Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Thing#19: Power Tools

I like Power Tools.
I really like the library Power Tools page. I like it so much that I was emailing family and friends so they would know about these resources.

The highlighter feature is a dream! I discovered it accidentally as I was highlighting a CD I wanted to see if the Library owned. I highlighted, looked up and it was already in the search bar.

Great service. I don't think enough people know about the Library Tool bar and everything it can do. I think that if each library staff member told one person about this feature of the tool bar it wouldn't take long to get more "power" users out there!

Thing#18: Discover Web 2.0 Tools Picnik

Early this week I was chatting with Short and Mighty and LibraryJoy after one of the video sessions for Learn & Play. Short and Mighty mentioned Picnik as a great add-on for flickr. LibraryJoy was sold too about the wonderful aspects of this technology. You can watch this conversation here if you're interested in what happens after the video taping. Picnik is mentioned at about 2:55 into the video. You might like the video for a great conversation about how Learn & Play is helping connecting staff across the system.

That's was I've decided to explore, Picnik. Picnik is a website that lets you edit/correct/manipulate images from a variety of online resources. I've got a flickr account so I'm halfway there. It was very easy to link my flickr account with Picnik and easier to create a collage of existing images.

I've linked this in my delicious account and will refer back to it when I need to do something creative with the photos I've taken. It's quite useful for me personally. I don't know if I would use it enough to purchase the premium resources.

An interesting aside: when a page is loading the loading bar also gives some alternative messages. Very nice addition.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Boss Day 2

Boss Day 2
Originally uploaded by gerald2.0

This is MariaOD and Angela being silly on Boss's Day for 2008.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Thing #17: Online Web Apps

I'm sold.
I see the benefit of the online tools. These are great. I got a knitting spreadsheet from a friend awhile back, looked at it once and then forgot it was there. Well, Google Docs makes it easy to have everything in one place, accessible and easy to use.

As I think about work, he many revisions that I go through with monthly reports to the Board or planning for the next presentation would me made easier by storing them "in the clouds." I wouldn't need to bring my laptop home with me everyday. If I can get to the internet, I can get to the documents. That makes me happy.

I also think about how CML has used Grpwrk folder to collect documents that people use across the system. If we used an Online Web App, the version tracking would happen automatically. I like that. I find it tough to remember the naming theory for documents. I'm always going back to the key to makes sure I'm using the right naming convention.

I wonder if there is a way to include customers in the creation of some documents.

Added Bonus with Learn & Play

There were a couple of nice things that I heard about today that I wanted to share. Video is easiest so watch this if you want to hear about the good work that Jimmer provided and how another staff member is using RSS feeds.

RSS feeds is thing #8 and I'm glad the Bill is using the extra time to keep learning! Google Reader is a perfectly fine alternative to Bloglines talked about in the post. Everyone has their preference. Which is yours?

Here's the video I took with Bill and Jimmer. The sound quality is a bit low.

Did you notice Mr Pointy Hand showed up? I wonder if Jimmer wears the hat everytime he helps someone with L&P?

A significant benefit to Learn & Play is the staff helping each other. It's about connecting with people. Sometimes we connect using Web2.0 methods and other times the connection happens by asking for someone for help and then letting them help! Offering to help has its great rewards, too. Jim's tweet shows how a small thing makes a big difference.

Got a story that needs to be told? Post it on your blog and then let me know. Not afraid of the camera, I will come to you to get your story on film!

Thanks to those of you who encourage people to learn every day! There are lots of you, I know. You're doing great stuff for each other and our customers!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Thing#16: Sandbox Wiki

I added a few entries into the Learn & Play wiki without problems once I got my login information correct.

This "thing" has been a bit of challenge for the L&P Team as you see from the comments on the blog. I was able to get my login information quickly by asking for an account.

Once in, I was able to add my blog, favorite children's book, and favorite album. It was easy to do once I took time to look at the page and see the "edit" tab at the top. I like videos to help me learn so I've been looking on youtube. I didn't find any that I like so I email pbwiki directly.

Great customer service from pbwiki support. They quickly sent me a link for their video support page. Editing was the feature that I noticed was needed. That video is here.

Wikis could work.

Thing#14: Thoughts about Web2.0 and Library 2.0

I've been pondering the concept of 2.0 for some time and how it impacts me and the library.
Over the last 18 months, I've been more consciously aware of 2.0 concepts.

Michael Stephens wrote about Librarian2.0 in the OCLC Newsletter. I think it's true that "Librarian 2.0 embraces Web 2.0 tools" because of the importance of collaboration and connections to our library users.

Three points that he makes ring true for me:
  1. Librarian 2.0 makes good, yet fast decisions
  2. Librarian 2.0 controls technolust
  3. Librarian 2.0 is a trendspotter
Making good decisions fast requires trust and experience on top of being willing to be wrong and not get punished for the error. Being able to quickly assess progress of a decision and making necessary adjustments is critical. I think learning quickly takes a cultural change. We used to plan and plan and plan until we had something 98% right. Not any more. I like the change to moving quickly and developing as we go.

Technology can help us do our jobs. The right technology can help us to our jobs better. Our jobs are about making connections with our users and the information they want.

Trendspotting is fascinating to me. I think the idea of genius it the ability to see relationships that might not have been seen before. Spotting trends from a variety of places and applying those trends to the library is an asset.

As technology and information increases in availability and speed, it's been important for me to develop a sense of what I can filter. RSS feeds are great in saving me time by putting all the information in one place. I have to learn when to "mark all as read" and start over. I remember when I first got a cell phone. I carried it with me everywhere. When it rang, I answered it regardless of what I was doing. I learned quickly that just because I had the phone, didn't mean that I had to answer it. I was able to silence the phone and leave it at home, if I wanted. It was very liberating for me to screen my calls and give focus to what I was doing. I am playing around with "screening" information that comes my way. TMI happens and I control my response to it.