New Voicethread export feature

 

voicethread2.jpgExport Archival VoiceThreads – From Voicethread Blog

We are very, very happy to announce the availability of Archival VoiceThreads. Downloadable as a widescreen movie, this version of a VoiceThread will play offline, stored on your computer, iPod or other portable device and can be burned onto a DVD or CD. These Archival movies are an exact replica of the content and commentary of any VoiceThread, which include the text commentary, audio commentary, webcam commentary, and also, the animated drawings we call Doodles. This has been our #1 requested feature and has taken quite a bit of work to pull off. To make one, just click the ‘Export’ button when creating/editing your VoiceThread.

Does it look and feel like a VoiceThread? You bet, and portable. Click here (~6.2 mb) to download an example. During a beta test period the export function will only be available to Pro users, at no charge. After this period, 10 per year will be included free with every Pro account. Individual archival exports will be $2.99 for free accounts, with bulk and educator discounts on the way.

Here are some FAQ about our new export function:

Price? During a beta test period the export function will only be available to Pro users, at no charge. After this period 10/yr will be included free with every Pro account. Individual archival exports will be 2.99 for free accounts, with bulk and educator discounts on the way.

When? available right this moment for Pro users and coming soon for everybody else

Does it look and feel like a VoiceThread?You bet, even better in some ways, it’s quite cinematic. Click here to download an example.

Can I make any changes to an Archival VoiceThread? No. Like a book that’s gone to the printer all commentary and content are essentially locked in amber at the moment you create the archival copy. The original VoiceThread remains live, on the web, and can be edited and continue to accept new commentary, but the archival version is a frozen snapshot.

How big are they? Well, how big is your VoiceThread? The average size is coming in around 20 MB but can be more or less depending on the content of your VoiceThread.

Options? None just yet, but we might add some options in the future for adding titles to the Archival version or the addition of other export formats

How long does it take to make once I order it? About an hour on average, much quicker if it’s short and much longer if it’s big or contains a lot of complex elements to render properly, or our ThreadMaker is particularly busy. (please don’t wait until the last minute you need it, it’s not like printing a document:)

What are the specs?? The Archival VoiceThread is a movie encoded with the H.264 codec and is in a wide-screen format of 852 X 480 pixels. QuickTime is recommended to play them back.

Miguel Guilin reports that Voicethread hopes to charge educators a very low price for downloads – but that hasn’t been worked out yet.

Just a final reminder that I am collecting examples of how educators are using Voicethread in their classroom or for professional development on a wiki at: http://voicethread4education.wikispaces.com/. Add your links! Thanks.

Top Ten Tools 2008

Colette’s (updated) Top 10 Tools

  1. tool.jpgGmail. I love this web based email system and the fact that I can access it from any computer. Not only do you get tons of storage but I like the way it keeps the threaded conversations together. Gmail chat is also nifty.
  2. Google Docs. Google docs are great for collaborating and sharing information with others. You must invite friends to participate in your documents but it’s so easy to edit ALL AT THE SAME TIME!!!.
  3. iGoogle Ok, ok, so I love of all the of the Google products – but I do use them and find them easy to use. iGoogle is a personalized page (which I make as my own homepage) that you can customize with all kinds of widgets like: weather, calendar, CNN news, Google Reader (RSS), Gmail notifier, jokes, etc…
  4. del.icio.us. I can’t believe how much I depend on this social bookmarking tool to remember sites I have visited but also for sharing cool sites with my friends. Now I don’t need to be that annoying friend who always sends emails recommending websites (I can’t help myself) – if I find a site and know my friend’s del.icio.us name I can tag the site as: for:ccassinelli and then when that user goes to their del.icio.us account they can add my favorite to theirs. This is very helpful for group projects!
  5. flickr. This web-based photo sharing site is awesome for uploading photos to share with friends. I like how you can create different albums and tag photos for easy sorting. I also love snooping through my friend’s albums too!
  6. My first RSS aggregator was Bloglinesand I still use it today. I like how I can create folders for all of the ed tech blogs I read. Here are my folders: personal, ed tech bloggers, under consideration and last chance. When I stumble across a blog I might be interested in I add the feed in the under consideration folder. When I find that I enjoy the blog and read it often it moved up in rank to the ed tech bloggers folder while some of those are demoted to last chance before I decide to do away with the feed.
  7. Audacity. This easy to use FREE audio editing software is easy to use for podcasting and editing audio files. You will need the LAME Mp3 encoder if you want to export your audio files at MP3 instead of WAV – but it’s easy to download and install.
  8. Wikispaces. I’ve already mentioned my love of wikis in my blog but for collaboration and easy editing – wikis are the way to go. I also love the fact that Wikispaces gives FREE wikis to teachers. Thanks for the support!
  9. Voicethread – A great tool for encouraging collaboration in your classroom. Upload photos and add text, audio or voice comments with a web cam. My new personal favorite way to get students to share comments with each other.
  10. Moodle. I started using Moodle this last year with a few of my computer classes but will use this open-source course management system with all my classes this year. It’s easy to use, has built in blogging and modules (quizzes, journals, docs) that make it easy to keep all class documents in one area.

TOP 100 TOOLS FOR LEARNING – SPRING 2008
as collected by Jane Hart

 

2007 Top Ten Tools: http://www.c4lpt.co.uk/recommended/colettecassinelli.html (my current list is pretty similar to the 2007 list. Hey – I like what I like!)

Photo Credit: http://flickr.com/photos/cayusa/2221656599/

OETC professional development cadre

Today I participated in the OETC professional development cadre. We spent the afternoon discovering some Web 2.0 technologies. Yes, most of these tools are online, free and can be embedded in websites – but only a handful would actually be useful in the classroom. The others are just for fun – or another scheme to get you to register and capture your email address. Here is a list of some of them that were shared:

Voki – create your own talking avatar. I’m not quite sure how to use this in education or how it qualifies as a Web 2.0 tool – but it’s fun thing to have on your blog or website.

PhotoShowonline free version of Photoshow5 software. Upload photos from your computer, any MySpace account, or photo URL. After uploading photos, you can customize your music, captions and transition styles.

VoicethreadUpload photos and record narration for a photo story. Allows viewers to record their comment to show. Very easy to use and allows multiple user to comment on each account. Of the list here, probably the most useful in the classroom. Updated version coming October 10th.

PollDaddyCreate free polls for your website. Easy to make and easy to embed.

Toondoo – Cartoon strip creator. Fun and easy to make. Better for younger kids.

Slide.com – Slide widgets — including Slideshows, Guestbooks, SkinFlix and FunPix — are popular on top social networking and blog platforms.

Sitekreator You can build your own professional site with page and navigation management, add an unlimited number of pages, and maintain a unified appearance and consistent navigation structure. The folks that evaluated it were not that impressed.

OurStory Save stories, photos, and videos on a collaborative timeline. Has potential – need to check it out more.

Bubbl.usBubbl.us is a simple and free web application that lets you brainstorm online. you can create mind maps online, share and work with friends, and embed your mind map in your blog or website.

kSolo – Online karaoke!

I loved the networking and sharing of the professional development cadre and they modeled some great techniques for presenting professional devleopment with technology, but I was concerned about their choice of Web 2.0 tools. Since over 1/2 of the members of the cadre were new – why weren’t tools like del.icio.us, blogs, wikis, podcasting, Google docs, Moodle, flickr, etc reviewed (or at least introduced to the newbies!). I’m concerned about the explosion of “free” online tools that can be embedded on websites tooted as the latest Web 2.0 tools. Most of them are geared towards the Myspace crowd and don’t have a place in the classroom.

I am glad we watched the new Did you know? video and visited the ShiftHappens wiki at: http://shifthappens.wikispaces.com/Suggestions+for+Using+the+Presentation

Other tools that were shared that I didn’t get a chance to check out yet: