Saturday, November 3, 2007

Quest 12: Part 2: Podcasting

I was able to attach a podcast from, but my office computer would not allow me to listen to it! I tried downloading the software on and the ActiveX software would not download. Whether or not a podcast works seems to be random at least on the computers at Dorchester. It was discouraging to download software to run the podcast and then it would not run. I did not find either or very user friendly. With, I was able to download software, but the podcast still would not run! I will keep trying to get a computer to run a podcast for me, so that I can have the experience.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Quest 12 - Media 2.0: Part 1: YouTube

I signed up for YouTube after viewing a couple of the travel videos/photo montages of Lyon, France where my daughter lives. I now have a very clear picture of the city and know a number of sites that I would like to see thanks to YouTube! I looked at the suggested items in the Tech Treks 2.0 resource information. I saw everything from Tydee Bowl and Maxwell House commercials to Lonelygirl15 clips. Under libraries, I viewed an informative video about the library closings in Oregon. I do have concern about copyright and how unregulated this seems to be. It is my understanding that anything can be posted, but if there is objection based on copyright, YouTube will pull it. I found that the Conference on Computers in Libraries had posted their 2007 InfoTubey Awards on YouTube, so I thought that was a very appropriate clip to post on my blog. I had difficulty getting it to embed directly and had to copy it first to a Word document and then paste it into the post as it would not copy the entire code from YouTube to the blog.

CIL2007: InfoTubey Awards

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Web-based Productivity Applications

The Zoho Writer is user friendly and set up very much like Word for Windows. So far, I have tried 30 boxes and made a to do list for today. Zoho planner seems to be intended more for appointment reminders and business purposes and it is not as user friendly in my opinion as 30 boxes. I looked at most of the Zoho sights and really liked the idea of collaborating as presented in the Zoho show section. The teenager who was away from home visiting family and had a deadline for a competition was able to get help from her Dad online using a web-based service like Zoho. I decided to try the post option and was able to send this blog entry from the Zoho Writer. Since I am a non-techie, this was quite an accomplisment for me! I look forward to trying more of the web-based productivity applications in the future.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Son of Tech Trek Playhouse! Quest 10

I visited all of the websites listed for this quest. The Twit Netcast Network would not perform on my work computer. I had lots of laughs on Unshelved and sent one of the strips to a couple of people. The Wayback Machine was fascinating. I read an old French fairy tale, Blondine and enjoyed looking at the illustrations for an old children's book, Abroad. Artpad was fun, but will require lots of practice for the uninitiated like me. I created an evite on Evite, but it would not send for some reason, I will try again. Slideroll will be so helpful in sending photos of family for genealogy! I can't wait to get a show together! Dogster and catster are for the real animal lovers and it is good that they have an outlet. 43 things was too much of a list for me and I regularly write lists--I guess I am too private to share my lists. I found lots of interesting sites on The Generator Blog--one particularly helpful was the Clutterdiet--tips on keeping down clutter--the bane of my existence! One sentence really does put one in the frame of Hemingway--short, brief prose.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Tech Trek Playhouse

This quest is out of chronological order, but I did want to blog it. I visited all of the sites for the quest. I really found Trip Advisor to be very helpful. My daughter now lives in Lyon, France and we plan to visit her there in the spring. It was fun being able to get a virtual tour of Lyon and see possible sites to tour. After three attempts, I was able to create a trading card. The free trading card option does not let you edit the photo and the top of my head kept getting cropped. I did finally succeed!


This quest was particularly intriguing to me. In reading the various Discovery Resources, I found that the City of Rochester in New York has its own very comprehensive wiki named ROCWIKI. My husband has family on his mother's side in Rochester. I looked at the family history link and discovered a link to Mt. Hope Cemetery where lots of his relatives are buried. There was a way to search for famous people who are buried there such as Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass as well as a list of the famous, but one can search for less famous folks too. I will be returning to the Rocwici. I have used Wikipedia for reference question information, but I had not explored other wikis until now. The Library Success: A best practices wiki was very useful. I found a number of sites that gave valuable information about search methods and deciding what resources to use in answering a reference question. This wiki will be most helpful in training new employees who work the information desk. When I visited the 2007 SCLA Annual Conference Wiki, I was pleased to find pictures of Dorchester Branch activities in the listing for locations that had Flickr accounts and I got to see Cynthia Bledsoe's trading card! I had just finished creating my own trading card and posting it on this blog. I did find that the free trading card does not offer editing options, so it took 3 attempts to get a trading card that did not cut off my head! I think that wikis are a useful tool for libraries and librarians as well.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Social Networking Sites

I visited all of the recommended social networking sites. I found Bebo more tasteful than MySpace in its presentation and tone. On MySpace I decided to search under one of my hobbies, crochet. There were two sites with live videos that linked to websites: which had a concise clip of how to crochet a picot edging which would be very helpful for anyone learning to do that stitch; and which gave an interesting brief history of crochet, however the narrator consistently mispronounced the word "crochet" as "croquet"--somewhat disconcerting. When I visited the actual website it just linked you to many other crochet sites, mostly commercial in nature. I listened to one of the comedy routines, but found it rather amateur. In the music category, I listened to one very poor vocalist and a rather good group called Ween that played a song, la cucaracha as a drawn version of a cockroach skittered across the screen. I found that the profiles had more information than I wanted to know about the people in a public forum setting. Linkedin seemed to be a very useful site for making potential employment contacts or learning about the company staff prior to a job interview. I was interested in the profile of the Facebook engineer staff itself and the forward thinking approach they had to the technical aspects of the site.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Fun with Flickr

Flickr will be the answer to my family's extensive digital photo collection. Since we have an award-winning amateur photogrpher here at Dorchester Road Branch, Flickr will also help us to organize our branch photos. We will probably have to upgrade to the professional status in order to create more than the miniumum number of sets (3) allowed. I find this a very useful tool and I plan to explore more of its features. I found Flickr to be very easy to use and I am excited about the possibilities that it affords!

Friday, September 21, 2007 and Technorati

In trying, I found the instructions easy to follow and I liked being able to organize and access favorite sites with a minimum of effort. I have both Firefox and Internet Explorer at home, so I will try at home as well. The information about Technorati was not as easy to follow and I did not particularly like the content of the site. I guess if you are an avid blogger, Techorati would keep you abreast of the very latest information. I don't have to know what everyone is thinking about everything. It is just too "dernier crie" for me!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Subscribing to Feeds

The directions for this quest were somewhat cryptic to follow. I am looking forward to getting lots of information without lots of keystrokes. Here is the address for bloglines subscriptions:

So far, the quests have been interesting and challenging at the same time, especially for a non-tech type of person!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Instant Messaging

IM was a new experience for me. I liked the immediacy and experimented with both the emotors and audio aspects that are in Yahoo. I had my share of technical glitches which seem to follow me like dirt follows Charles Schultz's character Pigpen! My office computer would not accept Yahoo IM, so I found a computer in the workroom that did accept it. Helen Walker and I had fun experimenting in IM with the audios. Other staff was treated to our laughter and exclaiming as we tried the sounds. I tried meebo today and it worked on the children's services computer, but again, Yahoo IM would not work! I wrote systems about the difficulty. Meebo seems less showy and I like the fact that I can use my pre-existing Yahoo IM information to sign in--it simplifies the prolifieration of passwords.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Life Long Learning

In viewing the ideas for lifelong learning, I find that attitude makes a big difference. Obstacles are sometimes created due to attitude alone. Technology can be one of our most useful allies, unless our attitude turns it into a foe (obstacle). I was concerned that it would be difficult to create a blog--the only tiny glitch was finding a user name for my g-mail account--a common difficulty that librarians encounter often when they are helping patrons create e-mail accounts. I was pleasantly surprised at the ease of the process.

As librarians, it seems a natural part of our profession to do informal teaching on the job. I feel strongly also about mentoring employees who are considering entering our profession. These are lifelong learning habits that I already practice.