We are very excited to announce collaboration!

December 10, 2010

Thank you to everyone who asked us for collaboration features. Now you can have multiple people creating and editing the same LiveBinder. Here are just some of the uses that educators came up with for this feature:

  1. Student group projects – in your class or with a school across the country
  2. Teachers collaborating on lesson plans
  3. Teachers and students working in the same binder
  4. District or school binders that are a collection of resources

Dawn Wall, Technology Coordinator from Kansas State University, was one of our early testers of the collaboration feature.  Here is how she is using it:

“This collaboration functionality is really awesome. For example, we have created a private binder to share information regarding a complicated program transition. This allows us to have select staff update the binder in a timely manner while all interested parties have access to view the binder and have up-to-date information. I also think it has great potential for K-12 and post-secondary education project collaboration”

A note to all of our early Collaboration users and beta testers:  We wanted to let you know that we made some changes to collaboration since you started using it. For security reasons, we switched from user names to email addresses when you invite a collaborator. Your current collaborative binders should still work, but for new ones, you will need to use email addresses instead of user names.

Please see this binder to find out how to use the new collaboration features:

LiveBinders Collaboration – Overview
Please also keep those suggestions coming in.  We greatly appreciate your help in making LiveBinders a better product!

Podcast on 21st Century Professional Development with Steven Anderson

November 12, 2010

We had a wonderful podcast last night where Dean Mantz, in collaboration with Tina and Barbara from LiveBinders, interviewed Steven Anderson on 21st Century Professional Development.

The archive is here.

Thank you Steven and Dean for a wonderful, insightful session!


New Educational Category Search and More Sorting Features

October 30, 2010

Thank you to everyone who sent in feature requests! We have added some of your requests to this release including:


Searching  just the educational category. Now you can search just the binders in the educational category by entering your terms in the “Educational Searches” menu.  First click on the “More Education” link.  Then you can type in a term or terms that will search only the educational binders on the site.


Sort your binders alphabetically or by least viewed. Everyone is building so many binders that they asked for more ways to sort them.  There is now a pull down sort menu with all the options:


See the number of ratings that contributed to the rating of a given binder. In the details section (accessed either from the Options menu on the shelf or the “Details” link in the binder, you can now see the number of ratings that contributed to the rating of a binder.


Adding two new binder colors, brown and peach.




Adding “Original Author”. Now, when you copy a binder, the original author will be noted in the details section.


More Sharing Features Added to LiveBinders

December 30, 2009

We have added a few new features to LiveBinders:

Share a shelf – You can easily share an author’s collection of public binders. Just click on the author’s name (or your name) under a binder, you will then see their shelf page with all their public binders. On the right will be a url that you can send to anyone:

Add description to profile – You can now add a description to your profile with your website or blog link. This description will show up when someone clicks on your name:

Private binders identified – You can now see at a glance which of your binders are private on your “My Binders” shelf. They will be identified with this “Private” icon:

Easier to upload files – We have made the file upload interface easier to use.  Although we support uploading multiple file types, pdfs and .jpgs are the ones that will show up inside the browser most reliably.  Microsoft Office file types will only show up inside the binder in Internet Explorer.

Thank you to the LiveBinders users who reported bugs and requested features! Please continue to let us know how to make LiveBinders better for you.

Teaching Critical Thinking Skills

We had two teachers develop binders this month to help their student think critically when researching information on the web:

Research Skills & Climate Change

Read Beth’s blog post on this binder.

You may also want to check out our recent blog post: “10 Great Ways that Educators are using LiveBinders”.


More Features for Teachers

August 12, 2009

Live Link

We had several teachers who requested the ability to open the web page from within the binder – essentially escape the confines of the binder. So now, in play or full screen mode, the link in the binder is a live link. Clicking on that link will take you out of the binder and to that web page.

Live Link in the Binder

Live Link in the Binder

Change Email Address

We also had requests to be able to change your email address. You can now do that. To change any information in your profile, just click on the link with your user name in the upper right corner of the LiveBinders page.

Link to Profile

Link to Profile

Formatting Clean Up

We also did some formatting clean up. We noticed that teachers were creating some amazingly comprehensive binders with many subtabs like this one:

Teaching Resources

So we just made that look a little better.

Please keep those requests coming! We are thrilled with the response from teachers and want to make sure that LiveBinders works well for you.


Binder Dashboard Added

July 22, 2009

We just added a new dashboard feature to LiveBinders so that you can track the activity on your binders and see when you have new comments.dashbord

Also with this release we are still working on the file upload problem. Our apologies for not having this completely working yet. Right now you can upload word documents, but they will open outside of the binder. Uploading pdfs still is not yet working.

We fixed a problem with ‘LiveBinder It’. ‘LiveBinder It’ our bookmarklet, was not working properly when there were special characters in the title of a webpage – so you may have seen some web pages that wouldn’t go into the binder. That is now fixed.

Thank you everyone for your continued feedback!


A Feature for a Teacher

June 21, 2009

We have a teacher who is using LiveBinders in her class with her lesson plans and websites projected up on the screen. She asked that we create a way to show a binder without all the information around the binder that might distract her 5th grade students. So we added a ‘full screen’ mode to LiveBinders. From the shelf, click on Options > Show Full Screen and the binder will open up without toolbars or binder information.

This feature is also useful for PR people using LiveBinders who want to present the media coverage to clients.

Go here to try it out.


Comments Added to LiveBinders

June 20, 2009

We have now added a comments feature to LiveBinders so that you can comment on binders in the same way that you would comment on a blog. You just press the comment button at the bottom of the binder. You must be logged in to leave comments.


LiveBinders Saves Time in the School Computer Lab

June 11, 2009

Ms. Kellogg also had another a great suggestion for using LiveBinders in the computer lab.

Step 1. Create a LiveBinder with the pre-approved sites for the school, something like this one:

Websites for Kids

Step 2. Drag this binder to the desktop of every computer in the computer lab.

The students then click on the binder to get to the websites. Anytime you add to or change the binder, the changes are automatically on everyone’s desktop!

You could even make separate binders for upper grades and lower grades if desired.

Thank you Ms. Kellogg for sharing your insights with us.


Sharing Private Binders

May 7, 2009

We just added a new way to easily share private binders.  If you want to keep your binder private, but still share it with several people, you can.  You just enter a pass key in the binder properties.  Then when you email the url to someone let them know the pass key.  They will be prompted for the pass key when they click on the url.  Once they type in the pass key, they will be able to view your binder.  They do not have to be a LiveBinders member to view your binder.  Please see our FAQ for more information on how to share private binders.

Thank you for all your input and please let us know what else we can do to make it easier for you to use and share binders.


Sending Links to Customers Never Looked So Good

March 9, 2009

Thanks to some excellent feedback, we have a new release that includes several improvements to LiveBinders.

As you know, LiveBinders is like a 3-ring binder for the web – allowing you to capture a variety of web links into a tabbed format which we call LiveBinders.  Instead of bookmarking links – you can add them directly into livebinders.  Your LiveBinder icons can be embedded on your web pages or sent as links in email.  It’s a great way to share multiple links for yourself or with other people.

Here are some of the highlights in this release:

Upload Your PDF files to LiveBinders

Many of our users have been creatinglivebinders for customer documentation.  With our new upload feature you can upload your own PDFs and include them in a livebinder along with your website links.

screenshot of upload

Better Looking Binders

We’ve given the livebinders a more polished look.  At the top now is the LiveBinder logo and the username/ login line.  Underneath that is the contents of the binder including the name of the binder, the author’s name, date created, and the number of views for the binder.  If you are the author of the binder,  you will also be able to see the ‘edit menu’ button to the right which allows you to make changes to your binder’s contents and properties.

livebinder new look

Bookmark While You Browse
The LiveBinder It bookmark tool

Although many of you can still create a blank binder from scratch, new users will be asked to install in their browser the ‘LiveBinder It’ bookmark tool.  This allows them to create binders while they browse. It is a quicker and easier way to create binders on the fly.  You can find out more about the bookmark tool here: http://livebinders.com/create/bookmark?type=bookmark

LiveBinders was created to help people make their searches more useful.  Before Livebinders there was no easy way to combine multiple links into a document format that you can easily access online.  If you’ve found LiveBinders to be useful for you, let us know.  We have more improvements on the way.

Thank you for using LiveBinders!


Trouble at Ma.gnolia – Just how good are your back-ups?

February 8, 2009

I don’t know how many people were keeping their bookmarks at Ma.gnolia, but my husband was one of them.  Their recent data loss is a shining example to us all on the importance of off-site back-ups.  Why is it so hard to set up a comprehensive back-up system? In some part it is like earthquake preparedness here in northern California – most of us just don’t want to think about it!

We have a pretty good back-up system at LiveBinders.  But this situation with Ma.gnolia has the team reviewing our processes and making sure that something like this cannot happen to us.  Here are some of the blog posts on the subject:

Ma.gnolia Data Loss

Twitter for business uses

February 3, 2009

Twitter has been in the paper recently with talks about trying to find ways in which to monetize their popularity. (Doesn’t it seem like a common theme with many of our venture funded startups this quarter?)

In addition to advertising, one avenue they are looking at is to see how useful the twitter application can be for business.   How does a tool used for announcing your whereabouts and general attention grabbing convert to a serious business application?   Well there are some fans that have come up with initial suggestions that have been compiled here in this LiveBinder.

To view just click on the link below and go through each of the tabs in the binder.

Enjoy!

Business Uses for Twitter

Product Positioning Resources

January 20, 2009

I’ve spent over 20 years in marketing. I’ve positioned so many products in the market that I’ve lost count. I’ve gathered the best resources on the web and written some of my own, but I have to admit that my best lessons in positioning are from my 9-year-old son. Here is a recent conversation:

Sandor: ‘Mom, I need a 50 cent chore.’

Me: (I’m thinking great! I have this plant that was in my pond in its plastic pot, but it grew well beyond its pot so that it was twice the size of the pot.) ‘Okay, Sandor, see that plant that I pulled out of the pond? All those roots need to be cut off so that we can get that plastic pot out of there and put the rest in the compost.’ (I’m thinking this will keep him busy for at least an hour.)

Sandor: (Thinks for 20 seconds) ‘Okay!’

Me: (Very suspicious about him signing up for this much work) ‘Are you sure?’

Sandor: ‘Yep!’ (I leave the room)

Sandor: ‘Alex! I get to perform surgery on a plant – would you like to try it first?’

Needless to say Alex did most of the work and Sandor got the 50 cents.

Okay, so in 20 seconds, he analyzed his target market (Alex) and found a message (surgery) that would appeal to her, then he added sense of urgency (try if first), threw in emotion (great enthusiasm in his voice) and was able to monetize (50 cents) the transaction.

If you can’t do this as quickly as Sandor, you may want to use some of the resources that I have discovered on the web. Click on the binder below to view the sites:

Product Positioning

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