Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Google Glow Slides

Well, it only took me a month, but here they are, the slides from Jodie and my Virtual School Society Annual Spring Conference talk. It was after viewing this site yesterday that I realized how lame I was in not embedding these slides to this blog earlier. The site has a number of Google Docs presentations that were produced by a class of 6th graders in New England and embedded into their class blog. Pretty cool. I'm sure they would love it if you dropped by, viewed some presentations and left a few comments.

I know that some of the slides in our presentation may be difficult to see--the main goal was to have these screen shots projected onto a big wall, not viewed on a screen at 410 pixels wide. Having said that, enjoy! Perhaps sometime this year I'll record some audio and and it too?

Addendum: I just realized that if you have a Google Account, you can view these slides full screen by doing the following; click on 'Menu' at the bottom right of the slides, then select 'Our Presentation Google Glow'. From there you are taken to the Google login page. Then you have view the slide show in full screen. Now that's better!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Comment Pet Peeve

So, you have a blog with Blogger/Blogspot/Google and you're looking forward to lots of great conversations on your blog. Here's one thing that many people overlook that could be hampering their ability to get the conversations going.

Default Comment Permissions

When you first set up your Blog on the Blogger platform the default setting is to only allow people with Blogger or Google accounts to comment. So when a person clicks on the comment link, this is what they'll see:

Blogger limited comment

A lot of people are not going to be that interested in commenting if they have to sign up for an account. Or, if you're like me and have a Blogger account, but wish to link to your blog on another platform, it is just annoying. By having your blog comments set like this you are making it harder for some people to comment and join in the conversation.

How to Change Your Settings

To change your settings first you need to go to your Dashboard and click on 'Settings'.

Here's what you'll need to do next:

1. Select the 'Settings' tab.

2. Select 'Comments' from the menu.

3. Under 'Who Can Comment?', select 'anyone'

After making these changes, here's what your readers will see when they decide to comment.

Comments open to anyone

If you are concerned about anonymous comments you could enable comment moderation and put a disclaimer on your blog that anonymous comments will not be posted :-) Easy!

Another Plug for the Comment Challenge

Part of what prompted me to post this was that I've been participating in the 31 Day Comment Challenge and so have been visiting a lot of blogs that are new to me. Amongst these blogs I've encountered some with the 'Google only' commenting.

Final Thoughts

If you come across a blog with 'Google only' commenting, maybe you can link them to this post. If you think there are some very good reasons for sticking with 'Google only' commenting I'd like to hear them. Thanks for taking the time to read this!

This is cross-posted on my other blog, Clarify Me.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Google Info for Teachers

For National Teachers' Day, the Official Google Docs blog had this post with links to various resources for teachers. If you are thinking about trying Google Docs, or have started but need to learn some basics, this post is for you; lots of good step-by-step information. They've also re-vamped their Google for Educators site. All are worth a look. And please note, no I don't work for Google and no they don't pay me. I just really like their stuff :-)