Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Thing 23: Wrapping Up

My favorite part of Web 2.0 has to be Listen NJ. I'm very likely to use this again, since it was so easy! Even better, since I'll probably be listening to books with my husband, instead of me having to pick an audio book here in the library, my husband can browse through titles online.

My least favorite part of Web 2.0 would be the din created by the sound of millions of bloggers clogging up the Internet. While I appreciate reading blogs by pundits or experts in a particular field, Technorati revealed an inane world of people who'd do better to spend their time reading than posting...

I hope the library gets more involved in RSS feeds--especially regarding new materials. I also think that being able to perform a federated search of the library's catalog and databases would be VERY useful for customers.

As for what Web 2.0 applications I share with my family: much as people in the past made their guests sit through slide shows of their vacations, I make my parents watch when videos of me have been posted to YouTube (but only when they are visiting me, as Dad is too paranoid to download software to his computer...). Unfortunately, it doesn't look like State Library of Pennsylvania offers a service comparable to ListenNJ, or I'd try to help my parents set that up (although that conversation would probably be short and unsuccessful, as Dad would object to downloading the software...).

Overall, my favorite part about completing this Web Challenge has been reading everyone else's blogs (yes, yes, I know I just called most blogs inane, but that's only when the authors are people I don't know). Its been interesting to see the pictures posted by others--especially here in Lacey. I'm glad that the blogs OCL's Web Challenge participants will remain posted for a few more weeks, as I look forward to browsing through the ones I haven't read yet.

Thing 22: ListenNJ (Part Two of Two)

Not only was it very easy to download the audio software to my home computer, it was quick! Needless to say, we had a great time listening to Linda Greenlaw's True Tales From the Dry Dock Bar last night. As we listened to her tales of stormy seas, accidents on deck and shipwrecks we wrapped three new hula hoops (Captain America, Goth Girl II and The Panda). Tonight we'll listen to the other half of Greenlaw's fishy tales and wrap more hoops (I'm planning on Peace in Ireland and Orange Crush).

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Thing 22: ListenNJ (Part One of Two)

We've been pretty busy here in Lacey, between getting ready for SAIL and Reading Buddies as well as preparing for a Great Stories Book Discussion at the State Juvenile Detention Facility, so I'd been putting off this task. But today I thought I'd try to tackle it, and am halfway there.

Since I don't yet have an MP3 player, I was interested in finding a book that my husband would enjoy, since we'll be listening to it on our computer at home. He tends to favor nonfiction, and sure enough, while browsing through the non-fiction titles available on ListenNJ, I found this book that Paul, a semi-retired commercial fisherman, might enjoy (or at least enjoy complaining about):

All Fishermen Are Liars
True Tales from the Dry Dock Bar
By Linda Greenlaw

"All Fishermen Are Liars brims with true stories of the most eccentric crew member, the funniest episode, the biggest fish, and the wildest night at sea."

While we've been instructed to use a PC Plus computer to complete this exercise, I'm going to try to download the actual book at home. Not only is our PC Plus usually being used by customers, but I think it would be nice to listen to a book while Paul is tying jigs and I'm wrapping hoops. Stay tuned for my description of how that ended up working out.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Thing 21: Finding and Listening to Podcasts

My husband and I typically build our Sundays around being able to listen to Ira Glass on "This American Life", one of the best shows on National Public Radio. But festival season is now upon us, so we're unlikely to be able to gather around the radio in the afternoon. Fortunately, let me subscribe to weekly podcasts of "This American Life", which they describe as "first-person stories and short fiction pieces that are touching, funny, and surprising." It was great to hear what I missed this past Sunday, as well as being able to look up past programs I enjoyed. Now we can gather around the computer to hear this program, anytime we want!

My wonderful, rainy, weekend

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Thing 19: Web 2.0 Awards

Given that doing this Web Challenge has introduced me to more technology than I'm likely to use, my main category of interest on SEOmoz's 2007 Web 2.0 Awards was "Fun Stuff".

Sure enough, I found a link to a service I'm likely to use, "One Sentence: True Stories Told in One Sentence". Here's an example of the wit to be found at this Web site, pulled from their April 2008 archives:


I was the only one at the company who genuinely liked the woman who laid me off, and I think she's about to find that out.

Some of these stories only make sense when you read the accompanying tags:


After one friend told me I'd get pneumonia and the other two decided on hypothermia, I did it out of spite.

tags: ocean beach night bra and underwear cold

I'm likely to use this service because it only takes a minute to enjoy the latest postings.

Thing 18: Web Apps

I see several practical applications for using Web applications such as Google Docs. As was detailed in the instructional video provided by Google, when working on a project with a group, being able to access relevant documents in a central location that immediately reflects changes that have been made by group members is much more effective than e-mailing documents back and forth, and insures that all members have access to the most recent incarnation of a project.

Google Docs was very useful when Tyler Rousseau, Lavernne Mann of the Mercer County library, David Lisa of the West Long Branch library and I were preparing a presentation for this year's New Jersey Library Association Conference, "Adult Graphic Novels for Every Library". Using Google Docs to post our choices for Graphic Novels to include in the presentation saved us time and allowed each of us to comment on the choices made by others.

Thing 17: Playing in the Sandbox

Since I was a latecomer to this exercise, it was interesting to see all the variations of font/color/size that prior participants had already used in the Sandbox. I especially liked the pictures of the flowering trees outside the Bishop Building.

The biggest advantage I see for work is that posting information directly to a Wiki saves time--for example, for YALSA's Teen Tech Week, instead of e-mailing YALSA with a description of what our TAB in Lacey was doing that week, I was able to post that information directly to their Wiki. This kind of Web 2.0 application also saves time for an organization, since someone in the organization doesn't have to be responsible for receiving information and posting it.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Thing 20: You Tube and Me

If you saw my second blog posting, you'll know that I've already shamelessly promoted the video of me spinning fire poi that was posted to YouTube. Interestingly enough, I'm not the only woman named Karla who likes to spin fire poi.

For this exercise, however, I thought I'd post a link to a swell instructional video on how to step through a moving hula hoop:

It took me over a year of practicing to be able to execute that maneuver.

There are numerous other instructional videos posted to YouTube that I find useful, from hoop tricks to clawhammer banjo playing.

And for my next trick, I'll try to embed the aforementioned hoop video: