Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Online Productivity, Part 2

I just discovered that Zoho Writer offers a way to type a letter, or document, without having to create an account.


This may be a good way for some patrons to type a quick letter or resume.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Online Productivity

This is particularly difficult blog entry for me. It shouldn't be, because I've certainly used Google Docs and Spreadsheets plenty of times. So why is it hard? I guess because I'll have to start fresh with my feelings on Google Docs (and other online productivity options).

Here's what I like:

1. It's easy to keep documents private and secure, and be able to access them from any computer with internet access.

2. It's easy to share documents that you want to collaborate with someone on.

3. It's easy to publish documents to the web for others to view.

Here's what I don't like:

1. The formatting is not as sophisticated as Word. While this may be good for some users, for most it is prohibitive of creating a nice looking online document.

2. That Google Docs is a replacement for other programs, such as Word, on the library's public computers. Maybe some day soon this will be okay, but until we reach the day when it is just as easy to use as Word, we will be underserving patrons. Setting up an account is too difficult for some people, especially as you must have an active email account to set up a Google Docs account. For those who just need to type a letter and will never use the program again, this is a big hurdle.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Playing Favorites

Here are my favorites. I'll add them to the 2.0 Sandbox.

Animals - Dog

Blogs- Likely Stories (blog.booklistonline.com), PostSecret (postsecret.blogspot.com)

Books- A Thousand Splendid Suns, There is No Me Without You, The Omnivore's Dilemma

Movies- Annie Hall, Amelie, Dan in Real Life

Activities- Umm, reading. Mountain biking, cooking, painting, taking pictures

Movie Stars-Jude Law???

Music- Badly Drawn Boy, Wilco, Michael Franti, Ozomatli,

Place in Santa Cruz County - Wilder Ranch, Beach between Sunny Cove and 26th Ave.

Restaurants- Nuevo, Pink Godzilla, Dharmas

Sports Stars- Used to be Marion Jones, before the steroids debacle.

Stores- Bookshop Santa Cruz, Best of Everything, New Leaf

TV Show- Six Feet Under, 30 Rock

Vacation Spots- Taos, Tahoe, Paris

Web tools- ScreenGrab, Pandora, all Google products

Websites- Epicurious, Facebook



I love wikis. I created a wiki for my bookclub. I created a wiki for my business. I've helped with wikis at work. I use wikipedia.

However, I have never used Library Success: A Best Practices Wiki. This looks like a good example of wikis can work well. Also, The Princeton Public Library Summer Reading wiki is a good example of a wiki working well. So much depends on those who are contributing to the wiki. If contributions follow a clear set of guidelines and the formatting stays the same throughout, then a wiki can be very useful. However, if if there is not a straight set of guidelines, a wiki can become a free-for-all.

Nancy Pearl's Booklust wiki has taken a turn for the better recently. For a few months, it was really a mess of contributions without formatting or proper organizations. It is now organized, and probably moderated, and no longer spinning out of control.

Kindle and the future of libraries

Several colleagues have sent emails about Amazon's new book device, the Kindle. It's an e-book reader with wireless access. Books, magazines, and some blogs can be downloaded from Amazon from almost anywhere using it's whispernet connection. Also, wikipedia can be accessed for more information while reading. There has been a lot of talk about the Kindle and the future of books and libraries. Will this change the library's role in society? My first thought when reading this Newsweek article was YES! We need to get ready! This is huge! But then I saw a picture of the Kindle on Amazon's website and started to change my mind. It is so ugly! And doesn't look that easy to use. And there are so many people who are resistant to technology that paper books will never go out of style! But then, the world is changing so rapidly, and the next generation is changing the way we seek for information. Why not change the book? Already, we have the ability to have almost instant access to information with the internet. Often when reading, I have to put down my book and pick up my computer to look something up. perhaps there is a cultural reference I didn't get, or the geography is unclear and I need a map to help me finish the chapter. Why not combine reading with this instant access to information? I do think that we are headed that direction, and in a couple of years, the Kindle will seem old and clunky and outdated, and we'll think "did we really think this was an alternative to the book?" But instead of returning to paper books, we will have something so snazzy and easy to use it will be comparing the new video ipod nanos to the first generation ipods. They have the same function, yet they are sooo different.

I checked Kindle on Google Trends and it didn't even register. People are more interested in Donda West's funeral and Oprah's favorite things, and I don't blame them.

Technorati - for real this time

I decided to stay clear of the most popular blogs when returning to Technorati today. Instead, I decided I'd like to know more about the Kindle and read some of the hubbub about it. I started with a basic search for "kindle," which brought up several recent (a few minutes ago) blog posts about it. I then tried the advanced search and searched blog posts with the tag "kindle." This brought up some of the same postings that the basic search did, but also some more posts that I hadn't seen, that were about the Kindle, rather than just mentioning it. That's part of the beauty of tags, I guess.

I really like that I can subscribe to a feed of my search, and keep current on whether or not the Kindle will really be the NBT.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Technorati is an enabler

I have a new addiction.

Thanks to Technorati.

It is called postsecret.

I was browsing the list of most popular blogs when I found it.

Now 15 minutes of my life have been sucked away.

Friday, November 9, 2007

del.icio.us is delicious

I've been using delicious for several months now to keep track of the websites that are really useful, fun, or that I want to come back to look at later. It's sooooo easy to use. I've seen magnolia, a similar bookmarking tool, and it is so beautiful that I almost forget about how it isn't very easy to use. Delicious is easy to use, but ugly. I guess you can't have everything.

I've added a badge to my blog.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Week 6 - Rollyo

I've started playing with Rollyo. I've heard much about it, but have never used. I somehow never found the occasion when I thought it would be helpful. Now I've done a search using someone else's food and dining search. I searched for lobster mushrooms, and the top search results seem to be recipes from epicurious. Now I like epicurious a lot, but this search wasn't really helpful because I would have just gone straight to their site if I had wanted lobster mushroom recipes and the search results would have been much easier to read with ratings and pictures.
So I've decided to do my own search to see if I can out roll a popular rollyo-er.

Hmm. What interests me?

I love my dog.

Dogs! A popular search!

I add five or so dog-related sites to my search, then create my search, then I search.

I type, "husky."

And... it takes what seems like forever, then...

Excellent! I get a variety of results from the American Kennel Club, Dogster, DogChannel, and a variety of sponsored links (which are NOT helpful). My search results are exactly what I was hoping for, though!

Here's my search: http://rollyo.com/search.html?q=husky&sid=325373

Monday, November 5, 2007

LibraryThing hearts me!

Someone from LibraryThing asked if they could use my previous blog posting on their www.librarything.com/buzz site! I said yes and they did!

Friday, October 26, 2007

I heart LibraryThing

Visual Poetry - ImageChef.com
Dear LibraryThing,

It started with the tags. Then came the appeal of being able to choose or create a display style for the books in my library. Then I became obsessed with your widget that I could add to blogs (except for MySpace). Now I've added a couple of reviews! Each time I log in, I learn how to do something new. I especially like the recommendations (LibrarySuggester) that you give based upon what's in my library. I can get recommendations for fiction or nonfiction and recommendations for only certain tags. I'm looking forward to a long and fruitful relationship.

Yours truly,


Wednesday, October 24, 2007


ImageChef.com - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more

This is fun.

ImageChef.com - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more

I think we should wear these at the library instead of "Reference" badges. This has a little more authority, especially when breaking up arguments at the Internet stations.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Good Reading

I subscribe to a few library related feeds. LibrarianInBlack, Librarian.net, ResearchBuzz, LibraryBytes, HecticPace... you know, the usual suspects. I learn new things from these blogs and am able keep some sort of vague idea about trends in the library world. But there is also fun to be had. A Librarian's Guide to Etiquette is always makes me laugh a little. BoingBoing.net is always just weird enough or entertaining enough for me to check in every now and then. TechCrunch is a good way to keep up-to-date on new technologies. And Dooce is just a fascinating peek into someone else's life.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Feeding my Bloglines

Hello old friend, Bloglines. I haven't seen you for awhile. I've been seeing someone else, actually. Google Reader. I know, I know, I shouldn't have, but Google Reader is so much easier because I'm always logged in to my Google account and using the Calendar, Documents, Blogger, and Gmail, so I figured why not make the switch? It was easy enough to import all my feeds from Bloglines to Google Reader.

So, I am yet another Google victim. I use many of their products, primarily because it is easy to be logged in to only one thing.

But reader is a great, great tool. It is very similar to Bloglines. It makes it so easy to keep up with blogs and news of particular interest. Like earlier this fall when I decided to become a Denver Broncos fan ( I don't like football). I subscribed to the New York Times sports news on the Broncos thinking that I would read it when I read library related blogs and news and then I would be able to say, "did you see that fumble in yesterday's game?" and really impress people, but no. No, I don't read it. Football. Yuck.

A feed reader can really help keep you up to date, but you have to actually read the feeds to know what is going on.

YouTube's new content filtering system. No more piracy??

Oh, but that's the fun stuff! Ok, well part of the fun stuff on YouTube. I like to watch snippets of movies, music videos, tv shows, the Britney Spears VMA debacle. Just kidding about that last part. Sort of.

So the news today is that Google has launched a new filter for videos on YouTube. From what I can tell they are doing this to satisfy the plaintiffs in the billion dollar lawsuit.

My creation

My creation
Originally uploaded by Abbeywoofwoof

Using Big Huge Labs, I made a magazine cover using one of my Flickr pictures. Not one to put myself on the cover of a magazine, I chose Abbey. Giving one of her sassiest looks. She looks just like a Vogue model, right?

Here's the link to Big Huge Labs magazine creator:


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Week 3 Flickr

technical difficulties
Originally uploaded by Abbeywoofwoof

I have had a Flickr account for over a year. Take note that I say I've had an account for over a year, but not have been using Flickr for over a year. It's one of those things that I had forgotten that I had signed up for and had even uploaded a few pictures to. It's pretty fun, but I like Google's Picasa better for my personal use. I like to share pictures, but not necessarily with everyone. And Picasa has a built in photo editing tool so I had get rid of all that red-eye!

Anyway, here's an example of my technical difficulties earlier this week. I had a CD that I wanted to listen to in my car on my drive to work one morning. But it didn't play. So I plugged in my iPod and it promptly froze (for the first time in its life!). And then I tried to take a picture of it and my camera wouldn't focus. And no, I wasn't driving past the Mystery Spot.

This blog entry posted directly from Flickr, BTW.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Week 2 - Blogging Part 2

I am having fun. Really. I found some fun patterns that I want to incorporate into the design of my blog. I haven't found the time quite yet, but it is on the horizon. Watch for cool design changes soon.

Check this out: www.squidfingers.com/patterns/
Fun patterns to download and use!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Week 2 - Blogging

Well, here goes. My first post for the 23 things @ SCPL. I have to admit, this is not my first blog. I participate in two at work, and have two personal blogs - one that is utterly boring for anyone else but me to read, and another where I haven't posted anything yet. I have many ideas for posts, but just haven't found the time that I want to dedicate to posting. Yet. Maybe I'll find inspiration in these 23 things.

Some things of note:

Fridays 8-10 in the Headquarters Training Room we will have Discovery Sessions! I'll be at most of the sessions (8:30-10) and would love to have others come.

Tuesdays 12:30-1:30 in the Central Meeting Room we are having a support group for the 23 things. I'll be at those, too.

I'm not an expert by any means, and I will be learning along with everyone else, but I may be able to provide a few pointers along the way. I'm also looking forward to learning from everyone else. I hope to see some people at these sessions!