Friday, September 14, 2007

Final Thoughts

Thing 23
I am done. It was fun. I like creating pictures best. There were so many "things" to learn! Some of them I will probably have to re-read to use again. But it was all worth it. It renewed my interest in the world wide web. I even ended up using Flickr to post some vacation pictures I wanted to share with my family. I can now see why so many of the public computers are used for viewing videos and listening to music. I think the future of communicating will be a total connection between audio, video, telephoning and using the web. While I still worry that we may actually lose personal touch between each other, it is obvious that the youth of today are already comfortable in the world of technology and ready for anything. (However, I may re-read "Future Shock!")

The benefits of completing this project were:
  • Learning about many web-based tools such as, wiki's, widgets, image generators, tagging (still not too sure about using that), blogging & using feeds to keep up-to-date on the latest news and special topics.

  • Being better able to understand what our customers are doing online and perhaps helping them use the internet more efficiently.

  • Broadening our view of the web and what we can do with it. I think we are probably just beginning to see the endless possibilities on the web. But things are moving very fast in the web world and more and more tasks are all connected by online programs. I can see how important it is for the library to keep up with all the changes.

One more thought:I think using the Internet is a good way to communicate ideas and learn more about everything. On the other hand I have developed another viewpoint, that is: being online alot can just as easily pull us apart as bring us together. The more time people spend sitting in front of a computer the less they are actually connected to the real world and real people. It is just as important to have face to face contact in person as it is online. It is very important that we not lose contact with the natural world we live in. And we all need time to play:))

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Brave New World 2

Thing 15 (again)

The most interesting feature of the Web 2.0 presentation was the video "The Machine is Us/ing Us". This very clever presentation helped bring together for me the concepts of form vs. content and how the new web allows us to do things online in many different forms without needing to know complicated web language or content. It also made more clear to me what mashups are and why we can use them. So Web 2.0 was able to teach me somethng simply because it is what it is. Well, it made perfect sense at the time.......

Brave New World

Thing 15

Somehow, in my haste to do many fun things, I left out my thoughts on Web 2.0. I read all the perspectives and after the first one, "Away from the icebergs", I felt like I had crashed into one. Overall some good points are made.
  • The library must go with the times and become more accessible to everyone. We can't keep all the books we might like "just in case" (of course BCPL always knew that!).

  • We can't train everybody. The commentator suggests that our technology should be made easier to use so that we don't have to teach everybody how to use it. I think this is a great idea on paper (online) but in reality, face to face, we have many people who are still just figuring out how to click the mouse and use an online catalog (or any catalog). So I think we are still going to have to teach people the basics. People still want human contact to help them navigate.

  • We seem to be making progress in connecting with more people online. But we should keep in mind that there is still a population out there who don't have the money or the means to use a computer at home. Some people (older?) don't want to deal with the technology at all.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Audio Books

Thing 22

Well, here is another tool that I just don't feel like using. I have checked up on the Overdrive audio books and I understand basically how to use them. Unfortunately my computer at home has crashed permanently. Also, I don't even like listening to the books on tape or CD's that we can check out in the branch. So it is not something I would want to use. I feel sure I could help someone else use it if needed. I just prefer to read the books myself:)

Podcast for dogs

Thing 21

I have managed to add a feed from a podcast to this blog. It is for me, appropriately about dogs from what seems to be a British radio station. "Dog Cast Radio" It is very soothing as well as informative to listen to. However, it was not easy to add it. At this point I don't even remember how I found the feed URL to put in the blog. I did use Yahoo Podcasts to find the website. I'm not sure I will listen to as many podcasts as I would watch videos:)

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

You Tube

Thing 20

Wow! I now understand why millions of people use YouTube. It is practically addictive! I could spend hours looking at videos. As far as the library is concerned, we definitely need lots more bandwidth so everyone can use it. I guess we could maybe do some booktalks that kids might watch. They would have to very exciting. Or maybe do a funny video about things that happen at the library, without offending anyone. Anything that would encourage people to visit us. To be honest I don't see many people looking for us on YouTube.
Wait! I've got it! A video of Sneaks promoting, in a funny and exciting way, the Summer Reading Club:)

Spanky the Cairn Terrier Battles His Monster!

This is my kind of dog! He even looks like me!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Definition of widget

From Wikipedia: A widget is anything that can be embedded within a page of HTML, i.e. a web page. A widget adds some content to that page that is not static. Generally widgets are third party originated, though they can be home made. Widgets are also known as modules, snippets, and plug-ins. Widgets can be written in HTML, but also in JavaScript, flash and other scripting languages that will be run when the page is called.
See Weather on right side of blog.

Online productivity!

Thing 19

Used Google Docs to upload a poem that I had saved on the wan.
Also added a widget for local weather. Found this on the Web 2.0 awards list.
Still not sure what the word widget means. Lots of useful and fun things to download or copy though.

A poem from Google Docs

Thing 18

Mother to Son

by Langston Hughes

Well, son, I'll tell you:

Life for me ain't been no crystal stair.

It's had tacks in it,

And splinters,

And boards torn up,

And places with no carpet on the floor-


But all the time

I'se been a-climben' on

And reachin landin's,

And turnin' corners,

And sometimes goin' in the dark

Where there ain't been no light.

So boy, don't you turn back.

Don't set you down on the steps

'Cause you finds it's kinder hard.

Don't you fall now-

For I'se still goin' honey,

I'se still climben',

And life for me ain't been no crystal stair.