Wednesday, July 6, 2011

File Stork - Request and Collect Files via Dropbox

If you're in the habit of collecting students' work via email, there are probably sometimes when your inbox is overloaded. There are some ways to cut down on that overload. One way is to get students using Google Docs to share their work with you. Another way is to use Dropbox and connect it with a service like File Stork to collect files online.

File Stork allows you to collect files in two ways. You can make an individual file request by sending an email to someone. The other way, and the more practical way for teachers, is to create a "stand alone" request which will allow you to post an upload link on your blog or website. Visitors can then use that link to upload a file to your Dropbox where you can view it and download it if you like. File Stork allows you to specify an upload password and allows you to specify which types of files you will allow to be uploaded to your Dropbox. People uploading files to your Dropbox through File Stork do not have access to any of the files in your account.

Applications for Education
File Stork is similar to Dropittome which I implemented on my course blog last fall. Services like File Stork and Dropittome are great for cutting down on inbox overload and quickly accessing the files your students submit to you.

A Look Back at NASA's Shuttle Program

CNN Student News in on hiatus from its regular schedule for the summer. Until August 15th they're only producing single topic episodes sporadically. Today, they released an episode all about NASA's shuttle program. The video, embedded below, provides a short overview of the history of the shuttle program and a look at what's in store next for NASA manned missions into space.

An Introduction to Advanced Google Search

Yesterday I published a short guide to using Google Books. By request from a handful of readers I've now put together a short tutorial on accessing Google's advanced search tools. This guide is meant as an introduction to using Google's advanced search tools that will help your students discover content that lies deeper than the first few pages of a typical Google search.

The guide was created without signing into a Google account because not every student has a Google account (much to Google's chagrin). If your students do have Google accounts there are some other search features that they can access.

If you have a favorite search tip that you would like to share, please leave a comment below.

For a video overview of web search strategies check out Common Craft's Web Search Strategies in Plain English.