Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Thing 23 - The End (or The Beginning!)

As I reflect back upon all the hard work of this 23 Things on a Stick, I realize that there are so many tools that can make connecting with the rest of the world not only easier, but more meaningful. I really liked some of the new social networking tools I discovered in my assignments. I am going to make a daily effort to keep using these, to try my hand at podcasting, and to keep my eyes open to new developments in social networking tools.

23 Things on a Stick has been one of the most refreshing learning experiences in libraries I've been a part of all year. It was completely hands on, and all the learning that happened in it depended upon me. Because of this unique instructional style, I surprisingly learned much more in this self-driven challenge than I have in any other workshop format to date. I can't wait for them to do this with other topics!

I'm sad that it is all over, but excited to get out there and keep using the new knowledge I've gathered so far! Thank you to all those who put this together and got all these Library people around the state to get involved in learning about internet technologies.

Thing 22

We have definitely learned a lot in doing this 23 Things. I got to do so much of Library 2.0 / social networking, that now there is no turning back - nor would I want to!
I resolve to use a little of what I've learned every day. I set aside a little time at the end of each work day to explore a little more of at least one of the recommended sites. That should be no trouble as everything we've learned here is both useful and fun! I will try to add to this blog as I learn new things.

Minitex and WebJunction will also be a constant source for me so I can always brush up my skills so I don't get too far behind.

(I see posted to link that looks fun and interesting. I will have to look into this more!)

This has been a lot of fun, and I'm really glad I did this!

Thing 21

In my last post I complained about Myspace and Facebook not being grown up enough for social networking. The two are very popular, and that made them seem like the only options for me. Now that I've tried Ning and Gather I see that there actually are options for me!

View my page on 23 Things on a Stick

I'm having trouble getting the widgets to post to my blog, but I'm going to keep trying even if it makes me crazy! I also added a picture of my Libraries Book Cart Drill team to the Ning. I love the idea of the Ning site, and I'm seriously thinking about making a page for my Anne McCaffrey friends that meet each year in Atlanta. We could have a place to discuss the author, share our trip itineraries, post pictures, and just hang out online. Right now we all use a social networking site devoted to the author, and contact each other through the forum on that page. It is a great way to discuss our interests and make friends online.

I have played with other social networking sites like Project Playlist where I created a list of songs I enjoy. Here is the player if you are interested:

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Thing 20

I have used various social networking sites. It has proven a great way to network with former schoolmates, co-workers and neighbors from former residences.
I have a Facebook page, which I don't use more than once every few weeks, but lately more of my librarian friends are on that. I don't understand some of the stupid gifts and games in it, but I think that keeps people coming back. I really enjoy the groups features, that help keep people connected.

This past few days I got together with a bunch of MSU librarians to try out Facebook. We took our Library Week Read pictures and posted them, with tags sharing who's who. I made some friends on it, and joined our new Fans of MSU Library facebook group. I've had some fun with Facebook this week, and I can see it as a better way of connecting to other professionals online.

My Myspace page is pretty boring, but I do play around with the themes and added a music widget with songs. I've gotten a few people who networked with me contacting me through the site. I am not convinced that the site is that great, but it has helped me find people every now and then.

Myspace seems much more teen oriented, with its bright and flashy interface. There isn't a lot to do there, and the dialogs I've seen on Myspace seem very juvenile. While Facebook isn't much better, it does seem like a slightly grownup version. If there was something with a little more practical links to things I need, then I'd probably use that instead. Until then, Facebook is the winner.

Thing 19

Podcasting was really fun to try. I listened to the NPR podcast since I've listened to that on the radio before. That was pretty cool, and I found out about brand new book information. I thought that it seemed much more convenient that having to drop everything to listen to the show live. Now I can just listen when it is a good time for me.

I looked through some of the directories and found the easiest to get around in and to actually find podcasts of interest to me. I think that podcasts would be a great benefit to libraries to get material out to people who can't come to presentations live.

One of the things I tried was a video podcast called Diggnation, which has my favorite guy from old Tech TV Kevin Rose, who is also one of the founders of Digg. This is just a videotaped podcast where you can see everything that is going on and it is videotaped for an audience.

I am thinking about trying my hand at a podcast. I have another blog on LiveJournal that has a phone in podcasting type feature. It is rather cool as it also transcribes the text I submit via a phone. My LiveJournal account is paid, although, I'm a permanent member so I'm not sure what the monthly cost of this would be. I also have free RSS feeds for my page, so I think that would make it easy for sharing. If I can get this posted, I'll try to link it here.

Podcasting seems like a great way to reach out to busy library staff and patrons. It could be one more way to share information with people who already are listening to and enjoying podcasts.

Thing 18

Youtube is an addicting site that can give you clips from anything you like. My only problem is that the movies are rather low quality, and there is a lot of junk to wade through before getting to the diamonds.

The following is a cute videoclip of a gentleman's 3-year-old daughter describing what she thought happened in the Star Wars movies. It is quite cute and funny, and also falls into my nerdy interest in Star Wars.

I thought this was a great way for people to share information that is freely accessible. I have made training videoclips at other institutions that have used this. However, I would feel safer having our own videos kept at a more secure site.

I did make my own videoclip of our Fall Student Appreciation party in 2007. It was rather easy to upload, but some may want a pay site that has features like editing to make things run better. I tried out some of their new titles features, which I enjoyed. Although I tried it again another day and these options were no longer available. Maybe they are trying them out?

Here is the video I made of our party:

This was really fun for me to do. I can see using this a lot at most libraries, and being free is the right price!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Thing 17

The ELM Productivity Tools are wonderful! I have used search and journal alerts and the RSS feeds as well. The Web Page (Page Composer) feature of EBSCO is a great tool for faculty who want to easily incorporate sources from the EBSCO databases into class reading. I don't use these very often in my present postion, however when I worked in reference, I used them all the time.

Jonathan Coulton's Skullcrusher Mountain