When I missed the Gabbly bus

No. 2 in an occassional series of things I didn’t follow up on (see When I missed the wiki bus). A few years ago I suggested that we develop a tool that allowed instant messaging on a specific page, ie it showed you who was reading that page at the same time and you could chat with them. This was intended for study, so students reading the same page in a VLE could say ‘I don’t get this, do you?’. I even had a natty name for it – ‘StudyBuddy’. Of course, nothing ever came of it, but recently I’ve been looking at Gabbly (possibly as a tool for the FLOSScom summer school), which does exactly this. I think this incidental ‘I’ve bumped in to someone else around a resource’ type of dialogue has huge potential for e-learning.

Andreas Meiszner pointed me at me.dium.com (I hate these urls that split up a word, I can never remember them. Delicious has a lot to answer for) which potentially looks even better, although I have twice applied to participate and not heard anything back, so can’t verify this yet.

I still think StuddyBuddy is a better name…


  • Tony Hirst

    I think you can get quirky behaviour with a Gabbly chat conversation applying to several pages if those pages are distinguised by cgi arguments in the URL.
    If for example you look at http://vledemo.open.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=69 (which is an old, old, old, old, old demo… guest access applies, btw, so no login required…;-) I think the same chat applies to all ?id=X.
    Which is another example of how Moodle URLs are crap URLs…

  • Peter Newcomb

    Ever since coming up with the idea, I’ve always felt that Me.dium would be a valuable companion to e-learning activities. I’m sorry that you have been unable to try it yet! Please join me in Me.dium by following my personal invite link: http://me.dium.com/from/1f65c2/
    If you have any trouble getting in, please email me and I’ll help. (My email address can be found on the page to which my name on this comment is linked.)

  • Martin

    Thanks Peter – my invitation turned up yesterday anyway. Haven’t had a chance to play yet, but will do and no doubt blog about it!

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