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Lenses

What is a lens?

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

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Affiliated with (What does "Affiliated with" mean?)

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  • Houston Community College display tagshide tags

    This collection is included in aLens by: Houston Community College

    Comments:

    "3rd Item in a series of Connexions training"

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Also in these lenses

  • Busbee's Connexions Training

    This collection is included inLens: Busbee's Connexions Training Lens
    By: Kenneth Leroy Busbee

    Comments:

    "3rd Item"

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  • OER/LOR Connexions T display tagshide tags

    This collection is included inLens: OER/LOR Connexions Training
    By: Connexions

    Comments:

    "This training text shows how to create lenses, add content to them, and brand them. "

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Introduction to Connexions Lenses

Module by: Kenneth Leroy Busbee. E-mail the author

Summary: A general introduction to lenses within the Connexions web site. Covered are the purpose and types of lenses along with using the lens tab.

The Lens Concept

When we talk about lenses in a microscope, telescope or even our eye glasses; we are using the lens to be able to focus. You want to see part of the picture more clearly. With my eye glasses (tri-focal lenses) I use part of the lens to see distance, part for my computer screen and part for reading. My glasses are really three lenses and depending on which lens I use, I see more clearly that part of picture in front of my eyes. A telescope allows us to focus on one part of the sky, perhaps the moon, a planet or one of the many stars. A microscope let’s focus on part of what is on the slide more clearly.

In a major information repository like Connexions with thousands of modules (knowledge chucks), we want to use a lens to be able to focus on the content of the repository that is good or useful to us. The focus could be on:

  • Quality materials
  • Materials covering a specific topic
  • Materials associated with an organization
  • A combination of the above

A Connexions Lens

“Lenses enable both organizations and individuals to give their stamps of approval to content in the repository, allowing for user-driven quality control of modules and collections.” 1 As seen above, the quality control aspect is only one of the ways a lens could be used. A lens is made by somebody, a person, even if it is a person within an organization. When you use a lens, you are looking at the content of the repository through that person’s eyes. Thus the lens is a focused part of the repository as they, the lens creator, sees things. You, the user of a lens, are the ultimate judge of the quality and usefulness of a lens and the materials that it shows. The three groups of people that create lenses are associated with what type of user account that they have.

  • Connexions Project (people creating items as Connexions staff members)
  • Organization Accounts
  • Individual Accounts

Anyone can create an individual user account. Follow the directions on the Connexions home page at: http://cnx.org/

Organizations should contact the Connexions Community Developers and request instructions on establishing an organization type of account. Email them at: cnx@cnx.org

Lenses come in 5 varieties and are basically similar in how they are built and used.

  • Featured Lenses – Created by the Connexions project as special lenses. These lenses are always public (available for all to see).
  • Endorsement Lenses – Created by organizations, such as professional societies, businesses, educational institutions, etc. The lens contents have been carefully reviewed and deem to be of high quality by the organization. These lenses are usually public.
  • Affiliation Lenses – Created by organizations, such as professional societies and educational institutions. The lens content has been created by members of that organization (but not necessarily reviewed). Though not as rigorous as an endorsement lens, content in an affiliation lens is assumed to be of a quality on par with other members of that organization. These lenses are usually public.
  • Member Lists - Any account holder (Connexions, organizations or individuals) can create member list lenses to organize related content, such as to keep track of referenced source materials or to use as a course reading list for students. There lenses may be public (available for all to see) or private (only available to the creator of the lens when they are logged in to their account).
  • My Favorites Lens – Each user account has a private My Favorites lens which can be used to keep track of a user's favorite modules and collections. In addition to bookmarking content of personal interest, the My Favorites lens also allows readers to start reading from where they last left off within a bookmarked collection. You can access your personal My Favorites lens by selecting the MyCNX tab and clicking on the "My Favorites" link (login required).

The List of Public Lenses at Connexions

The easy way to see the public lenses is to use the “Lenses” tab on the Connexions home page.

Footnotes

  1. Lenses Help Tab – Connexions web site at: http://cnx.org/help/viewing/lenses

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My Favorites (?)

'My Favorites' is a special kind of lens which you can use to bookmark modules and collections. 'My Favorites' can only be seen by you, and collections saved in 'My Favorites' can remember the last module you were on. You need an account to use 'My Favorites'.

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Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

| External bookmarks

Module to:

My Favorites (?)

'My Favorites' is a special kind of lens which you can use to bookmark modules and collections. 'My Favorites' can only be seen by you, and collections saved in 'My Favorites' can remember the last module you were on. You need an account to use 'My Favorites'.

| A lens I own (?)

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

| External bookmarks