Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The End

Overall I have really enjoyed this opportunity to take this course, some of my co-workers may be surprised to hear me say this as they had to listen to all my frustration during times when I just couldn't understand the lesson. Getting the map on my blog was really hard (but easy when Robin showed me how) other things caused much frustration. One thing I've really gotten better at is writing on my blog, at first I wrote on paper to get my ideas down but now I can skip that part. I also felt uncomfortable knowing anybody could read my blog but I figure outside of my "teachers" nobody else cares what my opinions are. There are things that I would never have even attempted if not for this class, namely myspace, and I doubt if I will ever use it but it was easier to join than I thought it would be and not the evil, dangerous site I heard about. I enjoyed the creative parts like flickr. I feel that at least now I have more of an idea what all these different things mean and why some people really like them. The creative things and bloglines are what I hope to continue to use.

As far what would I like to learn more about I'm not sure how to answer that. I would like to see either classes where we can ask questions when we are having problems or maybe a time scheduled for questions when the instructors would be available. I do think more time needs to be scheduled for doing the assignments, I have rushed through some parts that I would have liked to spend more time on. I am also behind on other things that I am anxious to catch up on.


I have used e-books occasionally since the library has first started subscribing to them. I find it easy to use. I only use it as a starting place, by searching a subject and looking at different books and I find which are of most interest to me and interlibrary loan (ill) them. Books are so much better then a computer screen. That probably one reason I don't care for blogs, but them in book form and I'll read them. I do have very dry eyes and looking at a computer screen for any time at all really bothers my eyes. For anybody doing research papers and maybe research for something specific such as an illness, e-books can be of great help. I see this as something that will only get more popular as people become more familiar with it especially if it become more portable. I overall really like e-books as a resource but cannot see it ever replacing real books. There is nothing like curling up with a good book and a cup of tea.


This week has been podcast week. I found some of the podcast selections interesting but I was unable to get them because active x control (or whatever it is) does not work on this computer. I had the most luck with yahoo podcast. The found "The Library Channel" on yahoo, from Arizona State University. I find it hard to listen close enough to get any real information from the podcast. I cannot listen to audio books or talk radio because I get distracted too easily. I would must rather read to get the information. It is also much easier to go back and reread something or slow down than listening to a podcast. I still see a valuable use for them and by all the podcast out there they must be popular for a lot of people. I did try to listen to some podcast on subjects that were more entertainment hoping it would be easier to pay attention, it was not. I did select "The Library Channel" to add to my bloglines. I do not think unless I have a very specific reason that I will very use podcasts.

Monday, February 12, 2007


I've been looking at YouTube for the last few days. I understand the fascination with it but I find it boring mostly and a drain on my time. There are so many very clever videos but you have to go through a lot to find them and that is very time consuming. I can see why creative people enjoy making them. That would be the fun of YouTube. I can also understand why people could get obsessed with not only creating them but watching them also. I think creative people could fine lots of uses to use various videos on there sites to promote different things. It could be a useful tool. The video I choose is interesting but it did give me a headache watching it.

Doug Aitken: sleepwalkers

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Web 2.0 Awards

I looked around at a few different sites. Some sounded interesting but I was unwilling give them a try, such as the start pages because I don't want to mess anything up. I enjoyed the calenders and would need to work with them for a much longer period of time to really see what would work for me. A good and easy to use calender can help with busy lives. I also like the photo sites, but again to make a decision on what would be my favorite would take time.

I really liked newsvine. It was easy to navigate and find news stories that were interesting. I liked that people can submit news stories that they found elsewhere.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

google labs

I've been looking at google labs. I imagine the people at google have fun with that. I tried a few like music trends which was fun but I'm not for sure what the point is. I think Accessible search is a great idea and would be of great help to people who needed it. Picasa for linux also was interesting, but I like photos. I'm not sure what linux is and maybe picasa already exists for other systems(?). The notebook would be of great help to people search something. Page creator would be very popular I would think. I wanted to try it out but I also do not want a web page so all I did was look at it. I didn't get trends but it was interesting to search on things (I searched on winter, summer) but I have not idea what the graphs mean. I think page creator, music trends, accessible search and notebook will make it because of the uses a lot of people will have for them.

OK, I'm totally lost with this stuff. I don't use anything besides occasionally a word processor. I don't understand the meaning of many of the terms and endings(?) that are used such as 'ajax, htm, html, PDF, .ppt, .pps or .odp. When it says you need firefox I don't have a clue if I have it. Its hard enough with photos and music and they only have about 4 or 5 different endings and I guess at it. Even as I opened the file to this document the choices to save were confusing. I have no idea if I wanted to save this document would I save it as a html or rtf or word or openoffice or pdf. Whats the difference and how does average Karens know which to use.

Now that I've vented my frustrations I see why people who know what they are doing when find this a great help. I would be useful for people in the same office building and would be a must have for people working from different buildings or even states. The time and ease of working on a project together would be a great benefit to all companies.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Search engines

Today I've been experimenting with search engines. I tried all of them with a search that I've conducted a few times in the past. I am looking for supplies to replace a broken snowglobe. Until today I've not have any luck in finding any. I found what I was looking for on clusty and mooter. For the most part though the results were pretty much the same. Kartoo was unique in the way it presented the results but I would have to use it more to really be comfortable with it. Actually, to really find which works the best for me I would need to experiment a lot more with all the them. I don't know if I 2 minute search can really be enough to decide, I think it would be best over weeks of trying different ones with different searches. The three I liked the best were exalead, mooter and clusty, along with the standard yahoo. They felt the most comfortable to use. I don't feel comfortable enought with tagging to like gravee and wink and kartoo were different.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Library 2.0

Having read all of the articles suggested I'm feeling as if I can never catch up on the technology that this involves, with constant changes. I have a hard time finding things on websites, and then when it gets updated and is changed I lost again. There is definitely excitement by the leaders of library 2.0 and their excitement is contagious. The article that I enjoyed the most was "Away from Icebergs", I thought Rick Anderson stated the problems libraries face with trying to serve our patrons in this changing world of technology. I especially like the part on having things work so patrons did not have to be trained to work the technology. I worry about changing too much too soon. As I have stated before I worry about people who are older and do not want libraries to change, they like browsing through books and communicating with people face to face. It will take a long time for all people to be comfortable with computers, many people do not use computers at all and others only for work and others for limited uses such as emails and playing games. Just as many businesses and banks would like people to pay online many people are not ready for that yet. It will take some time. I do not want to intimidate people who are not ready to be pushed into technology. The library should be for everyone to feel comfortable and welcomed.

Friday, January 19, 2007

States Visited

create your own visited states map These are the lovely states I have visited. Not very
or check out these Google Hacks. many places but I hope to change that in the next couple of
years. Again, thanks Robin for helping.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Image Mosaic Generator

I've been playing around with generators today and found one I really like. Its the Image Mosaic Generator,
I found it on The Generator Blog. There are so many generators on the site I can't wait until I have time to work with more. I am not only getting more comfortable with blogging through these exercises but better at uploading pictures so I can have fun with them. Robin did have to help me get my generated picture on my blog, I had the right idea of how to do it, but the wrong size picture. I'm still not for sure exactly how all this knowledge will help me help someone with any computer issues but at least I can understand what people mean by blogging, and wikki's and such. Its hard to believe that I'm on week 7 already, the first couple of weeks I thought I'd give up by now, I was very uncomfortable with the whole process. In case anybody is interested the picture is of my three beautiful children, my pride and joy as they say.

Friday, January 12, 2007

More RSS

Today I've been working on more RSS experimenting. I really like bloglines, it is a very easy convenient way to keep up with news, interests and things relating to work. I have had some troubles with the asignment 16 of using the different search tools to fine things but I hoping that with more experience it will become easier, just as blogging has. I like and feedster the best. I found technorati too confusing to use very well. I find that just like searching through the library stacks, searching for interesting news stories, you find the unexpected that peaks your interest. Things you never would have known you even wanted to look at without stumbling over it. I have a total of 17 feeds on my blogline right now and plan to add more. I was wondering if there is a way to organize bloglines into separate accounts, one for work interests, another for news stories and one for personal interests. Just a thought, it probably is already possible.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

My creation - mashups

My creation
My creation,
originally uploaded by karengel.
This is the postcard I created with the flickr mashups. I hope I'm using the terminology correct.

RSS - Useful stuff

I had no idea that the RSS had so many things for you to subscribe to. No wonder it has become for popular. It really can make life easier for people who check many news/interest sites every day. Initally I had a hard time subscribing to the feeds that I was interested in but once I figured it out its pretty painless. There is still one I cannot figure out. I also added co-workers blogs to my blogline and that was easy. But learning that I can do all of this is actually takes more of my time because now I have myspace and bloglines and gmail etc, etc to visit whereas before I didn't.

Friday, January 5, 2007

Enjoying Flickr

This week I been looking at Flickr and I just love it. Because its creative and visual its something I can really get into. I still don't know how to do much besides upload photos from a disc but I guess thats a start. This is not the best picture I took when we went to Colorado last fall but its the one I was able to get posted on this site. A few weeks ago I accidently discovered another site for posting photos that I thought was good also, but I cannot remember the address to check it out again. I am not sure of some very basic things of the flickr website as I do not know how to let other people see my pictures. I have it set to private, friends and family but how does flickr know who my friends are? See, I still have a lot to learn. Maybe, after everyone does this course and we have a basic background on what myspace and flickr and everything else is about maybe we could have a couple of in person classes so that Robin and Bobbi can answer questions and should how to advance further. Real small classes on the different topics so we can really learn.
As I continue with the classes and blogging every week I am getting more comfortable with it, and I can see why people really like myspace even though that is not my way of communicating with people. It is a great tool for people to keep in touch. I'm even getting more familiar with tagging.