Open Letter Re: Behind the Blackboard

Hi Blackboard Support, Today, without warning, you changed Behind the Blackboard. Clients dislike surprises. We like knowing how things work. Give us access to the new thing before we have to deal with it. That way we become familiar with it. Even if you do not give advance viewing of the service, then advance warning… Continue reading Open Letter Re: Behind the Blackboard

Microsoft Outlook 2007 Wishlist

From 2001 to 2006, Microsoft Outlook was the email client I used for work (and on my home computer to access work stuff). Back then, Exchange was not available, so a number of the features were more hacks than reality. However, it worked pretty well. When I changed jobs, Netscape and Thunderbird were the pre-installed… Continue reading Microsoft Outlook 2007 Wishlist

LMS Security

This morning there was a flurry of effort to locate an article called “Hacking WebCT.” My coworker was able to locate it. We were disappointed.  The main points of the article were: Lazy administrators make compromising user accounts easy. Lazy instructors make getting questions for assessments easy. These apply to any LMS. So, here is some… Continue reading LMS Security

Better CE/Vista Web Server Log

Some support tickets are more easily solved by knowing both user behavior and environment. An often helpful piece of information is what web browser they used. To add this, shut down the cluster, edit /VISTA_HOME/config/config.xml to include the cs(User-Agent), and start the cluster. This line will need to appear for every node. At startup, the… Continue reading Better CE/Vista Web Server Log

Bb Suggestions

WebCT used a suggestion form to collect product improvement ideas from the various users (instructors, instructional technologists, administrators, etc.). I’m not sure if the switch to opening enhancement request support tickets under Blackboard was something new to improve the support model overall or just a change for former WebCT customers as support integrated. Interestingly, Blackboard… Continue reading Bb Suggestions

Open Response To Bb ACSS

17. What is the single most important thing Blackboard can do to create a better client experience for your institution? Provide successful workarounds or bug fixes to the identified issues in a timely manner. A timely manner means within 5 days to the user and 180 days to me. By the end of 5 days,… Continue reading Open Response To Bb ACSS

Pointless

So I wanted to open a support ticket. However, in thinking about what I can ask for the company to do arrayed against what they are willing to offer for support, I realized… I am not going to get a resoultion for the ticket. It is functioning as designed. They are just going to tell… Continue reading Pointless

ST:XP Shutting Down

Star Trek: The Experience is shutting down September First? Geeks don’t make the annual pilgrimage to pray at the alter of the captain’s chair. Maybe Vegas is too expensive. Between dropping hundreds monthly on movie tickets, DVDs, comics, and video games, spending three months rent to see ST:XP doesn’t have the right magic.

Try Again

The worst response technical support can give me is to suggest I try something I have already tried without success. An explanation why this suggestion is going to work this time when the previous attempt(s) did not work would help. Otherwise, why would I expect it to work this time when it didn’t last time?… Continue reading Try Again

Better: Closed or Resolved

I just read: Clients are receiving responses to and closures of long-outstanding tickets. In the past quarter we’ve reduced the number of outstanding tickets by 15% (1500 tickets). We closed several tickets because it was decided no resolution was ever going to be provided after the ticket was open for 6 months without the tier… Continue reading Better: Closed or Resolved