Switching job roles

I am in the process of moving across to be eLearning Adviser for mostly Life Sciences and Psychology departments.  It will be very interesting to support the health teaching and research which ranges from psychology, therapy, health and sports sciences to ecology and anthropology.

Roehampton has a history with prosthetics:

Modern research:


Top 10 tools for learning directory

Jane Hart of C4LPT has been organising this for many years. There is a very comprehensive directory and the recommended tools are used by eLearning designers, developers, other educators and interested others.

I haven’t done for a number of years and these are some favourite tools which I use for developing learning or web content rather than just personal learning, I don’t use all the time as jobs vary but have found useful in the last year:

0. not a tool but functionalities: Ctrl+F to find word/s in anything, F11 to enlarge browser view, Ctrl+F5 to clear browser temporary cache.

  1. Notepad++
  2. Smallpdf
  3. Screencastomatic
  4. H5P
  5. Audacity
  6. Dropbox
  7. WordPress
  8. Paint.net
  9. Puffin web browser (Android)
  10. Quik video editor (Android)

Honorable mentions:

Atlassian Confluence wiki


RU-EN Translator (Android)

PowerDirector (Android)


Recovery from back injuries

Regardless of severity, unless it’s really not physically possible , I walk on the day it happens and every day after minimum twice a day. Even if not 100% vertically.

This time I am doing yoga cat, cow and child as well as knee rolls / stretches, nowhere near hamstring stretches yet. Very light leg conditioning by holding onto chair or something similar as additional pressure from back causes leg muscle issues.

I’ve ordered a new firm mattress (the existing one likely to be a factor) and now using a back support – this particularly helps for walking and sitting.

When there is a better period of the day, I am doing one set of taekwondo patterns without kicks – just lightly to practice flow. Don’t know yet if this is bad idea or not.

Brave knights or saints needed?

Once upon a little time ago, a few men found themselves in an American valley. Let’s make dragons. And so they did, gradually inviting other dragon makers from the UK and elsewhere. But they really didn’t have a plan beyond the dragons. Very soon a network of dragons was flying in and out of the valley – perpetually blind, burning everything within their range. 

It wasn’t their choice, they were made that way. The unburnt began to discuss how they might slay the dragons, kind of forgetting the unusually good hearing abilities of the dragons. 

Perhaps the dragons will break free of the valley and use the remains of their fire to grow knights or saints from the ashes. 

Inclusive coaching update

Each Saturday in May,  we are running a free informal 30 min session at 12.30pm for students or interested others to work out wheelchair movements. 

Master Worsfold also teaches Tai Chi and his military experience means we will run as a mixed martial art session applicable to both.

We have a new club secretary so will be starting again with publicity and communication, so if we get a low turnout, we can run it again later in the year. This will coincide with our association’s president visit to the UK for Dan grading but not sure if it will be possible to involve him yet – Master Worsfold will decide as he will be lead instructor for these sessions and I will assist.

We are starting with wheelchairs because we need to test floor impact (I have spoken to the leisure centre who don’t anticipate problems) and any adjustments in relation to speed and space between students. One of our students is having a hip op at the end of May and has kindly offered to be used for kicking practice 🙂 

There are loads of coaching resources and workshops available but informally in house also offers interaction with our existing students and their abilities. If we get stuck or there is a lot of interest we will run more formal workshops with organisations like SportsCoach UK.

Software and systems training structure

Whether eLearning or f2f or both, I have found these common to many learners in earlier phase of learning:

trees near Oxford Botanic garden

  1. How do I find it (system / software name) ?
  2. How do I open it?
  3. How do I login?
  4. What am I looking at e.g. what are the key boxes, spaces, buttons, links, where are they placed on the screen?
  5. What new language or key words do I need to learn to understand more e.g. field, post, window, tab, link, save, add, edit ?
  6. What metaphors or analogies are similar or relevant to my world and my contexts e.g. icons similar to app icons, magazine layout?
  7. What are the steps to complete a task?
  8. How can I go back if I press the wrong thing or close something by mistake?

Beginning conversation with AIML or Chatscript

Not at a point yet when I could write enough script so that Roe could follow something like this, need to work out more of the flow

flowchart of chatbot options

Original AIML – this is a useful parser with a link to intro for how it works – type in a couple of sentences and the script will make sense


  • <aiml>: the tag that begins and ends an AIML document
  • <category>: the tag that marks a “unit of knowledge” in an Alicebot’s knowledge base
  • <pattern>: used to contain a simple pattern that matches what a user may say or type to an Alicebot
  • <template>: contains the response to a user input1

A link to a conversation about trying to implement chatscript in another language



1. Available at http://www.alicebot.org/aiml.html , http://alicebot.wikidot.com/learn-aiml