What is a Virtual Binder?

Going from 3-ring binders to virtual binders

Are you looking for a digital solution that will mirror your experience with paper and 3-ring binders? Searching online can return a variety of terms: Is it a virtual or digital binder you need? Do any of those terms describe a binder that can exist in the cloud such as an online binder?

A virtual binder is a paperless version of a binder.  And like the term “digital binder,” it doesn’t necessarily mean that the binder is online. It may just exist on your desktop computer and not be cloud-based.

But for many people looking for cloud-based solutions, a virtual or digital binder has to be easily updated and accessed in real time by others. With remote learning and remote work environments, “virtual” generally implies online as in “virtual office,” “virtual library,” and “virtual meetings.” These terms all describe a place that exists online to mimic the effects of a physical location. A virtual binder, then, can be a place you organize other online resources, similar to the way you’d organize paper in a physical binder.

If the solution you are looking for needs to be cloud-based, then the LiveBinders’ virtual, online binder platform might offer you the right solution for your sharing needs.

Virtual binders for your virtual library

For over 10 years, LiveBinders has been the virtual place for teachers to organize class exercises and reference materials; where administrators organize staff handbooks and board meeting notes; and where small businesses organize product catalogues, onboarding manuals, and training material. What makes our online binders their first choice is the intuitive navigation and the flexible framework for packaging media and links in the context of a physical 3-ring binder – but with so much more to offer because it is online.

Check out our Virtual binder page to learn more about how to get started.

Adding Online Binders to Microsoft Teams is Easy

In an upcoming podcast we talk with a LiveBinders customer who has added both binders and LiveBinders shelves to the menu on their Microsoft Teams dashboard. They use LiveBinders to organize handouts, training material and company resources in a group of binders that are much easier to access than by searching through a shared file folder. Online binders are now fully integrated into your Microsoft Teams App! Imagine sharing staff binders, sales binders, and product binders from an easy to find location eliminating the need for resending URLs or printing out pages of a paper-based binder.

Steps to add your binder or shelf URL to Microsoft Teams Dashboard

  1. Copy the URL for your binder or binder shelf
  2. Open your Microsoft Teams App
  3. Go to the Dashboard and find your team
  4. Click on the + sign at the top Navigation Bar
  5. Choose Website URL as the option to embed media
  6. Paste your binder or shelf URL in the URL box
  7. The name of the binder or shelf will appear across the top, but you can shorten it if needed from the Teams dashboard
  8. Click on the link to launch your binder or shelf

You can find screenshots in our Help Guide binder. If you would like to learn more about how to share resources across your team, let us know on our new Contact page and select Request a Demo.

How to Add Your Google Calendar to an Online Binder

If you would like to have your audience view your Google calendar inside of your LiveBinder tab, use the embed code instead of the link. Using the embed code will add your live calendar to your online binders. It’s an easy way for your stakeholders to find your calendar and see all the up-to-date schedule and event changes in real time. We recently created a Youtube video on how to do that and added it to our Help Guide binder.

In the 3 minute video below, you’ll learn where you can find the embed code of your Google calendar, and how to add it to a tab in your binder.

If you use another calendar tool where the link to the calendar is not embedding in your binder, check to see if it comes with an embed code, and you can use the same procedure to add it. Let us know if you use something other than Google calendar and we will create a demo for our Help Guide binder.

Step-by-step instructions along with the YouTube video tutorial is available by clicking on this link.

App Smashing in a Digital Binder with Thinglink

App Smashing is the process of bringing together multiple media apps in one place to complete a project. For example, a project might include notes kept in a Google Doc, a YouTube video demonstration, a slide presentation that was presented on Google Slides, or comments on a project organized on a Padlet. Our binder platform allows you to integrate those different media objects into a digital binder without compromising your story’s organization.

Many of our curators have been exploring the use of interactive media to engage their remote audiences. One tool they are using is Thinglink. Thinglink allows you to map hotspots onto an image that can include links to websites, videos, audio files and documents.

In this quick video tutorial, you’ll see how to add a Thinglink embed code to your binder tab.

Learn more about how to add your embed code to your binder from our Toolkit Help Guide.

LiveBinder It update!

We are happy to announce that the LiveBinder It bookmarklet tool has been updated.

Here are some of the changes in this release:


Now when you add a link to a binder through the LiveBinder It bookmarklet tool, the binder will automatically open so that you can see where the link was added in your binder.

Non-conforming Links:

Some users have come across links that override the binder trying to open the link in its own browser window.  LiveBinder has now corrected that problem by adding the URL link to the tab page and launching a separate window for the web page.  Everytime you click on the tab of that particular link, the browser window will come to the front of the binder.

Error messages:

Any error messages caused by odd characters typed into a binder title has now been fixed.

To benefit from these new updates, replace your bookmarklet by going to livebinders.com/tool.

Let us know how it goes and if you encountered any problems.

Enjoy collecting!

It’s a Buyer’s Market for Real Estate

My mother has been a real estate broker for almost 40 years, so I know a thing or two about real estate cycles. What I don’t understand is why is everyone panicking? The real estate market is cyclical – it goes up and it goes down.

The only interesting question is – is this the bottom?

I have some friends that are making an offer on a house tomorrow. I personally think it is a little early, but if they are planning to hold the property for five years or more, they will be fine.

What I really love about the real estate market is the types of tools that are now available on-line. Real estate investment used to be a lot more like guess work, but these sites really help. Take a look at my binder below and let me know if there are any great real estate sites that I am missing:

City politics

The city in my neighborhood bought a little triagluar empty lot in hopes of making it a park someday. There are not many parks in my neighborhood, so the neighbors have all been waiting to see what would happen on this tiny corner lot. But waiting for something to happen from a government entity is a tedious process.

Recently we have decided to drive this process instead of wait. I have never been involved in city politics. (Though I do have experience in working with schools and corporate politics so I should have had a clue!) What I have learned is that that the noisier you are, the more people listen. (Gee, you think I would have understood that!) Just by organizing the neighbors and putting together a plan, we realized that we could ‘help’ the city prioritize the funding for this park.

We put together a Yahoo group and a LiveBinder to keep the neighbors informed. Then we made flyers and organized meetings where all the neighbors could get together and share their vision.

Next week is the annual prioritization meeting for parks and rec. funds. This week we have organized an email campaign to show the city council just how much our neighborhood wants this park. I kicked off the email campaign on Monday with my own email and was thoroughly impressed to get a follow-up phone call from one of the city council members who is also our former mayor.

One surprising thing to me about this process, was just how hard it was to find the parks and rec. meeting minutes on the city’s website. They are there, but you really need to dig to find them. After spending quite of bit of time unearthing them, I put the relevant pages in the LiveBinder for all the neighbors to read:

We will see where we stand after the meeting on Tuesday!