Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Save Bandwidth, Chop Youtube

If you are among the lucky users who has access to YouTube in your school (I can't believe I just said that - but that's a discussion for another post), then you know that there are a multitude of educational videos available at the site. Whether it's a clip from DiscoveryNetworks, Tedtalksdirector or MIT, there is a plethora of videos you can share with your students to motivate and engage them.  But unless you have a dedicated T1 in each classroom you have probably dealt with the dreaded load time, lags and dropped connections. Sure you can cue up the video and let it buffer, but who has time for that before every class?  Luckily, there's a tool out there that can help you with all of these issues.  It's called TubeChop and you don't even need an account to use it.

All you have to do is paste the link to the Youtube video.  In this example, we'll use an MIT video on Single Variable Calculus: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rAo0cN-b2w That video is a little over 32 minutes long (much more than I could personally handle), but the part we are interested in is only 30 seconds long about 13 minutes into the video.  Once you paste the link into tubechop and click search it will import the video from Youtube.  You'll see a button titled "chopit".  Once you click the button, you'll be presented with a fairly simple editor.  You can either use the start and end segments to manually enter the appropriate times or you can use the sliders.  When you click chop it again, a page like this one will open.  You'll have a number of sharing options (eg., Twitter, Facebook, etc) as well as a link to the file and embed code to add to your favorite blog or wiki.  There's also an option for comments that you could easily use for class discussions and a link to the original video.

That's it.  Now you can pull up the 30 second clip - no fuss, no muss, no lag!
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