Saturday, July 25, 2009

Bookmarking

I started using diigo a few months ago to keep track of links that I found. Mainly I dump them there so I can keep track of them, but diigo is nice for also sharing them with the wider world. Most of the resources relate to education or math, though I think there are some other odds and ends in there.

Before that I used Portaportal, but it's functionality (describing, tagging, sharing, listing, etc.) is limited (here is a link to my Portaportal page, but I stopped adding to it several months ago). Before that, I did my lists by hand (here is a link to my teaching math resources page), but it has been too cumbersome to maintain, and while generally available on the web, not as rich in features as a site like diigo. I tried delicious at one point, but couldn't get comfortable with it.

One of the most useful features of diigo has been its "group" feature. I am a member of the "diigo in education" group, and as a result, I receive a daily summary of new links that other members of the group have found. Links include both online activities as well as news articles on education. This has been an ongoing source of good new (to me) resources.

I have not been so good about sharing my links with others, except for whoever stumbles upon them via diigo.

I now have over 300 links on my bookmarks page organized into almost 50 lists. When I moved my Portaportal links over, the associated lists did not all transfer, so some of those links may not be in any lists. A number of the links have no description, so there is the danger of the links being orphaned in my diigo attic (now that's a rather bizarre mixed metaphor). This points to the general problem of Internet resources, the challenge of adequately indexing the material so relevant material can be quickly retrieved. Google of course is one blunt tool for retrieval. Librarians have been sensitive to this issue for a long long time. Diigo uses tags, which I have not taken advantage of until recently. The drawback with tags is the variety of tagging terms that people use.

Looking through the links, I am once again reminded first how much stuff is out there, and how the Internet is pretty amazing at making the stuff available. And second that there isn't so much a shortage of resources, but of the time to review, select and absorb the resources into one's teaching practice. That old metaphor about putting your mouth up to the firehose of information...

jd

P.S. In case you were wondering (why would you wonder?), this was posted to satisfy a course requirement.

2 comments:

Jonathan said...

I don't get it. Please explain what i would do with diigo. Thank-you.

jd said...

1. Use diigo as an available-from-any-computer place to collect your bookmarks.

2. Share your favorite / important bookmarks with anyone / everyone else. By creating lists of bookmarks (e.g., history of documentary film links; cinema-verite links; Chris Marker links) you are fulfilling a similar editor function that you play at IF and what you (you specfically) do on Facebook.

3. Take advantage of diigo's search function to find the bookmark you made but can't remember where you put it. Be better link-organized.

4. Join subject-specific groups as a way of learning about new web resources you didn't know about and letting others know of resources you think are important.