Saturday, March 29, 2008

Social Networks Thing 21

Social networks are not quite the latest thing, but they are new to me and probably some of my fellow librarians. We have been fumbling around Facebook and Ning. There are a few photos, but not much video or music on the 23 Things site on Ning. I have newly joined the Craftster network as well as Facebook and Ning. Whether I find something of value on them will determine if I will visit them in the future. I also have been a member of Webjunction for the past 6 months or so. I guess I thought of webjunction differently than Facebook, but perhaps it is similar. I saw webjunction as a source of information about libraries and links to sites of interest to librarians. I have always been reluctant to post anything on that site because you have to dig so much to get to the interaction part. There's also no customized home page as in the other networks.
I do not find social networks extremely appealing. I think "social" is the key word. I don't feel a need for more social interactions. I interact plenty with my patrons and my co-worker. I have a husband, children and friends so am not lonesome. So anyway, unless there's more library related need, I probably won't be using social networking sites.
I joined Craftsters for support regarding knitting. I would like a place I could go to ask questions and get advice. The directions on many patterns are pretty vague. I don't know if this site is the best place to go, or just to look in a book or look at general on-line informational sites. Maybe there is a different knitting network. All these sites and badges and widgets can be overwhelming and time consuming.


Find more photos like this on 23 Things on a Stick



Ning Badge

Visit 23 Things on a Stick

Friday, March 28, 2008

Facebook Thing 20

Thing #20 is Facebook or My Space. I have been hearing about Facebook from my college-age daughter for some time now, but I always considered it off limits. I once had a My Space account (now abandoned), but I decided to sign up for facebook because I knew I'd have at least one friend--my daughter. I found another young friend--Leah Bardwell who was my IM pal a few weeks back, but no one my own age.
I did write on a couple of walls and joined the Library 2.0 group. I also started a group. This may not be exactly kosher because I used the CMLE office as the headquarters. They may not like this, but I thought it might be a good way to network with other 23 Things People. I haven't been reading too many other blogs, unfortunately, so that is my own fault.
Facebook has a lot to offer, including ways to contact people--write on their wall, poke them, give them gifts. I asked for my other daughter's e-mail address so I could add her as a friend. She said that I didn't need e-mail--just a name. Indeed she was right, so I added her. She was number one under "Alice Johnson". I could also add many pictures. My older daughter uses Facebook as a way to keep track of her photos. She has a very cute one on her page. Her name is Livia Johnson if anyone wants to look at it. My daughter cautioned me against getting addicted to Facebook. I can see how that can happen. It is a creative outlet, so you can advertise your ideas and pictures there, but it is also motivating when someone contacts you (okay, it hasn't happened yet, beyond two people who accepted me as friends), but I am curious to see if anyone else joins the 23 Things on a Stick group

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Podcast Thing 19

We are looking at Podcasts this week. These are like radio for the computer. In fact some of the best podcasts are from the public radio station. I listened to a few podcasts. A great library related one was an interview with a librarian from Upsula, Minnesota. She is librarian at the school and the public library. It seems like a lot to juggle. I also listened to some music through "the current" on Minnesota Public Radio. The podcast directories were not that great. I think it is best to just go to the site you are interested in and see if they have podcasts. If I had to recommend a directory, I would say "podcastalley" has many good graphics and suggestions as to popular podcasts. Yahoo just has a plain page with only a search engine box. I really didn't get very many good hits. None of these podcast sites has the appeal of You Tube. I could see that in the future, the ECRL website might have podcasts of different presentations and information about different topics of interest. I don't have much high tech stuff around my office so probably will not attempt my own podcast. The MP3 format is definitely the wave of the future. I can see that in the future, people may want to download books onto their ipod--more compact than tapes or CDs. Next I will attempt to add a podcast to this blog. I'll find a song--seems like the most fun.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

You Tube - Thing 18

You tube is lots of fun. There are all kinds of witty things on this site. There's also the latest video news--Rev. Wright's rants about the oppression of black American. It looks like you can also watch serious lectures about various topics--I didn't have time for some of the 40 minute offerings.

I choose to put a video of Phoebe Snow singing "Poetry Man" on my blog. I was looking for things about books or reading, but everything was way too long. The video of the couple singing about "Reading on a Dream" in the library was cute, but that was already on the 23 Things Site. I tried the tag "books" and got a video of an author (James Born) shooting his rival's books. I thought it was funny, but I told a patron about it and she seemed offended, so I eliminated that idea. Next I tried "poetry"--that produced lots of "Def Poetry Slam" Dave Chappelle had a poem about how he gets followed around in Korean grocery stores. It was funny, but perhaps racially offensive. That is one thing--things on you tube are a little over the edge for us middle-aged folk. So perhaps that is why I choose a 20 year old video that can't offend anyone.

I liked the video tour of the Winona State Library. Maybe we could use it to take short videos of our book discussion or storytimes. Our library isn't really big enough to tour.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Thursday, March 13, 2008

ELM Productivity Tools Thing 17

These ELM tools are fantastic! I can see showing patrons who are interested in a certain topic to get alerts for magazine articles about that topic. The web page composers seem like the perfect place to organize information for a paper or topic. I wasn't able to save my pages because I don't have a flash drive, but I e-mailed them to myself. This seems like a very useful function for people who don't want to make a lot of copies at the library. It can save money and energy. They can just e-mail themselves the articles. I really like the note-taking function in net library.

I wish I could say that I will be collaborating with colleagues with these tools, but a public library is a little different in regard to colleagues. I think these tools would work well for school librarians who are helping a colleague compile current research on certain topics. The proquest web page would be a good way to show your research to colleagues and help to save them time.

I think these enhanced tools should benefit students greatly. On the whole, the general public that I work with is not research oriented. It is fun to get students in who are doing serious research, but it really takes time to show people these tools and I am lucky if I can show people that we have these sites, let along showing them the enhanced features.

I would like to add that NetLibrary is about 8 years out of date. When I was teaching at the college level, this was a very new database and many books were added. Now it looks like there aren't too many current books available. I have used it for nonfiction, but the books were from around 2000.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Research Project Calculator Thing 16

Now this thing is great!! There was lots of good information on this site about writing a research paper, creating a thesis, looking for sources, evaluating sources, organizing ideas, organizing time. I certainly would use this if I were still teaching English Comp or even taking a class where I had to write a paper. I will recommend it to my 18-year old daughter. I have looked at the ELM resources and they don't have as much information as this site. I like the evaluation sheet at the end--seems like it would be very valuable info for teachers. I like that the site gives both student and teacher perspectives.
Though this site is great for school librarians, I'm not sure I'll use it much in the public library. I certainly will recommend it to students who tell me about a paper they are doing, but so far I haven't done many academic papers for my job.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Puzzle Pirates Thing 15

Have to say--hate interactive games. My interactions with my fellow pirates have ranged from no response to a friendly hello to repeated requests to "Get off my ship" and "walk the plank." First of all I did my level best to match up my little dots on the bilge game and also the sailing game, but in the hour or so I spent on them, did not master them. Often told "Ye Botched It". The sword and dueling games were much worse--my pirate name soon appeared on the bottom of the screen with a frowny face after I failed to match up the correct colors with the swords or whatever. I don't mind games--I wasted a whole summer once on Krystal Krazy, but these cruel interactions are what get me down. First of all you have to learn the lingo (who has the time), and secondly these people are hell bent on who knows what? I never really learned the point though saw signs about getting "booty" and dueling other ships. Seems like a whole world that wastes a lot of time. Real people would never be this mean.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Blog Prompts Thing 14

1. I can use Library Thing for making up lists of books as I've demonstrated in the previous blog. It also might be useful for checking dewey decimal numbers or putting things in order. I don't do cataloging so this is not something I usually have to worry about.

2. I share booklists with patrons in a number of ways. ECRL prints up lists, which I hand out, such as Star Wars books, or Librarians choose influential book of the 20th century. I also sometimes make a display of books such as "Minnesota mysteries" or "books about the civil war". I print up best sellers or sometimes lists such as "best books of 2007 (according to Washington Post). There are also catalogs beside the patron search terminal for patrons who want to look for new releases. Lastly Novelist offers lists of "read-alikes" that I can use if I have a specific request from a patron. It seems like Library Thing would be a way to do a sort of "read alike" by accessing other books from certain lists.