Monday, August 13, 2007

Week 9, Thing 23 - looking back

I really enjoyed "23 Things". There were a few items that I had never heard of before, and several areas of Web 2.0 that I hadn't really ventured into yet. It was nice to get a introduction to these areas, though I think a few of them appealed more to my personal interests than work interests.

I really hope we can do something similar for our system. I don't know if I'd suggest all 23 things. I'm not sure how daunting it would be for a new user to see all of these different sites. And so many of them I had a hard time applying to the library. Still, I think it would make a nice introduction and maybe create some great conversation among people that might not talk regularly. I mean, already I've had contact with other members of my system that do not work in my branch, and it's nice to exchange ideas with them and hear their opinions on these new bits of technology. Because, if you're not on a committee with someone, you won't see them until the GSM and by then, you won't remember to talk about any of this stuff! (that's one of the things I like about blogging - you can put your thoughts out there and people can just stumble upon them at their leisure).

So, yes, that was a lot of fun! I think I would enjoy more programs like this that let you see what other libraries in the country (or even the world!) are doing. And maybe even interact with librarians all over and get advice from them!

Friday, August 03, 2007

sometimes...you wonder if people think this way....

This was today's Penny Arcade comic. I really had to share it here, didn't I? (click the comic to see it full size)

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Week 9, Thing 22 - Downloadable Audiobooks

I'm pretty familiar with both Overdrive and Netlibrary, since I attended one of the 'Downloadable Audiobooks' trainings we had in the system. Both are relatively simple to use and navigate. I like that some of Overdrive's titles can be burned to CD.

Unfortunately, I haven't actually downloaded an audiobook. I own an iPod, so my portable device will not play the .wma files that these books are formatted in. And if I'm near my computer, I'm usually doing enough multitasking that I can't add "listening to a book" to the list.

But, any time I've tried to help a patron find a book on Netlibrary or Overdrive, I've been very happy. Especially the classics, since it's usually a kid that should have read the book 2 months ago but just remembered he needs it tonight for the project due tomorrow. If you're comfortable enough with technology to be asking about audiobooks, then you'll be comfortable navigating their sites. The rules about "permissions" and "licenses" are a bit hard to explain face to face, but I think once people download all the bits to play the files, they don't really think about it all too much. They just know the file will "expire" in 3 weeks.

I think downloadable audiobooks were a great addition to the services we offer. I just wish Apple would share their iPod code so that 3rd party distributors could create compatible files. I hate the looks on patrons faces when I explain they are not compatible with iPods.

Week 9, Thing 21 - Podcasts

Yes, I believe I have babbled about podcasts before in another forum. I'm not a talk radio person. I listen to books on cd occasionally. Other than that, if I'm listening to something, it's music. If it's talk, it better be very very short.

So I don't really do podcasting. I've tried! I used to have the X-Play (video game reviewing show) video podcast sent to iTunes for me and the Harry Potter Mugglenet podcast. And I never listened to them.

I'll read blogs about video games and harry potter, sure. Because when it comes to a blog, I can skim, skip to the part I am interested in. With podcasts, unless someone has helpfully created a list for you (at 5 minutes 10 seconds, they interview such and such) then I get bored and end up shutting it all down before it's over. Video podcasts...well I haven't found anything I felt the need to watch every time they post something. This is sort of what I use my blogfeeds for - if a cool video is going around, I will find it there. If something funny/interesting is revealed on a podcast, someone will relay the info to me.

Now, the idea of using podcasts on library pages is interesting and I'd love to hear what sort of reaction/feedback these systems are getting. I did a search on one of the sites and found a bunch of public library programs. But is anyone listening? That's what I want to know. I know a lot of friends that fill their iPods up with podcasts and listen to those during the week. So there is an audience out there, but would they listen to a library podcast?

Like a library blog, library podcasts should be kept short and sweet (unless you have a "special guest", like an author that is visiting). I can't imagine any patron listening for longer that 20 minutes about library events or new titles.

I find podcasting to be even more niche than blogging. I think blogging is a much stronger force in the internet universe and if a library was going to dabble in the world of Web 2.0, I think blogging would be a wiser first step than podcasting.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Week 20, Thing 9 - YouTube (the videos)

This is one of my favorite speeches given by one of my favorite people - Joss Whedon accepting his award from the charity 'Equality Now'. (That reminds me of another thing the Internet and YouTube have probably effectively eliminated - tape trading. I'm sure something like this would have been copied onto a VHS and then copied again and again back years ago. But now with high speed internet, mpg files, and YouTube, we can share these moments almost immediately!)






A friend of mine linked this from her blog awhile back. Cute little video created by the St. Joseph Public Library as part of their Staff Day program. Very cute. I'd love to do something like this in our system! Let's staff and patrons see all the different people working behind the scenes and on the front lines to make their library work!






And because I have no shame, I give you the one crappy Buffy/Angel FanVid I made over a year ago. My goodness this was a LOT of work for 4 minutes of video! I probably did it the hard way since I ripped all the dvds myself and just jumped into a program that I had never used before. I don't know if I'll ever bother doing this again, it was fun, but what a time sink!


Oh, and warning - this is extremely sappy/mushy. I'm almost embarassed...I'm usually not such a "shipper" but this song worked for me!


Week 9, Thing 20 - YouTube

Oh, YouTube. What can I say that hasn't already been said? You've given the world a way to share their home videos, which leads to far too many "OMG look at the baby/cat/dog" videos that only a select few would want to see. You've given an outlet to crazy people (like the Russian guy that burned a copy of Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows). And you've brought the art of bootlegging to a whole new level - now all the sneak previews that you can only see in theaters are snuck online by clever fans, and by the time the owning company can get it yanked down, enough copies have been saved elsewhere. And, of course, the world of fanvidding (creating music videos for your favorite tv show) has gone to a whole new level of sharing now that this site allows free uploads.

YouTube is a weird creature. My least favorite thing about the site is the search engine. I usually use Google to find things on YouTube because the in site search never gives me quite what I want.

It's funny watching the corporations try to figure out how to handle YouTube. It's free advertising! But...it's their property. But, they were running it on TV and so it was obtained freely in the first place, why is it different if I'm watching it on YouTube? (This has been the big debate when Viacom said that no Comedy Central clips (specifically targeting 'Daily Show' and 'Colbert Report') could be uploaded on YouTube. Even Jon Stewart has mocked this decision.)

I think YouTube is something programmers should take advantage of! Think of the fun teen contests we could have! Make a commercials for your library! Interview a librarian and post the results! Make a music video about your library! Of course - you have to be of a certain age and class level to afford the video & computer technology for these sorts of things to work. Unless of course you have the kids submits scripts...and the winning script the library could film with their digital camera....hm....a plan is forming....

Okay, I'm going to go find a few videos to post. I have a couple in mind already that I want to share.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Week 8, Thing 10 - Web 2.0 2007 winners

That was fun! I just clicked through a lot of the sites listed as "Winners" for the 2007 Web 2.0 awards. So many different kinds of sites, so many ways to spend time customizing the web to fit your needs!

I found a couple pages that I plan to go back to on my home computer. I really thought Colorblender was cool! I like to make graphics for my blog and I'm horrible at picking a color scheme that doesn't make my eyes burn! Right now, my entire blog is just one color, for fear of overloading my retinas. This site/program looks like it would be a lot of fun to play around with!

The customizable Start Pages are cool too. I have played with Googles Personzalized home page but since it came in 3rd, I'm thinking about looking at the ones in 1st and 2nd and seeing how they compare.

The widget making sites also look like fun, though I'm not sure if they are compatible with livejournal (my main blog). I could have a good time playing around with those.

The "cocktail builder" seemed like a good time too! I know it's just a silly site, but you could probably discover some new drinks and such goofing around with it.

So many sites, so little time! I think the site that made the biggest impression was Pandora. I had forgotten about this site. Last.Fm grabbed me because of the ability to have it upload your iPod and iTunes list and show what music you like. Pandora you just pick an artist and it begins to stream music it thinks you'll enjoy. I like how it explains itself before playing a song, helping you understand why it has chosen this piece of music.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Week 8, Thing 18 - "online productivity tools"

Okay, this is just cool. I was not aware of these sites, but it only makes sense that they exist! I guess I had just assumed that microsoft had taken over the world of word processing and you either typed on their program or you wrote it on paper.

But clearly, things are changing. And these "online productivity tools" look like fantastic resources. Especially for those patrons that come in to type something up, then realize they don't have a disc with them, but have no desire to purchase one. Or, for people that own computers but don't want to drop the cash for Microsoft Office just to own Word. Or Excel.

Maybe this is just because I've become so anti-microsoft over the years (even though I use so many of their products...I'm just tired of the grip they have on the computing world), but I like the idea that I can tell a patron about something like this. It's a nice option to have. I think these would make great links for our current "Reccomended Sites" page. (I would never call them "online productivity tools". I had no idea what that meant until I clicked on it. I'd find a better way to name it. Or perhaps list the sites in several areas - business, homework, etc)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Week 7, Thing 17 - Sandbox Wiki

Well, if the Sandbox Wiki taught me anything, it's that you really need someone to build your Wiki first before calling in other participants, otherwise it had no real goal. And a wiki without a goal just turns into a bit of a mess. A literal pile of information.

I really enjoy Wikipedia, it's a very clever idea. I've heard it's actually the best source for information on *ahem* government projects because "official" sites won't disclose as much. haha. Not sure if that's true. I tend to use Wikipedia more for fandom related issues. While I tend to double check anything "true", when it comes to checking the facts about the last Harry Potter book or characters from Star Wars, Wikipedia has your back. I did a manga program earlier this year, and I used a lot of the information I found on Wikipedia to create trivia games for the kids to play.

I'm impressed by how well managed Wikipedia is. The "staff" edit content and check entries to make sure they are written in a objective manner. (Though it's wise to double check with another source, since you never know who the last person was to edit the entry.)

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Week 7, Thing 16 - Wikis & Libraries

After hearing libraries were using Wikis on their websites, I was very curious to see how. It takes a very large effort to create and maintain a wiki. Like I mentioned before, it takes only a moment to register for a site, but to actually make it something an outsider would want to visit, you have to find some dedicated people to maintain it.

Clicking around the Library Wikis, I noticed a couple things - many of the places that were using Wikis were much smaller than our system. One wiki that was linked (Bull Run Library) was actually not run by the system, but by a single patron that had just decided to create it! I thought the BookLovers Wiki was also very cool, though it will take awhile for the site to rival databases like 'FictionConnection'.

Then again, perhaps the familiarity of the Wiki format will draw more patrons to sites like BookLovers Wiki than FictionConnection (which has that silly AquaBrowser that I cannot stand!) Plus, I think people enjoy reading other "normal peoples" review (i.e. not librarians or other book reading professionals). I don't know if I like the idea of the wiki replacing the library catalog, but it would be a nice supplement.

I think a Wiki would be a great idea for our Intranet. Our current site is tricky to navigate, especially for newcomers. It might be nice to turn it into a Wiki, even if the wiki is controlled only by Branch managers or heads of committees. As we move more and more to keeping often used files online, a Wiki would be a great way to manage those files. You could include instructions on how to fill them out, perhaps an FAQ for each form or area, etc.. Again, this would require someone willing and able to update the site when the need arises.

Week 6, Thing 15 - Library 2.0

Library 2.0 is a very strange creature. You can see those in the workplace discussing it and how to make it evolve. But has it reached the outside world yet? Have any of these libraries that jumped on the bandwagon with blogging, wikis, tagging, etc. actually helped their patrons?

Michael Stephens talks about controling "technolust" - the urge to use the technology just because it is there. There are several areas of Web 2.0 that I think can and should be utilized by libraries to help market themselves. There are other things that we should use what is out there but not feel the need to create our own And even more that we should just watch to see if they last.

I've seen many library blogs, but I wonder if anyone reads them. (I guess sites like Technorati and Delicious would let us know how many are linking and watching them?) I think blogs are a great way to get information out there. They are free to set up, easy to maintain, and just as easy to customize. Other social networking sites - like MySpace or Facebook - might also enjoy a library presence. BUT it is just as easy to create a blog and include a "Share" button (you will notice several sites suddently have "Share on Facebook" buttons) that a very nice and professional blog would be enough. The thing to understand is that these items cannot remain static. In the world of the internet, you can't let anything stay empty for long. Blogs must be updated weekly, DAILY even, if you want to maintain a steady stream of interest. Websites that stay static for any longer than that are forgotten.

Dr. Wendy Schultz talks about the library as a community, something I firmly believe in. I think that in our modern society, we have lost many of the community spaces we used to take for granted. Watch the old movies and tv shows of years gone by and characters talk about going to social activities held by the town. Cities still have a few places for gatherings, but I find that the suburbs struggle to create these kinds of spaces. Libraries have free events, free items, and are (hopefully) welcoming areas. As with all things, we should look closely at how we started before we go changing ourselves to fit the model of the future. We (libraries and librarians) need to make sure we have our "mission statements" in mind before we start logging onto every site out there and creating links to pages we don't plan on updating.

Web 2.0 may be easy to create, but it takes a little bit of time and effort to make a website or blog that is worthwile. Otherwise, you end up looking like that 50 year old high school teacher that keeps saying words he thinks are "cool" but it's very obvious to the students in his class that he is completely out of touch. In society, especially the internet culture, this is the kiss of death. So if you are going to take a step into Web 2.0, don't just know where your foot will land, but know where you are heading. Because the visitors you get to your online spaces will be more tech saavy than you, and they can spot a "poser" before the page is fully loaded.

Week 6, Thing 14 - Technorati and tags

Another site that I had heard a lot about but never actually been to, Technorati was a bit overwhelming to me too. It's a great site to browse, though I'm not sure how you would go about finding one specific piece of information.

Looking at the "most favorited blogs", it's clear who is dominating this site. Site like "Pro Blogger", "Techcrunch" and "Lifehacker" are clearly designed for hardcore internet users. Probably people who make their living online. It's no surprise to me, the site is streamlined but not very pretty, so I can't imagine anyone coming here to just look around.

Technorati has been around for a few years now, so the concept of "tags" has traveled to many more sites since then. Blogger calls then "labels". Same idea, so they were nothing new to me. I love using tags on my livejournal, especially when it is something I write about a lot (harry potter, star wars, movies). It's an easy way to see all of your posts about that same topic without remembering exactly what day you posted.

This is a neat tool for a blogger though, as you can see how many people have linked to your site recently ("Technorati Authority") and see your ranking in Technorati. I'm going to pass on creating yet another watchlist that I probably will not use. You pick your way to read blogs and you stick with them - I prefer RSS feeds. And I think I'm at my limit of what I can read in a single day.

Week 6, Thing 13 - Del.icio.us

I had heard of del.icio.us before. It's hard not to notice all the little buttons found on every site you go to! Again, I found it an interesting site, but it really depends on how you use the web.

My first thought was that this was the perfect type of site for a (I just heard this word earlier today and loved it) "cyberloafer". Someone who spends a lot of time in front of the computer while at work and tends to wander around the web randomly when they should probably be doing something productive. It makes all of your bookmarks portable so you can find all your favorite sites without memorizing the url or bookmarking them on a work computer.

I thought about it a bit more and realize it could also be used for work things. It would be great to create an account for our branch and use it to bookmark library related sites - Readers Advisory pages, official author pages, upcoming movies based on books websites, etc..

I do feel the site is a bit overwhelming. It is something I would have to use for awhile before I became comfortable with it. And it really depends on what you use the web for. Results on delicious can be overwhelming if you don't know how to search on it.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Week 5, Thing 12 - Rollyo

Well, that's a neat site for someone who does a lot of online searching. I think, if that's your thing, then Rollyo would be a big help! I feel like you'd either want to use RSS Feeds for sites and read everything they publish, or you'd rather just create a search for bigger sites that might mention things your interested in, and then search them. (The Rollyo I created was made just for me to search fandom websites - so it covers the main site for Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Buffy news)

Me? I don't think I would ever use this site. When I get to the point of Googling at work, or at home, I'm usually clueless about what I'm looking for, and Googling is the last step. Or, I know exactly what i'm looking for and I'm searching online because I'm too lazy to type in the URL.

Now, this would be very cool for homework assignments we get ever year. Especially ones that we knew didn't mesh well with what databases we have available. If we found some great sites that consistently gave good information for these assignments, creating a Rollyo for them would save a lot of time.

EDIT: Scratch that idea, I just attempted to create such a search and found that Rollyo searches the entire site you enter, not just the pages, so this gave me just as many worthless results. Easier to just google it and then go the the actual site and search. Oh well!

Also, I find the ads distracting. I have a low tolerance for advertisments on my webpages, especially when they are in the middle of everything and mixed together with search results. BOO!

Week 5, thing 11 - LibraryThing

Ah LibraryThing. Many an hour have I lost just goofin' off on that site. I do like how easy it is to add widgets on Blogger! I've had LibraryThing for awhile, though when I found out there was a limit to how many books I could list, I stopped adding things on a whim, afraid I would fill it up too fast! I just my LibraryThing booklist on the blogger sidebar, that as pretty cool. Sadly, it says their widget is not compatible with livejournal! Bah-Humbug!

LibraryThing was sort of the start of this "listing stuff" crazy. Now there are an insane number of sites dedicated to you listing your stuff! An online buddy recently showed me listal.com, a site that lets you not only list books, but dvds, tv, music, and movies that you own, want to see etc. and rate them. Here's current profile. It's another one of those sites that's a great time waster and lets you make spiffy widgets for your websites.

(I also find it interesting that both LibraryThing and Listal somehow search Amazon's site for titles and images...I guess the real question is, are they hosting the images themselves or somehow hotlinking from Amazon? Wouldn't Amazon get upset if that were the case?)

I've noticed new blogging sites, like Vox, have integrated this sort of thing into their pages so you don't have to go outside to add widgets. Here is my Vox page - you can see the pre-made widgets on the side; books lists, tag clouds, etc. Like Blogger, you can go in and organize your layout as you see fit (the page starts out much busier on Vox, I had to tell it to tone it down a bit). The nice thing is, since your books and movies are part of the site, it's really easy to add them into your posts on the webpage. (I usually do this to pretty up any movie "reviews" I do).

Monday, July 02, 2007

Week 5, Thing 10 - Meez Avatar



I forgot I had one of these! I made it after someone told me about the program. Never really got into making avatars though. When I am online and want to see something representing me, it's usually
not actually me I want to see.

(This is my same problem with things like 'Second Life' - if I'm playing an online game, I don't want to be a librarian, I want to be a
a little green haired gnome that fights dragons!)

(this is why I spend a lot of time
making graphics, livejournal allows you to upload icons of your choosing, and most people use the icon as another form of expression - for example, a post that is tongue in cheek about some silly topic might have an icon that looks like this -


There's a whole subculture on Livejournal based on creating these little 100x100 (under 40kb) images. It's ridiculous, but fun. And another way to express yourself online. Very interesting stuff...at least to me, but then again, I was an American Studies major and almost every class was about that sort of thing.
..

Week 4, Thing 9 - blog search tools

I think there was a Colbert Report episode where Stephen said we could save the African Elephant if we all just went on Wikipedia and edited it to SAY that they were no longer endangered. And then, if you blogged about it and he blogged about it, any search that someone did would give three sites saying that the African Elephant was no longer endangered.

That's how I felt when using these blog search tools. I'd type in subjects that popped into my mind and got several blogs with similar information. I wasn't sure how much of it was true, but it was clear that all the information had come from one site and these bloggers had wanted to share the info/links with their readers.

I find the trick to navigating the Blogverse is pinpointing the blog that gets the news out there first. Because there are billions of Harry Potter fansites and Star Wars related blogs, subscribing to more than 2 of them would be silly because, 9 times out of 10, you're probably just going to see the same information twice. So, you should look at other people's blogs to see who is getting the information you care about out first. (This is why subscribing to site feeds can get messy - sometimes they update too much with very random news items. If you can find a blogger out there who is already sorting through that stuff and then re-posting it in their own blog, that might be the best way to go to keep from getting information overload).

And this isn't just specific to pop-culture blogs. I had a couple library related blogs that I subscribed to, and more often then not duplicate information would pop up. It got to the point where I decided to just take it down to one feed because I was tired of scrolling through the same news twice.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Week 4, Thing 8 - RSS Feeds & Bloglines

*phew* well that was fun! I had never poked around Bloglines before. Interesting set up. But since Livejournal's "Friend List" function also doubles as an aggregator, I probably won't use my Bloglines account as much.

I will confess, the problem with things like Livejournal, Bloglines, etc.., is that you sort of stop browsing. If it's not published in one of my RSS feeds, then I won't know it! I hardly ever venture outside of my livejournal anymore because I've added so many blog feeds to that reader! So be warned, RSS feeds are addictive and if you start collecting them and reading them religiously, your reader will be the only site you ever visit! (Though, Livejournal is part blog part social networking site, so I have a lot more random people/things that I read on there, probably why it cane take me an hour to read my entire "flist" some days...).

I really think libraries should take advantage of all of this technology and create active blogs which, by default, should have public RSS feeds. (I say active because if you want to get anyone's attention, you need to update your blog on a regular basis, weekly, if not daily). Like I mentioned above, if you get into RSS feeds, you tend to never leave your reader page, so if libraries want to stay in their patrons lives, they should have blogs that update when new releases are on their way ("We know Harry Potter won't be out until July, but you can place your holds starting today!") or programs ("Don't forget, Cathy and Marcy will be here in a little over a week") or even just boring old marketing ("New Releases this week that you might not have heard about..).

My public Blogroll is here . I added a few of the recommended sites from Maryland Libraries Learning but also tossed on a couple that I am a fan of - "No Flying No Tights" (a graphic novel review site) and Whedonesque (because I am a total fangirl for all things Joss Whedon...um...and he had a character in his show that was a librarian so its work related...sort of).

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Week 4 (the pre-show)

Okay, just looking at what I have to do for Week 4. I'm pretty familiar with RSS feeds. I don't use Bloglines, Livejournal actually has an RSS feed incorporated into it's "friends list" feature (I currently have 56 friends, 60 communities, and 18 outside feeds that I watch on livejournal - mind you not all of them are active posters, but still, that's a lot!)

Though, I have to say, I was a bit freaked out that my livejournal is syndicated on Bloglines...wonder if there's a way to see if anyone reads it outside of livejournal land...not like I post anything scandalous, mostly just babbling about fandoms I enjoy.

(note to self: to avoid confusion when on a work-related blog, do not refer to Livejournal as "LJ" as that is also the code for "Library Journal").

Week 3, Thing 7 - Tech post

Well, the most recent technology (and when I say "technology", I'm assuming we are referring to the internet) that has caught my attention is "micro-blogging". So far, it's actually one of the few new trends that I haven't been completely sucked into! (well...almost).

The biggest "micro-blogging" slash "social-networking" site right now is Twitter. This site allows you to update your status in a short sentence or two from your computer or cell phone. While on a regular blog, like this one, I can ramble on about my life, tv shows, etc., a micro-blog consist of "I am eating food now and it's good" or "I am at work, call me there if you need me".

My first interaction with microblogging happened on 'Facebook'. I joined this site just to see what the fuss was about and found it odd that people were updating their "status" with little notes like "so-and-so is suffering from a headache" or "so-and-so is ready for friday". These updates happened every few hours!

I'll admit, when I log into Facebook, I feel compelled to change my status. Usually it's just to kill time or amuse myself. But since there's no method of feedback, who knows if anyone cares!

Anyway, I find the whole thing interesting because of the type of people that use it. First, you have to have some tech-savvy if you're going to use your cell phone to send message to the internet.

Second, you have to have a teensy bit of free time all the time - not a chunk of time to write a full blog, but enough time to say "so-and-so is craving pizza" and then get back to work. Which means you have a certain kind of job/lifestyle that sits you in front of a computer or cell phone all day and you can goof off like this.

And third - you have to be even more delusional than a regular blogger. I mean, yes I've fooled myself into thinking other people would want to hear my opinion on tv shows, movies, my life etc. But I don't know if I can convince myself that anyone wants to know what I'm doing at any given second!

Though, I've heard the powers of micro-blogging can also be used for work rather than play. A friend of mine told me his office uses a similar updater to alert co-workers to what they are doing. (I'm in the office, I'm at lunch, I'm working on such and such).

It's a bit scary. Cell phones bother me because people let them take over their lives. They drop everything to take cell phone calls no matter where they are. Why? Back in the day, if you weren't at home, people left a message. Why must you answer the phone when you're...oh gee, I dunno, at the library. ;-)

Same with micro-blogging. Before you would just leave home. Or if anything, put up an away message on instant messenger that said "be right back". But soon, will people be compelled to document their trips to the grocery store? to update us on their every movement?

And that's the story of technology I guess - it goes from a total distraction, something silly, then slowly becomes part of our culture until we can't live with out it!

Wow, that was a really long post. If you made it this far, treat yourself to a cookie!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Week 3, Thing 5 - Explore Flickr

I've had a Flickr account for awhile now (I sort of "grew" one when Yahoo bought the site) but didn't really start using it until earlier this year.

One of the things I liked about Flickr, because it is such a popular site, is it has worked out deals with several blog hosting sites to allow you to post your Flickr photos from Flickr right into your blog. (This is how I was able to post my mash-up in the previous post). It's a nice addition, so that after you've uploaded photos you don't have to go back to the Flickr site, find the URL of the image, create the HTML to post the image, and then return to your blog site to post it all.

There are several different kinds of "groups" on Flickr. I have never signed myself up for one, though I was contacted by the 501st group - a Star Wars costuming club. We had the members come to my branch last October for a program. I had posted my photos on Flickr to share with friends and co-workers. One of the 501st members found the post and contacted me about marking them to be included in that groups album. That was the first time I had done that. It's a very cool way of sharing photos.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Week 3 Thing 6 - Flickr mashups


Librarian Trading Card
Originally uploaded by orangerful
So, I already have a Flickr account that I use on a pretty regular basis but I wasn't familiar with the "mashup" sub-culture. And I really wasn't aware that it was even encouraged by Flickr. I wasn't 100% comfortable giving my information to the site, so I only allowed permission to make this one silly trading card and then deleted it.

Still, it's very cool. I also realized I don't have very many photos of ME on my Flickr site - it's mostly the stuff around me that I photograph and share on my blog.

Also, I'm surprised that the subject of "notes" has not been broached in this training. It's one of my favorite parts of Flickr! I shall talk about that more when I backtrack and post about Week 3, Thing 5. Right now, I want to see if I'm able to post from Flickr to Blogger without the comptuer going ka-blooey.

test post: reactions to "7 & 1/2 lifelong learning habits"

Use one of your test posts to create an entry about the habits among the 7 and 1/2 lifelong learning habits that is easiest and hardest for you & why

The hardest part of the 'lifelong learner' program for me would be the goal setting. I'm horrible at creating realistic goals. Usually, I'm far too vague in what I want to accomplish, so it's hard to create a way for me to know when I've done what I want to do! We have to create a Workplan for ourselves each year, and that's always the scariest part of my evaluation because I have no idea what I'll accomplish in the next year - something I'm intersted in right now could turn out to be very dull and something that I imagine to be boring could hook me! And I also seem to have big commitment issues, so creating any sort of contract, whether for learning goals or buying a car, stresses me out!

The easier part for me will be the actual learning. I love to learn! I consider "learning" to cover everything from reading a "how-to" guide to clicking around on someone's blog and ending up on an article about something totally random. It's all information and you never know when it will come in handy!


first post (again)

So, I've deleted the couple of posts that I had made during LATI and turned this blog into my personal Maryland Libraries Learning 2.0 blog. This is not my first experience with Blogger or my first experience blogging (if that's what you call what I do with my livejournal). I look forward to sharing my thoughts about this program here.

Now I'm going to go find some headphones and watch the "Lifelong Learners" tutorial.