What’s next?

So, eMargin is now being used by English students at Birmingham City University, and has generated interest from other teachers and researchers within and outside the University. We’re also looking forward to seeing how the University of Leicester will make use of eMargin with their students. Discussions with those involved have suggested new ideas and reinforced our existing plans, so it’s about time we told you what they are…

  • Uploading documents from your desktop, and translating Word and PDF files into a form eMargin can make use of.
  • Fetching web pages to include in the tool, translating HTML into an eMargin-friendly form (using our WebCorp LSE technology).
  • Moderation of annotations. The ability for moderators to remove annotations, comments and tags.
  • Text histories. We already keep histories of annotations made on texts, we just need to make them visible.
  • The ability to assign labels to colours, to clarify their meaning.
  • Alternative ways of representing paragraph level annotations.
  • Investigate integration with VLEs, like Moodle.
  • Customisable interface. Users can modify how highlights are displayed to suit different screen types or according to personal preferences.
  • Text and annotation search system.

If you’d like to suggest something, just reply to this post. We look forward to hearing more ideas but, for now, we’d better get to work!

eMargin Progress

We’ve been working on eMargin over the summer and an initial version is now ready to try. Feel free to give it a go and let us know if you have any comments, questions or suggestions. At the moment, anybody can try eMargin as an individual user but you’ll need to contact us for permission to create groups of users (e.g. students), upload your own texts, and share texts with groups.

We’ve been giving further demonstrations of eMargin to current and prospective users, at our own university and at other institutions. The tool is being used this semester in English seminars at Birmingham City University and at the University of Leicester, and is now being trialled in other disciplines.

Following our recent technical discussions, Rowin Young of JISC CETIS has written a blog post about eMargin. We’ve also been contacted by Caren Milloy and Anna Vernon of JISC Collections, who were keen to hear about eMargin in advance of the NISO meeting on Standards Development for E-Book Annotation Sharing and Social Reading at the Frankfurt Book Fair. We hope to work more closely with JISC Collections on future developments to eMargin.

See what others are saying about eMargin on Twitter.