Monday, November 17, 2008

Exercise #21 Facebook, etc

I have had a facebook spot for a few months - mainly set up so people who want to can look at my photos, i.e. I don't have to send them whopping great folders by email or force them to look at my computer screen and admire my handiwork when it is mostly average!
I can see from younger people who are my friends though that they use it to organise gatherings and invites to parties/gigs/clubs/exhibitions, all sorts - which is brilliant - like your own personalised social club. So I can see if you check it every day or so you would be reaching a lot of people - and the link to community and library events is logical for those who are into it. I suppose there are the rest of us though who would prefer email notifications or google searches.

Anyway I have recently discovered also that you can store or link to your favourite music, books, etc and build up collections ..... so given a bit more development it could probably take over from some of the other applications like Library Thing [oh wash your mouth out].
I am wary of revealing too much about myself of course and of how there are limits to what one communicates to others.
The North Shore Library group required me to ask to join so I didn't carry on with it but it would be a great way to share general news that wasn't just the official stuff. Yes, I really would like to hear what some of the sessions at the LIANZA conference were like - not just look at the endless flickr photos which really didn't tell me anything much. [In the end I did join and there were a few comments posted about maybe 2 sessions at the LIANZA conference but then they petered out - so I assume people were only impressed by those 2 or that's all they had time to comment on.]
So my conclusion is - along with my next post- that we and the public still depend on [and value highly] person to person contact- it takes up less of our time and doesn't require us to become journalists. Patrons can take advantage of it while they are in the library picking up books - so there can be a combination of checking a website for recommendations, reserving online but still having human contact. If someone asks me to provide a book recommendation or review I can do that at the drop of a hat as I have worked on this for many years but not everyone is comfortable in doing this in public or in writing. Lots of librarians can do this verbally on a one to one basis with no problem at all and library users feel comfortable with this as it is an individual service, i.e. they can interpret body language and work out whether you are someone who might have similar tastes to them. It also means that anyone on a counter , doing shelving or working on a desk in the library needs to be versatile and to be able to switch from reference type queries to issuing a book, to accessing internet facilites when the queues allow.

[Still working on this]

Auckland Library's bebo looked like a good experiment but you do get some really irrelevant comments on the friends page. A nicer way to get feedback on library services eventually!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


My browsing of the suggested sites and reading about the different ways to access an ebook made me think that it is all very much in its infancy. I don't know anyone who has purchased an ebook reader and North Shore Libraries has still not purchased them despite the hype from Geoff Chamberlain about 2 years ago.
It seems logical but somehow totally unappealing. It will take us many years before we can browse an internet site the way we do a bookshop to find out about the equivalent of the latest fiction paperbacks. However, I was impressed to find that Terry Pratchett's latest, "Nation" is available on Kindle Bookstore. However at $10 US, although it is cheaper than a hardback book it is not particularly cheap considering it is downloadable by wireless connection and one would be paying for the download access time as well. In a few months it will be available in paperback at around $14 US [at today's exchange rates!].
Some of the sites did not have acceptable search mechanisms either.
I do like them for the possibility offered of browsing a limited number of pages to see if it is what you want but then I found a Margaret Mahy title where most of the illustrations had been pixellated out due to copyright issues - so what would be the point of browsing it.
Anyway I'm sure if I was into reading some classics that I'd never got around to it would be useful if a really good reader device became available.
Considering all the wonderful things I am storing on my computer I guess the odd novel could be acceptable - but not a preferred option. Could be quite useful for sections of works that one wants to refer to later.
And there's a new one [21/11/08]

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Had a look for what could be found in the first 2 directories.
In the end I went back to my favourite one which is Point England School. They are up to episode 195 in their book reviews which they have been doing for 3 years. This could be useful for adult viewers/library users too but probably not worth their while by the time they've downloaded itunes and quicktime - just as easy for them to read a review on a website. It may appeal to teens though because of the enhanced visuals.
While browsing that one I found another Auckland school Glenbrae had also set up podcasts - one on the subject of Preserving Culture was very well done so I will be able to preserve the link to that as well.
I am working on getting them linked to my Netvibes setup. Bloglines didn't seem to want me! So, still learning but am on the whole attracted to them and want to learn how to set them up.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Attempting photo link

Just trying out speed of photo upload. Uploaded old photo quickly - doesn't upload new ones at all.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

You tube

Many wonderful things can be discovered here. I would have like to import the library students' Rock and roll presentation into my facebook but I needed to allow cookies and that escaped me. At least i have put the link up here. The useage to promote library services seems specially useful.

Web 2.0 awards

In the short lists for Web 2.0 awards I picked Events first place getter 'Upcoming.' [The first event quite neatly focussed on a conference for developers of social network applications on the internet, with a special focus on building a layered identity - if I understood it right.]
This seemed to me to be a wonderful facility, i.e. the events lister/booker to bring communities together at little or no cost for publicity - once everyone has learned to use them that is. Assuming anyone can contribute to the listings it could make it easy to add to the events listed on the NS Libraries' website or the same section on the Council website.
Another site I visited allowed employees who produced a graghic design magazine to work from anywhere they could locate an internet connection and retrieve and contribute to common files - which they were very thrilled about.
Some of the other sites I visited seemed to have nothing much in them despite being prizewinners - I wonder how they are all going to get our attention?

Zoho writer/google docs

I had already been using google docs before this exercise, which worked well in a collaborative sense. I have also used it to store documents I can't afford to lose.
I set up a Zoho writer a/c and at the first 2 visits it looks like it might have more features than google. However when trying to store documents the save function wasn't working within an acceptable time so I gave up.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Library thing[ out of order]

I have 2 Library Things I contribute to; it took me a while to realize that if I don't sign out of one of them then that will be the one which comes up each time, and I won't be able to get into the other one even though I can see it. The old bad dream thing where you are in a cage and can't get out.
Or like my friend who I recently visited who has only just realized after 8 months that she has 6 gears on her car!! Well, she's never had a car with overdrive before!

Anyway, they make it very easy for you and it's been especially useful for a book group I belong to. We don't have to email a list out any more and if someone is away from the meeting they can still enter reviews. I may suggest starting one for the other book club I belong to but probably not to cover the backlog.