Blogs, Wikis, And Docs Oh My!

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Ideas for using Blogs, Wikis, and Docs...
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  BlogsWikisDocsNatureA blog is a web log, a frequently updatedwebsite. More -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BlogA wiki is a web page that visitors can quickly edit.More -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WikiGoogle Docs provides an online officesuite that allows you to access yourdocuments from any computer via aweb browser. It also facilitatescollaboration and sharing. More -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_DocsAuthorsUsually only one person or a small team canpost. Each post is one author's voice. Otherscan only leave comments.Many. Most wikis allow either anonymous editing orediting by a limited number of approved users.Each document is created by anindividual, who can then invitecollaborators.CollaboratorsUsually visitors can comment. Sometimes asmall team has the ability to post.All visitors can be collaborators - or access to edit thewiki can be limited to approved users.Docs can be shared with a small teamof collaborators at one time(synchronously). A larger number of users can collaborate asynchronously.OrganizationReverse chronological order. The newest postappears at the top of the page and olderposts move down until archived (usually bymonth). Most blog systems also supportcreation of a few static pages, such as anabout page or class expectations page.A wiki site is a hyperlinked collection of individualpages.Each document is separate. Users canview all docs that they create orcollaborate on at their Google Docshome page, which allows organizationin folders. A published document canbe viewed as an individual website.UpdatesFrequency of updates varies, but blogs tendto be updated more often and moreconsistent than wikis and docs. Visitorsreturn often to blogs that are updatedfrequently and consistently. RSS users canalso subscribe to a feed so that new postscome to them automatically.Wikis are updated as needed, usually when newinformation about the topic becomes available,information changes, or a mistake is found. RSS userscan subscribe to a feed so that they are notified of changes automatically.Docs are usually created and editedfor a specific purpose, but they can besaved indefinitely for reuse at a latertime.BenefitsBlogs are easily created and easily updated. If you can email, you can blog! And addingimages and files is as easy as addingattachments.Some blog systems allow authors to embedmedia.It's a Two-Way Technology - visitors canleave comments.Most blogs allow teams of authors withvarious permissions.Some blogging systems allow users todownload a backup of their blog.Wikis maintain a history of all revisions to each page,including who made what changes.Most wikis also provide a discussion forum for eachpage, though this is not always a threaded discussion.Most wikis allow different permissions for differentusers. If you can word process, you use a wiki! And addingimages and files is as easy as adding attachments toan email.Most wikis allow users to download an html backup.Google Docs are the best choice forsynchronous collaboration on a singledocument - with some delay, userscan see others changes as they occur!The system handles conflictingchanges well.A history of revisions is kept for alldocuments.Each spreadsheet has a built in chatroom for collaborators.Each presentation has a built in chatroom for viewers.Upload and export most wordprocessing and spreadsheet file types.  DrawbacksNo multiple authors on a single post(usually).No history of revisions on a single post(usually).Though archives are searchable and can beorganized by category, it can be difficult tofind old content.Some blogging systems do not allow users todownload a backup of their blog.Users can overwrite each others' changes if they areediting the same page at the same time. Wikis arebest for asynchronous collaboration, not synchronouscollaboration.Though many wiki systems now have WYSIWYG(what you see is what you get) editors, some wikisrequire additional knowledge of wiki syntax that isdifferent than HTML. This is helpful fortroubleshooting problems with WYSIWYG editors, too.Wiki syntax can be different for different wikisystems.Though a history of revisions is available, archives of old content are not easily accessible by category orsearching.The history of revisions can bedifficult to navigate.Old data may be difficult to findbecause it is not easily accessible bycategory or searching.Only a small number of users cancollaborate synchronously. (About 10in docs and presentations, but Googlesays 50 can join a spreadsheet at onetime.)Docs only allow two levels of permissions: viewers & collaborators(plus owners).Importing and exporting files islimited to only a few formats (butMicrosoft Office formats areincluded: .doc, .xls, .ppt)  ExamplesExamples:ãEducational Technology and Life(Myprofessional blog)ãClark's Blog(A personal blog aboutmy son - with much more multi-media than edtechlife)Spectrum of Uses:ãTeacher web sitesExampleãClass web sitesExampleãLearning journalsExampleãBook ClubsExampleãConnect with Authors andExpertsExampleãPen PalsExample(See GlobalAwareness and Cultural LiteracyThrough Electronic Dialog)ãProfessional DevelopmentExampleãReflective PracticeExample(Also, don't missDavid Warlick's blog.)ãMore Examples:http://www.supportblogging.comãGet Started:http://www.blogger.comorhttp://www.edublogs.orgSubject Specific Examples:ãAlgebraExampleãArtExampleãEnglishExampleãMusicExampleãPhysical Ed.ExampleãScienceExampleãSocial StudiesExampleExamples:ãPodcastarticle on WikipediaãThe Palm Srings USD tech plan waswritten ona wiki!More Examples:ãThe Wikipedia -http://www.wikipedia.orgãDave Conlay's Aristotle Experiment -http://aristotle-experiment.wikispaces.comãEva Wagner's Houghton-Mifflin TechResources Wiki -http://hmtech.wikispaces.comãEva Wagner's Technology Integration Projectsfor Grades K-3 -http://techtips.wikispaces.comãDan McDowell's Wiki Resources -http://www.ahistoryteacher.com/necc2006/ãMore Workshop Wikis -http://edtechlife.com /? page_id=1399ãMore Examples (A wiki about wikis ineducation!) -http://educationalwikis.wikispaces.com/ãGet Started:http://www.wikispaces.com/site/ for/teachers/More On Educational Wikis:ãWhy Wiki?ãThe Infinite Wiki Machine(Answers the  question when is a wiki better than a blog?)ãWiki While You Work (Long Video) ãWikis in Plain English(Short Video)ãSee another great workshop about wikis(from CTAP IV):http://www.ctap4.org/infolit/wiki.htmExamplesãOur Demo FormãThe results(a publishedspreadsheet)ResourcesãGoogle Docs for EducatorsãGoogle Docs(Session fromthe Google Teacher Academy)ãGoogle Docs in TheClassroom(PDF from theGoogle Teacher Academy)ãCreate a PermeableClassroom - Part I: GoogleDocs PresentationsãGoogle Docs in plain EnglishãGet Started:http://docs.google.com
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