Collaborate with Twitter & Yammer

Twitter and Yammer are social networking web applications which allow members to share information. Both applications use hashtags (#) to allow people to search for a particular topic or conversation. For instance the hashtag #edchat is used by educators to tag their conversation so others can easily find, follow, and participate. Without the hashtag it would be impossible to find what you are looking for among the 60 million tweets per day. Another symbol used is called a mention (@). If you want to mention another user in a tweet you would use the @ symbol before their username. Mentioning someone in a tweet will look like this @mikegrantjr and will notify the user that they were mentioned in a tweet.

Yammer is a similar application only it is intended for internal use. Members of a company or school with the same email address can register and have a twitter like experience with the safety and security of knowing who you are yammering with. The yammer web user interface is more facebook-like than twitter, which may be a bit confusing for those who tweet a lot.

I have recently realized the power of twitter and the ability to find and share relevant information on topics that interest me. I will give yammer a try and see how it work out. The only problem with yammer? You need to have other members of you school or business to be yammer users. Otherwise you are yammering to yourself.

Both twitter and yammer have mobile apps for ios and android. For more information on how to use twitter you can go to their support page.

Create a Word Cloud

The above Word Cloud was created from the text on this website using There are a number of websites that allow you to do this and most are free. is a free service and allows you many options such as shape, colors, file format, and the ability to eliminate common words from the image. Students can use the site to copy the text of one of their papers to see which words play a prominent role in their writing. Teachers can use it as a visual tool to engage students and get them thinking about key words within a text. The visual is also kind of cool looking.

SETDA Broadband and Network Recommendations

The Broadband Imperative: Recommendations to Address K-12 Educational Infrastructure Needs is a report by the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA). Read the full report here. The basic recommendations by the committee call for schools to improve their internal network and internet broadband access to the following by the 2017-2018 school year. For internet broadband access schools should be capable of 1GB/1000 users and for internal networks speeds should be 10GB/1000 users. The current recommendation is a factor of 10 less for the same number of users. For more information and additional articles on Broadband recommendations go to the SETDA website.

Online Image Editor – Pixlr

Online image editing software is getting better and better. It won’t be long before web applications like PIXLR are on par with powerful desktop applications like Adobe Photoshop. I used PIXLR Editor to create the banner on this blog. If you know how to use Photoshop then you will have no problem with this application. Most of the basic functions are there; layers, selection tools, as well as the ability to add filters and text to an image. The user can also save the file to either your desktop or to the cloud in multiple formats such as .png, .jpg, and also as its own file format which maintains layers.

The software is a little complicated for lower level grades but could be integrated in a middle and high school course such as digital photography.