Friday, January 28, 2011

I’ll let you in on a secret – I Cheat! (Challenge #6)



The most recent blogging challenge asked us to embed some media (e.g a video, a prezi, voki, voicethread) into our blog. Now, I’m pretty confident with my media embedding skills, and I have even gone so far as to develop a rudimentary understanding of the HTML code which underpins my blog posts.

I’m not some incredible blogger, able to create amazing media-rich posts out of thin air. I have a little secret ... I cheat …

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For all my fellow Windows users out there – while we may moan and complain about Microsoft, Windows Live Writer 2011™ is a powerful, and FREE blogging tool (unfortunately, only available to Windows users). I started using this software about 6 months ago, and I’ve never looked back.

The Secret to Creating Media Rich Blog Posts

Windows Live Writer 2011™ is my secret weapon when it comes to embedding media into A Relief Teacher’s Journey posts. It supports most blogging platforms, including Blogger™, Wordpress™, and Windows Live™ spaces; and it’s simple to set up, intuitive, and very easy to use.

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Embedding media, such as images, pictures, maps, and videos, into your blog is a breeze with Windows Live Writer – simply use the ribbon menu ...

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To embed HTML code for Voicethread, Animoto videos, etc you simply copy and paste the code into the Source code view at the bottom of the main page.

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For More Information

I was going to create a video tutorial to explain how I use Windows Live Writer™, but I had the bright idea of tapping into YouTube™, and came up with this excellent instructional video. While it is based on the older 2008 version, it’s well worth a look.

I also highly recommend the Make Tech Easier™ Guide to Windows Live Writer 2011.

You can Download Windows Live Writer 2011™ here

7 comments:

  1. It's great to find another useful tool! Thank you for sharing - does Windows Live Writer 2011 work with Office 2003 products or does it matter?

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  2. Michael
    I don't think that's cheating! I think that's a great tool. I am going to come back after Monday and download it. On Monday my school computer is being updated to Windows 7 so will wait till after all thats done. Thanks for sharing.
    Kathryn

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  3. Hi Theresa and Kathryn.

    Windows Live Writer works independently of Microsoft Office; however, it only runs on the Windows OS. Sorry to all the Mac users out there.

    I've certainly found it to be a huge improvement on the basic blog creator on Blogger. I've never used Wordpress (edublogs), so I'm afraid I can't compare.

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  4. Hi Michael,

    Great informative post. I just switched to Mac at home and still feeling my way around. I use Windows at work though so will definitely have a look at this tool. Word to Sharepoint has a similar setup so will be interesting to compare.

    btw, I don't call it cheating. When I worked as a programmer, we called it "saving time". It's also been called sharing and "standing on the shoulders of giants".

    Thanks for sharing your secret.

    cheers,
    Malyn
    My post for challenge 6 shows how far I’ve come and how much further I’ve really got to go.

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  5. Thank you for posting this. While I use a Mac at home, we have Windows at school. This an especially great tool for those who are just starting in and want a WYSIWIG to take care of details such as pictures or embeds.

    There is a fine line between "cheating" and "working smart." I log you in as "working smart" in my book.

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  6. Windows Live Writer is a fantastic offline blogging tool with a WYSIWYG editor. It interfaces with just about any blog service [Blogger, LiveJournal, TypePad, WordPress, etc.] If you're a blogger you'll find this tool incredibly helpful- and it's refreshingly free from Microsoft.

    Expanding the functions of Windows Live Writer is easy with the use of plug-ins; here's a link to the main Windows Live Writer gallery...

    Link:
    http://plugins.live.com/writer

    And Windows Live Writer is far from cheating; but it is really smart to use it.

    Happy blogging!
    Until next time,
    Larry Henry Jr.

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  7. Well, this post seems to have attracted far more attention than I'd anticipated. Thankyou for all the comments.

    I must admit I had to Google "WYSIWYG" - & discovered it the a computing term for "what you see is what you get".

    Thanks for the comments about "working smart" - I agree that it is better to "work smart, not hard", and am glad to know I'm not "cheating"!

    A particular thankyou goes to Larry Henry Jr for his reference to the plugins page for WLW. I've used this extensively, but couldn't remember the link.

    It's well worth a look, and I highly recommend the Tweetmeme and Twitter Notify plugins for sharing blog posts on Twitter. There is a Creative Commons plugin there as well, but it doesn't work in Blogger.

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