AHA! I finally have something already in the bag for MTBoS #6, the file system.
Since it’s sorta attached to this blog, I just use the WordPress Reader to follow all of these neat new people I’m meeting via #MTBoS. It works. I pop out links into new tabs (I really like Chrome, too). Sometimes, these tabs sit for a few days until I get around to them, but eventually, all of the links that I like go to my online bookmarks page. I’m a huge fan of Delicious. My page is here. I tried using a tag (see below) for “read_later”, but I never got around to actually doing that. I use this page as more of a repository for approved stuff rather than a way of later searching stuff I haven’t read. Note: this page is actually intended for school and my students, so most of the teacher-related links are marked private and are invisible.
What do I like about Delicious? verging on advertisement here!
- It’s free.
- It’s so easy to find stuff that I’ve listed. I mean, I’ve collected over 700 links, and I can find what I want really quickly. Delicious uses “tags” that you make up (think Twitter hashtags), along with your own little blurb. I think more tags makes for a more accessible list. For example, I’ve tagged OK Go’s music video for “This Too Shall Pass” with physics, mechanics, rube_goldberg, songs, movies, and weird, along with my short description and note about its duration. I use it for physics, when I’m discussing transfer of motion or momentum or Newton’s Laws, or just need a time filler. Click on, say, chemistry for just the list of my chemistry tags. Now click on weird for all of the links that I thought were both chemistry and weird. Click on chemistry again to get rid of it, and only see the weird things.
- It’s easy to add new links. Just click and add your description and tags. They have a button you can install on your browser(s). You can just copy and paste into Delicious. They have phone apps (but I haven’t tried them). Hmm… I may be a link-packrat…
- You choose to make each link public or private. Private links are only visible if you’re logged in, so when I go to the computer lab, my students still don’t see my private links.
- It’s simple to edit your links. If you’re logged in, you just click on “edit” and add tags or change your description. If you want to delete it… boom… done. Easy peasy.
- You can access the links from any computer, and so can others. Makes it easy to go to any classroom at school and pull up the videos I want, or to have all of my students click to a particular webpage instead of typing URLs.
- Once you’ve saved a particular link, you can see who else has saved it. Chances are, if it’s a specialty thing (like a math activity or chemistry drill page), the other people who saved it are probably also teachers. You can then look at their saved links to
stealperuse their hard work. You can also follow them, in a similar way that Twitter does, and check their recent links through the Network.
Things I don’t like about Delicious:
- When a URL moves to a new address, it used to be possible to edit in the new URL. They changed something a few months ago, and now you can’t do it. You have to delete the old (now dead) page and add a whole new entry. Weak.
- Once you click on a tag, up pops the “related tags” section. These are ordered just by their recently-added-status. Would be more useful if they were either alphabetized or listed by frequency. Hard to predict what else already appears in the category.
This system works for me. Results may vary. It’s sorta like study skills: Using three-ring binders works for me now, but I had to have spiral notebooks and folders back in high school. Find a thing that works for you, and just know that there’ll be some maintenance every now and then.