Web 2.0 and Emerging Learning Technologies/Web 2.0 Tools

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Cool Web 2.0 Tools: Virtual Worlds, Language Learning, Podcasting, Wikis, Blogs, Social Networking, Online Communities[edit | edit source]

Shen-yu Huang

Institute of Education

The Program of Learning Technology

National Chiao-Tung University, Taiwan

Introduction of Web 2.0 tools[edit | edit source]

Web 2.0 is an emerging applications between knowledge creation and knowledge sharing, which accumulates collective knowledge in a spiral fashion.

Web 2.0 is concerned with active knowledge sharing and creation, whereas Web 1.0 is about passive viewing of content. The following table shows the developmental stages of Web 2.0, along with the comparisons with Web 1.0.


  Web1.0 Web2.0 Differences between We 1.0 and Web 2.0

•  Web 1.0 : read and download

•  Web 2.0: share and upload


Traditionally, expert posses the right to classified the resources via the internet.

But in Web 2.0, everyone can decide how to classify what you want(tag).

Central Idea

They, the


We, the content
In Web 2.0, user defines and design the content
User Attitude

Controlled by




•  Collaboration also involves the meaning of cooperation.

•  We share knowledge whenever it is needed and wherever it is located through the web

•  Everyone are both editor and receiver

Examples Individual large scale website Blog wiki Wretch...
Web 2.0 tools are free and easy to use.

Associated with the impact on human life, take for example, Web 2.0 help enterprise gather the new information or idea through on line community embedded in the intranet. Also the school teacher can uses the blog as a collaborative channel to help student work, response or communicate.


Web 2.0 technologies give learners and instructors a new perspective to consider how these tools can be enhanced in educational settings, and the tools can be inferred to “Web 2.0 tools”?

There are some common characteristics of Web 2.0 tools, for example :


•  Web as a platform (O'Reilly, 2005)

•  Who has the high degree of choice

•  Participants act in a collaborative way

•  To share information, and build commercial or interest-based relationships and personal friendships


Because of the interpretation of Web 2.0 tools, its flexibility and openness make Web 2.0 easy and user friendly and is considered as a system that places people at the hub of the activities. Take for example, wikis, social networking and other online communities, which are further examples of popular and widely used Web 2.0 tools.


This chapter introduces a few Web 2.0 tools, including wikis, blogs, online communities and social networking

Pods and Blogs: Pros & Cons[edit | edit source]

With the birth of the internet came the birth of various new forms of media. Two of the most popular forms of new media are podcasts and weblogs. These are two very new, very different forms of media.


Podcasts are a type of digital media file designed to educate, entertain, and inform. Podcasts are made and distributed over the internet through various syndication feeds. They then can be downloaded to computers or MP3 players and played at the user's leisure. The common term for these audio files is “podcasts”. This naming convention is due largely to the prevalence of the Apple iPod; an early (and continuing) iteration of the peraonal MP3 player, and to Apple's iTunes, a widely used application for downloading and managing MP3 and other digital audio files, including podcasts.

The initial idea behind podcasting was to permit the public to easily create and distribute their own programs, in a format akin to radio programs. The impact was large and allowed people a voice to use their new-found technical know-how and spread their message. Because of this impact, other uses became implemented.

VideoPodcasts or vlogs are designed to provide the viewer with a more clear instruction than media that is solely audio based. Unlike most portable media, it can have spoken word, videos, images, .pdf documents, text, and captions for the hearing impared. Podcasts are a great way people can stay "in the know" on topics of interest. For example, Podcasts have been made from almost everything: news, self help, public safety messages, radio streams, speeches, award shows, talk shows, school lessons, and even some television shows. These program files can be downloaded to a computer or a media player (like an iPod or a Zune) and viewed as often as wished. A major difference of podcasts is they are unlike websites that offer streaming content. On these websites, you have to physically check the sites you wish to receive this new content. Podcasts, on the other hand, can be subscribed to and new content is downloaded automatically. It is almost an entirely hands free medium.

Podcasts are better when viewed in three to five minute segments, or episodes. Dividing up the podcasts into shorter segments is a good idea, especially for educational purposes. This allows for better memory retention and to allow those interacting with it to keep their interest. Enduring an hour long news report, lecture, even an entertainment podcast wears down the interest of the viewer. Why are podcasts better in short segments? Is there any backing of this?

Podcasts are also widely used in higher education. Research (Lane, 2006) found that students prefer to listen to podcasts on computers than MP3 players. They often use podcasts concurrently with other resources, such as PowerPoint slides or lecture notes. Podcasts are also useful tools for helping students catch up when they missed classes. Even though some instructors were concerned that students might rather miss the class when podcasts are available online, students reported that the availability of podcasts did not affect their class attendance. It would be, therefore, interesting to further explore the use of podcasts in educational settings.

It's a charming title for reader:"Pods and Blogs: Pros & Cons " and you logically list and introduce the two products and application in education and other subject field but I think you can lay more emphasis on why these tools have high relationship with Web2.0 tools? Do Blogs and Podcast have the same characterastics as Web2.0?


The web log, or blog, is a page on the internet where people can write about...well just about anything. Blogs take the form of many things: commentary, reviews, comedy, news articles, political speeches, or just plain everyday rants. The content can be anything that can be coded on a webpage. They work mainly as a personal journal that is accessed online by the writer and anyone who might stumble across the site. The way to release article on a blog site can make use of on-line edit, FTP to upload or e-mail despatches. Blogs include text, images, links to other websites, and other media the writer wishes to add to the article. The blogs can also be commented on by the readers and reflected on by the writer. I would like to see a clearer description of a Blog and Podcast

Before the onslaught of the modern blog, most digital communication took form on the “usenet”, the original designation of the World Wide Web. It set up what was called “Moderated Newsgroups.” Moderated Newsgroups were simply discussion forums that were controlled by an individual or small group of like-minded people. Around the mid-1980s, a man named Brain Redman created mod.ber, an archive that he and a select few managed. It had a journalistic publishing style and shared many similarities with the present day blog. Its lifespan was not long, however, lasting only 8 months. In the 1990s, various software used for the internet set up conversation threads. An example of this was the BBS, or Bulletin Board Systems.

Eventually, the modern blog grew from the online diary and journalistic format. Justin Hall, a student at Swarthmore College, is credited as being one of the earliest bloggers. Another early blog was called Wearable Wireless Webcam. This is unique as it shared a person's life in large detail combining text, video, and images that were captured and transmitted by a wearable computer and EyeTap (a wearable camera that is worn like glasses in front of your eyes) to a web site in 1994. This type of recording is called “sousveillance”, or inverse surveillance, and records events in the perspective of the person witnessing it. This was a huge leap in the progress of blogging and has even been used as evidence in legal disputes.

The start of the blog was slow, but snowballed quickly. Around the turn of the century, blogging really took off. It was around this time that the first blog hosting software began emerging. The first and most popular were Open Diary, Live Journal, and blogger.com. Blogs combined traditional web pages with tools for linking and text editing allowing even the most uneducated computer user to make a home on the World Wide Web.

A popular type of blog would be the news blog. Many homepages have a news section and keep those interested in the know of current events, celebrities, politics, and the like. An example of this type of blog is the “Drudge Report”, launched in 1994 by “maverick” reporter Matt Drudge. The Drudge Report was the first news source that informed listeners of the Bill Clinton/Monica Lewinsky scandal after Newsweek buried it.

Since the beginning of the century, blogs have become more and more detrimental in giving notice and reporting of the news stories. Political blogs have become very popular in recent years, particularly since President Bush's “War on Terrorism”. Many people have stated their opinions on the matter, some good, some bad, but all passionate and powerful. It was because of the people's stance on this topic that solidified the blogs’ role as a source of news reporting.

Blogs can also be an effective and powerful source of media. In 2002, several blogs that focused on a few questionable comments by United States Senator Trent Lott forced him to step down as Senate Majority Leader. Senator Lott said that the United States would have been better off if Senator Strom Thurmond would’ve been elected president. Considering that Thurmond's platform supported racial segregation, most would agree that was not intended as a complement. No mainstream media broke the story/insult. Bloggers did their investigation and found multiple sources supporting what Lott said. This political spotlight was enough to force Trent Lott to step down as Majority Leader of the Senate. This proves that even though a lot of times blogs are nothing more than rumor, gossip, or opinion they get attention. They bring information to public view, sometimes more quickly than traditional means of radio or television. It is a voice that is gaining more and more credibility with every political and celebrity goof. If you added another example, I think would help strengthen this section.

One of the most frequented blogging systems in the world is myspace.com. Here, you can access friends lists, send friends comments, messages, and write your own blog about whatever you wish to discuss. Millions of people, young and old, journey to Myspace on a daily basis, some even calling it an addiction.

Blogs can also be an effective and powerful source on education field. Teachers can use blog as an alternative channel for communicating and inquiring after the classroom. Because blog represents a high interactively style for knowledge share, and also involves teaching scenario.


How can teachers use blog as a potential web2.0 tool? Here are my suggestions:

1. Teachers can use blog as their personal teaching portfolios

2. Teachers can publish their teaching performance and let it be evaluated by other teachers at same time

3. Teachers can record teaching experiences and communicate, negotiate with either students and teachers and t o share ideas, knowledge and drive social revolution.


As good and interesting as Podcasts and Blogging are, there are legal issues that must be addressed. One of the biggest problems, in any medium, is copyright infringement. People often use music that fits the mood of their podcast, as a theme song, or an intro of some sort. They could also link to them from blogs. These musical additions may or may not be used with permission bringing about the question of legality. If that may be the case, to avoid the legal ramifications one should use them with permission to avoid any unfortunate circumstances.

Numerous cases have been brought before courts against blogs and their bloggers because of libel, slander, or defamation of character. An example of this would be a blogger in Britain calling a politician a “Nazi.” Through a series of various investigations, the real name of the poster (who had been using an internet alias) and filed suit against her for damages and court costs. The politician won the suit for a total of £17,200. What kind of laws were broken? And do they apply in the US? It is good to know we are subject to certain laws when we Blog. A more clear description would help.

Another consequence involves one's job getting involved over content on a blog. Several instances have resulted from this kind of situation. A man named Mark Jen was fired 10 days after he started work at Google because he talked about corporate secrets on a personal blog. Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, was fined for badmouthing NBA officials on the court and in his blog during the NBA playoffs in 2006. So being able to write about life/experiences is a tricky subject. Just because you can write about things does not necessarily mean that you should. Writing about it might just get you in trouble somehow. Granted, that might not be the case. Depending on how you construct your blog, if it is well written, and logical, it might open the door to an employment opportunity.

With the number of political bloggers in the world, and the number of people who have disdain for politics or politicians in general, there could be a number of political dangers as well. Along with the slander and defamation issues listed above, trying to stage an uprising of some sort on a blog that targets a political official or agenda could have legal ramifications that could lead to jail time. The reason for this is because if someone feels threatened in some way, steps must be taken to protect the ones involved. Outright threats could lead to questioning, arrests, and possibly incarceration.

Another consequence of a blogging forum is threats and verbal attacks against the author of the blog. Since blogs are public forums that can be read and responded to, this is a possibility. If someone feels the need to share their opinions online for others to read, then that blogger needs to be prepared for an instance like this. A victim of this was Kathy Sierra, author of the blog called Creating Passionate Users. She ended up canceling a series of speeches and lectures because she was afraid some of the threats written toward her would be acted upon. After that, Sierra and other supporters started a separate online discussion against such behavior online. Because of all this, the idea of a blogger's code of conduct was penned.

The blogger's code of conduct states:

•Take responsibility for the content on your blog; this includes what others post in response to your topics.

  • Clearly state your tolerance level for abuse.
  • Consider eliminating anonymous comments on your blog.
  • Ignore the trolls.
  • Talk directly, not online. If this is not possible, find an intermediary.
  • Do not hesitate to tell someone they are behaving in a way you will not tolerate.
  • If you would not say something in person, do not say it online.

You should add who the writers are of the code and what authority they have. Is it federal, local or just the Blogger community?

The Final Word

There was a day when Blogs where more like a teenager: opinionated, ranting, and often angry. In a way, they still are, because they tend to be remembered more for their embracing of the first amendment. Many people delved into it as a means of passing time away or just ranting about things they disagree with. Blogging became such an epidemic several “how to” sources started to appear. However, because of their evolution over the past few years and their popularity, more and more websites are embracing blogs as a means of information on the happenings of business, news, entertainment, and the world in general.

In that realm, they are similar to Podcasts. However, the podcasts are more convenient to those who are on the go and wish to remain in the know. With blogs, you must access the internet on your own with a computer or other media device, so they do not adhere to the user as to the podcasts. The main pro that the podcasts offer is that they tend to offer more clear instruction. They are also more logic based whereas blogs are not. It seems that no matter how legitimate blogs are becoming, the original role of blogs will foreshadow the credibility. Podcasts seem to win this round. Your topic really is a leading edge in technological communications. A deeper explanation of how these two evolved would be helpful. Also, how does each pertain to learning and teaching? I liked the information you provided, but I do not see any credit to anyone else. You mentioned copyright enfringement, using writings and ideas without permission is similar to using music without permission.

Wiki[edit | edit source]

The term Wiki is Hawaiian for quickly. In Web 2.0, wiki systems are social and collaborative platforms which encourage users to quickly edit and create online content with minimal technical knowledge. Wiki systems run in the web browser in order to simplify collaborative content creating, maintaining, and publishing in hypertext environments. Wikipedia, the most widely-known encyclopedia around the Web 2.0 tools, is an example of wiki technology managed by the Wikimedia Foundation (Halvorsen, 2005; Wikimedia Foundation, 2005). Because there are generally no user restrictions and no need for advanced technical knowledge or background for users to contribute contents in wikis, they are powerful tools for information sharing and online collaboration. Content contribution and collaborative authoring are enabled by wikis because collaborators focus on the contents and the collaborative efforts without distractions generated from resolving technical issues or problems. Other useful features in wikis include content navigation, versioning, and searching capabilities. Therefore, many researchers realized the potential of wikis for adding collaborative dimension in online and blended learning environments (Chiu, Wen, & Sheng, 2009; Coutinho & Bottentuit, 2007; Parker & Chao, 2007; Resta & Laferrière, 2007).

Social networking[edit | edit source]

Social networking is a phenomena defined by linking people to each other in some way, it can also means the conception of online community. Users work together to relate information and knowledge by rating choices or explicit identification of other members. Generally speaking, social networks are used to allow or encourage various types of activity whether commercial, social or some combination of the two.

Annotation, Bookmarking, and Tagging[edit | edit source]

Online communities[edit | edit source]

Online community is a group of people that primarily interact with each other via internet enabled communication media such as email, discussion forums or chat rooms rather than face to face interaction. In an online community, people come together for a shared purpose and are guided by shared rules and regulations of the community.

Online communities have also become a supplemental form of communication between people who know each other primarily in real life. Many means of communication are used in social software separately or in combination, including text-based chatrooms and forums that use voice, video text or avatars. Significant socio-technical change may have resulted from the proliferation of such Internet-based social networks( Barzilai, 2003).

On-line communities is not geographically bounded, because in the online communities people can interact for anyone, anywhere, and anytime.

Recommendations for Future Studies – Classroom 2.0[edit | edit source]

As mentioned above, we know Web 2.0 tools, such as blog, wiki, online community, with their high accessibility, are simple enough for teachers to incorporate into their classrooms. As for teacher, web2.0 tools can also be used in classroom .

Here I give it a new appellation: Classroom 2.0. Because it can be

•  a knowledge management platform to promote collaborative learning among students

•  Multi-communication channels for students and teachers

•  a knowledge innovation laboratory

Teacher can take advantage of the characteristic of web2.0 tools.Take for example, to use Blog as a free software to extend the "book knowledge" to "multi-national knowledge".To use Web 2.0 tools in the classroom is a meaningful way to help student and teacher collabrate. Classroom 2.0 allows student and teacher communite in a more high interactive channel. Classroom 2.0 also spread the knowledge more deeply, widely and fast.

Summary[edit | edit source]

However, Web 2.0 can also be considered as a form of social software, especially in learning scenarios. Social here refers to harnessing collaborative intelligence. Additionally, these tools are not intended to sell themselves through advertising, but rather by viral marketing.

We may also inferred to data is the next Intel Inside. According to this, network effects become a key factor to survive under Web 2.0 era.

“Teaching benefits teacher and student alike.” Web 2.0 really strengthen the relationship between teachers, students and the whole world.


Barzilai, G. (2003). Communities and law: Politics and cultuers of legal identities. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press.

Chiu, H., Wen, S., & Sheng, C. (2009). Apply Web 2.0 tools to constructive collaboration learning: A case study in MIS course. In 2009 Fifth International Joint Conference on INC, IMS and IDC (pp. 1638–1643). Seoul, South Korea.

Coutinho, C., & Bottentuit Junior, J. (2007). Collaborative learning using Wiki: A pilot study with master students in educational technology in Portugal. In Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2007 (pp. 1786–1791). Chesapeake, VA: AACE.

Lane, C. (2006). UW podcasting: Evaluation of year one. Retrieved July 10, 2007, from [1]

O’Reilly, T. (2006).Web 2.0: Stuck on a name or hooked on value? Dr. Dobbs Journal, 31(7), 10.

Parker, K. R., & Chao, J. T. (2007). Wiki as a teaching tool. Interdisciplinary Journal of Knowledge and Learning Objects, 3, 57–72.

Resta, P., & Laferrière, T. (2007). Technology in Support of Collaborative Learning. Educational Psychology Review, 19(1), 65–83.

Voss, J. (2005). Measuring Wikipedia. Proceedings of the ISSI 2005 Conference. Retrieved November 27, 2007, from [2]

Wales, J. (2005). Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. Retrieved November 27, 2007, from [3]