Tools

The Internet is a rich source of resources for collaboration and knowledge creation. I have compiled a list of sites and categorized them according to general use. Of course, many of these could fall under multiple categories. If you don’t find what you are looking for, try looking on some of the other related categories. I will add to this site as I discover new resources. Remember, this is only a small sample of what is out there. If you find something that is useful and not on in this collection, please let me know through the comment page below and I will add it to the list.

WEB CONFERENCING
These tools are great for collaboration across distances. Most of these will allow for 1:1 communications as well as multiuser connections. The functionality here will be dependent on the tool and the mode of communication (text, shared desktop, video, voice etc.)

ONLINE PRESENTATION
This collection of tools allows you to create presentations in various formats as well as share them with others.

WIKIS
These are collaborative sites where users can log in and edit existing pages or create new pages. While multiple users can edit these pages, you can only have one user editing a page at a time. If you are looking for live collaboration, you will want to explore synchronous collaboration sites.

SYNCHRONOUS COLLABORATION SITES
These sites allow for simultaneous editing and collaboration in the same web space. These tools are useful for collaborative notes and projects.

ONLINE PUBLISHING
These tools range from microblogging (140 words or less) to full-fledged blog sites. These are great for metacognitive reflections, topical blogs, portfolios and electronic newsletter creation.

FILE SHARING
These sites are great for sharing collaborative documents. These may include documents such as text, presentation and spreadsheets among others. You can create a document and share it with a select group or in some cases, make the document public and share it with the world for collaboration. In some cases, you can upload documents created in other formats. Some of these tools can be used in conjunction with others to make robust portfolios.

WEBSITE CREATION
These are exactly what you think they are…website creation tools. Most if not all of these have free hosting for simple sites. All of them allow you to easily create various types of website with existing templates or fully customized sites. Some of them also create flash style sites.

PHOTO SHARING AND MANIPULATION
These sites allow you to store and share photos with others. Additionally, some of these sites allow you to edit and modify your images. While most are internet based, GIMP is an open-source program that you can download that works like Photoshop for photo manipulation and processing. These programs can be used as stand-along programs or in conjunction with others as part of a portfolio system.

VIDEO/AUDIO EDITING
The following programs are related to video and audio editing. In some cases, you need to download the program to your computer and run from there. In other cases, you upload the files and edit the project across the Internet. All of these programs can be used to create artifacts for e-portfolios as well as many creative projects.

SOCIAL NETWORKING
Social networks allow groups of individuals to connect in many different ways. You can connect through common experiences, interests, friends etc.

CONCEPT MAPPING
These tools are different versions of charting tools. Some are very basic mind mapping tools while others are very sophisticated. Some of these are internet based applications while some are programs that you can freely download to your computer. Some of these tools allow collaboration and some are designed more for independent work. Explore each as they all have their unique characteristics which include the ability to map how you search for things across the web (Trailmeme) to allowing multiple users to edit a map simultaneously (MindMeister). Some of these also have mobile apps that allow them to be used from various smartphones.

SOCIAL BOOKMARKING
This collection of sites allow you to save your favorites as bookmarks on the web. This means that they follow you everywhere you go on the Internet and allow you to share them with others. Each site has different features and characteristics. Explore them to find the best fit for the way you work. There are reasons that you might actually utilize multiple sites.

QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS
Data is your thing…these tools can help you with qualitative analysis and work in a similar fashion as NVivo and Atlas.TI.

COLLABORATIVE POST-IT BOARDS
These tools make it easy to post notes on the web in a collaborative space. Some of these tools allow posting without accounts while others might require those posting to create an account.

SYNCHRONOUS WEBINAR TOOLS
These tools are similar in nature to Elluminate and Wimba. They allow for synchronous classroom experiences integrating video, voice, text and whiteboard functions. Use these tools to teach class in real time from a distance.

DESKTOP SHARING
These tools allow you to share your computer desktop with others across the Internet. This is very useful for collaborative work, technical help and presentations utilizing software and files that reside on only one computer.

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