1) What is a web ring? (aka webring)
A web ring is a way to link websites. It is similiar to
the "favorite sites" option; however, as a ring implies, it is
circular. Each webpage links to a
subsequent webpage with the click of a mouse.
This continues until all links have been visited and the user returns to
the original link.
2) When and by whom was WebRing created?
The web ring idea was created in May of 1995 by Sage Weil(now 23 years old).
A small software program, WebRings, focusing
on web rings was formed. In December of
2001, Yahoo took over the program (and idea).
Little or no advances were made, and in October 2003, Yahoo sold WebRings to one of the original engineers of the program.
3) How is a web ring navigated?
The sites are reached by simply clicking on the word
"next". Navigational buttons also include: previous, random, ring
hub, and skip.
4) Why would you use a web ring?
Originally, the web ring was created to increase traffic to
websites of common themes and connect people with common interests. For example, if someone has a knitting hobby,
he/she may find a webring that contains websites
about knitting supplies, techniques, patterns, etc. More recent Yahoo Groups and other such
programs serve a similiar purpose.
In education, a teacher may use a webring
to reduce research on his/her part. For
example, the teacher may find a webring about his/her
topic of study. If the sites are not all
appropriate, the teacher may click "list" and a list of all of the
websites will appear. This may help the teacher find websites for student
use. However, advances in search engines
has made searching the internet as effective, if not more effective, than
relying on webrings.
A webring can be used to organize
information about a topic. For example,
if a teacher is doing a unit on whales, he/she may find a webring
on the topic. The web ring will enable
students to navigate through whale websites that the teacher deems age and
topic appropriate. Since a web ring is
managed from one site, an easily navigatable ring may
save valuable time that the students alternatively would spend surfing the world wide web.
Unfortunately, it is difficult to find rings that have all the sites a
teacher may want the students to use or a limited number of websites to prevent
student overload. A teacher made webpage
with listed sites may serve this purpose better.
If students create individual websites, they may be linked
using a webring. As aforementioned, a teacher made
website with the individual student links may be as effective as a webring and easier to create.
5) How do you access, join or create a
To access a webring, simply find
one and navigate through it using the buttons.
To join a webring, one must first
have a webpage to connect. Then follow
the instructions on that specific webring site. Many
rings are housed at www.webring.com.
This site requires becoming a member, but the membership is free.
Creating a webring is a more
difficult task. It takes time and energy
to maintain a webring. Software programs such as the Ringlink Program and free online services such as
http://dir.webring.com/rw)may be used to accomplish
6) Where can I find existing web rings?
Numerous web rings already exist. Check out the webrings
at the links below to preview existing educational rings. If your desired topic is not available on
these sites, try using a search engine and type in web ring and your topic.