Friday, December 4, 2009



I'm done. I started last January and now it's December.

These are a few of my favorite Things
Thing 39 Digital storytelling. I liked scrapblog. It was fun and easy to use and best of all, no paper clutter. I don't know how I would use it in my job. I liked exploring the world of Internet radio in Thing 42 Music 2.0 and online TV and Video in Thing 43. I am making another list of TV shows to look at on Hulu.

Things I didn't like
Thing 24 Refresh your blog. I was ready to move on to something else. Thing 41 Mashup your life. I've had enough of mashups and social networking. Thing 27 Twitter. Thing 31 More Twitter. Does the world really need more Twitter? On second thought, it was fascinating to watch how Twitter was used by protestors in Iran a few months ago to get the news out to the world about the election there. If the Internet, Twitter and cell phones had existed before and during World War II, what would have been different?

Useful Things
Thing 47 Webjunction might be useful as a source of training. Some of the Things were useful for keeping up with trends in libraries and society. Thing 35 included a discussion of the future of books, reading and how the Internet is changing reading. After doing Thing 45 I had really cool conversations with friends about clouding computing. Thing 38 Screencasting could be useful if I can find a website that is compatible with the Java version I have, doesn't require downloads, and has terms of agreement I can live with.

My library and Web 2.0 tools
What has my library done with Web 2.0 tools? The library now has Facebook and Twitter pages as well as a reference wiki. This year the library had classes for the public including social networking (featuring Facebook) and blogging. The library now has AquaBrowser. AquaBrowser has features similar to social networking sites. It is interactive and users can contribute content. Users can make lists (which can be public or private), tag items, review items and score items. They can also make personal profiles.

My use of Web 2.0 tools
Things I use: I regularly use the Gmail account I opened last year for the original 23 Things. I have a feed from the New York Times emailed to my Gmail. I have a Photoshop account. Now that I have a digital camera, I want to try more of the websites that use photos. I tried Typealyzer again. This website analyzes the personality of your blog. When I tried this in February I repeatedly got the message "Detected language Vietnamese." Now it says my blog is an ESTP. What a laugh. My blog is an extrovert but I'm not!

I'm on to the next thing: MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Friday, November 20, 2009


After signing up for an account, I searched two names in "Find a friend." Didn't find them. I looked at the Minnesota Library Community Calendar of Events. The listings include conferences, teleconferences, workshops and webinars. This could be a source of training opportunities.

I looked through the courses. Didn't sign up for anything. I subscribed to Crossroads, the monthly email newsletter. The newsletters for November, October, and September are online. I read through them quickly.

I clicked on the Library Services tab and then on Readers Advisory. There are several booklists and discussion threads.


Friday, November 13, 2009


I've been computing in the cloud and didn't know it. The accounts I've opened for the Things are in the cloud. I have Gmail, Delicious, Photoshop, Facebook and I can't remember what else. The big advantage to me of cloud computing is having access to applications on any computer. I use different computers, and it is handy not to be tied down to just one. On the other hand, privacy and security issues concern me. I don't want a lot of my personal information stored on the cloud. I don't want people collecting information on me so they can target me as a buyer.

Libraries and the cloud: Many of our patrons don't know that when they create a Word document and want to save it, they have to use a jump drive. Otherwise, the document will be lost when the computers go off automatically at closing time. Patrons could use Google Docs, Zoho or something similar and be able to access documents later on any computer (assuming they logged off before closing time).

CommonCraft has just released a video called "Cloud computing in plain English." It explains how with cloud computing you use technology that is not at your site, but at another location-- "in the cloud." Using the web, a business can access servers not on-site, and doesn't have the expense of buying and maintaining the technology. The video uses the term "cloud companies," which I hadn't heard before.

Friday, October 30, 2009


Over the past year, I've had many discussions with friends about the economy. Who predicted the meltdown? When will the economy pick up and start booming again? Are we headed for inflation? After the economy recovers, what's going to cause the next bubble to burst? And what are the signs to watch for?

I watched the video "Understanding the financial crisis for kids & grownups." It gives a good summary of mortgages and investing and how combining the two after deregulation in 1999 led to the present crisis. I also watched the CommonCraft video on saving and compound interest.

I looked at the websites for this Thing. Frugal Dad offers 75 hints-- #56 is Rediscover a local library. Gas Buddy-- enter a zip code and gas prices for that area are displayed.

Recently I cataloged a book on keeping chickens. This seems to be a topic of increasing interest. I looked at the websites Raising Chickens and MadCity Chickens. The city of Shoreview (along with Seattle, Spokane and Madison) now allows residents to keep chickens, with certain restrictions. No roosters allowed. I have a feeling my townhouse association would not take kindly to me raising chickens in our common area. My grandmother raised chickens and I have many memories of Sunday dinners with fried chicken.

Friday, October 23, 2009


This was another Thing I liked. Since I don't have cable, I asked coworkers for suggestions for cable shows they like. Here's what I found on Hulu:

Burn notice had many interviews. I watched one. Didn't see that full episodes were available.

Breaking bad. You have to sit through 2 minutes of ads before seeing an 8 minute minisode.

Life after people. More ads. Watched clip on what would happen to animals if people disappeared from the earth. Wild animals would multiply. Domestic animals would die or turn feral. Gorillas would be the top mammal. Then watched clip on trash and no people. The worst trash would last a million years. A single styrofoam cup could last indefintely. And on that cheery note it's time to move on.

I discovered Hulu is more than TV. There are movies on Hulu and trailers. I watched the trailer for Bride and Prejudice, a Bollywood version of Jane Austen's book. National Geographic specials are on Hulu--excerpts as well as some full length programs.

It was while looking through the National Geographic lineup that I had a eureka moment. The trebuchet question. Every year I get the trebuchet question. A patron, usually a young male, wants information about the trebuchet, a medieval siege weapon. I found clips on Hulu from the History Channel showing what trebuchets look like and how they work. I can answer a reference question with Hulu!

What happens when you subscribe on Hulu? Some shows have a subscribe icon. I looked all over the website for an explanation of the features. Hulu's how-tos are buried in a pulldown box I got by using "subscribe" as a search word. There's a list of videos explaining various features, including "How to subscribe to a show." Why isn't there a link on the home page for Hulu how-tos?

I don't watch much TV except for the news. Hulu is fun to play around with, but I don't think it will drastically change my viewing habits. I don't have time to watch hours of TV and movies. With Hulu, you have to spend a lot of time searching, and maybe the full length show you want isn't available. I like the free, on-demand access of Internet video. What impact will Hulu and similar websites have on viewers? Internet TV competes with broadcast and cable TV. It must cut into their number of viewers. How much, I don't know. I can't predict that it will replace them. I have heard of people who watch TV mainly on the Internet.

Friday, October 16, 2009


This Thing could have come sooner. I have heard about internet radio and streaming for some time but have never delved into it. Since I listen to music often on the radio, this Thing was very interesting to me. I have heard of Sirius Radio, so I looked at their website. I could have signed up for a free, 7-day trial, but I'm tired of signing up for accounts. Using the Internet, I listened to news on BBC World Service and to music on MPR. I listened to 365live. I tried Radio-Locator, but there was a problem with Windows Media Player. I made a personal list with Pandora, but I didn't sign up for an account. I also tried out Grooveshark and Songza.

I created a quilt album widget with Aretha Franklin albums on The only part that uploaded was the red border. I tossed that and tried to upload a widget of classical radio stations from 365live, but that wouldn't upload, either.

I hope internet radio does not totally replace broadcast radio. I'm concerned that if it does, we'd have to pay for all radio. Besides, it's easier to turn a radio on and tune to the station you want. I don't want to have to log on everytime I listen to the radio.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Mashups would not make my life easier, because I'm not a big fan of social networking. Mashups would be a drain on my productivity and not a booster. Too time-consuming. I don't see myself using this Thing much. I haven't looked at my Facebook, Ning or Twitter pages for some time. However, I can see why people who have multiple email accounts and social networking accounts might want to bring them together in one place for easy access.

I looked at most of the websites. I tried Superglu several times on different days. Not there anymore. Apparently Superglu didn't have much sticking power. I thought about signing up for Fuser, but I don't have the right version of Internet Explorer.
I looked at TabUp and watched the demo, but I didn't sign up.

On to Thing 42.