SHEEN Sharing

A Project of the Scottish Employability Co-ordinators' Network

SHEEN Sharing Launch: Employability Resources for Higher Education in Scotland

We did it. We launched the Web resource created by the Employability Coordinators’ Network over the last hectic, busy, exciting, challenging, fun year of SHEEN Sharing. The Web resource called Employability Resources for Higher Education in Scotland.

We returned to The Teacher Building, venue of our successful SHEEN Sharing dissemination event in September last year. That is a great venue for stuff like this: they have good tech, and on-the-spot support, and great staff, and delicious catering, and a nice building (it’s all about whisky, not education 😉 ).

The day started with a keynote address from Prof. Brent MacGregor, Chair of the SHEEN Steering Group. Cherie Woolmer, SHEEN Sharing’s redoubtable project manager, gave some background from the ECN’s point of view. Then it was over to me for the entire rest of the morning session.

You’ll see my slides at the bottom of this post (which includes links to the relevant resources, including the videos I’ve created to help you use our Netvibes-based site). Gavin McCabe of Edinburgh University got to see himself on the screen as I used the evaluation interview I did with him and Jessica Henderson from Heriot-Watt again. He did get to give his story in full after lunch this time though! I also used audio clips of Fiona Boyle of Queen Margaret University and Gopalakrishnan Premalatha (Prema) from the University of Abertay to present even more voices from the ECN. This was their project, their vision and it is important to hear their voices.

Having shown people the new site, we made some laptops available at lunchtime for people to have a play around with it themselves. The feedback we got was great: people said it looked clean and interesting and was easy to navigate (once they’d seen the short introductory videos). And people reported already finding new resources and ideas, just in that short time.

After lunch, we had a panel presentation from five people from the ECN: Cherie Woolmer (Strathclyde University); Gavin McCabe & Ruth Donnelly (University of Edinburgh); David McCall (UHI Millennium Institute); Jonathan Culley (Stirling University). Each of them presented for about 10 minutes on their learning journey through SHEEN Sharing, and the impact the project has made on their work and their professional development. We finished with questions and discussion about the future: people were keen to disseminate the resource and the learnings from SHEEN Sharing into as many communities as possible.

There was a general vibe that, not only had we created a good place to find quality employability resources, but we’d also found out a lot about harnessing and developing a small community of practice, to ensure their quick growth and dissemination of their work to a wider audience. And we’d done it all on a shoestring, using only free Web-based tools. In fact, there was some suggestions that flying so low under the radar of top management and university policies was what enabled us to do such a good job in such a short time. No worrying about IPR and metadata schemas, even long-term technical sustainability or anything.

So, here are my slides (or here on SlideShare): you’ll see in here how to use our new Web resource, and also how we got here. I’m hoping to convince Cherie Woolmer to do a brief post as well, with her take on the day and what we’ve achieved.

View this document on Scribd

February 9, 2010 Posted by | SHEEN Project Dissemination, SHEEN Project Events & Meetings, SHEEN Sharing Project | , , , , | 4 Comments

Our Netvibes Page Inspires a University Careers Service: Can They Inspire You?

What with SHEEN Sharing having visibility on Twitter and Diigo and the blogosphere, we’ve picked up a few followers from outwith the ECN, which is great.

We got a very kind Tweet today on Twitter from Darren Jones at the University of Sussex Careers and Employability Centre.  BTW: you can see they are already pretty au fait with Web 2.0: they use a blog to update their main page with big news (see under ‘Latest News’), and their Twitter account to give short pithy updates (scroll down a bit to see an embedded Twitter widget from their @sussxunicareers account), both embedded in the page.

Anyway, Darren likes our Netvibes page and is experimenting with using Netvibes to create a student careers page at Sussex.  Here it is.  You’ll notice he’s chosen to divide his tabs by subject area. Check it out!

I’ve bookmarked this in our Diigo Employability Group.

October 15, 2009 Posted by | Blogging, Employability Resources, Microblogging, Resource sharing sites, SHEEN Project Dissemination | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Improvements and Updates to Netvibes Site: Feedback Please!

Our Netvibes site is the public face of SHEEN Sharing’s original remit: the one-stop-shop, virtual repository/portal type thing that presents a range of quality employability resources, as planned and hoped for when SHEEN Sharing was originally funded in January 2009.  It displays selected resources by using feeds out of Diigo, from our Diigo groups and tags, and other Web-based feeds and resources.

Now, as it currently stands it is a sandbox / demonstrator site, mainly designed by me with some help from Cherie Woolmer at Strathclyde University.  I am not an employability co-ordinator, so I have used quite a bit of creative licence in trying to imagine the kinds of things the ECN will eventually want to go into the site.  It will be much easier for folk to say “not that, this” than to try and think of things from scratch.  So please keep that in mind when you have a look!

Even with this in mind, I have learned a lot since January 2009, and received a lot of feedback.  So, before we even get to the bit of the project extension where the ECN sits down and hashes out what it wants its Netvibes to look like, I have made a range of improvements and updates, as follows:

Google Scholar Resources Gone 😦

I had to remove all the fabulous Google Scholar feeds.  We used a wonderful Yahoo Pipe that enabled me to do a search in Google Scholar (e.g. “employability AND eportfolios”, resources published after 2006) and create a feed in Netvibes that showed the up-to-date results of that search.  Google Scholar of course only lists peer-reviewed publications, so this was a very rich resource.  However, Google does not allow this kind of feed and they have now blocked this Pipe and others like it from working.  Boo!  However, I have added a Google Scholar search box here.

EvidenceNet Searches: A Holding Pattern Until They Get Their Feeds Sorted

We are waiting with baited breath for the awesome HEA EvidenceNet repository to start providing feeds of specific searches so we can pop some of these into our Netvibes tabs.  So, we hope to be able to search for resources, or events, in EvidenceNet, e.g. with the topic “personal development planning”, get a feed for that search result, put it into Netvibes and thereby always see the most up-to-date list of evidence-based UK resources or events.  We know they are going to provide this, they just haven’t yet.  In the meantime, I’ve worked out that you can just use the URL of a search results page, and put that into Netvibes as a Web page, and get a rather clunky but still usable display of said search.  See here and here and here and here and here.

Delicious Feeds on Work Related Learning: Thanks Glasgow Caledonian!

I discovered some juicy resources tagged on Delicious with “work_related_learning”, so, in the absence of anything immediate on Diigo, I added a feed for that Delicious tag here (along with an above-mentioned EvidenceNet search page).  Shout out to Allison Littlejohn and team at Glasgow Caledonian for many of these!

New Version of Diigo Allows Group Tag Feeds: Cocurriculum Resources Tagged by Employability Group

Felt much joy when I realised Diigo had fixed a previous problem in their new version: I now have an example of a Diigo feed for a specific group tag (resources tagged “cocurriculum” by the Employability Group) here.  This will be great when we come to adding tag dictionaries to our Google Groups.

New Voluntary Sector Tab with Reflective Student Blogs from SHEEN Placements

Created a new Voluntary Sector tab, which has the feed from the SHEEN Placements blog in it (it’s still there under “Student Resources” too, Fiona, don’t worry!).  It also has the project’s Twitter feed, and individual feeds from the two student blogs accompanying the Samaritans placements set up by the project.

Some Content for International Students Tab

Added a couple of EvidenceNet search pages under the International Students tab, which was previously empty.

Small but Significant: You Can Read the Page Title Now!

Changed the colour of the title text to a much more harmonious and readable shade!

Moving Forward: Netvibes Day in November

Still have some empty tabs, and would like some new and exciting ideas from the ECN about what they’d like to see in the Netvibes page.  We’ll be having a day-long workshop session to hash it all out and make decisions in November, so please keep an eye on emails on the ECN JISCmail list if you want to take part in that.  We’ll use that day to train keen development group members in keeping Netvibes up-to-date after I go, too.

Launch in 2010

And, we’ll be running a launch event in January or February 2010!  So please help us make it as good as we can!

October 12, 2009 Posted by | Bookmarking, Resource sharing sites, SHEEN Project Dissemination, Tagging, Using Newsfeeds | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Improvements to This Blog: Feedback Still Welcome!

During the course of SHEEN Sharing’s initial nine month phase, we received quite a bit of feedback re this blog.

Some of this arose from the original ambiguity about the blog’s purpose.  While we were getting started, this blog was both a dissemination tool for the project, and a sandbox/demonstrator for the ECN to see how different Web 2.0 tools worked.  So, we had not only project news, documents and postings about how to use Web 2.0 tools, but also various feeds and widgets in the right-hand columns demonstrating how other tools and tags could be used to enrich the content here.  Some ECN members were very keen at the start, and tried using the blog to post about things they wanted to discuss with the rest of the network, or employability resources they were interested in.

Now, we are much clearer about what we want to achieve and which tools we want to use for which purpose.  We are using our Netvibes page as our one-stop-shop site, kind of a virtual “repository”, for disseminating quality employability resources to the ECN’s stakeholders.  We are using Diigo for two purposes: one is for co-ordinators to save, share, discuss and disseminate their favourite employability resources, the other is to use Diigo’s excellent social networking tools to provide safe online group discussion spaces.  You can see how using Diigo to save and share resources can feed directly into our Netvibes page with no additional work by the ECN by looking at this tab and this tab.

We are using this blog, plus our Twitter account, to disseminate the SHEEN Sharing project itself.  It will stand as a record of the proecess we went through and what we achieved.

With this in mind, I have removed several of the “sandbox” widgets with feeds from the right-hand columns, and also re-arranged and re-configured the remaining items there in a way that I hope will make the blog easier to find your way around.  Please do have a look and feed back to me if you can suggest any improvements.

I’ve also updated the SHEEN Sharing Project page and several of the Scottish Employability Projects’ pages, to indicate progress made.  In particular, check out the pages:

Sharing Student Experiences Trial Group

and

Voluntary Sector Project Trial Group: SHEEN Placements

October 12, 2009 Posted by | Blogging, Bookmarking, Group Spaces Online, Microblogging, Resource sharing sites, SHEEN Project Dissemination, Social Networking | , , , , , | Leave a comment

SHEEN Sharing Extension to February 2010

Good news: SHEEN Sharing has officially been extended until February 2010.  Our thanks to the SHEEN Steering Group for this validation of the hard work everyone involved has put in so far.

You’ll be seeing some new blog posts coming out here updating you on many different aspects of SHEEN Sharing’s progress.

We’ve been extended to really capitalise on the first nine months of the project.  Now that the ECN are starting a new academic year, and have had tasters of all the cool Web 2.0 things they can do, we want to really start embedding the chosen trial tools and new practices in their work.

When SHEEN Sharing started, the core idea was to end up with a one-stop-shop on the Web to share and find and disseminate and discuss good quality employability resources with a range of stakeholders in and around the ECN.

Our One-Stop-Shop: Netvibes
Our one-stop-shop is the virtual repository for employability we have created using Netvibes: http://www.netvibes.com/Employability

This repository is still in a “sandbox” phase: the next four months of SHEEN Sharing will be dedicated in part to turning this into a resource the ECN can use, contribute to and be proud to send to other stakeholders.

Contributing Your Favourite Resources: Diigo
The way for ECN members to contribute their favourite resources to the Netvibes repository is through bookmarking and sharing them on Diigo.

This has the added benefit of allowing them to access their own bookmarks from any computer on the Web, and to link in with each other and a wider international community to discuss and share resources.

Catching up on Netvibes and Diigo: Flashmeeting Webinar Later This Month
With the extension of the SHEEN Sharing project until Jan/Feb 2010, we will be having some more Flashmeeting webinars.

I will be hosting monthly webinars, with open drop-in support from 9:00-10:30, and presentations / discussions on particular topics from 10:30-12:00.  The first webinar this month will be for a recap/catchup on Netvibes and Diigo (including an overview of new features in Diigo v4, released late last month).

In addition, Cherie Woolmer and the project development group will be organising a series of employability co-ordinator led webinars to show-and-tell tools and practices that have changed their jobs and lives for the better through SHEEN Sharing.

Further Diigo Trainings: Introductions, Recaps and Diigo-ing Deeper
We will also be running two more Diigo Training days, in November 2009.  Each day will consist of a morning session recapping the original introductory workshop for those who haven’t been able to attend, which can also serve as a refresher for those who would like one.  Each afternoon will be a chance to dig a bit deeper into Diigo for those who have already been using it.  Those who attend in the morning will also be welcome to stay for the afternoon.

NB: Diigo recently released an all-new and shiny version 4.  This includes one amazing new feature: the ability to save an archived copy of a resource you have bookmarked, so if the resource ever disappears you have a copy of it to use in future.  It also includes the feature we’d been eagerly waiting and hoping for: the ability to set up a working feed from a Diigo Group by individual tag (e.g. a feed just for resources tagged “cocurriculum” by the Employability Group).  We’ll cover all this and more for those who want to see it at the afternoon trainings.

Keeping Up-To-Date on SHEEN Sharing
Further information on the above and more will continue to be disseminated via the SHEEN Sharing blog and Twitter account.  Please note that the blog is now totally dedicated to dissemination of SHEEN Sharing as a project: sharing of employability resources by the ECN will continue via Diigo.

The SHEEN Sharing blog can be visited here: https://sheensharing.wordpress.com/
You can subscribe to updates from the blog using the RSS feed here: https://sheensharing.wordpress.com/feed/
Or, you can look at the blog updates on the Employability Netvibes page, in the first tab which is currently devoted to SHEEN Sharing as a project:
http://www.netvibes.com/Employability#Welcome (see the section in the bottom right: “SHEEN Sharing Blog updates”).

To follow us on Twitter for even more pithy updates, go here: http://twitter.com/sheensharing

October 12, 2009 Posted by | Blogging, Bookmarking, Resource sharing sites, SHEEN Project Events & Meetings, SHEEN Sharing Project, Using Newsfeeds | , , , , | Leave a comment

SHEEN Sharing Examples: A Diigo List Published Straight to WordPress

*** NB: This post is an example of using Diigo to publish a Diigo List of bookmarks to any Web tool or Website.. what you see below is exactly how it appears after selecting Publish > WordPress in Diigo ***

*** This Diigo List contains the four Netvibes and Pageflakes project sites I used to show the SHEEN Sharing Development Group what kinds of things can be done with Netvibes.  They are still worth a look for that reason.  Thanks to the colleagues on Twitter who responded so swiftly and sent these  ***

SHEEN Sharing examples

Shared via AddThis

June 29, 2009 Posted by | Blogging, Bookmarking, Resource sharing sites, SHEEN Project Dissemination | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

For ECN book-lovers: LibraryThing

It’s funny what you come up with when you’re supposed to be writing up a big old document (in my case, the final polished version of the SHEEN Sharing Literature Review and Requirements Review docs). Was thinking about LibraryThing, which is possibly my favourite Web 2.0 app, and one I only use for personal stuff.

It’s a huge favourite out there to, particularly as a cross-over into the web for Luddite book-lovers. Basically, you can make a web catalogue of all your books, and include reviews, ratings and tags. And you can see others’ reviews and ratings, and get automatic recommendations, and join groups of like-minded others.

When I joined I even wrote away for their lovely barcode reader in the shape of a cat (oh how they know their target audience!). Because you don’t have to manually catalogue your books: you can just enter the ISBN, and you’ll get the full catalogue record immediately. Plus a nice little thumbnail image of the book’s cover.

Thinking about applications of LibraryThing for SHEEN Sharing: some folk mentioned that many of their favourite resources are non-digital, hard copy only. Here’s a way of sharing those. Because, like everything else, LibraryThing offers feeds and widgets, so we can expose our recommended employability resources via our Netvibes page.

Also, small libraries now use LibraryThing to catalogue their collections online. There are a number of English university careers’ services already cataloguing their libraries there. To see what a LibraryThing feed looks like in Netvibes, go to the Student Resources tab on our Employability page; you’ll see one from The Careers Group (UoL), and one from King’s College London. NB: You can see reviews and recommendations, where available, by clicking on the books’ titles.

At the moment, as with Diigo, LibraryThing appears to have a small bug in its feed capabilities. It offers the ability to have a feed based on a search for the tag “employability”, but the feed doesn’t work. I’ve contacted them to find out if it’s a known bug, and when it will be fixed.

In the meantime though, if folk think it’s a nice idea, and if you have books and other hard-copy resources you want to share, we could start up a SHEEN Sharing LibrayThing account and start entering stuff there.

Only if there’s a demand though: we want to focus on Diigo first!

June 4, 2009 Posted by | Resource sharing sites | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Next phase under way: a community ECN site plus a lovely resource sharing tool

SHEEN Sharing to date: many tools, little time
Since we kicked off in January this year, SHEEN Sharing has shown Scotland’s employability co-ordinators a lot of Web 2.0 stuff, possibly to the point of overwhelm at times. This phase has been necessary just to make sure folk start getting a glimpse of what’s out there; you can’t elicit decent requirements from people if they don’t know what’s possible. We’ve also been doing a lot of listening to the ECN’s priorities, and thinking hard about ways to meet them in the short time available. We’re now ready to recommend a couple of tools, only one of which the ECN will need to “learn”.

Priority One: sharing and recommending employability resources
While our plan to work with small groups of co-ordinators and other stakeholders in trialling different social media and other Web 2.0 tools is still burbling away in the background, the most important priority is the one that brought this project into being in the first place. The Employability Coordinators’ Network want a way to share, discuss and recommend good quality employability resources, and a way to make sure those resources (and discussion on their quality and use) can be made available to current and future stakeholders. We knew we didn’t have the resource for a formal, sustainable repository, so we’ve been investigating the freely available tools out there currently which make resource sharing and recommending, and community building, easy.

A one-stop shop for employability resources: Netvibes
We’ve now established that Netvibes will let us set up a project site for free, which will allow a place for the ECN and other stakeholders to come and find resources that the ECN has shared and discussed. Netvibes does this without us having to build a website; it pulls in stuff from anywhere on the Web using newsfeeds and widgets, and presents them in any structure you like. It can also have a public face (for stuff you want to push out to different stakeholders) and a private face (just for those with logins).

I can set up the Netvibes page; we don’t need ECN folks to do anything but feed back on how that’s looking.

A place for a community to share and discuss resources, and build a wider network of interested people
We’ve also found the wonderful social bookmarking site Diigo, which does a lot more than store your bookmarks. It meets most of our requirements, for both private and public group activities around sharing, discussing, recommending and commenting on resources.

I can set up Netvibes to make public the results of this resource sharing and discussion on Diigo (only those bits we want to be public of course!). This can be done in as fine-grained a way or as broad a way as possible. For instance, we can have a section on our Netvibes pages just for “anything related to employability”, and one on some narrow topic of interest, such as PDP for international post-grads. We could have a feed out of Diigo, appearing in the Netvibes page, just for our own group discussions on third-sector voluntary placements, alongside a feed listing everything being discussed around the world on Diigo by anyone on this topic, and some individual feeds from prominent blogs and websites in this domain. The possibilities are many and varied.

Both Cherie and I have been playing with Diigo’s numerous features in the past few weeks, and we’ve both used the words “falling in love” to describe our reaction to this very cool free tool. And don’t worry: as previously mentioned, if you are already using Delicious for your Web-based social bookmarking, it couldn’t be easier to use them both with no extra effort, or to swap over to Diigo.

The next ECN meeting
We’d like to use our slot at the next ECN meeting on June 1st to show you Netvibes and Diigo properly, with some prototype stuff set up so you can get a feel for them. We’ll be taking feedback and suggestions at this point.

Training on Diigo
From there, if folk are happy with the approach we are recommending, and with the support of the SHEEN Sharing Development Group, we’d like to set up some training sessions to get folk started on using Diigo to share, recommend and discuss resources. Our hope is that this wonderful site will take over from the ECN JISCmail list as the place to go when discussing and sharing resources with other employability co-ordinators. And of course, finding resources again that you’ve previously heard about or saved.

Finally, Cherie has noted to me that one of the things she finds exciting about Diigo is the way it allows you to find other resources out there that you hadn’t previously known of, and indeed to come across other networks of people with similar interests who may be of use to you in your work.

So, ECN members: see you on June 1st! And don’t forget to drop into one of our weekly Wednesday SHEEN Sharing webinars if you’d like a preview, a taster, or any other help with anything SHEEN Sharing related!

May 25, 2009 Posted by | Bookmarking, Group Spaces Online, Resource sharing sites, SHEEN Project Dissemination, SHEEN Project Events & Meetings, Social Networking | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Diigo: a match made in SHEEN Sharing heaven?

I spent some time this week digging deeper into Diigo, to see if it is as close a fit to SHEEN Sharing requirements as it looked at first.  It’s certainly very promising, and I’d like to show it to the ECN in detail soon and recommend it as the way forward for the core work of the SHEEN Sharing project.

Diigo is like a next generation Delicious: it’s social bookmarking with the ability to also append comments and discussions on resources to the resources links, and to highlight and comment on sections of resources you’ve linked to.  Being a Web2.0 tool, you can then expose these resources, comments, discussions and highlights to other applications using feeds and widgets.  This means that the ECN can use Diigo to share resources and their experiences with them in one common place, but the results of this can be picked up and exposed in any site or repository.

This post goes into a bit more detail about how all this actually works, with special reference to how SHEEN Sharing might use it.

Web-based social bookmarking

Delicious is the widely used tool for this: instead of saving your favourites or bookmarks in your browser, you save them to your account on the website; this way, it doesn’t matter what computer you are on, you can always access them.  You can import your browser bookmarks into Delicious when you start.

  • You can save bookmarks as private, or public.
  • You can add descriptions/comments to them.
  • You can tag them with different keywords to help you and others find them.
  • You can make newsfeeds of your public bookmarks available elsewhere, for instance in your Facebook page, your Netvibes site, or on your blog.
  • You can share them with your network of Delicious contacts.
  • You can create feeds based on particular tags, for instance, you can make a feed of everything tagged “employability” by anyone using Delicious, or a feed just of resources you have tagged “employability”.

Some examples of Delicious feeds can be seen on this blog, in the far right-hand column.  We decided at the start of the project, as an experiment, to tag anything useful we knew of on the web about employability with the tag “sheensharing”.  We then put a feed from Delicious pulling all resources tagged “sheensharing” into the blog.  This was just done as an example, to show how social bookmarking and tagging can be used.

Diigo is a next-generation social bookmarking site.  It includes features for sharing and exposing annotations of, discussions around, and highlighted portions from resources, as well as really useful group features, allowing groups with specific interests to discuss and share resources.

Diigo: highlighting, rating and discussing resources

  • You can highlight a portion of text on a website and bookmark this.  Here’s an example: I’ve highlighted a portion of a job ad relating to employability in the Guardian: http://www.diigo.com/05×64.  Follow the link and see the highlighted portion.
  • You can add a comment to a resource.  This one is a different job ad in the Guardian, with a comment appended: http://www.diigo.com/05×67.  Click on “comments” in the Diigolet bar at the top.
  • You can comment on a highlighted portion of text, or add a “sticky note”.
  • You can expose these comments and discussions about resources publicly using newsfeeds.

Diigo lists

Diigo groups

  • You can create groups within Diigo, and belong to any number.
  • You can create feeds and widgets exposing groups’ shared bookmarks, including comments and discussions on the resources.
  • Groups have forums for general discussions, and these forums can be exposed via feeds and widgets, or be kept private.
  • Groups can be set up to auto-post to a blog: see the previous post here for an example, using a trial group I set up called “Employability”.
  • You can set up a Group Tag Dictionary which recommends tags to group members, making it easier to create feeds based on tags you’ve all agreed to use for various topics.
  • You can have a private group, where noone but group members can see forum discussions, comments and annotations on resources; you can also belong to public groups; when you save a bookmark with annotations you get to choose which group you are saving the comment and bookmark to, and you can edit this later.  So discussion can take place in a private group, but if you want to share something publicly you can do that too.
  • Within groups, you can vote for resources (it’s a basic “thumbs up”, not star ratings, and you can’t expose these votes externally yet).

Diigo and Delicious

  • You can import your browser bookmarks or favourites into Diigo.
  • You can import your Delicious bookmarks into Diigo.
  • You can set up Diigo so that when you save, describe and tag a bookmark in Diigo, it is automatically saved, described and tagged in your Delicious account too.  This means any existing feeds or widgets you have set up in Delicious will still work.  It also means you have an effortless belts and braces approach- if anything stops working in Diigo, it will still work in Delicious, and vice versa.

Diigo and Netvibes

We’re trialling using Netvibes as a central gathering and dissemination point for resources shared and recommended via the ECN.  Netvibes lets you put any number of “blocks” or widgets into it so it’s a one-stop-shop with little windows into feeds and pages and tools from other sites.

  • You can put a block in Netvibes from a Diigo group; you’ll see resources shared publicly within that group, along with tags, descriptions, comments, discussions, and highlighted portions of those resources.
  • For each resource you can either view all the Diigo commentary on the resource, or view the resource directly (you can toggle easily between these in Netvibes).
  • You can link straight from that block by tag, by user, by group, and by resource, and go straight into the relevant place in Diigo.
  • You can have a block in Netvibes showing a public group’s  forum discussions.
  • You can have a block in Netvibes showing your resource list slideshow.
  • You can have blocks in Netvibes based on feeds for specific tags, e.g. a block showing everything tagged “employability”.  This means you can have a fairly fine-grained structure within Netvibes, making it easier for visitors to the Netvibes page to find things on the main topics of interest.

Things to note

  • You can’t (yet) set up feeds for groups by tag within the group into Netvibes (or anywhere much).  They are working on this, but it being a free service, no telling when it might come.
  • All group activities are either public or private according to the public or private setting of the individual group so you have to make sure you set things up properly and folk understand what they are doing when they bookmark and discuss resources.
  • Diigo doesn’t allow you to upload resources, it’s for link-sharing only; for those creating their own resources and wanting to share those, they would have to use another method of making the resources available online, then bookmarking them in Diigo.  Alternatively, all resources of this nature can be shared via groups on other services, and feeds and widgets from these services can also be exposed via Netvibes.
  • Examples of how all this looks in Netvibes will be made available very soon.

May 15, 2009 Posted by | Bookmarking, Group Spaces Online, Resource sharing sites, Tagging, Using Newsfeeds | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Examples of NetVibes for project dissemination

We’ve all realised fairly quickly that a blog like this, while a good tool for project dissemination and a great way to get started as a sandbox and exemplar of using Web2.0, is not a good place for the complexity of knowledge-sharing requirements at SHEEN Sharing.  We need a space that can pull in resources in a well-organised and structured way, make them available to different interest groups, and allow “push” out again to other interested sites and services (e.g. HEA EvidenceNet).  That space needs to be fairly easy to maintain and self-sustaining, and it needs to be able to interoperate with all the other Web2.0 tools folk in the employability arena might be using.

We looked at Elgg, which allows you to create a website/portal type space pulling in a lot of different Web2.0 feeds, blogs, Twitterstreams, etc.  But Elgg requires a local server, and some technical expertise, neither of which are within the project scope.  Nonetheless, to see an example, look at this JISC-funded communities of practice project Elgg site: Emerge.

We’ve also looked at Netvibes and Pageflakes.  We have some great exemplars of NetVibes being used in the way that the ECN would like to use a space like this.  It can be organised into tabs by subject/interest area, or any other criteria, and it can very simply be composed of feeds and lists and bookmarks and Twitter feeds from all over the Web.  But don’t try to imagine it.  Here are some really good examples:

Connected Practice: Researching Social Services in the Network Society

This is the NetVibes page of Neil Ballantyne at IRISS in Glasgow; even though he has set it up to reflect his own interests, it really looks like a project site, and it is easy to see how the sort of structure he has given it could be used in SHEEN Sharing.  Note- all the “blocks” under all the tabs are dynamically composed of feeds from other sites: blogs, journals, etc.  Also, it looks pretty.  Neil is a one-man project!

Innovation in Public Services

This is a really pretty one; it looks like it’s had some professional design input.  It’s a neat example of the use of a NetVibes site to support a community of practice and provide a one-stop-shop both for the CoP to visit, and for it to push out things it is interested in (e.g. via blogs).  Worth a good hunt around: it should be fairly clear where things have been locally created and where they have been pulled in via feeds.  Really good use of feeds based on searches of blogs and Delicious tags too, so you’re pulling in stuff from all over the Web on a daily basis, not just the stuff you already know about.

The Rhizome Project

This Eduserv-funded project on digital identities’ NetVibes page is not so pretty, but nice and clean nonetheless (I like it anyway).  Just a good contrast to the above: a project using this tool to create something that will live on beyond the project’s end.

April 23, 2009 Posted by | Group Spaces Online, SHEEN Project Dissemination, Web2.0 Tools, Tips and Tricks | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment