What are Web Aggregation Tools?


Aggregation is the process of transparently gathering together distributed pieces of online content based on an interest in the topic(s), the author(s), or other shared characteristics. RSS readers are one way to aggregate data, but with the increase in personal publishing, new tools for aggregation are emerging. Using these tools, readers can easily track a distributed conversation that takes place across blogs, Twitter, and other publishing platforms, as well as pull in relevant resources from news feeds and other sources.

Some educators and students are seeking alternatives to course management systems, preferring to open their discussions and make use of a variety of tools instead. Aggregation can reunite course discussions that once took place within CMS forums, even if they are scattered among different platforms and tools. Aggregation can allow a class to visualize its conversations in new ways. Information is available when and where the reader wishes, in almost any desired format.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

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(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

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(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on teaching, learning, or creative expression?

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(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

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