Archive for the ‘CommonCraft’ Category

Common Craft are a small company comprised of Lee and Sachii LeFever who produce some short, succinct and brilliant explanatory videos from their base in Seattle on the West Coast of the United States.  I’ve been a fan since the first one hit YouTube in 2007.  RSS in plain English does exactly what the title says – it explains RSS feeds in a simple and easy to understand way.  I’m still astonished that there are many technology aware adults who still do not use RSS feeds – they will save you so much time!!

Since 2007 they’ve grown and expanded and now have a subscription model for use of their work.  We’re delighted here at TechDis to be account holders and there are a number of Common Craft videos on the Toolbox site.

So for those who still don’t understand RSS Feeds – here is the first ground breaking video from Common Craft.


To coin a phrase used in the UK – it does exactly what it says on the tin!

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The TechDis Toolbox has a full section on web browsers.  There is information on Safari, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Chrome.  There is a great general video on web browsers from Commoncraft and than a further one on  accessibility within web browsers – take a look at the basics!

The individual videos on different plug-ins for each browser will be on here in the next few posts.

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We at TechDis are working closely with a number of groups on e-safety and e-responsibility. This is a great video and just the sort of short message we are using in Toolbox.


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Nice to see that the good people at CommonCraft have got some mainstream coverage.  See this report in Newsweek magazine.  In the meantime here is another of their videos.  We are so looking forward to having Lee with us online for our conference.

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This will be the first of many posts about our Annual Conference taking place in Southport on June 25 this summer.  I say conference, but we are trying to get away from the ‘person standing at a lecturn and talking at a bunch of people’ type of event.  We are having a keynote from Russell Prue and an interactive question and answer session from Lee LeFever of Commoncraft.  Lee will be with us online from Seattle and will be doing a short presentation and then taking questions from the audience on the production of the fabulous videos that he and his wife Saachi make.  If you haven’t seen them I’ll embed one later in this post.

We are also planning a pecha kucha area – for those not familiar with this, it is a Japanese phrase meaning chit chat.  It incorporates a powerpoint presentation of 20 slides, each shown for 20 seconds only.  The presenter therefore, has only 6 minutes and 40 seconds for their ‘show’ before it is the chance of the next person.  It promotes discussion and interaction, focusses the presenters on the essentials of their message and if it is boring, it’s over in less than 7 minutes!

This year, we are hoping that the RSC-Northwest stand will be an interactive and multi media delight.  The main focus will be our mogulus TV station manned expertly by John Dalziel our ACL adviser.  We’re also planning some demonstrations by the advisers on Interactive White Boards, Second Life and AccessApps amongst others.

As a team we now have a twitter stream so you can catch what is happening on @JISCRSCNW and we’re hoping that the day will be tagged by many of the delegates with #JISCRSCNW09.  We’ll be running a continuous ‘coveritlive‘ during the day so the various comments will be able to be seen as they appear.   It’s early days yet, there’s still 3 months or so to go,  but we have great hopes and if something goes wrong, so what – if people leave the day with something to talk about then we’ve done our job. Fingers crossed.

Finally as promised a commoncraft video – Wikis in Plain English.

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