Environment as Context

This pre/face is an afterthought, after all is said and done...so far. We, Kristian (computer GEEK) and Janet (teacherly geek) started collaborating on MOOtiny in May 1995. By July, we knew we wanted to work together building an alternative educational MOO environment, one which would call most upon the ethos of social MOOs and still combine security and a loose framework for the work and play of learning: a place where "tech" and "rhet" do meet on common grounds: a place where theory and practice could come together, informing each to each as always, yet with the added dimension of enactment. The MOO, for us, has been home and hearth, our social milieu, our communication umbilical cord, our work space and our playground. We come from very different backgrounds: Kristian from the sciences, and Janet from the humanities. But we share this in common: curiosity. Kristian was curious about what he could do with MOO to help teachers; Janet was curious about what the technical features of MOO could do for her and her students. Together, we explored ways to help others, teachers and students, feel more at home in the MOO environment.

We return again and again to this notion of MOO as "environment" because this metaphor is crucial to an understanding of what we have built at DaMOO. Three short weeks after DaMOO was up and running, we attended the MOO conference in Berkeley, The Virtual Classroom: Writing Across the Internet. John Slatin gave the plenary address, "The Next Revolution: Real Students in Imaginary Classrooms," and when he insisted on MOO as "environment" rather than "tool," we turned to each other and grinned. "Yes. We know. Yes, we agree. Finally someone talking our language." Such had been our idea the summer before when we sketched out our plans for our next MOO. The notion of "environment" rather than "tool" is precisely what shaped our shared vision; Slatin "named" the "situation," succintly.

  1. Know Thy MOO
  2. Know Thyself
  3. Know Thy Pedagogy
  4. Know Thy Students' Needs
  5. Covet Not Thy Neighbor's Code or Words
  6. Spam Unto Others Only as You Would Have Them Spam Unto You
  7. Suffer Newbies to Come Unto You
  8. Forget Not Thy Password
  9. Know Thy Security Measures
  10. Be Thou Not a Quota Hawg Return to the index.