My favorite exercises were the ones I could share with my daughter. She was excited that I knew about podcasting, YouTube, and image generators. Somehow I feel a little more "with it". I think this program has made me realize just how much I don't know about web 2.0 and technology.
As for improving the program, one suggestion would be to have someone on-site to help when we get stuck. I really liked being able to work at my desk, but I got stuck a few times where I needed someone to look at where I was and to give me tips on how to proceed. I mostly figured it out by trial and error but it was very time consuming. My second suggestion would be to scale back on the number of things covered and spend more time on each. I would just begin to understand one thing and would immediately be on to the next thing.
I would describe my overall experience as both enlightening and humbling. I felt excited to learn about all this new technology, but felt I was only scratching the surface.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
I was least familiar with Project Gutenberg and what it offers, so I decided to take a look at that site. The site offered a good selection of classics, but I was expecting many more titles by Shakespeare and other authors used in literature classes. The selection of titles for Twain, Thackeray, Hardy, and Doyle were very good. I would enjoy listening to some of the Twain or Doyle titles which I read many years ago. This site would also be helpful for some of my daughters classes.
Monday, September 10, 2007
I started out the discovery project by looking at the directories for general information on video reviews. This was too general so I searched library video reviews. I only got two hits on Podcast.net one of which seemed relevant. On Podcastalley.com I got lots of hits but again only one seemed relevant (a different podcast than on Podcast.net). It seems fruitful to use more than one directory to search. I added the feed for Hennepin County Library Teenlinks (a podcast that reviews books and videos for teens) to my Bloglines account.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
I spent some time on YouTube looking at the different categories and videos. I saw the suggestion of funny dogs and decided to look at funny cats. I spent a while laughing at all kinds of cat videos. I was amazed at how creative some of them were with music and editing (or non-editing). What surprised me a great deal was the number of comments for each video. The amount of visits to this site must be phenomenal! I think the idea of videos for patrons to watch is a good one. Perhaps library programs or special presentations could be made available. Also, the idea of allowing comments by users is a good one (though I guess someone would have to review the content).
Friday, August 31, 2007
I chose Medstory (beta) from the health category. I did a couple of searches on topics of personal interest. One search came back with only one category and seemed very straightforward without allowing for refining. The second search I did "cholesterol and diet" was much better. It allowed me to refine by 8 different categories including clinical studies, conditions and experts. It also allowed for further refining by trials, news, research articles and grants. This intelligent search engine makes searching for health and medical information on the web more refined and less cumbersome. It could be used in the library when information on the in-house databases is insufficient or sketchy.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
I created an account at ZohoWriter. I explored the site and created a test document. The software was easy to use, very much like MS Office. It did include some tool bar buttons not on my in-house MS Word such as inserting emotions (smiley faces) and special characters. I also like the ability to insert images and do quick formatting (such as changing background colors) easily from the tool bar buttons. As to the advantages ZohoWriter, I liked the ability to have my document published and read as a web page. Also, I appreciated being able to save documents online and e-mail them as a word file or in other formats.