Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Sometimes I just love silliness!

I was just going back through the many things I did during the NT23 exercise. I deleted a few things and also wanted to write down some of the other accounts that I intend to keep. I had forgotten about LibraryThing (for shame, Ms. Bombshell!) which I can't believe I did because I really liked it. Well, they've upped the ante! September 19, 2009 was Talk Like A Pirate day and LibraryThing actually has a version of their site that is still accessible THAT IS ENTIRELY IN PIRATE SPEAK!!!!!!!!!!!!! To quote an excited 16 year old "EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEKK!" Now, granted, Facebook has had that available for a while but for LibraryThing to do it is just heavenly! Oh how I heart you LibraryThing!!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Story Time with Ms. Bombshell

A few weeks ago, I developed a lovely case of the flu with some sinus infection thrown in for taste. It was a most excellent week where I felt like my brain was simultaneously being smushed by rocks and broiling in an oven. I felt fantastic......ok, I'm totally lying. I felt like padoodles. I also sounded like Satan thanks to the drainage making my throat totally inflamed. It was the best week ever. Anyhoo, cut to the next week when I finally was cleared to go back to work. I was better but I still had some fatigue issues. (I had to stop halfway up any set of stairs because I would get tired. Yeah, that's fatigue!) Hence, that whole week, I wore nothing but dresses because they are low maintenance and ballet flats because they require the least effort when it comes to walking around. Evidently, I've become the Queen of High Heels because I received several comments from people that ranged from "Oh, look, you have your comfy shoes on," to "Wow, you're actually wearing flats two days in a row!" and my favorite, "Whoa, you must still feel bad if you're wearing those shoes!" I had no idea that my footwear was noticed that much! Granted, there are those that I would make sure saw my shoes. There are also those people that would comment because they liked to say "I don't know how you can walk around all day in those heels." I just had no idea so many people had seen and noted what I put on my feet every day!

This week I have been wearing a higher heeled boot (although I'm still not up to my usual 4 inch heels). There was a comment made about it, "That's the smallest heel I think I've ever seen you wear, other than flats." I just said "I'm getting better! Once you see me back in heels, you'll know I'm completely recovered!"

The whole thing actually just made me feel quite special, and not in the helmet kind of way! I think that I will go get a new pair of heels to celebrate!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

And the lights fade out (Thing 23)

Like all fun things, this has come to an end. I am so glad I signed up to participate in this experience. I've learned so much and am super excited about several of the things I got to do. The thing I liked the most is still the blog reader (I heart you Google Reader!). That one thing (granted I did like a lot of the others) made this all so worth doing! The thing I liked the least was I don't have any kind of agenda and so it was totally worthless to me. One of the aspects that I learned during this exercise is just how many websites can be linked (like Flickr and Yahoo or Digg and Facebook). That was most excellent! I had a wonderful time doing all the tasks and got some insight into things that I had heard about but never got to play with. I really hope that either this program runs again or that we can bring it to our library system. And so, I take a bow and exit stage left!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Adaptation (Thing 22)

I do know of several people in this particular library system that participated in the 23 Things exercise. When it comes to the 23 Things, I would love for everyone in the system to get to experience it. Granted, they wouldn't all do it at the same time (that would be chaotic and probably cause a few people to lose it) but it would be nice if they could all experience it. If I were to adapt it for the system here, I'd change only a couple of the things. I would take out Ning and replace it with shelfari, mainly because I think the people involved would use it more than they'd use ning. (Pretty much everyone I talked to wasn't very thrilled with ning) I would also probably take out the more facebook thing (oh it would pain me to do so!) and put in myspace simply because we still have a lot of people (public) that use it and still ask questions about it. That one is still pretty optional though. Otherwise, I would keep the tasks in the same order and just have everyone go at it. Either that or have a 23 things thrown in your face kind of thing where we go over it all in one big hit. Doing that with a fun, exciting person instructing it might make it something people would want to participate in. (It could also be broken up into a two part session but again, that would something that would have to be discussed and, of course, dissected, torn apart, then put back together. gotta love planning!) And that concludes my thoughts on adapting the 23 Things for the library system where I work!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Invasion of the Podcasts! (Thing 21)

Thanks to this thing, I actually listened to my first podcast. I had seen them popping up on the LIS-Librarian and Information Science news rss feed that I had subscibed to in Thing 7. I finally took the time to listen to one and although there were a couple of times that my mind wandered (I think it was less to do with content than the man's voice. It was so soothing!) but it did have some good information. The audio did have a small glitch, in that, it sometimes would sound like the person stuttered but other than that, it had great audio quality. Some of the topics covered were technology in the library, a small note about a funny article (Children's Books that will never be published) and also, some discussion about the podcasts and where they are headed. I enjoyed it. When I get more time, I'm going to go listen to some podcasts from the National Library of Medicine. They had some great ones about new information about diseases and things like that!

As far as what patrons might listen to, I'm thinking that the subjects that would interest them would be business and money, entertainment, and technology. Those tend to be the subjects I get asked about the most right now. I think if we could make some entertaining ones about our library services and other things, we might be able to get patrons to listen to them. Or that's just my own little hope.

Friday, July 24, 2009

I saw it on YouTube! (Thing 20)

Dear YouTube,
Although so many people use you for really dumb things, I wanted you to know that I love you. So do a lot of libraries! I did a search just for Texas Library and came up with a ton of videos. Most of them were actually informative (ok not all were interesting but that's totally beside the point). Then, YouTube, to step it up, the search generated some really funny and entertaining videos from National Library week 2008. Now those were awesome. Not only are you so informative and put library videos out there for all to see, you also have awesome stuff like the David kid that was high after being at the dentist. Please don't ever change.

The Library Bombshell

Thursday, July 16, 2009

No wonder Google rules the world! (Thing 19)

Now they have documents!!!!???? It's probably been around for quite some time and I had no idea. (So after a little bit of research, I found out it's been around since 2006! Holy cannoles!) My biggest hurdle with this was writer's block. Once that was out of the way (thank goodness for a conversation with co-worker that gave me the basis for what I wrote!), I was able to complete the rest of the tasks. I was so super stoked about the sharing feature! My first thought was group projects or tasks! That is majorly useful! Kudos to Google for having everything a person could need all in one tidy little website. I'm fairly sure that soon, Google will just go ahead and take over the world. And I'm ok with that.

Wiki what? (Thing 18)

Before doing this thing, I had limited experience with wikis. I had heard of them (thanks most in part to the most famous wiki of all, wikipedia) but never really got hands on with one. I got some experience with the wiki that is used by the library although I was still only good at losing pages. At first, when I used the one designated for this activity, I had some difficulty getting it to accept my typing but then I went to another computer that had IE7 and that took care of the problem. After that, it was much easier to make and edit the pages.

Before I added those pages, I did go to wikipedia to look around. I had never paid attention to the tabs at the top that show you the history and discussion, etc. I usually just read the content on wikipedia, then usually would start clicking on the other links which would lead to reading way more than I needed to. Good times, yes; good use of time, no way!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Ewww...a Libworm! (Thing 17)

Actually using Libworm was not an ewww situation at all. I really like the concept of this Thing. The first time I went to the page I didn't have an exact idea of what I wanted to look for so ended up staring at the home page for a few seconds (ok it was minutes but I totally didn't want to admit that I drew a blank for that long). After that, I just decided to click around and see what happened. I had better results using it when I went to the feed categories menu and then whittled it down from there. I am sure I would have had great results if there had been something specific on my mind. It was interesting reading. The broad subject headings really helped me get a start on my own search. I will definitely have to spend some more time going through things so that I can find more RSS feeds that can help me at work!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

It's a Library Thing. (Thing 16)

I had no idea that existed and my life has been the poorer for it! Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating but I am glad I know about it now. This is going to be a Thing that I'm going to keep once this is all over. I really want to set aside a good amount of time so I can go through all the stuff on there. I've tried numerous ways to keep track of the books I've read and I do always seem to either forget some or forget to write them down (although a lot of the time I have the book so I can just look at my bookshelf). This website, in my humble opinion, is a much better way to keep track of books. I spent a little time exploring the groups and the other functions, but ran out of time. I will try to get on there at home so I can spend some time browsing around.

Do you Digg it? (Thing 15)

I definitely dig Digg. The concept of stories being submitted by people then voted on to be on the front page is pretty awesome. The most awesome aspect of Digg? You can connect it to your facebook page and when you dig a story, you can publish it on your page so that your friends can see it. Ok, so I realize that the above sentence makes me an Uber nerd but digg has some really funny stuff on it that I know the people I know would enjoy. The link to Facebook makes it easier for me to share it with people. Plus, if I'm already signed into Facebook, all I have to do is click one button and I'm logged into Digg. I had an enjoyable time going through the stories on Digg and also playing with the filters so that I would just see things that I wanted to see. I could go on and on about how much I like Digg but I think I've made that abundantly clear.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Mmmmm, Delicious (Thing 14)

The Delicious website totally gets two thumbs up from me. I am glad I signed up for an account instead of just looking through the site. Not only do I have all the library websites that I look for in one place, I've shared it with coworkers and they have added more that I didn't even know about! It has now become a useful tool for all of us here that work at the reference desk. I even have a story about it!

Once I set up the account, I sent out the info to my coworkers. One of the bookmarks I added was for the National Library Services for the Blind. One coworker in particular happened to browse through the bookmarks and noticed the aforementioned bookmark. Not even an hour later, someone called wanting information on acquiring library materials for a blind person. Thanks to the delicious account, she knew exactly where to find the info. She shot me an email and I was super stoked that it had already helped someone out.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tagging is not a crime (Thing 13)

Well, at least not in this application! To be honest, I've never really paid much attention to tags. I looked at the tags on delicious and flickr and I can see how they would be helpful for those websites. I'm really not sure about incorporating that into a library catalogue. I really think that since there are so many words for all subjects, people's associations are very different and some people are just malicious jerks, it would just cause a lot of unnecessary problems. This next statement is probably going to anger some people but I'm going to write it anyway. In my opinion, there's a reason the people that work in libraries have to go to school. They are there to make sure that things are put in order, whether by number or subject or whatever. Just letting the general public have at the catalogue is just not acceptable to me. Call me old fashioned or call me whatever, I just think there are some things that should be left to professionals. The catalogue should be one of those things. Outside of that, rock on with the tagging.

Twitter (Thing 12)

I'm just going to say that I don't like using Twitter. I do like reading some people's tweets (?) because they are generally witty people and are good under 140 characters. I am not one of those people. Plus, I think my life is interesting but I doubt anyone else would. Also, what I find interesting and what others find interesting is VERY different! I can see why celebrities, comedians and tabloids love Twitter. It puts their stuff out there and gives the public what they want, namely knowing what is going on every minute of the day in other people's lives. I give kudos to people that have made Twitter entertaining and interesting. I know mine won't last long.

Here's my Twitter address:

One of the suggestions was to write about the last time we heard about Twitter. Well, on the radio this morning, I heard a story that was called Twitter Kills! Apparently, a girl was tweeting (?) in the bathtub (???) and decided to plug in her laptop while in still in the bathtub. I'm sure you can guess what happened next. In case you want to read about it, here's the link to the story:

Oh dear!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

IM! OMG! (Thing 11)

First of all, let me say that the "text language" that kids use today is not new. This "language" started a long time ago and started on IM. I know because I have a notebook full of it that is written in my high school handwriting. (Yes, my handwriting has evolved over the years.) Ok, now that I'm done with that, I have to say that I still really like IM programs. Although I no longer sign on to talk to complete strangers like I did in my teens (Fun, yes; Smart, no way!), it is a great way to keep in touch with people that no longer live near me. I can always send them a text message but I'm just a much faster typist with a computer. Plus, sometimes when one person sends me multiple text messages, it can feel overwhelming. The "live action" feel of a chat is so much easier, although I will say that sarcasm doesn't always translate well and this can lead to possible misunderstandings. I also like that I can chat with multiple people, unlike with a phone (well I guess there is a way to do that but that's just WAY too advanced for me!)

The library here uses meebo on a limited basis, mainly to help employees navigate our intranet system. What I didn't know about meebo, until I read the blog about this thing, is that it can let you chat on almost all a person's programs! YAY!!! Personal use aside, I really think it would benefit the library system if we were to have a meebo interface for employees to talk to each other. I can understand why they would be hesitant since it could always be abused but then again, so can anything. Again, that's just my opinion.

Monday, June 15, 2009 (Thing 10)

I did set up a Ning account but I doubt that I will keep it once this is completed. This social networking site seems to be for those that have some sort of agenda. The website is perfect for those in an organization or a group of people that share a common passion. Without an agenda of some sort, the site is not useful to just an average person. If I ever become head of some sort of organization or want to create a group for people to join, I now know a place to do it!

Enabling the Facebook Addiction (Thing 9)

You call it more Facebook, I call it enabling an addiction, so all I can say is THANK YOU!!! *stops twitching*

Finding groups on Facebook was not something that I intended to do although, shortly after joining, a friend invited me to be part of his group. The group is called When In Rome and they trade recipes, take pictures of food and recommend favorite restaurants. It's really fun because now I know some good restaurants to go to when I travel to a couple of cities. I also joined the group Coronado High School Alumni and also a couple of silly groups like one called A Glass of Wine Solves Everything. The groups are pretty fun to follow and allow for random silliness with people from all over the country.

I really enjoy the Facebook interface so much more than other sites. Communication is easier plus there is the voyeurism factor. Much like tabloids, we get to see little pieces of people's lives and keep up with what they are doing. Even though they are friends, some may be in another state or just not someone you see all the time. Overall, an excellent way to keep in touch with people.

Friday, June 12, 2009's an addiction (Thing 8)

I already had a Facebook account before I did this thing, although I haven't had it for very long. Thanks to that, I do remember the set up. It was simple and not time consuming. Although it has changed a little since I first signed up, it's still an enjoyable way to keep up with friends. It just seems to be more interactive and fun. Also, a most excellent feature is that a profile is not visible to anyone that is not a friend. I really like that.

My only complaint about Facebook is that it is highly addictive and will probably require rehab soon. At least there is no bodily harm involved.

Facebook gets the seal of awesomeness.

RSS Feeds (Thing 7)

Learning about RSS feeds was so great to me since I had no idea what they did. I have repeatedly seen that little orange box on websites and wondered why it was there. After watching that video and experimenting with adding those feeds to my reader, I feel I have a better understanding of what they are. I give them two thumbs up since they are a big part of what allows the reader to work. I'm going to keep experimenting with them so that I won't forget about them.

Blog, Blog, Blog (Thing 6)

This has probably been my favorite thing to do (Yes, even more than Facebook!). I decided to go with the Google Reader since, thanks to this blog, I already had a Gmail account. I had no idea that these things were available. There are several blogs that had a place in the Favorites menu on my web browser because I enjoyed reading them every day. Although not a tedious or hard process, it was just something that became part of the day, going to each one individually and selecting it. I do have to admit that I love having them all in one place now, especially since not all of them are updated daily and the blog reader highlights the name of the blog when it's been updated. It's so nice now to just open one page and have everything there. It's so simple to use and an excellent way to keep updated on the blogs. High-five to Google!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Image Generators are great for team building (Thing 5)

Well at least that's the story I'm sticking to. I happened to be around a few co-workers when I read about this thing and decided to give it a try. Getting started was probably the hardest part since these should be either funny or mushy. Since I'm not a fan of mushy, I went with funny. The first image I worked with was this one.

After this one was done, I got on a roll and did a few more. I was giggling to myself when one of my co-workers asked what I was doing. I showed her the various images I messed with and she decided to see if she could make them. I ended up showing her the various things that could be done on the website and she generated her own funnies. The best part is that I was able to pass along what I'd learned shortly after I finished learning it. I know it sounds rather hokey but I really enjoy passing along any kind of knowledge to others. I suppose that's why I like working in a library. Anyway, I showed a couple more co-workers this site (and also and they all started to work with the site. It was an afternoon spent laughing with my co-workers that I will label team building because A) we made each other laugh and B) we all learned something new.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Flickr that....(Thing 4)

Ta Da!!!!

Here is my name spelled out with Flickr spell. I must admit that it is pretty fun to see how many different images it had for each letter. I actually tried several words but decided to just post my name since 1) it's easy and 2) it's short so it would fit and not get distorted once posted. I did have a little trouble posting this up because I didn't like all the letters that came up the first time. Once I switched a couple of the letters, the code on the bottom changed so it no longer would just post here and then give the html view. It would post a link that didn't seem to work. I'm not all that good at writing or editing code at the moment so I just went old-school and saved the images and put them up here. All-in-all, it was a very fun and interesting experience.

Flickr this...(Thing 3)


Flickr is very easy to use. It's reminiscent of which I used a while ago when I first got a Myspace page. The amount of images available to view was most excellent. There were some really beautiful photographs on that site. I couldn't take a lot of time to look at them since I was at work though, I would love to take some time (should probably be personal time) to go through more of them. The site was simple to use, which is always a plus, and has lots of storage. A big plus is that it is linked to a person's yahoo account so it's way easier to remember the log in and password. Bonus!

I went ahead and created my own account instead of just looking through the pictures.

Here's the link to my photostream. I used fun pics of my friends and I.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Library 2.0 (Thing 2)

The concept of "Library 2.0" seems to be a catchy way to summarize that libraries are embracing and incorporating technological resources into their collections. I remember when I was growing up that the library was a place to go get books for fun, books for research and a place to stare at that weird machine that would let you look at old newspapers. As time went on (high school, college, bad after college jobs) the way the library looked kept changing. For example, the main library at the university I attended has changed it's look pretty dramatically. (or at least as dramatic as a state university can afford.) When I first started attending that university, the campus library had a few computers around, mainly for the catalogue and a one of the upper level floors had a small cluster of computers for students to use. Now, the first floor is part computer lab, part circulation desk and part coffee shop (ok that has nothing to do with technology but boy is it still excellent!). As things changed, the library had to adapt to those changes or become obsolete. Granted, students will always need print resources but one of the main draws of a library now is the access to computers. Public libraries have an even harder time drawing the crowds (well unless there's a recession but that's a whole other subject!) but thanks to a good amount of computers with Internet access, people do still make the trip to the library. This, in turn, does make circulation go up since people need something to look at while they wait for their time on the computers.
When I started working in a library about a year ago, I was rather surprised that the majority of questions I was asked were computer-related. Here I thought I'd be showing people where to find that new novel by David Baldacci (Ok, I wasn't that naive but I was really surprised). This was part of my motivation in doing these 23 things. I want to be able to answer these questions with confidence instead of smiling and say "Sure I can help you with that," but having my inner monologue saying "Oh poo, I have NO IDEA how to do that on that website!" Now, I know that library staff will never know how to do everything but with some good training and a little time to play with the new things we learn, we should be able to make everyone THINK we know everything.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Story time with Ms. Bombshell

Although this blog is mainly for the NorthTexas 23 things exercise, I thought I'd take a small break in normal programming to tell a story I heard that made me laugh until I got a headache. This comes courtesy of an elementary school teacher.

The class was discussing the swine flu pandemic that was the news headline all last week. A fourth-grade student contributed this gem of knowledge to the discussion, "The pig flu was predicted in the bible and we're all gonna die because that's what the bible says. Oh and my friend told me that if you read the last page of the bible, you go crazy!"

This little nugget of knowledge stuck with one of the kids, in particular a severely dyslexic fourth grader, who decides to go home and read the last page of the bible.

He comes back the next day and tells the student "Nah uh, you don't go crazy! I read it and I'm fine!"

Wow, really???

So to recap:

1. The pig flu is predicted in the bible

2. If you read the last page of the bible, you go crazy.

3. The last page of the bible is something that even a dyslexic fourth grader can read.

Sometimes I really, really like the way kids think.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Hello 23 Things people! (Thing #1)

The title pretty much says what this first blog is about. I am super stoked to be doing the 23 Things activity and hope everyone that is participating is just as excited!

And yes, the name of my blog is rather ridiculous...but then again, so am I!