Showing posts with label Google Notebook. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Google Notebook. Show all posts

Thursday, July 5, 2018

A Lesson From the Evolution of My Bookmarks

One of the questions that readers ask me on a fairly regular basis is, "how do you keep track of everything?" The answer to that has remained largely the same for the last decade. My process is that when I find something interesting I bookmark it, review it, and, if I like it, I write about it here on Free Technology for Teachers. Once I write about something I tend to remember it better than if I just looked at it and tested it for a little while. The one part of the process that has changed over the years is just where my bookmarks get saved.

Delicious (or
Delicious was the first online bookmarking tool that I used. It was the leader in the field of social bookmarking for quite a while. Unfortunately, it started to suffer from feature bloat which prompted me to move on to Google Notebook. In the years after I stopped using it Delicious was bought and sold a few times before ceasing to operate. Mashable has a good little history of the evolution of one of the original Web 2.0 darlings.

Google Notebook
Google Notebook offered a simple way to save bookmarks into my Google Account. I cannot remember all of the features of Google Notebook today, but I do recall at various times using the collaboration option and the option to take notes while saving each bookmark. Google stopped development of Google Notebook in 2009 and shuttered the service completely in 2011.

When Google announced that end of development of Google Notebook I moved my bookmarks over to Evernote. Evernote was smart in making it easy to import Google Notebooks into Evernote. At the time Evernote didn't place any limitations on the number of devices you could use with a free account. It was also at this time that I played with using Diigo for my personal bookmarks but kept going back to Evernote because their mobile apps were better than Diigo's. That said, I did use Diigo with student groups because the collaboration component was easier for students to use.

Google Keep
When Evernote started to restrict their free plan to use on only a couple of devices at a time, I moved my bookmarking activity to Google Keep. Google Keep didn't have as many options for organization of notes as Evernote did, but for my purposes Google Keep did everything that I needed it to.

In January of this year I decided that I needed to get to know Microsoft's products a bit better so I started using OneNote for bookmarking. I'm now doing almost all of my bookmarking in OneNote and occasionally using Google Keep to bookmark or record quick notes.

Everything Changes
The lesson to take away from the evolution of my bookmarks is that everything in tech changes. While each change seemed like a big hassle at the time, after a week or two I was over it. Those bookmarks that I had in Delicious more than a decade ago aren't worth anything to me today nor are those that I had in Evernote four years ago. So the next time that a favorite ed tech service changes or shuts down, go ahead and groan for a bit but remember that an alternative will probably present itself in short order.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

UberNote - A Great Replacement for Google Notebook

UberNote has one of the best arrays of online note-taking tools that I've seen in a free application. UberNote gives users the ability to take notes from the web through a browser extension, take screenshots of websites, take notes through Twitter, take notes via email, take notes in AIM, or take notes using a cell phone.

The UberNote Firefox Toolbar allows you to highlight sections of text on the web and clip it to your UberNote notebook. If clipping text is not enough for you, you can take a screenshot of a website using the UberNote toolbar. Sometimes clipping text or taking a screenshot is more than you need, in which case you can simply bookmark a website using the UberNote toolbar. You can see a screenshot of the UberNote toolbar below.

I spend a lot of time on Twitter where I often see good links and get ideas while Tweeting with others. Using UberNote I can send note through Twitter to my UberNote notebook. AIM users can also send notes to their UberNote notebooks through their AIM accounts.

For former Google Notebook users Ubernote has an option for importing the contents of your Google Notebook to your UberNote account.

A video overview of UberNote is embedded below.

Applications for Applications
UberNote can be used for all of the same things that you used to do with Google Notebook. UberNote could be a good tool for students to use as they conduct research on the Internet to keep track of their sources. UberNote might also be used as a platform sharing notes and outlines between students.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Zoho Notebook Adds an Import Option

After last week's announcement that Google is shutting down Google Notebook people on Twitter and elsewhere started talking about using Zoho Notebook as a replacement. In response to those conversations I put together a short screencast about moving the contents of Google Notebook into Zoho Notebook. The process I shared is less than perfect, but it works.

Today, Zoho announced the launch of an official import from Google Notebook option for Zoho Notebook users. I gave it a try just a few minutes ago and it worked well. In order to use the import option you do have to install the new Zoho Notebook plug-in for Firefox. The new Zoho Notebook plug-in is much much better than the old plug-in. The new plug-in operates almost identically to Google Notebook plug-in. Click here to read all of the detail about the new Zoho Notebook options including directions for using the new features.

Applications for Education
These new features from Zoho are perfect for teachers that were scrambling to find Google Notebook replacements for themselves or for their students.

For other ideas about Google Notebook replacements please see the comments posted in response to last week's Google Notebook shut-down announcement.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Choosing a Google Notebook Replacement

I have been using Google Notebook for roughly the last 18 months to clip and save all kinds of information that I find on the web. Today, all of the major tech blogs reported that Google is eliminating some of their services. One of the services that slated to be phased out is Google Notebook. I had some conversations with other teachers on Twitter about using other online notebook programs. It seems that some people will give Zoho Notebook a try. In response to those conversations I made a short screencast demonstrating how to move content from Google Notebook to Zoho Notebook, you can see that screencast here.

I have always like Google Notebook for its Firefox add-on that allows me to clip a website's url and add notes to my clipping without having to open a new tab or window. In addition to the Zoho Notebook add-on, the Firefox add-on has the potential to replace Google Notebook as my prefered bookmarking and notetaking tool. This afternoon I installed the add-on which allows me bookmark and write notes directly into one of my drops by simply clicking a little "+" icon my browser toolbar. In just a couple of hours of using the add-on I can safely say that I do prefer it over the Zoho add-on.

Mozilla has a library containing 278 Firefox add-ons designed for bookmarking websites in one way or another. Some of add-ons in the library, like the Delicious add-on, I have used in the past others I have never heard of before. Over the next few days I'll be trying out a bunch of the bookmarking add-ons in the Mozilla library and I'll let you know which ones I like.

What is your favorite bookmarking and notetaking tool?

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Notetaking and Collaborative Research

This week's episode of Wicked Decent Learning titled Take Note features a discussion of teaching notetaking skills and research skills. Jeff and Dan explore the value of notetaking and reasons why we make students take note. The WDL guys also review a neat little gadget from Livescribe. As always the Wicked Decent Learning podcast is informative and entertaining. Check it out on iTunes.

The Wicked Decent Learning discussion about notetaking reminded me of two free resources that every student and teacher should be familiar with. Google Notebook and Zoho Notebook are great, free, collaborative resources that can help students take notes and outline their online and offline research.

Below is a video introduction to Google Notebook. After the video are my thoughts about using Google Notebook and Zoho Notebook in education.

Applications for Education
Both Google Notebook and Zoho Notebook can be used to "clip" or bookmark webpages that students find online. That isn't anything special what makes it useful and different from simply bookmarking pages is that users can write notes about to accompany each clipped page. Adding notes helps students to record why they are saving that page and what they found useful and important on a particular webpage. Google and Zoho both offer browser extensions which make it very easy to clip or bookmark pages and write notes without having to open a new browser window.

Google Notebook
and Zoho Notebook both have collaborative features that allow users to share and edit notebooks with other users. This is a great tool for students that are working collaboratively on research projects. For example if three students were working a research project about the Cold War they can create a notebook of information to which each person can add information as it is found. Then when it is time to write a paper or create a presentation each student can harness the power of the group's efforts.

Comparing the two notebook applications Google's Notebook interface has fewer easily accessed features than Zoho offers. Zoho's Notebook allows users to add more layers to a notebook by including videos and pictures with a very simple and obvious process.