Manifold Mini #1
A Brief Introduction to Manifold
The first Manifold Mini was held on April 7, 2020. This session was intended to gently introduce new users to the Manifold platform. I described the foundations of the project, the collaboration between The CUNY Graduate Center, the University of Minnesota Press, and Cast Iron Coding, and gave a tour of the CUNY Manifold installation. I explained that CUNY’s instance is dedicated to Open Educational Resources and aims to cultivate community across CUNY campuses through the sharing of high quality educational resources.
A Brief Introduction
I gave a general overview of CUNY's Manifold instance:
I talked briefly about the collaboration with CUNY GC, University of Minnesota Press, and Cast Iron Coding (the development firm founded by Zach Davis, a CUNY English PhD)
We looked at the overarching organization of the interface
- Home page library view
- Featured collections
- All projects
I did a brief dip into a couple examples:
- Structuring Equality, a seminar's end of term collected edition of student work
- Building Open Infrastructure at CUNY, a collection of essays by the GC TLC
- Selections from Petrarch's Canzoniere, an enriched edition of public domain text created by Julie von Peteghem at Hunter College
I referenced project organization.
I talked briefly about how projects are the main container of material on Manifold -- a project may be a single text with many chapters (as in the CUNY Student Editions, which I haven't shown but will) or multiple texts (as in some course readers). I mentioned that you could have a resources only project.
I previewed Reading Groups.
I demoed how you can highlight text to annotate, share or cite passages if you're logged in. Manifold collects your private annotations and lets you see other people's public annotations. Further demo of reading groups is slated for April 21 at 1.
Can you turn off annotations?
Not currently, but it is planned development (you can see the open issue on the project's Github development)
How does Manifold handle copyrighted material?
Manifold holds whatever metadata (including license) you supply. If you wish to present material that is still in copyright, you need to request permissions from the authors (or authors' estates).
Will Manifold add an ISBN?
Manifold does not create ISBNs, but you can add one if you have other means of acquiring them.
How do I make my text visible in Google?
Adding metadata helps and making sure you enter your project into OER Commons and CUNY Academic Works. Search Engine Optimization is not my area of expertise, but based on today's questions, I will try to set up a Mini session on Metadata and Getting Found. I'll see if some librarians and maybe someone from the press can come.
Can you annotate video?
You can leave comments on any resource, but you cannot at this point annotate audio and video (as you can on other platforms like Scalar)
Can you download any resource type?
All added resources (added manually or in bulk to a project) may be downloaded. If you wish to provide a download of any file (an offline copy of the text, for instance), you can add a button on the home page. Video and Audio files can be viewed within Manifold. Other resource types will appear as downloads.
Can resources be added directly, or must they be embedded?
Resources can be added to a project separate from texts. Any resource that has been added to a project may be anchored in the project's text by anyone with the necessary permissions (project creators and editors). Google and Word doc images will render inline in Manifold. For inline interactive resources, you need to create the text using Markdown, EPUB, or HTML.
Can you reingest parts or do you have to reingest the whole?
To make changes on a text, you need to reingest the text. If you have created a project with multiple texts, you can reingest only the text you have altered. If you wish to change a chapter of a text ingested with a manifest (more on this when we get to Publishing with Manifold), you would need to rezip all the component parts. One of the planned features is a text editor for minor edits, but it will be a while before this feature is complete.
Are Google Docs preferable to Word Docs?
Yes. Google Docs and Word Docs are often the easiest document types for new users, but they offer the least control of the outcome. Google Docs are made for web viewing so what you see there will be more closely reflected in Manifold. Word does a lot of hidden work that doesn't take kindly to non-Microsoft settings. Because both softwares are WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get), it can be easy to expect that what you create in these programs will easily convert to web-friendly flowable text. Working with Markdown, HTML, or EPUB require more work but offer much more control of formatting. Manifold follows the structure provided by the documents you ingest.