Thoughts on teaching, technology, learning and life in an era of change.
Grab that YouTube video via a single click
February 28th, 2009

Australian War Memorial YouTube Channel

I discovered that the Australian War Memorial has its own channel on YouTube the other day when doing some research on the Vietnam War for a series of lessons designed for my Year 10 class. I showed the students a variety of video clips focused upon the Vietnam War. The clips were authored by war enthusiasts, students, news media outlets and several by the Australian War Memorial. I asked the students to compare the clips in terms of credibility, bias, usefulness and accuracy. Honing their Internet research skills and capacity for critical thinking, methinks.

This week several colleagues dropped by my desk with questions about PowerPoint and embedding video. Each had a different problem. It is a little weird when staff possess identical laptops and operating systems yet PowerPoint and video behave differently. Well, not that weird really. Typical if anything. That is another story.

I wanted to find an easy way for my colleagues to download the high quality video from YouTube that they could insert into their PowerPoint presentations, etc. From time to time one hears of different methods to download YouTube videos. MacUsers may like to use Tooble

But then there is this nifty little button or “bookmarklet” that you can drag to your browser’s toolbar. It is located at this page on the GoogleSystem blog. This is “old news” but good news. Simply click and drag the rectangle that states “Get YouTube Video” to your browser’s toolbar and that’s it. Simple, elegant.

Get YouTube video bookmarklet in situ

Next time you visit YouTube and locate a video that meets your needs click on the “Get YouTube Video” bookmarklet on your browser’s toolbar. A download of the high quality version of the video will commence. The downloaded file will be in .mp4 format. The video will launch once the download had completed. You will need to rename that file. Each download has the same generic name which is “video.mp4″. The video will insert within a PowerPoint presentation.

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5 Responses to “Grab that YouTube video via a single click”

  1. Tony Searl Says:

    Thanks John,
    So simple even I can follow these instructions.
    Very useful as I am trying to piece together our WW2 collaboration and this may help me a lot.

  2. acroamatic Says:

    I use KeepVid, which has a similar bookmarklet. It provides the download links to the flv and mp4 versions (doesn’t start an auto-download) but it will work on quite a number of other video hosting sites too.

    For embedded videos, I use a Firefox extension called Video Download Helper.

  3. John Larkin Says:

    Tony: Thanks for the comment and I shall keep an eye on that project!
    Kenneth: Thanks for the tip! I shall give Keep Vid a whirl.
    Cheers, John.

  4. Judy O'Connell Says:

    Hello John, I love your instructions too, and have also used that button. I have also used too. But I have abandoned all those approaches since I discovered kickyoutube, as it allows me to choose the format I want for my particular purpose. Just change the at the beginning of any youtube url to and the options are there for your choosing on the kickyoutube site. I’ve also found some pretty good videos this way too – in other words, you get to spot the great videos that other people have found. Nice.

  5. Marcus Says:

    Thanks for the tip.