Archive for June, 2010

eXtension & EDEN Respond to Gulf Oil Spill

The EDEN (Extension Disaster Education Network) Community of Practice has developed a resources page with information and news concerning this ongoing disaster. In the past few weeks more than 18 gulf oil spill related releases have been published in the eXtension Virtual News Room from the following sources: Alabama Cooperative Extension, Alaska Sea Grant, Cornell University, EPA, Louisiana State University, Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant, Mississippi State University, NOAA, Southern University, Texas Sea Grant, University of California, University of Florida and University of Missouri. eXtension and EDEN will continue to provide information to the public.

Links to various information sources such as the Gulf of Mexico Sea Grant Programs, NOAA Office of Response and Restoration, Alabama EDEN, Louisiana State University, University of Florida/IFAS and more.

For more information, please visit:


Gulf Oil Spill Hot Topic in May News

Land grant and Sea-grant university work to assess the Gulf oil spill and its effects was a hot topic all month. eXtension had 18 Gulf oil spill related releases from Alabama Cooperative Extension, Alaska Sea Grant, Cornell University, Louisiana State University, Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant, Mississippi State University, Southern University, Texas Sea Grant, University of California, University of Florida and University of Missouri as well as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Oil spill news is in the agrosecurity and floods resource area.

In May, 330 news releases came from 34 states:
26–University of Illinois
21–University of Missouri
15—(each) Louisiana State University and Southern University; North Dakota State University
14—North Carolina Cooperative Extension
13—(each) Iowa State University; Kansas State University; Ohio State University
12–University of California
11—(each) University of Georgia; University of Wisconsin
10—(each) Michigan State University; Mississippi State University; Oklahoma State University; University of Nebraska
8—(each) Alabama Cooperative Extension and Tuskegee University; Penn State University
7-(each) University of Arizona; University of Arkansas; University of Florida
6-(each) Texas AgriLife Extension; University of Kentucky
1 to 5 releases each from Alaska Sea Grant, Cornell University, Montana State University, Oregon State University, Purdue University, Rutgers University, University of Idaho, University of Minnesota, University of Nevada, University of Rhode Island, Utah State University and West Virginia State University.
2–Original releases
44–Other sources

330 releases total

News was posted to 31 Communities of Practice as well as four CoPs yet to go public:

42–Gardens, lawns and landscapes
32–Personal finance
28–Agrosecurity and floods
24–Families, food and fitness
22–Beef cattle
17–Corn and soybean production
12–Family caregiving
11–Extension master gardener
10–Entrepreneurs and their communities
9—(each) Dairy, Food safety, Horses
7–Diversity across higher education
6–Animal manure management, Community planning and zoning, Farm energy, Organic agriculture
5–Bee health
4–Geospatial technology
1—(each) Child care, Goats, Home energy, Imported fire ants, Pest management in and around structures, Science, engineering, and technology for youth, Small meat processors, Wildfire, Wildlife damage management, Wood energy, Drinking water, Freshwater aquaculture, Military families, Swine


June Free Public Webinar Schedule

Each month experts from land-grant universities and industry use webinars to provide information on seasonal topics and current research. Click on the link provided for details on these events.

June 8 — Feeding Horses for Optimal Performance
June 10 — Youth Market – Rural Entrepreneurship Experience
June 11 — Clearing the Air: Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Animal Agriculture
June 17 — Feral Hogs: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
June 25 — Cellulosic Biomass Harvest – Agronomic Issues


June Professional Development Opportunities

eXtension’s professional development opportunities are open to all Cooperative Extension faculty, staff and employees. No pre-registration is required. Please share this announcement with others and encourage them to pick a topic and try it out!


This month we are offering 30-Minute Sessions on a several topics including sessions to help you work in Second Life, eXtension Data APIs, HTML5 and how to (can you?) pick a Creative Commons license. Give us 30 minutes and we’ll teach you something useful! These sessions will be held at our Web Conferencing Center at Plan to join the session 5 minutes before the starting time. Each session will be held at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time (1:00 p.m. CT, 12:00 Noon MT, 11:00 a.m. PT, 10:00 a.m. AT; 8:00 a.m. HT) unless otherwise noted.

* Thursday, June 10, at 2:00 p.m. ET, a 30-minute session on Second Life for Newbies, by LuAnn Phillips. Highlights and sharing of resources from the recent CoP sessions “Second Life for Newbies.” If you could not be there in Austin for the hands-on sessions, come for this quick rundown of what you need to know, some ways to approach self-orientation, and resources to get you started. (For all Extension)

* Thursday, June 17, at 2:00 p.m. ET, a 30-minute session on eXtension’s Data APIs, by Jason Young, eXtension. One of the goals for the eXtension Engineering Team is to make as much of our data and information programmatically available to our peers as we can. Come and learn what Data APIs are available from eXtension and how you can use them in your own applications to get data from

* Wednesday, June 23, at 2:00 p.m. ET, a 30-minute session on HTML5 vs. XHTML 2, by Ben MacNeill, eXtension. HTML5 has recently become the dominant spec for future web development. Come learn about the history of HTML5 and XHTML 2, and the new features in HTML5 that you can start using now. (For developers and designers)

* Thursday, June 24, at 2:00 p.m. ET, a 30-minute session, “Jazz up your next professional development meeting with a live presentation from Second Life!” by LuAnn Phillips, eXtension’s Virtual Worlds Coordinator. Are you a lone SL user in a sea of skeptics? Fear not! Schedule a live tour of the Morrill sims for your next PD or association meeting and turn skeptics into believers. All you need is your laptop, a projector, powered speakers, and an Internet connection that will run SL. Sessions can be whatever length of time you need. In this session you will learn how to promote, set up, and facilitate a presentation. (For all Extension)

* Wednesday, June 30 at 2:00 p.m. ET, a 30-minute session on Understanding Creative Commons Licensing by Kevin Gamble, eXtension. Almost everyone has heard of the Creative Commons, and their unique approach to copyright. What people don’t realize is that there are actually six different Creative Commons licenses that content creators can choose from, each having their own unique permissions. This session will discuss what content licensed with Creative Commons you would be free to use in your Extension and eXtension content. HINT: It’s far less than you might realize. We will also discuss your Creative Commons choices for licensing your own content. HINT: You probably aren’t allowed to use any of the Creative Commons licenses with your Extension content under your current terms of employment. (For all Extension)

Longer sessions, these sessions will also be held at our Web Conferencing Center at Plan to join the session 5 minutes before the starting time. Each session will begin at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time (1:00 p.m. CT, Noon MT, 11:00 a.m. PT, 10:00 a.m. AT; 8:00 a.m. HT).

* Tuesday, June 22 at 2:00-3:00 p.m. ET, Beginning with the Ask an Expert Widget by Aaron Hundley and Ask an Expert Discussion Double Header by Aaron Hundley and Beth Raney. Learn the basics of the Ask an Expert System with Widgets and stick around for the AaE Discussion for current participants of the AaE system. How to use the Ask eXtension widget to receive and answer questions directly from your county Extension web site or Extension-related blog. This widget adds question-asking capabilities to your site, but uses the power of the eXtension Ask an Expert and FAQ systems to assist you in answering. Take questions from your clients, and use the 40,000 questions in the FAQ system to assist you in providing a timely and accurate answer. This session will introduce you to the Ask an Expert system, the Ask an Expert widget, show you the latest features developed, and will discuss what is necessary to begin using it immediately in your own county sites and blogs with helpful tips. Then we will have a conversation to discuss current implementations and ideas for the AaE system with those who have been working in the AaE system. (For all Extension)

* Tuesday, June 29 at 2:00-3:00 p.m. ET, Question Wrangler Monthly Meetup with Beth Raney and Kevin Gamble, eXtension. As each state identifies Question Wranglers to help with questions submitted via Ask an Expert by the public at, we’ll hold this session to help you get familiar with your role, the tools available to make it easier, and share experiences & tips. (For eXtension Question Wranglers)


Second Life is an immersive 3-D virtual environment, inhabited by over a million users, and used by educators all over the world to teach a wide variety of topics in an engaging and innovative way. You can also use Second Life to have meetings and events, create 3-D models or scenarios that would be too expensive or impossible to make in reality, make educational videos, and network with thousands of colleagues in the education community. In Second Life, you will find that eXtension has a virtual fairground, a model county office, and projects on assistive technology, turf grass, food safety, pest management, and space for you to develop your own projects. In Teen Second Life, we have Bailey Island available for any 4-H educator to use for programming. LuAnn Phillips, Second Life educator, is available to assist you, and can be reached at or by instant message to Thynka Little in Second Life. Instructions for entering Second Life are here: Please also consider joining the Facebook group “Cooperative Extension
Second Life.”

June Second Life Events:

* June 10- 2:00-2:30 p.m. ET, in Adobe Connect at, Second Life for Newbies:
Highlights and sharing of resources from recent hands-on workshops

* June 11- 2:00-3:30 p.m. Second Life Meetup: In-world practice for new
users, mentors are welcome to assist. Meet at the Virtual County

* June 24- 2:00-2:30 p.m. ET, in Adobe Connect at, Jazz up your next
professional development meeting with a live presentation from Second

Add these dates & topics to your calendar, and plan to join us on for
one or more of these sessions in June!!

TO PARTICIPATE in any of the sessions held in our Web Conferencing Center…
1. Five minutes before the start time, go to our Web Conferencing
Center meeting room at

2. You will be presented with a login screen that has an “Enter as
Guest” option.

3. Enter your first name; your last name, and your
institution/university, then click the “Enter Room” button to join the

4. To hear the audio of the workshop and participate in the Q&A portion of the workshop we will be using a built-in teleconferencing capability of Adobe’s Connect Pro conferencing software. Once you log into the meeting you will be presented with the option to enter your callback number, your phone will automatically be called. After entering your number you will be automatically called and joined into the audio portion of the Web conference on your phone.

If you or a colleague would like to get notices about upcoming professional development sessions offered by eXtension, go to and Click “Join Community.”

Recordings of many past professional development sessions can be found
at the main eXtension wiki at and
scroll down under Professional Development heading and find “Recordings of eXtension Professional Development Sessions”, or search on the word Recordings.

Looking forward to having you join us to learn something new in June!!