Thursday, August 14, 2008

Too good not to share:

Running from here to there today, but this was just too good not to share:
This is what 2.0 means

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Thing 6 - Flickr Mashups

Well, this makes me wish I were still a front-line type librarian, because I could make some really awesome promo materials with these toys. In a lucky convergence, I recently discovered that judicious laminating and sizing can slat-wall enabled signage out of just about any piece of paper! But given my current job responsibilities, there are only so many READ posters I can justify printing out on our expensive color copier, particularly since they feature my kid. Though she is awfully cute...
Eventually I have to figure out what the various Creative Commons licences of flickr actually mean, because I may actually use some of these things when building presentations and training materials. Some of the images I'm finding are really useful, but I do want to attribute appropriately.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Will you wiki, or will you won't?

Catching up here, I've been looking through some of the wiki-discovery sites, and boy, do other people do it better than I do! I've tried using a wiki for some of my collaborative work here, and they tend to fall flat.

I think there are a few problems, not with the technology but with how we/I work. Mostly, I think we're so tied to the immediate call/response nature of e-mail that it's hard to step away from that. Remembering to check/work on the wiki seems almost retro, what with the immediate delivery of feed readers and such. The weekly "here's what changed on your wiki" doesn't really seem to work as a trigger to get people involved, either.

In looking for ways to more effectively use wikis in my work situation, I think I need to:
Make sure everyone understands why we're using wiki, i.e. the importance of the collaborative process.
Make sure everyone understands how the technology works.
Share expectations as far as participation and, for lack of a better word, manners.

I think people are still getting used to this kind of collaboration - there's a real reluctance I've seen to edit each other, and some of the resistance to full exploitation of the wiki's usefulness stems (I think) from misplaced politeness. Clarifying the "manners" or mores of how our wiki will be used might alleviate some of that fear.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Podcasts and frustration.

Well, this morning I tried playing a little with podcasts. I already download/collect/amass (what ever is the verb for this?) a bunch of podcasts, mostly BBC Radio 4 shows I got addicted to while living in the UK. I used to [verb] these on GoogleReader, now I mostly [verb] them on iTunes.

Which leads me to my frustration, probably a common one, having to do with how locked down library computers are. I can't download iTunes at work. In the last few weeks there have been a number of things (delicious toolbars, FreeMind, Firefox) I have not been able to download without an awful lot of kerfuffle. And while I do (I think) understand the reasoning in favor of tight security, homogeneous collections of loaded programs, and limited administrative access, this has more than once seemed like throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

It's clear from things I've read elsewhere that this is not unique to my system, and that many libraries are grappling with this. I don't have an answer (well, other than "I want what I want when I want it," but I fear that's a character failing, not a systemic solution).

The long and short of it, however, is that I will be waiting until I get home this evening to add They Might Be Giant's Friday Night Family Podcast to my iTunes feeds.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Feed Readers

I love love love my feed reader. I use Google Reader, and have a widget that exports it to my iGoogle page (right next to my current BestWidgetEver, MyListy).

Primarily I use it for work-related stuff, though that includes the more librarian-y of my library friends blogs, and yes, my Sunday PostSecrets are there to make Mondays more bearable. But mostly it's a "current awareness" service for work-related things.

Yay Feed Readers! And now I'm off to add some of you to my reader!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

All Together Now!

This is a practice post, a starter piece for the larger project of All Together Now, a Learning 2.0 experience coordinated by SLJ. I have a few reasons for doing this:
  • I'm thinking of rolling out a similar program for staff (finally, belatedly, etc.) and I'd like to get a feel for the actual time involved.
  • I know a little bit about a few of the applications involved, and not more than the names of more of them.
  • I'm curious as to the viability of such a mass exercise, as well as wondering who signs up for such things.

More about me later - I'm off to work now!