I started on a quest to find a friendly graphic organizer for the iPad. One of the titles that I ran across was Popplet which has both a Lite and a pay version. As I’m inclined to do, I downloaded the Lite version to play around with it. It worked very nicely and did the sorts of things that I was looking for. It was like an iPad version of the most common features that I use with SMART Ideas. Create bubbles (popples), enter text, add some drawing, insert an image, include a URL actively linked to a web browser, resize and link bubbles. It had it all.
There were some features that I wouldn’t use now like output to VGA but that’s a feature that I might use somewhere down the line. With finger touches and swipes, it’s pretty easy to navigate throughout the organizer on the screen. I was pretty happy with it. Recently, I wanted to do a little more research on the product and so went to their website where they’ve been working on a computer version – only thing it is a closed Beta. But, ever adventurous, I signed up and received my invitation today.
I had to give it a shot. I decided to create a Popplet version of my Digital Footprint. Within minutes, I was up and running and very happy with the results.
The computer version is just as easy to navigate as the iPad version. It does have all the functionality of the original and then some. In addition to creating a basic organizer, there are some really nice additional features. Besides images, bring in media from YouTube, Flickr, Facebook or Google Maps. Rather than pinching and swiping to zoom in and out, a slider does the trick for you. (Or mouse navigation as well, of course) In the design, choose a colour theme to get started.
I really liked the clean presentation. In their “labs”, there’s a timewarp feature that lets you play back your Popple in the order that it was created. I can watch stuff like that for hours! From a presentation point of view, each of the Popples can be hot linked to internet addresses. This would be a very nice navigation feature on an Interactive White Board.
Collaborating isn’t fun when you have to do it alone! There are a number of options for sharing like a link, Twitter, Facebook, or embed code. So, if you are inclined, you can visit my Popplet live at: http://popplet.com/app/#/11936.
My first impression of Popple is very positive. I like the consistent approach between the iPad and the web version at the basic level. That makes implementation in the classroom easier. It would be nice if you could share a Popple between platforms but perhaps that’s in the future. If you’re inclined, apply for an invitation and see what you think.