There’s a new post over at the iLite blog: http://ilite.wordpress.com/2010/03/18/moodle-off-line-application/. It poses the question: what would offline Moodle access look like and is it possible?
From the post:
To my mind the offline client should be a stand-alone application that is installed on the Users PC. The application should permit the following:
1 Log in using their Moodle Username and Password (Network access required)
2 View all their courses
3 Do a Course
4 Resume a Course they are busy with
5 Save the progress and results locally
6 Manually (or automatically) synchronize their data with the Moodle server.
7 View grades
8 Update their profile
9 See which other students are online (red dot, green dot)
Certainly there are loads of technical issues with providing a quick and simple offline access for Moodle (using a Google Gears style approach); but it’s my belief that the hurdles would be well worth what an offline Moodle application for computers would make up in say, productivity and ubiquitous access.
One of the most justified complaints about web-based lessons and assignments and against Moodle is that some students do not have access to the internet at home. Though this is the case less and less these days, it’s certainly a concern that should be weighed when evaluating new technology in the classroom. However, if there were an offline application that could be loaded onto a laptop or portable memory and transported home, it would be possible for students, even without internet access at home to engage the content and assignments.
This would be a boon for Moodle using teachers and schools globally and I believe would open many of the remaining doors that are shut due to these concerns. Quite frankly, offline Moodle may be as important to the Moodle community as any movement to make Moodle Mobile-accessible (especially since all students do not have iPhones).
If you’re technically savvy and have ideas or thoughts on what might make an offline Moodle tick (or would like to collaborate to create one) check out the iLite blog and comment there: http://ilite.wordpress.com/2010/03/18/moodle-off-line-application/