ACU Blogs is a project of the mobile learning initiative at Abilene Christian, seeking to connect our campus through more engaged student learning and improved campus communications. The class blogs project is an initial phase toward that end.
ACU Blogs Themes
WordPress has proven a fortunate choice for campus development, providing a flexible foundation. Mike Wiggins is an associate professor of Art & Design at ACU and a free-lance designer. For the initial deployment in 2009, Mike developed the ACU Blogs theme in two formats–the standard and minimal layout–and worked closely with Mike Jolley and The ThemeSlice Team in the UK on the final code. In 2010 we worked with Mike on the Cornerstone Portal and blog themes. Both themes are available to other educational institutions and non-profits with a Creative Commons license. For more information, contact the Learning Studio at ACU.
WordPress has also proven a fortunate choice for deployment. Building on the work of its expanding community of developers, we have rarely encountered problems that haven’t already been tackled by others. Though the installation includes dozens of specialized plugins, two key components that helped us realize a mobile solution were WPtouch and Postie.
- – Developed by BraveNewCode in Canada, WPtouch provides customized mobile access to any WordPress blog from an iPhone or other smart devices.
- – social plugin to encourage sharing content
- – simplifies time changes for daylight savings time
- – edit the capabilities of users by WP roles
- – sets up an editorial workflow for sites with multiple editors
- – embed Google Forms, Calendars, and other iFrame content
- – expands the number of sites able to embed media content
- – easier way to exclude pages from sidebar widgets
- – control over batch changes to comments
- – syndication plugin allows aggregating feeds to a single blog
- – more customizable alternative to the Pages widget
- – sharing and linking Flickr photos and photo
- – sidebar display of thumbnails of Flickr photos
- – sidebar display of photos from WP Media gallery
- – draws from geo-data associated with blog posts
- – helps site owners tap basic analytic data for individual blogs
- – overlays images over current blog page
- – additional privacy levels for MU blogs
- – more control over category order in sidebar
- – provides greater control over post and sidebar galleries
- – embed single-question polls and results into posts and pages
- – fine-tune results from Search box in sidebar
- – ability to add Twitter feed to the sidebar
- – provides designers greater control over web fonts
- – ability to have page or section-specific sidebars
- – embed video from over 50 sites with simple shortcodes
- – Twitter management from the makers of WPtouch
- – embed Issuu PDF viewer and content into posts and pages
- – a blog wall in sidebar that updates automatically