New Upgrades to Base Tabs

copy_move_tabYou can now move tabs (and sub tabs) to base tabs. In fact, our new move tab interface lets you easily move any tab anywhere in the binder.

Also in this latest release is the ability to set a default tab color for both sub tabs and base tabs from the Binder Settings menu.

Introducing Base Tabs!

Main Sub and Base tabsWe are very pleased to be introducing what is, by far, the most requested LiveBinders’ feature – an additional level of tabs that we are calling base tabs!

This is a feature that is available only to our subscribers, so this may be a good time to upgrade. Educators can get a subscription for as little as $14.95 a year.

To find out more about how this feature works, please check out our newly updated help page.

Thank you to everyone who requested this feature. It took us a while to implement, but your emails and tweets were great encouragement!

Colored Subtabs and Indicator Change

Drop down on tab for selecting colorYou can now color individual subtabs in the same way that you can color individual main tabs. We didn’t allow this before because it was too hard to see the selected tab. Now we have changed the selected tab indicator to a triangle that shows up on both the active tab and active subtab. So now you can color-code tabs and subtabs and still see which one is selected.

Thank you to everyone who emailed us to request this feature!

tab_nav

Add Multiple Uploaded Files to a Binder

You can now add multiple uploaded files to a binder at the same time.  This should make it much faster to build binders with files from your local PC or school network.

DashboardTo use this new feature, go to your “My Binders” page and click on “My Uploaded Files” in the dashboard on the left.

You can upload your files there and then use the check boxes on the left to check all the files that you want to add to a binder.

Once you have selected the files that you want in a binder, click “Add to Binder” above the file list.

Checking off binders

You will see a “LiveBinder It” interface pop up with a list of your selected file names.  You can add the files to main tabs or subtabs by clicking on the appropriate selection and then clicking “Add to Binder.”

LiveBinder It interface

Thank you to those of you who requested this feature!

Welcome to Our New Editor

Thank you to those who provided early feedback on our new editor!  We believe this update will make it easier for you to edit your binders.  Here are some highlights of this release:

  • New editor layout
  • Simple Dropbox integration
  • Easy QR code insertion into your binder
  • PDF files in the binder will no longer be displayed on top of the edit window
  • File uploads can now be done as links in a text layout

You can now add Dropbox files or QR codes from the new “Add Content” menu.  Just click on “Add Other Content” in the “Add Content” menu.

Adding Dropbox and QR codes from the "Add Content" menu

For tutorials on the new editor, please see this page:

http://www.livebinders.com/welcome/tutorials

As always, we welcome your feedback. We have had so many great suggestions from the LiveBinders community. You just keep making this product better and better!

Create Your Own Binder Collections with Shelves!

We are very pleased to announce this feature since so many of you have requested it!

Now you can create your own shelves to organize not only your binders, but other people’s binders as well. Here are some reasons that you might want to create shelves:

  1. To collaborate with a group on multiple binders
  2. To collect the best binders on a given topic
  3. To create separate shelves for your students and for parents
  4. To organize binders by subject (both your binders and binders from other authors)

The nice thing is, when other people’s binders are updated, you automatically have the latest version on your shelf. These new shelves can also be embedded, so you can put them in a website, wiki, or blog.

In fact, you don’t have to have your own binders at all, you can just curate all the great binders that are already out there on your shelves.

Our LiveBinders community has shown us some amazing applications and uses for binders. We can’t wait to see what you do with shelves!

Here is how you can create and add to your own shelves:

You will notice that your “My Binders” page has changed its name. It is now “My Shelves”.

All your shelves will be located on the drop down menu under “My Shelves”.

To add a binder to a shelf, click on “Add to Shelf” either from the drop-down “Add” option in the upper right corner of the binder’s “Edit” mode, or from the “Options” menu located under the binder.

When you click on that link, you will have the option to add that binder to an existing shelf or create a new shelf.

These shelves can be emailed as links or embedded as widgets in your blog or website. This is easier on Blogger and other similar websites, but can be done on WordPress like the example below:

Please see our help menu or video for more details on creating your own shelves.

Here is an example of a shelf of the winners of the “Top 10 LiveBinders for 2011”.

Thanks again to those who requested this feature. As always, keep those enhancement requests coming. We love making LiveBinders a more useful tool for you.

Add Your Public Shelf to Your Blog

This post is updated as we have added some more features.

You can now add your public binder shelf to your blog or website.  It will look something like this (but it actually be live if your blog is hosted on something other than WordPress):

Unfortunately WordPress hosted blogs (like this one) will not allow iframes, so you cannot use this feature. If you are running the WordPress software, you can implement this feature through a plug-in.

To see a live example, please go to my testing blog on Blogger.

For Blogger, and other websites and wikis that accept iframes, go to your “My Binders” shelf and just cut and click on “Share or Embed Your Public Shelf”:

Then select the embed code and copy and paste it into your blog or website:

For those of you who are a little more advanced, you can customize the embed code to have a different number of rows and columns. To do this, please see the Tips and Tricks binder under tab #4 “Embedding Binders” and the subtab “Customizing the Shelf Embed Code”.

We are very excited to announce collaboration!

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:

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

New Educational Category Search and More Sorting Features

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

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”.