Thursday, October 4, 2007

Week 9 - Summary of The 23 Things

I thought that this program was excellent. I enjoyed the process and am grateful that HCPL offered it to me. I believe that each person should be a lifelong learner and this program helped me with this never ending goal. "Never ending" in a good sense, of course! Each lesson was well organized and easy to complete. I did struggle with a few but that is to be expected. Learning isn't always easy and making mistakes is to be expected.

I would certainly participate in another discovery program if it was offered.

My favorite exercises involved Library Thing and online generators. I was surprised by how much fun the online generators were. I have seen some people do very creative things with images and wondered how they did it. I learned to add cloud bubbles to an existing picture to add a bit of humor. Library Thing is probably the one thing that I will continue to use. I plan to add ALL of my read books into my profile. What a wonderful tool!

The only thing that I can suggest to do differently, is to let the learner know at the beginning of each lesson if a new account is required in order to complete the lesson. Even the notice that "you will be required to set up an new account to complete this lesson" would be helpful. Sometimes it was confusing as to whether I was supposed to just browse a site or if I was expected to log in and create a new account.

I would describe my learning experience as positive. It was time consuming and I did almost all of the work in my off time as did many of my coworkers. Although I heard some grumblings about that, I don't have a problem with it. I think that learning and gaining knowledge to be a better employee doesn't stop when the 5:00 PM whistle blows.

Once again, I thank HCPL for giving me this opportunity.

Week 9 - Audiobooks

I did not establish an account on the suggested audiobook sites because I don't listen to audiobooks. I've tried with cassettes and cds, but the experience leaves me irritated and rather bored. I love to read but an audiobook is not a format that I enjoy. I like to listen to music.

Personal preference aside, I think it's incredible that technology has advanced to the point that one can download an entire book. I think Gutenberg would just marvel over such an invention!

Week 9 - Podcasts

I had trouble with the Podcasts. I was able to add an RSS feed for a Harry Potter podcast into my bloglines, but I couldn't actually listen to it. It wanted me to download Quck time and I get nervous whenever I have to download "extra" things in order watch or do something. I was using my work computer and I particularly don't like to experiment with downloading on a work computer.

To be honest, if I can't listen to a podcast or watch a video immediately, then I don't want to do it. I'm afraid that downloading things will slow down my computer.

I did find a podcast on the Kanakee Library link that worked immediately and didn't require me to download anything. It came up easily on Windows Media Player. It was a conversation with Elizabeth Berg. Here's the link, I think, . I have read about 3 of her books and enjoyed them.

This was very enjoyable even though I didn't listen to all of the one hour program. I think that listening to authors discuss a book is a great thing for a library to put out there. I occasionally flip thru Bookspan on tv and have caught a few good authors.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Week #8 Exploring Web 2.0 sites

Well, since I had to explore many of these sites in order to complete my 23 Things, I didn't see a lot out there that I was particularly interested in. I did look at which had very unique items for purchase. I'm not a big shopper, but I get tired of seeing the same stuff from one mall to another. There were some reasonably priced items especially the earrings on this site.

I also looked at I have an account but never go there. Over a year ago, one friend of mine had some pictures that I wanted to view so I created an account. Last week or so, another friend made a request to add me to her friends' list so I decided to pop in to browse around.

The pages seem overly busy and cluttered with all kinds of stuff. Good Lord, how does one have time to keep up with all of this personal stuff? I guess if you are used to looking at them, it's not so overwhelming. I just have no need to document my life on a continuous basis.

I also tried to listen to a few of the music web sites. I checked out which was okay. One song played beautifully, but another had a buffering problem. I might look into this again in order to hear some new music by artists that I am unfamiliar with.

Week #8 - online applications - Google Docs

Now this is something I can use. This solves my problem with carrying floppy disks or flash drives when going from my home computer to another. I found that it was easy to use since I am used to Word, WPerfect, etc. I did not, however, see anything that was similar to MSoft Publisher unless I didn't browse well enough. I use Publisher quite a bit for flyers and bookmarks.

Anyhow, this free application is a great tool. I especially like the fact that it can be shared for others to collaborate. I sent a document to a fellow staff to see if she can access it, add to it, and send it back to me.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Week 9 # 20 YouTube

Well, it should be obvious now why I chose the video that I did. I did look at several music videos including Dave Barry's Rock Bottom Remainders which is a group comprised of writers such as Amy Tan, Barbara Kingsolver, Stephen King, etc. I read about them in one of Dave's books and in Amy Tan's memoirs. I also looked at an interview with Amy Tan.

I also watched Maurice Coleman playing the guitar while sitting down and looking like a young B. B. King. Was that Lucille he had in his hand?

Libraries could create videos with a visiting author or tape other fun programs. It could be a very creative marketing tool.

Ramrod by Springsteen