Wednesday, February 13, 2008

aHA! Zoho!

MY LAST KRL2pt0 assignment! yahoo! (yes, I did them out of order...)

Anyway, just signed up for a Zoho account, and I can see the possibilities here. I belong to an organic buying club & we're always looking for better ways to know who is ordering what so we can get better prices and more consistent orders. The Zoho software and Googledocs both have good spreadsheet applications that could make this more efficient. No emailing spreadsheets. Everyone can see what everyone else is ordering. etc etc etc.

I think it would be helpful to do a "tour" of Zoho, or have an online demo of all it features, but for what I'm thinking it's pretty straightforward. I like that when you select the tool you want, it takes you directly to a very familar-feeling spreadsheet, wordprocessor, whatever.

Applications for the library? What if we didn't have to purchase application licesnses to be able to offer wordprocessing and spreadsheet tools to our patrons? This does that. What if students didn't need to be able to afford a computer in order to do their homework. Pretty cool. Yet another way to open the door to all the other really cool things the library has to offer.


Explored twitter, and really don't "get" it yet for application at the library.....but am SO excited about something else it could do! I was walking my hubby through all the COOL things I've learned in the KRL2pt0 journey, and then mentioned that Twitter was still on my need-to-do list for this afternoon. He sat with me & we read the KRL twitter blog aloud, and I could see the gears start turning. He's part of a volunteer rescue group that helps folks stuck on the sides of mountains, lost in the wilderness, etc. They have pagers for when they have call-outs, but have been looking for a way to eliminate the pagers & have the call-out message sent directly to members' cell phones. I think this could be their solution! Very cool to sit here in my living room and see an immediate, real-life application for this new technology we're being introduced to.

OK - back to library application..... hmmm....... Meeting change notices? Out-of-power annoucements? Not sure how this would be better/faster/different from using the group-email capabilities of Outlook, though. Perhaps something with patrons...? I need to think about that more.

Explored some Twitterers. Found the author of the KRL reads Farenheit 451 blog. Found Shannon Petersen (loved her twitter about the coolest moment and the teen wanting a fort).

Created my own account. Way too tough to figure out how to find people. I added a few people to follow, but after 30 min gave up on trying to find krl. What did I miss??? Did a search for kitsaplibrary, library, krl, etc etc etc. Nothing. gRRRRR.


So it's entirely possible (likely, even) that I'm missing the point here, but it seems to me that it would be easy to spend a LOT of time trying to create blogs, facebook entries and the like without really having a clue what impact it was making in terms of patron using the library. I'm all for moving forward, taking advangtage of new technologies, and most definitely being useful at where the patrons are, as the blog gal described. My issue with social networking for libraries is that it's easy to do a really bad job of it. Blogger gal pointed that out. So is bad better than not at all? I don't think so. But is it bad to not try because we think we'll be bad at it on our first attempt (and second and third)? I think so.

I guess I think that if libraries decide to jump, we need to jump with both feet, and COMMIT to learning how to do it better, be more effective, etc. Committing means that staff time is dedicated to it for the long haul, and that training and research dollars are allotted to make it better, and staff time is provided not only for producing, but also for researching what can be improved. Simply throwing it out there for a few rounds and then bagging it because it's not working is the worst option of all I think. Try it. Assess. Learn from version1 and move to version2 and so on into infinity. Or at least until web3.0 arrives. So yes, thumbs up, with the conditions that we be active in figuring out who's doing it right, and learn from them, and advancing this new technique. Reinvest.

Wiki needs a little PR

Catching up on assignments here.....

I wasn't sure if I was wiki-ing correctly because when I clicked on the PR dept page, nothing came up. Nevertheless, I persevered. (That MP3 player is like a little carrot dangling in front of my slee-deprived eyes. Am I in college again???) I added to the PR page, and wa-la! It appeared. Went back to the home page, clicked on PR dept in both places (left and right) and it shows up in both. Cool! Simple, quick.

How could KRL use this? It's the layman's website. Get it up quick, anyone can do it. Quality control could be an issue, and message control could be of real concern to PR dept. though. Hmmm.........

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lost in space

Just spent over an hour creating a totally unnecessary but pretty fun digital meez. For a non-surfer, practical-oriented computer user (just want to use it to get my work done and email then go do other things, thanks) I got really serious about creating just the right meez for the mood!

But I digress.

LibraryThing is cool! I've always had little success selecting good books off the shelves without a recommendation. Wine, like books, has always been selected by the label (cover). Most often, book covers are deceiving --- really great cover art does not a good read make. But I HAVE gotten some great reads off the book group shelves at the library! Makes sense, and they're selected by the fine folks who find great books and bring them to other people's attention for a living. LibraryThing just expands that. See what people are reading, talking about, love, would read again, etc Perfect!

Now if someone can just help me find a really good glass of wine...
Meez 3D avatar avatars games

Monday, December 31, 2007

Online videos

YouTube: fun! But really hit & miss unless you are looking for something specific. The viewer ratings are really valuable. Could spend a lot of time here. Or, could spend a lot of time outside, doing something fun of my own! There's definitely a cultural shift that's gone on, and to ignore YouTube is to ignore that aspect of pop culture. Sort of like shrugging off TV. You can, and you can be perfectly happy(ier) doing so, but you'll also miss out on a lot of the common humor and references of the time. That can have greater implications that it would initially appear. As what felt like one of only about three teenagers in the universe that didn't have access to MTV, I think I'll make up for a little of that lost cultural reference on YouTube.