NOTE: First, Wallwisher, the popular virtual “corkboard” or “bulletin board” Web tool changed their name — they’re now known as Padlet (though all their old links using the Wallwisher name work fine). Now, Corkboard.Me, a similar tool, just announced they’re changing their name, too — they are now known as NoteApp.
Wallwisher (now called Padlet) was the first online application that let you easily place virtual post-it notes on a virtual corkboard or bulletin board, and allow you to post text, images, and/or videos on them.
This kinds of apps have many uses. I particularly like them for easy social bookmarking (my students, for example, post their favorite language-learning games on them so their classmates can try them out. I also have students use them to supplement inductive data sets (a series of pieces of information about a topic( they have categorized in the classroom. Once they categorize the information, they write a summary sentence about each category and find an image that goes with it. You can see many examples on our class blog of how they used Wallwisher to create one of these on Nelson Mandela.
Several similar sites have followed in Wallwisher’s wake, and they have been helped by periodic technical issues Wallwisher has seemed to have (recently, though, they seemed to have fixed them). I thought I’d make a list of these newcomers. I have not included any that do not allow inserting of photos or video, though. Without that ability, I don’t really think they bring much value-added benefit, but leave a comment if you think I’m wrong. I also have not included any services that charge for creating more than one bulletin board.
Here are my choices for The Best Online Virtual “Corkboards” (or “Bulletin Boards”):
Wallwisher now called Padlet, the granddaddy of this kinds of apps, lets you, with very, very minimal registration, create a “wall” where you can place virtual sticky-notes. You can allow others to also place notes on the board, or keep it so that only you can do so (which is what I would recommend for students). The sticky-notes can include images you grab off the web, videos, or websites, and you can add text to them (you can also just include text without adding anything else). Each sticky has a 160 character limit for text.
NOTE: New Development: Wallwisher, the great virtual “corkboard-creator” tool, has just announced some nice improvements. They include making it even easier to create a corkboard and having immediate real-time collaborative abilities by seeing what people you invite are doing on it as they do it. They say there is more to come in the next few days. I’ve tried out both of those improvements, and they work very well. They’ve also changed their name to Padlet.
Corkboard Me (now called NoteApp) is a Wallwisher-like tool. The site has just announced the ability to embed your virtual bulletin boards, which you are unable to do with Wallwisher. Other features include real-time collaboration and a chat room for the people collaborating. You can post images, but not videos. You used to be able to use it without registration, but changed that so now you do….
Popplet is like Wallwisher on steroids. You can make an online “bulletin-board” with virtual “post-its” (called “popplets), just like in Wallwisher. And, except for the fact you have to register to use it, Popplet is just as easy and, in some ways, easier to use with a lot more functionality. With Popplet, you search for images and videos on the Web directly within the “popplet” instead of copying and pasting the url address (as you need to do in Wallwisher). You can draw within the “popplet” and it doesn’t appear to have an limit on the number of characters you can use. You can connect the “popplets.” You can also embed the whole thing.
Group Zap joins a long list of online virtual “corkboards.” It has some nice features, including the ability to convert your board to a PDF and being able to “drag-and-drop” images and documents from your files. You can’t add photos by their url addresses, unlike some other similar sites, and there’s a limit in the number of photos and files you can upload for free.
I just received my invitation to join Mural.ly, and am very impressed. I’d strongly encourage you to register for one. It lets you drag and drop images and links (and the links appear as thumbnail images on the screen);it lets you write on it or add speech bubbles — it’s basically a super-duper-duper Wallwisher (Editor’s note: Unfortunately, a reader tells me it’s no longer free).
RealtimeBoard is an online whiteboard that seemed like a decent tool for real-time collaboration. It’s easy to use, and lets you upload images from your computer or by its url address. They offer free “Pro” accounts to educators.
I learned about TUZZit from Carla Arena. It’s a free online graphic organizer tool that provides lots of different options of organizers (you can also create your own); lets you paste online images videos, virtual post-it notes and more onto them; and then you can share your creation with online collaborators. In some ways it seems like an Exploratree on steriods (that site is on Not “The Best,” But “A List” Of Mindmapping, Flow Chart Tools, & Graphic Organizers list). In other ways, it reminds me of tools on this list.
Stormboard, which is free for educators, is a nice new collaborative online “corkboard/bulletin board” where you can share “stickies,” including photos, videos and text.
Slatebox appears to have a lot of bells and whistles. However, the feature I like most is its ability to easily search, label, describe and connect photos. That capability makes it a great tool for students to create picture data sets. Plus, no registration is required.
Padlet’s Price Update Riles Teachers, Raises Questions About Sustainability of Freemium Models is from Ed Surge. It’s about the recent decision by the popular Padlet tool to only allow three free boards per person. Personally, I’m not too concerned about it because I think most teachers have multiple email addresses and can register for three free ones at each one, and I’m not sure how many teachers would have their students create more than three each year. The article also says that Padlet is developing another more low-cost plan. Nevertheless, there are tons of alternatives to Padlet, too and you can find them on this post. I only have tools there that let you also post images and links, because that’s really the only way I would use them in classes or in professional development. However, there are some tools that can function more like a text message bulletin board, and Richard Byrne shares some of them here.
Ryeboard is a new Padlet-like tool without any bells-and-whistles.
Miro is an app that lets you take photos of sticky notes and then organize them on a bulletin-board type interface.
Walling looks something like Padlet.
IdeaBoardz is a nice-looking online “bulletin board.” Too bad it doesn’t allow you to integrate images.
Yokanban looks like a nice tool like Padlet but, for now at least, it doesn’t look like you can include images (other than as attachments).
Weje seems like a fairly decent Padlet-like tool.
Feedback is welcome.