Friday, April 27, 2007

Lesson #22, Choose Your Own Adventure

I must admit the title for this week reminds me of those popular books from my childhood where you would read a page and then based on your decision, you would be told which page to turn to next. I was very excited to go explore the web 2.0 awards site. I was even more interested when I saw they had podcasting sites. However, after looking at them, I have to say there wasn't a lot of content there. Or, at least, not much that was new to me. I was hoping to find some new stuff to subscribe to and didn't find anything. So then I decided to look at the "books" section and it states there "There were either not enough nominations or there was no clear leader to award winners in this category." What? I know there are free audiobook downloads out there. THey couldn't find anything?! This site was a major disappointment. So, to cheer myself up I moved onto webware. Now this is a cool site. It just has blog postings about new web stuff. I was so impressed, I added it to my bloglines account. So, no new podcasts for me, but I do have a new feed in Bloglines, so it wasn't a total downer.

Lesson #21, the labs of Google

I experimented with a numer of things in Google Labs. I like Google Transit, but it seems to do the same thing that the Metro site does. I typed in my locatation at work and my home address and discovered that if I caught a bus at the local park and ride at 12:01, I could be home by 3:17pm. This is one of the drawbacks of living out of the city and one of the reasons I don't commute by bus. I have been using Google Reader to keep up with some of my blogs. While it doesn't have all the blogs I have in my bloglines account, I find that I use it more because I am always logging into Google to read my gmail. Interesting how the ease of the user really matters. Hmmm... I also tried Google Suggestions. I think people will either hate it or love it. I love it. It lets you know all of the phrases that begin with your search term and how many sites are available with that particular search term. Fascinating. For instance, when I began to type in "Early literac" it showed that there were 6.9 million results for early literacy, 1.5 million results for early literacy skills, and 1.4 million results for early literacy activites and 3.3 million results for early literacy development. This would help users guide their search to get more results. However, they may not be better results. Google Trends was interesting, but I am not sure how I would apply it. It was interesting that the Australians are the ones searching the term "early literacy." However, the links off to the side were all two to three years old and I know there is newer material.

Lesson #18, Search what you like

So, I didn't realize that I was more behind in this process than I though. So now my lessons are out of order. How embarrassing! I had fun exploring Rollyo and Google Custom Search Engine. I think that Rollyo's home page is a little misleading as there isn't a lot there. Also, I have a difficult believing that Debra Messing is making Rollyo searches on online shopping in her free time to share with the world. Hey, that just me. Also, there Celebrity Gossip search included PerezHilton, but not TMZ?! What is up with that?! Still, they seemed to have more content than that searches already available on Google. So here is a link to the search roll I created on Google. To be honest, I picked Google because I already have an account and it was one less login and password to have to remember. That said, it was very easier and I can see the potential use of my search roll. So here it is, my search roll of early literacy resources: It only has a few sites listed now, but I hope to add more of my favorites at a later date. Here's to hoping that someday I will have some free time!

Lesson #20, online software

Well, I spent a bit of time exploring Google Docs and Zoho. I prefer Zoho. At first glance, it appears to have many more options. It had more choices for fonts. Also, when I saved my Google Docs file, it just named it after the first sentence automatically. Ewww. Zoho actually prompted me for a file name. Much better.

Lesson #19, Library 2.0

Our instructions for this lesson are to blog a bit about 2.0, so that is what I will do! I read all the articles and I think at times the concepts they tout and their directions are at odds with each other. For example, the gentleman listing the "icebergs" or barriers claims that we should make technology so simple that our patrons don't need education. I read that as I am sitting at my computer taking part in a 27-lesson, 3 to 4- month training process and I am a trained professional. Yes, there are many patrons who are familiar with and already using this technology, but I think there are also just as many who aren't. Let's use the technology highlighted in Learning 2.o to make the tech savvy users welcome, but not at the cost of making others feel unwelcome. There are still many patrons who only use the library to check out books and media and that is okay. I did particularly enjoy the last section of the last article ( about Library 4.0. Where can I sign up for that? It sounds like my kind of library.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Hey, that's me...

Hey, it's me. Well, sort of. I have never claimed to be artistically gifted and this just proves it. In fact, my children have made miis of me on our wii at home and this looks nothing like my mii. I wonder what that says about my self image? Hmm... I wish there was a generator online that was as easy to manipulate as the mii generator on the wii. My children have had more fun making miis than playing the games at times. We have miis for all of our friends and family. My middle child got very creative and discovered you could shring down the set of eyeballs and place them over the nostrils and they would look like nose rings. What genius. A proud mommy moment for me, for sure.

Friday, April 6, 2007


Well, what to wonder about wikis. That is about as good as my alliterative skills get. I think wikis are a great idea. I first learned abou them at ALA, when ALSC introduced their wiki. They will definitely make committee work easier. I served as chair of a virtual committee and had to try to edit a document and reach a consensus amongst a group of librarians via email. Not an easy task, I tell you. With a wiki, I could have posted the document and all of the committee members could have had access to it and edited it. What a concept! I like anything that makes my life simpler. Go Wikis! I have also had fun browsing the conference wikis and I think they are a helpful tool as well.