As outlined on the Grading & Expectations page,students
in Mission 2011 will use four different tools to communicate their ideas:
team and class wikis, a class-wide blog, and a final Project Web Site. There
are some web and HTML resources listed near the bottom of this page.
Our web guru, Dr. Robert
and TA, Mariela Perignon, are available
to review work and provide design insight throughout the semester. In addition
Phil Long, the Associate Director of the Office
of Education Innovation and Technology can answer questions about web communication
via wiki's. This is the first year we have employed wikis and we will make
sure there is ample instruction.
The team wikis will serve as a repository for the research and brainstorming that different teams and their individual members are doing. Team members can use their team wikis to share their work with each other, as well as contribute to one other's work. Each student must also maintain a web-based journal as a page in their team wiki. They will use this journal to document their individual progress in the class, as well as share ideas and resources with their team members. We expect each team member to have at least one major contribution to the team wiki and their journal each week during the entire semester.
An important part of research is proper documentation and attribution. When you
present a fact, a graphic, or an opinion that is not your own on a web site,
in a presentation slide,
or in a paper, you MUST reference it properly. Correct referencing
is not often part of a high-school curriculum, so you should familiarize yourself with the correct approach, Consult Chapter 10
of the online version of the Mayfield Handbook of Technical and Scientific
Writing for a brief treatment of this subject. We will use the American Psychological Association (APA) citation style for this class.
Each team is responsible for proposing one or more components of the final Mission 2011 design. By Friday, October 19th, each team must upload to the class wiki a draft version of their finished research and proposals. This work should be presented in considerable detail, and it will serve as an informational resource when the entire class decides on the final proposed plan for saving the world's fisheries.. These documents should have a solid, professional look and it should be informative to anyone who might read it from outside the Mission 2011 community. Again, information and ideas must be properly cited.
The class wiki will, at a larger scale, serve the same purpose as the team
wikis. As the transition from team-based research to class-based solution
occurs, the class wiki will serve as a place for the students to share
files, as well as comment and contribute to each other's work. The students
will use this space to communally finalize the documents from which the
Project Web Site will be created.
The MIT Office of Educational Innovation and Technology has provided Mission
2011, along with the wikis, with a Class Blog. All students and staff can
post and comment to this blog under their own name, but the general public
cannot access it. This space will serve to share ideas and resources with
the class as a whole, as well as to house discussions on topics relevant
to the class. This is a great way to communicate between teams. .
Project Web Site
One of the principle assignments for the semester is the development of a
coherent, highly informative description of the final Mission 2010 solution
in the form of a Project Web Site. While this site might contain links to
the Team Web Sites, it should be an introductory page with at least
ten links. This will be your opportunity to provide a succinct review of
the principle components of your overall solution as well as describe your
implementation strategy in detail.
One effective approach to constructing a good Project Web Site is
for each team to designate a delegate to a Project
Web Site Committee, which will meet regularly throughout November. The Final
Project Web Site must be fully operational on November 26th.
The Final Project Website will be housed in an athena locker inside the Mission
2011 web space.
General Web Site Design Tips
There are so many really cool things to do on web pages that it is easy to
get carried away; but it is important to realize that on a web site purported
to provide ionformation, that too many special effects will dilute your message.
Remember that the focus of your web sites is content, not flash! Try to create
sites that are
not cluttered but will let yoiur message come through loud and clear. Just
as on your computer screen, the user interface should be easily understandable
and intuitive, yet fade into the background so that it doesn't overpower
the content. You can learn the principles of user-centered design here.
For the Project Web Site, it is not enough to list what will be
done; rather, you must explain how you arrived at your final solutions. In
other words, you must justify your decisions with facts and reasoning. In
doing this you should clearly illustrate not just your final solutions, but
the thought process that you followed. What alternative
solutions did you consider and ultimately reject? Why did you reject them?
What was the logic behind selecting certain alternatives? Who did you consult,
and how did their opinions influence your decisions?
Web Pages with Composer is Netscape's tutorial for those unfamiliar with
using Composer to construct web sites. Another tutorial for Composer is Web
Using Netscape's Composer 7.x. Ignore the school specific stuff as these
are for Long Beach State students. Yet another Composer specific site is Easy Web Page Design with Netscape Composer.
Although there are a plethora of sites with "How to's" on writing HTML, I like W3
Schools, HTML Primer,
and HTML Code Tutorial.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) really simplify web page design and are cached
by browsers so they don't cause a huge time penalty. CSS are nothing more
than formatting rules. Think font-size, margin-width, fon-color and spacing.
They are stored in a seperate file, in your page header, or in-line. Again,
there are thousands of sites that deal with CSS, but you might start with Open Sourcery,
the W3 Consortium, and CSS Tutorial.
Graphics can be created in any graphics program, but for the web you must
optimize them. Most web professionals use Adobe Photoshop® and
For example, when using a GIF file format (for text), do you really need all
256 colors or will 32 do most of what you want? There's a big difference in
file size. Also, be sure to experiment with photos and jpeg (jpg) settings
as often a 4 or 5 quality will work just fine and be much smaller. Check out
the Web Design Groups' Image
Use on the Web and also this
tutorial on jpeg.