Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Phone Home

The Icodeon Common Cartridge Platform enables Common Cartridge features to be integrated into different web environments - such as blogs, wikis and social networking sites.

Some Common Cartridge features, such as assessments and discussions, may require a unique user identity, and sometimes this identity can be accessed from the web environment.

For example, look at this integration with the MySpace social networking platform - the user's identity and their social graph are available to be mixed with the content from the Icodeon Common Cartridge Platform.

 But what about web environments where the user identity is not available or inaccessible? In these cases, we can use a technique where the user can "phone home" to another website to "ask for permission" to use their identity "away from home".

There are a number of "home" websites that allow their users to "phone home" - Google (Friend Connect) and Facebook (Connect) are two popular examples - but in principle, any web application can set up a service, using the OAuth protocol for example.

You can see a live example in our Psychology of Faces demonstration page. In this page, the learner is guided through some material on psychology and the human expression of emotions - and then invited to post a comment to a discussion topic from the Icodeon Common Cartridge Platform.

To post a comment, the learner first needs to "phone home" to their "home" Facebook account - and then use their Facebook screen name and icon/avatar in the discussion topic post. All posts are persisted to the Icodeon Common Cartridge Platform. Optionally, posting activity can also be reflected  back to the Facebook wall and activity stream of the contributing users.

Click the screen shot below for full size image.

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