Monday, October 15, 2007
I was sad about completing 23 Things, but equally psyched that I could move on to other projects needing my complete attention. Imagine my surprise in learning that I still had 2 things to blog about. Number 1, Lifelong Learner - Of course I consider myself a lifelong learner and only wish I had another 24 hours in each day. In that most wonderful scenario, I'd be going to yoga on a biweekly basis, learning Spanish and French, taking regular photography classes and completing book after book, both fiction and non-fiction. 23 Things has given me structured tasks allowing me to indulge my love of learning and as I said earlier, I hope to explore certain Things in greater depth.
Number 2, Merlin and other library related blogs/news feeds - When I went to create an account on Merlin, imagine my second surprise of the day to learn that newtonf@hclibrary already had a Merlin account. Since newtonf could only be me, I reset the password and found out that my account was almost 2 years old. Weirdly enough, I don't remember setting it up nor accessing it. I looked around Merlin and was interested to learn about the available online courses...which might even be eligible for CEU credits!! After realizing the value of a wiki in working with Howard County's multicultural community, I look forward to linking to the courses on that, as well as Web Design.
On one hand, I'm sad to have completed 23 Things. Although I didn't grasp the great importance of each and every THING, I learned about so many tools and awesome web sites. I can see useful applications both professionally, as well as personally, and I look forward to more fully mastering these tools. I also LOVED designing each task around my own interests - photography, music, travel, the outdoors, photography and I'm aware of how much more savvy I've become. Initially it was a challenge to put something other than a text post on my blog; now there are pictures galore and I'm tagging each entry!! The one drawback was trying to find the time to fully understand each Thing. I realized that working on this assignment necessitated an uninterrupted block of time - something that's often elusive. My final comment is to stress the importance of reading the blogs of your peers and commenting on their thoughts. In fact, I think this should have been a formal part of the project. I guess that about covers my thoughts except to say how LUCKY I feel to have been able to participate in the Libraries 2.0/Web 2.0 discovery exercise!!! My exit picture is of 3 "hons" at the yearly Hon Fest in Hampden.
I visited both NetLibrary and Maryland's Digital eLibrary Consortium, but was a little disappointed with the title selection. I really appreciated the fact that a customer could execute a search in NetLibrary in a variety of languages, but was actually hoping to find books on studying and learning other languages. I could be wrong, but I thought language learning materials were available when HCL first subscribed to NetLibrary. I also searched for items which could be helpful in planning children's multicultural programs, but found very little. Finally I looked at titles available through eLibrary Consortium and realized that a customer would be more successful as a browser than as someone logging in wanting a specific item. The most valuable part of this Thing was that I became better acquainted with HCL's electronic resources thus enabling me to provide better service to our public.
Friday, October 12, 2007
I listened to the video called "Social Bookmarking in Plain English" and then del.icio.us made perfect sense. I went back and tagged and saved a few sites that I discovered while exploring 23 Things. I plan to add more sites whenever I catch a free minute!! On to podcasting. I tried to access podcasts from all 3 sites recommended on 23 Things. After waiting a ridiculous amount of time for the podcasts to download, I decided my Ubuntu machine MUST be the problem. I then tried a Windows-based PC....still no luck. SORRY Ubuntu machine!!! I was hoping to watch a Photoshop podcast which would explain how to make the sky in my Inner Harbor shot a bit bluer. Until I absorb that knowledge, my picture will have to stand as is.
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Following in the same vein as my visit to award-winning websites, I chose to watch some clips on YouTube of Joni Mitchell - today as a seasoned performer and at the beginning of her career when she was still (Roberta) Joan Anderson. From there I segued to hearing James Taylor, then Sarah McLachlan sing Joni's classic song River. To be able to EASILY access such obscure film is AMAZING!! It's like taking a Historical (Magical) Musical (Mystery) Tour. Again I have to remind myself that this is work and I'm getting paid to explore the best of the web. I'm adding to this YouTube post the only photo in my blog that I haven't personally taken - a picture of Joni herself.
Monday, October 1, 2007
For Thing 19, I couldn't believe I was being paid to listen to music while reading about places to visit in NYC. Pandora is a music site where you select the music of a performer you LOVE and you are then feed song after song from similar artists. Once I discovered the music of Joni Mitchell in high school, I knew I had located my high priestess. I decided to put Pandora to the test and the website started me off with Harry's House, a song from the jazzy Hissing of Summer Lawns. From Joni we went to Simon & Garfunkel, Sandy Denny, Suzanne Vega, and ended with a later Joni tune. Just as photography is my passion, music has played an equally important part in my life. I will listen to anything once and am always searching for a musician who will give me goosebumps and move me with his/her vision. With music streaming in my ears, I also figured I'd glance at the winners in the City Guides & Reviews categories. In October I'm going with my husband to NYC for 4 days. Although he'll have some time, I'll be exploring on my own a fair amount and I want to make the most of my visit. Although I've run out of time for Thinging today, Yelp looked like it had some great event, shopping, and restaurant ideas.
I'm curious to compare Zoho's word processing software with Open Office Writer. Although OO Writer has been perfectly functional, I have found a few occasions when it wouldn't translate. I had to write up a final report for DLDS summarizing the second year of Cultural Connections. The report is written within a template. I could add to the report, but couldn't save my changes. It's quite possible this problem was a result of my new Ubuntu machine or even user error. I ended up reverting back to Word to complete the report. Below see a photo of Tulum, a most spectacular area in the Yucatan. (P.S. Posting to Blogger was a breeze!!)