Fellowship of the SPLOT

We are big fans of the SPLOT at Reclaim Hosting, and Alan Levine has been doing a ton of work developing and managing these tools over the last couple of years. Not so much because folks are paying him too, but because that’s who he is. He follows his interests and over-sized heart from fun project to funner project, living the life of a nomad edtech. Not so much “The Man Without a Name” as “The Man without an Institution”—but damn that creep can blog! I guess if you have a good enough blog you don’t need an institution 🙂

Anyway, Alan’s tireless work around SPLOTs is something we have wanted to build on top of at Reclaim for a while now. Specifically, we want to be able to package up SPLOTs as individual apps that someone can install with one click. Alan has been maintaining a number of SPLOTs on our demo server StateU that are available as variables on top of WordPress:


But when Alan joined us in Fredericksburg for our Workshop of One’s Own to talk SPLOTs in March, we made some headway on making each tool a stand-alone app that can be showcased in cPanel alongside WordPress, Omeka, etc.

Big Picture Calling Card SPLOT as its own application

And the idea is to try and get a series of these SPLOTs in cPanel dashboards across our shared hosting and institutional servers, not only to give folks access to these tools—although definitely that—but also in hopes people will see what’s possible and make their own SPLOTs that can in turn be shared back for others to use. In this way Reclaim could help provide a hub to distribute these “tiny teaching tools” (to misquote Tom Woodward). So, that’s the plan, and to buttress Alan’s efforts and hopefully make it more widely available to others we have started a year-long fellowship at Reclaim in order to support Alan’s work with SPLOTs for the next 12 months. And, as it will be no surprise to anyone who follows his blog, Alan has been bobbing blogging and weaving all kinds of SPLOT goodness.


The House that 106 Built

A post shared by Jim Groom (@jim.groom) on

Being able to support the efforts of independent edtechs like Alan Levine is exactly what Reclaim Hosting was born to do—it is, after all, the house that 106 built! And, hopefully, we can do more of just this kind of thing in the future.

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12 Responses to Fellowship of the SPLOT

  1. Tom says:

    I like the cut of this Alan guy’s jib. I have a feeling he’s going places.

  2. I think he should move to Canada. We want him here full time.

  3. Alan Levine says:

    I arrived yesterday, Irwin, waving from SK.

    Thanks Jim, and Reclaim for giving me this ring of fellowship. I wont be tossing it in any fires. I have SPLOTs to cook!

    • Reverend says:

      Thank you, you rule! Go easy on the Canadian assimilation, that assimilating borg of niceness is dangerous 🙂

  4. Aaron says:

    I love Alan’s SPLOTs and the support Reclaim provides. I have used Big Picture to create my own ‘home’ page and supported someone in summarising their work. I think they offer so much potential.

    I am wonder what place microformats play with all this? I have enjoyed following Greg McVerry’s effort to incorporate #IndieWeb values into his work with Higher Education. I must admit, with my ‘Sunday drive’ of a blog, I am still finding my way. Was just wondering.

  5. This is such great news, for Alan and for those of us on Reclaim Hosting! I was just doing a web search on how to put a SPLOT or two into my RH site, and voila…you all are already supporting that effort!


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