Educational Technology where he also taught courses. Before that, he enjoyed life as a high school English teacher for 10 years. We mention him so much for two reasons:
1) some people know and like his work, and
2) he designed Web-and-Flow and the strategies that go into it.
- Hey, Tom, how come you're now making us pay?
- Happily, all the work we've previously posted has been funded, whether through Pacific Bell's sponsorship or in-person courses. Now that we're flying solo, we think that if we offer a very valuable tool, busy teachers who like quality instruction will find $25 a small price to pay. If you consider the time Web-and-Flow saves you, it will pay for itself within hours of using it. Of course you can try Web-and-Flow yourself for free or see if our 10 Good Reasons persuade to pay...
- Why "Web-and-Flow?"
- Whether affliction or facility, Tom abuses/uses his BA in creative writing by coming up with odd names like Blue Web'n (Blue Ribbon Websites), Filamentality (combines filaments of the Web with student mentality), and Web-and-Flow (accents integration of the Web in a creative, flow experience). The reason we make you put up with the hyphens between the words is that www.webandflow.com and www.wf.com were already taken. Such is life at this late point in the millennium.
- What makes Web-and-Flow so great?
- Teachers who know their students and curriculum (i.e., 95% of us) can do a much better job creating activities for our students than using someone else's lessons. When these teachers recognize the power and learning incentive offered by the Internet, they naturally want their students to benefit. But questions arise: How can I quickly find good websites? Once I find them, how can I integrate them in an effective learning activity? Once I create the Web-based activity, how do I put it up as a Web page? More than this, how can I get feedback and enter into that cool collegial space of sharing things I create with others? Web-and-Flow answers all these questions. Take a Guided Tour and a Free Trial if you don't believe us.
- Let's get to details: What are the system requirements for Web-and-Flow?
- We like the Web because it's cross platform and is available to the world. The Web-and-Flow software is a server-side script (written in perl by Jodi Reed) so that it doesn't load onto your machine, but sits cooking along somewhere out in cyberspace. This way it doesn't matter if you're Mac or Windows (or one at home and the other at school), as long as you:
That's it! :-)
- Who are the intended users of Web-and-Flow?
- Web-and-Flow has been designed so that people new to the Web can feel right at home, but experienced Web heads will have a powerful tool that can save them loads of time personally or as they train colleagues. This said, you might be a lone teacher seeking an online community of like-spirited educators. You might be a member of a college of Ed class where the professor felt Web-and-Flow would help you save valuable time while also prompting you to create a educationally sound learning activity. Finally, we suspect many of you might be teachers in districts with very capable technology support specialists who understand all the ins-and-outs of the Web, but don't have the time to design, develop, and maintain the software program needed to help them in-service district staff. So these folks get group licenses of Web-and-Flow for their trainees so time can be spent designing solid Web-based activities, not fiddling with HTML, FTP, or ISPs (whoever thought back in Ed school that we would need to worry about this kind of stuff?!).
- What do I get for $25/year?
- Your one-year subscription entitles you to unlimited use of the Web-and-Flow software (including the integrated analysis, design, development,and evaluation components), a database of user-developed activities, an online community, and exclusive access to articles and tutorials developed by Tom March & Co. The reason we use the yearly fee is because we want to keep making the site better, so upgrades and enhancements will be based on your feedback. This way we work as a team to create a win-win site for both users and developers.
- Can Tom give me personal feedback on my work?
- The only way we can maintain a $25 / person fee is to tap into large numbers of users. When we do this, it's impossible for one person to give individual feedback to all those people - especially if each person (as we're hoping) creates MANY activities. So what we decided we could manage was to grab as much from our brains as we could spare and turn that into code to create an expert system that prompts users through the same thought processes we use when developing activities. Another strategy we've chosen is our private "Club Ed" listserv. Besides ongoing discussions about web-based learning, completed activities are automatically announced so that our whole community can provide feedback, not just one person. Finally, as the technologies become more stable and ubiquitous, we'll hold periodic realtime chats, conferences, etc. If you have any comments, ideas or suggestions about this, please contact us. One last possibility that some districts choose is to have Tom March lead an in-person workshop, then use Web-and-Flow as the support medium.
- District / University Student Pricing
- We've priced Web-and-Flow so that it's way cheaper than typical learning expenses (curriculum binders, copyrighted course materials, textbooks, computer manuals, other software programs), so we're just about at rock bottom. This said, if you're responsible for more than 30 people subscribing (i.e., you're a college professor, district in-service trainer, technology director, etc.), we'll drop the price to $20/person. This way your learners would get a price break or district would get 6 free subscriptions (and we can stay in business, build a house, pay for the violin lessons, etc.). If you're in charge of a major training effort with lots of users, contact us with your situation and we'll set up a special pricing.