Monday, August 25, 2008

The 23 Things for Learning 2.0: Post #2

Blogs and Avatars
The word blog is an abbreviation of web log. It could be an online journal, a “column” (to use newspaper speak), or a series of posts tied together only by a loosely identified topic. Here’s what blogs have in common: their entries are usually listed in reverse chronological order; they can contain not only text but pictures, video, audio, and links to other websites and blogs; and they are available for syndication, meaning you can subscribe and have entries delivered to your “feed.” In the verb form, to blog, or blogging, just means contributing to a blog. If you’re interested, see Wikipedia’s more in-depth article with a definition and the history of blogging. If you prefer, here’s another source at Encyclopedia Britannica. There’s even a blog about blogging.

Here are some samples from university-related blogs:
Check out TWU Connection, the Distance Learner blog!
E-Learning and Distance Education Blog
Create and Post to Your Own Blog

Discovery Exercises (Things)
#3. Set up your own blog
#4. Post your Blog URL here
#5. Create an Avatar

#3. Set up your own blog. You have several choices for blog hosts that offer free blog hosting. This blog is hosted on Blogger. Others include WordPress, and LiveJournal. That’s just a sampling; there are many more. Because it’s an easy blog service to work with, I’m going to give you instructions for Blogger. Those of you who are experienced bloggers may use any blog service you like.

  1. If you already have a blog, skip to #6; if you are new to blogs and blogging, proceed to #2.
  2. Click on this link to blogger: (this will open in a new window, on top of what you’re now viewing).
  3. If you have a Google Account, sign in with that at the top right of the page, and then click on SIGN IN; if you do not have a Google Account, use the CREATE YOUR BLOG NOW button (in the shape of an arrow).
  4. Google will walk you through setting up your account, naming your blog, and selecting your template.
  5. Be sure to record your blog name and password! It is recommended that you bookmark your blog.
  6. Play around and add a test post or two.
  7. You will create a blog post for each of the "23 Things" you try.

Please clearly label each entry in your blog in the following way: WEEK 1, Thing #1, subject. Each of your posts should provide insights into what you’ve discovered and learned. Feel free to share what worked for you … and what didn’t … what surprised you … what frustrated you … what amazed you. TIP: This is a good time to "bookmark" your blog for easy access.

#4 Post your URL for your blog (the “address,” like to this page using the comments button. [ ]

#5. Create an avatar -- a representation of yourself. Go to , design an avatar [representing you or a younger version of yourself] with a school, library, or classroom background. (You will have to set up an account if you don't use Yahoo!) Save your avatar and export to your blog.

Yahoo! Avatars
[HINT: Here's how to export your avatar to your blog. When you are on your page, go to "home" tab and look to the right column. One of the options is: "EXPORT: Use your avatar in web pages and blogs and more." Click there. Then, in the Center of the page, 0ne option is your avatar's HTML code. Copy the code, go to your blog (Sign in. When you first sign in, there is an option to add a post OR manage posts, settings, or layout; Go to "LAYOUT." You will see various page elements.) Paste (Control V) the HTML code in the PAGE ELEMENT marked "HTML/Java Script." Then move that PAGE ELEMENT to wherever you want your avatar to appear on your blog.] Each blog application: blogger, wordpress, edublog, typepad, and so on has a unique method of exporting avatars and other images onto your pages. Be sure to use the ‘help’ menu within your application to work your way through any problems you run into. ]


  1. OK. I started a blog, party because I've wanted to for a while and partly because of this post. My blog is personal and has nothing to do with work so I am thinking I should not post it?

  2. Greetings! If you are following along the 23 things postings, then yes please share you blog with us!


  3. Yes. I am following along. My blog is

    BTW, I teach in the School of Management - this semester Human Resources Administration (grad) and Training & Development (undergrad) both 100% online and Research Methods (grad) as a hybrid course.