Since Glogster’s founding in 2007, the backbone of the Glogster experience has been what we have come to call the Classic Glog. By the beginning of the next school year, we will have phased out the Classic Glog editor, and replaced it completely with the NextGen Glog. For technical info on the reasons for this switch, read our post about it.Glogster’s newer, shinier, Gloggier, futuristic Glogging platform.
History of EDU
Glogster EDU started as an offshoot of Glogster.com, “The Visual Social Network.” We noticed right away that the tool was being used by teachers and students for creative expression and learning. Glogster EDU was born; based on the same technology that had made Glogster.com so popular: the Glog. Three years after the launch of EDU, we are proud to say that we have won major awards, have over 10 million students, over one million teachers registered, and we get almost 50,000 new registrations at EDU every month.
Technology Marches On
At Glogster EDU, we work hard to stay at the forefront of new trends in education technology. We’ve been a pioneer voice in the Flipped Classroom movement, and have the securest online educational service out there. Our EDUcators and students look to us to lead the way.
The NextGen Glog
Beginning last year, we developed and launched a whole new Glogging Engine, which we called “G3” or The NextGen Glog. The next-Gen Glog is viewable in HTML 5, meaning it is accessible on the iPad and any other mobile device without flash installed. In addition, it allows Re-Glogging: the ability to copy and redesign a Glog from Glogpedia, giving EDUcators the ability to use it as a lesson template or a starting point for a new project. Not only that, but the NextGen Glog is built to allow deeper integration with other services, such as Google Apps and Youtube, meaning that currently users of Glogster EDU can log in to Glogster EDU with Google, access videos on Youtube through their Google accounts, and will have increasing access to other Google Apps resources through Glogster EDU in the future.
The Future with Flash
Adobe, creator of the Flash graphics platform, announced in late 2011 that it would discontinue work on mobile platforms, to focus on developing its desktop features. Since the Glog was based on Flash from the very beginning, this signaled a big change for us in how we would be able to work with Flash in the future. Since developing workable mobile applications is important to us, and will be a part of Glogster EDU’s future development plans, we developed an HTML 5 viewer for Glogster EDU, to allow Glogs to be viewable on any device produced by Apple, or using Google’s Android OS. As Adobe discontinues support for those devices, EDU will remain accessible, and we will be able to develop new applications that fit a changing digital education environment, increasingly focused on tablets.
Part of what this decision meant was that Flash would be changing more rapidly in the future, as Adobe worked to integrate it more fully with a desktop environment. Updates to the Flash platform meant that it would soon become impossible for Glogster EDU to continue to support its Classic Glog platform. A total rebuild of the Glogging platform was required to accommodate new changes in the way that Flash works. In launching the G3, NextGen Glog, Glogster EDU has been able to ensure that its future stability and usability across the broadest range of platforms remains at the same high standard.
What it means for Educators and Learners
For relative newcomers to Glogster EDU, the NextGen Glog is already a go-to tool. It allows more flexibility for teachers and students in using Glogster EDU’s great resources, and in collaborating on new projects. It also promises a future of greater integration with Google Apps and other web 2.0 tools that many teachers are already using, and are eager to integrate with Glogster EDU. The NextGen Glog will allow EDU to integrate calendar functions, new grading and rubric systems, and many other features that would not have been possible with the Classic Glog engine.
What about my old Glogs?
As the next school year approaches, we will be introducing special tools to “migrate” your existing Glogs over to the new NextGen Platform. When Glogster EDU turns off the Classic Glog editor for good, all of the remaining classic Glogs will be migrated to NextGen. As some minor changes may take place in the look and layout of a few Glogs during the migration process, we want to give our long-time Educators plenty of chances over the summer to look through their existing Glogs, and choose a time to upgrade, making sure everything is in order. Current users who have signed up in the past few months haven’t had access to the Classic Glog editor, and so they will not be affected by any of these changes.
More Stability, More Support
These changes not only allow Glogster EDU to offer you the best and latest version of Glogging technology, it also allows us to focus all of our attention on supporting ONE great platform for Glogging. The future with this new platform will see increased stability and speed, easier, richer, and quicker integration of many new features, and the addition of many pieces of new content, including new graphic libraries, a new Glogster EDU media commons as a compliment to Glogpedia, and improved communication, reporting, and community tools on Glogster EDU, along with other exciting developments we can’t even tell you about yet. The future with Glogster EDU is exciting! And we just can’t wait to share all that we have in store.