Tag Archives: technology

Little bits of interesting…

Here’s a quick summary of some neat things from the web – all with potential library applications!

Tweet Seats – Theaters are reserving seats towards the back of venues and encourage those sitting in those seats to live tweet during performances.  Totally worth trying at your next large event!  Check out the article!

Google+ Hangouts – A great opportunity to host community meetings or book clubs.  This article provides the top three reasons to use this Google+ feature.

PressBooks – PressBooks is a platform that gives you or your library users an easy-to-use digital publication solution.  When we talk about empowering content creation in our libraries, these are the tools we need to look at!

Turn young patrons in to coders – Thomas Suarez is a 12-year-old coder who spoke at TEDxManhattanBeach.  He touches on an interesting and cool idea for schools that applies for libraries too – download the Apple app development pack and start teaching kids to code!

Jawaya – Beta

I just received an email letting me know I can access the beta of Jawaya.  Jawaya is a search engine search tool that allows you to “record” your searches, then tag the results that are most useful.  That description doesn’t do it justice however.

Here’s how founder Charlie Crystle describes it:

Jawaya is a social Search Network that helps you

  1. save your searches and results,
  2. find searches and results found and shared by others
  3. search and discover with others
  4. and connect you with people who share your interests
I’m just getting started in this and trying to assess how it works and what it’s potential is.  I think it could have some really great applications in libraries and in education.  There are tools that are kind of like it out there, but…not.  And the beta is so new to me still, I can’t say “Well, it’s like Delicious meets Facebook meets your favorite search engine meets your ILS or favorite database. ”  Plus, the beta is still a tad rough (that’s what betas are for, after all) so there are features that are not fully implemented yet.
I’ll be taking a look at it more and playing around as it progresses and will keep you posted.  Stay tuned kids!
And PS – YOU can sign up and participate in the Beta too!  The more, the merrier!

I’m a Nicole Engard groupie

There.  I’ve said it.  I got a copy of “Library Mashups” and I can’t put it down.  Twenty minutes after I had it in my possession, I emailed her telling her I loved the book.  It rocks.

Engard contributes to and edits the work of 25 contributors in this great book that explores the ways libraries deliver data.  By exploring new tools and offering insight into old ones, Engrad and her colleagues really tread on new ground in relation to getting information out to the public.

I was particularly drawn to her information on effectively using Delicious and Youtube in libraries.  She is all about using the software when it is needed and is beneficial – not when it is just some clumsy add on to a website or creates no value at all.  I felt myself developing more concrete ideas about how these technologies are integrated into existing library webpages and for the first time understood why they can be so useful.  Prior to that, I just kind of thought “Oh, and there’s Delicious which is just website tagging that can get really crazy and messy and would be overwhelming to the public at times”.

The idea of externalizing the knowledge that librarians have also really intrigued me.  The concept that we should share what we know with our users so that they too can become effective users while also seeing the true value of librarians and librarianship totally rocked.  It’s like a peep show – we show the public how much we rock and we help them out by sharing what we know, and then they want more and keep coming back.  (I know, I have a dirty mind, but the analogy works…)

I’m still reading and there is so much this book has to offer.  For instance, I can’t wait to read about Yahoo! Pipes and ways that you can improve your OPAC.  Whether you’re a tech novice or a hard-core programmer type  this book will contribute to your knowledge.

Check out Nicole and “Library Mashups” on her website: http://www.web2learning.net/  (It too is a peep show.  Of library stuff.  Not of Nicole.  Dirty blog reading people.  Sheesh.)

Tech UnCamp is going on now!

Co-hosting a tech uncamp in Michigan – I’m participating via webcam from my office in Kansas!

An uncamp/unconference isn’t like your normal conference – a) it’s free and b) main topics of discussion are planned by the attendees the morning of the event.

View Tweets and Information in real time via Cover It Live:

Tech UnCamp 2009

The Dangerously Irrelevant Blog

I think I have blogged about the Dangerously Irrelevant blog, before, but I’m going to do it again.

The blogger, Scott McLeod, was co-creater of the Shift Happens presentation, along with the equally awesome Karl Fisch.

If you haven’t checked out Dangerously Irrelevant, you should.  The blog focuses on technology, education, leadership, and how they all come together to create better schools.  The topic dovetails with the needs of libraries worldwide.  What happens in schools (or doesn’t happen in schools) related to technology, very quickly has an effect on libraries. 

Take a moment to check on what Scott McLeod is saying.  I think you’ll find yourself saying “Hey that’s happening at my library!”

Where culture and technology meet

Recently featured in Choice:

the website Ars Technica

A bit techie at times, but really helpful if you want to stay up on your gaming and iPhone releases!  Plus, it’s an interesting watch of where technology is taking us.

1/5 of Americans Have Never…

used Email. Or a variety of other computer-y things, for that matter.


Hmmm…so there’s why librarianship and tech services often (and should) collide, why we should always offer classes, why we should always offer computers, why we should be the most patient public servants so we can help folks…

As the world becomes increasingly tech, there is still a segment of the population that does not embrace the trend for a variety of reasons. I don’t blame them for their reasons and I envy them a bit, to be honest. It is our job to make information, communication and knowledge available to those who cannot and/or will not join the tech crowd.

And if they choose to join up, then we must be there to help them with a smile and patience.

Simple terms…

I had to come up with a way to describe PHP to my boss today.  (Boss wants to know why the website isn’t working, tech-dude won’t download PHP…you see my problem) No easy task, I discovered.  I barely understand it myself and then I had to tell the boss-person.  The same person who recently went into barely containable panic because the office computer monitor stopped working…because it was unplugged.

So my PHP explaination went something like this:

PHP is like…well, it helps with the website by…it’s a tool that…um, we need to put it on the server so it can help organize information.

That seemed to make the boss-person happy.  But really, I need to start hunting for a website that uses the most simple terms to describe tech things.  I mean, incredibly basic terms here.  I looked online for a good PHP explanation and it meant nothing to me.  Tech terms for first graders…yes, perfect.