Showing posts with label feedburner. Show all posts
Showing posts with label feedburner. Show all posts

Monday, December 22, 2014

Important Note for Those Syndicating the FreeTech4Teachers.com RSS Feed

About a month ago a couple of things changed with FeedBlitz (the service that I use to publish my RSS feed). First, if you have been syndicating my feed (which I encourage) through a widget on my blog or website, you will need to update to this feed address http://feeds.feedblitz.com/freetech4teachers&x=1 unbeknownst to me the old syndication feed stopped working.

Second, if you previously subscribed to the old FeedBurner feed, you may need to re-subcribe here if you haven't been seeing updates lately.

Of course, if you want to subscribe via email you can still do that here.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

RSS Subscribers - I Need Your Help

If you have followed this blog in an RSS reader (Feedly is my favorite) and you have not been receiving updates consistently over the last month, I need to ask you to please subscribe again by using this link (http://feeds.feedblitz.com/freetech4teachers).

Here's what happened to necessitate this action:
Last fall I moved the RSS feed for this blog from FeedBurner to FeedBlitz. At the time nothing changed for people who subscribed to the blog through RSS as I simply redirected old subscribers from one platform to another. I thought that would work just fine, I was wrong. Last month Google finally shut-down the architecture behind Google Reader and in so doing anyone, like me, that had imported readers from Google Reader to FeedBlitz lost all of those old readers.

How to subscribe to this blog:
Through RSS at this address http://feeds.feedblitz.com/freetech4teachers
Through email by completing the form here.
For a once per week summary of the best posts, you can subscribe to the PracticalEdTech Newsletter.

To be clear, this change only affected people who subscribed to the blog through an RSS reader and have recently stopped seeing updates. If you have been seeing the updates regularly in your RSS reader and or you subscribe through email, you don't need to subscribe again.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Benefits of Subscribing to Blogs

Earlier this week I posted an announcement about moving my RSS delivery service from FeedBurner to FeedBlitz. This is probably a good time take a look at the benefits of subscribing to blogs compared to simply bookmarking them and visiting them on a regular basis.

Subscription Options and Their Benefits
Most blogs have at least two methods of subscribing to updates; RSS and email. Subscribing via RSS through a reader app like Feedly or Flipboard will put the latest updates on that app in near real-time. In both of those RSS reader apps you can create categories of feeds from your favorite blogs and read them all in one place. Feedly and Flipboard don't display advertising next to articles while you're reading.

Subscribing via email will send you an email when new content is posted on a blog. In many cases you can read the full blog entry without leaving your email client. The emails from Free Technology for Teachers come out once a day and include all of the posts from the previous 24 hour period. In the emails that come from this blog, advertising has been removed too (there was a small glitch with that earlier this week, but it have been fixed).

Why not just follow a blog through social media?
I know folks who have abandoned RSS and email subscriptions all together in favor of just relying on social media updates. I haven't taken that plunge yet because social media updates move faster than I can keep up.

Options for subscribing to this blog
RSS feed
Email subscription
Twitter (I put personal updates in this as well as ed tech updates)
Google+ (I share everything from blog posts to interesting pictures that I find)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Best of the Summer - Tools for Gathering Feedback

For the next few days my schedule is packed with travel and two conferences. At the same time, historically this week is when many readers return to the blog after taking a break during the summer. Therefore, for the next couple of days I'll be re-running the most popular posts since June 1st, 2012.

Urtak is a free and simple polling service that can be used on any blog or website. The polls you create can have multiple questions, but they must be "yes or no" questions. But Urtak isn't that limited because visitors to your poll also have the option of writing in their own questions. You can get started using Urtak in seconds by registering with your Twitter or Facebook account. You can also use your email address to create an account with UrtakUrtak polls can be embedded into your blog or you can direct people to your poll by sharing the unique url Urtak assigns to your poll.

Kwiqpoll is a simple tool for quickly creating and posting polls. To create a poll with Kwiqpoll just visit the site, type a question, type your answer choices, and go. Your poll can stay online for three or seven days. Kwiqpoll assigns a unique url to each of your polls. Give that url to the audience that you want to participate in your poll.

Hall.com is a service for quickly creating and hosting online collaboration spaces. On Hall.com you can create your own space, quiet appropriately called Halls, in which you and your teammates chat, take notes, and manage to-do lists together. In your Hall you can also post polls and surveys to gather feedback from your group.

Understoodit is a new web app for quickly gauging your students' understanding of information that you have shared with them. I saw it in action for the first time last week when my Ed Tech Teacher colleague Greg Kulowiec used it during a workshop we taught. Understoodit is quite simple. Just open your account (it's still in beta by invitation only) and open the simple poll of "understand" or "confused." Students can vote using any internet-connected device. Students can vote whenever you have the poll open. They can vote multiple times too. So if they are confused at the beginning of class, but understand ten minutes later they can change their votes.


Simple Meet Me is a free service for quickly creating an online chat room with anyone you like. To use the service just go to SimpleMeet.Me and click on the link below the chat code. That code appearing when you visit SimpleMeet.me is the code you can give to anyone you want to join your chat. Anyone joining your chat just needs to enter that code to join you. Registration on SimpleMeet.me is not required.

Socrative is a system that uses cell phones and or laptops (user's choice) for gathering feedback from students. You can post as many questions as you like in a variety of formats. One of the more "fun" question formats is the "race" format in which students can work individually or in teams to answer questions as quickly as possible.

Poll Everywhere is a service that allows you to collect responses from an audience via text messaging or web input from a computer. The free plan for K-12 educators provides selection of features and quantity of responses that is adequate for almost any classroom. One of the neat ways to display feedback gathered through Poll Everywhere is in word clouds. The word cloud feature integrates with WordleTagxedo, and Tagul.

Mentimeter allows you to pose a question to your audience and get instant feedback on that question through cell phones, tablets, and any other Internet-connected device. Mentimeter doesn't have has many features as Socrative or Poll Everywhere, but it is free and very easy to use. In the video below I provide a two minute demonstration of Mentimeter. 


TodaysMeet is a free chat service that can be used for holding a back-channel discussion with students and colleagues. If you're not sure what a back-channel chat with students would look like, I encourage you to read Silvia Tolisano's post about using back-channels with elementary school students. Silvia's blog is where I first learned about TodaysMeet three years ago. TodaysMeet is completely free to use. Setting up a chat area in TodaysMeet is very simple. To set up your chat area just select a name for your room (that name becomes the url for your chat area), how long you want your room to exist, and select an optional Twitter hashtag for your chat area. To invite people to your chat area send them the url.

Chatzy is a neat little website that provides a free platform for hosting your private chat area. To use it, simply name your chat area, select your privacy settings (you can password protect it), then send out invitations. Instead of sending out invitations you could just post the link to your chat area.

Pollmo is a free service offering an easy way to create and post simple polls online. Getting started with Pollmo is easy. Just head to their site, type your question, type your response choices, and select a color theme for your poll. Then just copy the embed code provided to place your poll on your blog or website. Don't have a blog or website? Then just direct people to the url assigned to your Pollmo poll.

Backchan.nl is an open-source backchannel tool developed at the MIT Media Lab. Using Backchan.nl you can create an online forum through which users can exchange messages in response to a presentation they're watching. There are a lot of free services that do the same thing, but there are a couple of things that make Backchan.nl different. Backchan.nl allows you to select a start and end time for your backchannel. As the administrator of a Backchan.nl account you can create and manage multiple backchannels and schedule them to go live at different times. Backchan.nl also includes voting tools that participants can use to vote messages up or down.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

For Google Reader Users and Email Subscribers

Once again FeedBurner is experiencing problems picking up feeds and delivering them in a timely manner. If you're an email subscriber that did not receive an email from me yesterday, please visit the blog to see what you missed. FeedBurner claims to have resolved the problem and everything should be back to normal today. I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Special Note for Email Subscribers

Yesterday, some subscribers to the email feed for Free Technology for Teachers may not have received updates due to a problem with FeedBurner (the service I use for email delivery). This appears to be just a glitch and you should now be getting emails from Free Technology for Teachers on the regular schedule again. I apologize for any inconvenience.

Monday, January 19, 2009

RSS Feed - Email Delay

Over the weekend I had to move the RSS and email feed over to the Google RSS service because Google, who has owned FeedBurner (the service I use for RSS and email delivery) for over a year is shutting down FeedBurner services. Google has assured all FeedBurner users that subscribers shouldn't notice a difference. That said, I've noticed that feed delivery has slowed and in some cases stopped over the weekend. If you haven't received any updates from Free Technology for Teachers in the last 24-48 hours don't worry, everything should be back to normal in a couple of days. I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Friday, December 12, 2008

New Subscription Options

Today, I purchased the domain freetech4teachers.com. Entering either freetech4teachers.com or freetech4teachers.blogspot.com with get you to the same content. That's the good news. The bad news is I had to establish new subscription options through FeedBurner. So that you can continue to receive all of the updates please renew your RSS subscription or your email subscription.

To subscribe via RSS, please use this link.

To subscribe via email, please use this link.

Thank you for reading, subscribing, and sharing. Free Technology for Teachers has grown to reach almost 1400 subscribers because of you.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Email Delivery Problems Resolved

I just realized that some subscribers to the Free Technology for Teachers email may not have received today's or yesterday's email. FeedBurner, the service I use to delivery the email, has been experiencing some problems during the last 24 hours. I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. Email delivery should be back to normal now.