Thursday, 30 December 2010
Wednesday, 1 December 2010
Prompted by the discussion lunch today at MML (and a need to get a presentation on the go...) I went back to my survey results from a number of academics who have recently used our new IT training suite in the Library.
It seems important that the room, and what goes on in it, is part of the well-established learning environment that is the faculty library. By placing electronic resources alongside material texts, the former gain a kind of visibility and status. The proximity between electronic and print resources is not only very convenient for students and class leaders - it reflects a fact of 21c. research.
If I have academics promoting our space like this - then I'm happy.
Tuesday, 30 November 2010
Saturday, 16 October 2010
Tuesday, 24 August 2010
Saturday, 21 August 2010
Conclu'sion n. 1. termination; final result; decision; in ~, lastly, to conclude. 2. judgement reached by reasoning.........
Whilst concluding, or reaching final thoughts means the end of 23 Things, I fully expect that this is not the end of interest in Web 2.0. for myself or for others around the University. Two summers ago, following a June Library staff development day when Phil Bradley gave a presentation to library staff, a number of us met together a few weeks later (at the English Faculty because that is where a lot of good things happen!) for an afternoon of playing with Web 2.0 tools to see what might work in our libraries and what might not. You could say that was the beginning........, 23 Things another stage......, and I am sure that in a year or two's time there will be other collaborative ventures in Cambridge exploring these tools and others. We should collectively pat ourselves on the back - I think that overall we are more collaboratively minded, we are successful at grass-roots initiatives, and we are generally a pro-active bunch of librarians! Combine that with our wonderful 'boutique' , user-focused libraries and, even better, students who are filmed saying they love the libraries, and I think that should sell the Cambridge model nicely.
Taking part in 23 Things has been something of a roller coaster ride. A sense of being over-whelmed with work and 'other things' at certain points nearly scuppered the whole programme as far as I was concerned. It all took more hours than envisaged and I spent a lot of 'home time' as opposed to 'work time' for doing the Things. Some people might not liked to have done this; but although this is a slight red herring, I wonder whether we can now afford not to think about some element of professional development taking place outside the workplace in this day and age? In any case, I'm delighted that I persevered to the end, and feel pleased that I'm at this final point of evaluation. I liked the style of learning - bite-sized for the most part - and mostly easy to work through with options for doing more. There are some things that I would definitely like a 'proper' training session on especially when I think that they might be useful, but haven't got the time to figure out how to apply them. (Group libraries and Zotero spring to mind!)
So.....addressing the questions:
Which Things did you find most useful, or thought-provoking, or good? What do I say 'yes!' to?
- By definition anything that I currently use regularly is good (kinda figures!) - Facebook, Google Calendar, Doodle, Zotero, Flickr, Slideshare, RSS feeds, youtube
- I like Google docs, especially the registration form tool. SO easy to use and it amazed my Computer Officer with its simplicity.
- Am still keen to make use of LibraryThing for new accessions like CSL are doing but I just haven't the time to spend on it now.
- I am a convert to blogs - I started out with my blog called Head above the Parapet because it felt exactly like that. I'm not sure that I will continue blogging personally although I would like to think I would, partly because I am thinking of doing Chartership revalidation and this tool seems to be good for reflection. Along the way however, a blog - which we use for Library News - seemed the way forward for some parts of our website. I was especially inspired by the History Faculty Library in Oxford. So, the 'Learning Hub' has been born.
- Reflection - in general. It's good for the soul.....
Which didn't you find useful at all and is downright ugly? What do I say 'no' to?
- Podcasting. - see my blog on that to explain this one.
- Dare I say Twitter? I fell into and out of Twitter in the course of 23 Things and have actually stopped checking it now - though I suspect I will be back there in time if only because I am essentially a pretty nosy person and I want to see what is going on. But I really do wonder how people have time to distract themselves all day with Twitter. Maybe they don't get the number of emails that I do, which are distracting enough - or maybe their jobs are more monotonous than mine! I rarely do anything like the same type of job every day and suspect that I would find it difficult to process any more information than I currently do. Having said all that I do use facebook for distraction!!
I persisted with Google docs - to the extent that I used them as part of the Committee preparation but not again until I was able to apply the registration form for the film launch - and then all of a sudden I have found myself using more of the docs. Especially useful when working between home and the library and remote access to the work server is rather painful.
I played a lot with ppts in slideshare until I discovered that I couldn't get animations and transitions to work in ppts loaded to slideshare. I've discovered iSpring though and it's very simple and effective.
What about Web 2.0 and social media?
There are clear distinctions about how Web 2.0 tools get used. There are those that have been put to use in developing services to libraries and for the benefits of users, and there are those that are for the benefit of our personal skills improvement or for workflow improvement in our libraries. I am drawing some of them to our users' attention this October and as usual I will run Zotero/Endnote sessions to introduce students to this information management tool.
How do you think they are shaping library services?
Library services should be shaped by the users of that service and not by the tools. If the tools dictate what we do, then shame on us.
In the bumff about wikis it says that 'Librarians are currently using wikis for a variety of purposes: to produce staff manuals and subject guides, to manage projects, and as Intranets'. I thought that I honestly did not think that a wiki would add anything really extraordinarily good to our work flows for this type of activy. The only thing that struck me was that I could have used it for brainstorming for the current IT Training room project where those involved were rarely able to physically get together - myself, Computer Officer, EMBS electrical, EMBS maintenance, AV people, Furniture people, IT people. Most of the rest of the time we have a shared drive for documents, manuals, subject guides etc etc.
I have an account with PBwiki and have added information on to the TeachMeet wiki. Apart from that 'I'm good' - as they say over the pond.
Tuesday, 17 August 2010
BUT - take me to the visual and I'm all yours (so to speak). Given that I understand/learn best with visual stimuli I thought that the podcasting video was brilliant.
Youtube is loads of fun and I looked at all the suggested links and chortled my way through Andy's top 3. Can't say that I pushed the boat out and found any others but I have seen some great ones in the past.
The Cambridge Libraries film - 'The Perfect Desk' - will shortly be launched - a special meet for those who can make it on 7th Sept means that you can see it then, enjoy a drink and enter a prize draw for a £25 voucher. The film will be posted on the University's youtube site and available for the public to see!
As for using podcasting and youtube in the Library - well, we tried a film last year and just used the streaming media service which is part of the University to load it on, and that worked fine. Podcasts - well I won't say no if one of the staff are keen to do them, but bearing in mind the above, they are unlikely to be something that I will jump to do quickly myself.
Saturday, 14 August 2010
Friday, 13 August 2010
Discovered that loading a ppt on slideshare with animations/slide transitions etc won't work. Bit peeved about this until I discovered iSpring which converts ppt with animations into flash video. It's free or you can download similar products for a trial, and inevitably there is a paid version available too. For a ppt lover this is a very easy solution....
Monday, 9 August 2010
Mr Priestner is definitely wrong about how to pronounce Zotero.
Tuesday, 3 August 2010
Sunday, 1 August 2010
Discovered Picasa today - I am sure that someone has posted a link to it somewhere on the 23 Things blog posts but I fell upon it by accident and found that it did some of the editing I was looking for! So some attempts at playing with text and image....
Monday, 26 July 2010
One of the exciting things about 23 Things is that the ‘and so what’ question that I rashly asked people to think about has actually produced some very interesting thoughts and conversations. We veer from complete enthusiast, to ‘good for collaboration’ to yes I’ll do this, or that or the next thing but not others. I think this is encouraging!
For me, the journey (to use a rather over-used term these days) has been quite mixed. Some of the Things I have already ‘done’/played with and actively use, others I just got cross with and wondered what the point of them were. I suspect that this reaction does me no credit whatsoever as it is probably the ‘things’ that I am least familiar with that make me react in this way. Mea culpa.
However, one thing that I have become quite excited about is the simple act of blogging and making use of blogs for library pages and for other purposes such as online tutorials. After all the committee will have written 23 mini tutorials for the library community over the course of this programme, which many people have managed to do – so why not use this friendly, free tool for library tutorials? Several conversations with our Computer Officer about our library website have all pointed in this direction as well. Blogs are easily edited by anyone really and with our Library News already based on a blog we are half way there.
So –somewhat to my surprise I have a real goal for shaping what we do next in the Library, and I don’t feel all that bad about ignoring such things as twitter and delicious – for the moment at any rate! So there is good stuff out there.......
Wednesday, 14 July 2010
Well, 'Delicious' looks.....er...um....delicious
I can see the point of being able to access my bookmarks from any computer etc etc but truth to tell I rarely move computers and if I do I don't generally need that particular set of bookmarks. But I fear that this makes me sounds like the proverbial 'grumpy old woman'.
BUT.......in my defense........I clicked the link through to the Casimir Lewy Delicious page and was suitably awed and depressed, and went through one of those 'oh my goodness - we MUST DO THIS/head in hand scenarios' . But then I thought that I would pretend to be a Philosopher going to their website and be entranced by the information available to me via this tool. I was incredibly frustrated at how unobvious it seemed to be on the website and wondered idly how well-used it was. (Apologies I truly am becoming more and more grumpy - could be that I'm just hungry). Even the Green Library delicious page looks lovely -but again going from the front end of the website - absolutely NOTHING tells you where this wretched page is hiding! Either that or else i am just starving and should go and eat. So once again i ask myself - is it useful? is it helpful?
Yes I do have a personal account, yes I have created a Library account, no I don't use it actively yet but am trying really hard to decide whether to pursue on behalf of the Library. I need to resolve access, promotion, location, resource searching, quality control, and buy-in from those who would maintain and use it.
* Thoughts about the tool
Helpful, inspirational, reminding, provoking, irritating (I would so like to have BEEN there!)
* What particular benefits to your Library are there from using Slideshare?
No need to keep on re-inventing the wheel - others have been there and done it already
* Did you find any interesting presentations that you would like to share?
Yep - sure - see one below from Chris Powis and Jo Webb
I'm highly likely to use Slideshare in the future - especially for ideas. I need to work on my powerpoints (see previous post) before I am likely to want the world to see them on slideshare!
Sunday, 27 June 2010
Saturday, 26 June 2010
Friday, 25 June 2010
Wednesday, 23 June 2010
Tuesday, 22 June 2010
Friday, 11 June 2010
Monday, 7 June 2010
Thursday, 3 June 2010
There is a definite feeling that it would be easy just to say - oh well never mind, it seemed like a good idea to do this but I'm not so sure........ Is there anything to say to change our minds and get us all up and running and on to the next. Well Thing 5 is not so far away and it's all about organising a cup of coffee for yourself and your study buddies or just anyone really, so maybe that will boost us all beyond the parapet?
I love the other 23 Things blogs - such inventive people around. Wish I could find time and energy and techie-ness to do it too! Ah well - and see now I need to stop and go and man the issue desk.
Am I still just peeping over the parapet - yes probably.
I prefer my feed reader at work though. I just put all the feeds in this and then little pop-ups alert me to the fact that feeds have been added. So here is a screen shot of my feed reader - looks like I haven't read any of the 23 Things feeds but then I do get them through the RSS feed into iGoogle!!
Ok so I already use iGoogle - not regularly at work but always at home. But I learnt a few things by playing again with it. I learnt that I like penguins that move at random around the screen. I learnt that being permanently logged into the twitter gadget is 'not bad'. I learnt something about tabs and about some new gadgets that I hadn't used before.
I LOVE the beachy-theme I've chosen. Helps me think that my hols are not too far away.
And most of all I learnt that I will choose to play (no! - surely this is work?!) on iGoogle as a preference to cataloguing.
Monday, 31 May 2010
It doesn’t help at all when you see some blog posts that are witty and engaging and making extremely useful and challenging points. If you’re in that place, rest assured that you’ll not get much of that here. Just a few random musings – now and again. It’s possible I’ll get carried away once in awhile and even say something that is worthwhile but that’s hopefully forgivable and easily ignored.
Cam23 - what do I think so far? Well, I already use iGoogle quite a lot, not at work , but at home. It's too distracting at work even with all the 'important' feeds that I have there like the English Subject Centre and the English Faculty Library News (I am often the one that adds the news so not sure why I have that there). However I did give in today and put the penguins up...which means that I will either have to remove them or tell myslef that it really IS just for home and not work! I find the facebook gadget irritating, but the Google calendar gadget absolutely essential as my whole working and home life is mapped out through 4 shared calendars and a task list there (see another Thing for google calendars but rest assured my life could not happen without it)
My very worst problem on this will be time despite the fact that I thought this style of learning brilliant. It still requires some discipline.........