“Open Internet” tools series – Chapter Two: Netvibes

The following is the second in a semi-irregular series of posts on Internet tools and utilities.  Today’s tool will help you both organize and communicate information:  Netvibes.

It’s hoped that these tools will make your “screen time” hours more efficient and productive, rather than more numerous.  The posts in this series give info and background on a few common “open” Internet tools.  All these tools have the following in common:

  • They are available “free” on the Internet (although an initial sign-up, also free, is usually required)
  • They have some utility in the world of the Internet, education, and libraries
  • I, personally, use each of these tools regularly

2: Netvibes http://www.netvibes.com

  • Example of how I use it: http://bit.ly/8h24b
  • My first use:  early 2008
  • Purposes for which I use it:  Netvibes is free “portalling” software, that is, a utility to bring together resources and web pages and so on, and store and display them all in one spot.  Once you create an account, it has both a “public” and “private” side, so if you want to organize some private pages and resources and bookmarks, you use the “private” side (visible to only you), while the “public” pages can be used to easily share and showcase information with others. Netvibes is so versatile and easy to use, that, for the course linked above, I basically used it in lieu of a course management system!  Most of the student’s work was posted there, although I couldn’t, of course, post grades.  Also note, that I gave the students perhaps five to ten minutes of instruction on how to do the basics (click on “Add Content,” then “Essential Widgets” gets the basics)
  • Biggest drawback:  It IS one more thing to remember to check, but, if you have a specific Web communications purpose (such as creating a rudimentary personal e-portolio) you will remember…

Have other thoughts?  Other tools?  Post your comment below.

Previous tool:  Google Docs

Tool for next time:  bit.ly


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