Saturday, October 29, 2011

Library 2.0

"The library is human" (Michael Stephens, librarian blogger) - When considering the present and the future of the library, this statement is the most essential of all. Yes, there's an assortment of Web 2.0 technologies, many of which I've explored, as evidenced in my blog. However, with all of this focus on becoming in tune with technology and integrating as much as deemed fit or possible in the library, we serve real, living human beings.

There are conveniences that come along with technology but there's a personal touch that comes with face-to-face interaction that cannot be matched by technology.

Rick Anderson (Director of Resource Acquisition, University of Nevada, Reno Libraries) made a good point as well when he said that, "We have to be a bit more humble in the current environment, and find new ways to bring our services to patrons rather than insisting that they come to us—whether physically or virtually."

We have to reach our patrons right where they are. It isn't enough for example for the library to merely have a Facebook page, they have to actively create ways to draw patrons to their page. What ways will the library use these Web 2.0 technologies interactively? The days of static Websites are fading. As users, we're enjoying the sense of community that's developing online. We don't simply consume. We contribute, we create, and add value to the overall experience.

To be future-ready, we'll need a good mix of continued face-to-face as well as virtual interaction. Face-to-face will never grow old. In fact, in the local library I frequent, there's so many self-checkout stations now. Yes, it's pretty cool, even fun. However, I miss the conversations at the circulation desk. Human interaction is important. In some ways, I'm confused because our libraries in the county have cut hours and staff but then a great number of self-checkout stations are added. I'd rather see the smiling faces of library staff (with jobs and restored hours) instead of new machinery.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Zotero, Trial Run

Zotero - An open source application for citation management.

With Zotero I can build a library of resources that are of importance to me. Diigo and Delicious do the same thing. These are all shareable to the rest of the world (should they care to take a peek at your library). What I particularly appreciate about Zotero is its ability to grab citations from Websites. It is also said that using these citations (in the style you select: APA, MLA etc,) in a Google Doc, for example, is as simple as "dragging & dropping." I haven't tried this feature yet, so I cannot weigh in on its functionality.

What I've tried so far is collecting resources and creating folders within my library to store them. I'm doing a test run with Zotero by attempting to use in a collaborative project I have in another LIS course. I hope it proves to be useful!

Should you be so inclined, here's a link to my library: http://www.zotero.org/cmcarter36

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Delicious - Bookmarking Frenzy

This week's adventure brought me to Delicious.com, a social bookmarking tool similar to Diigo which our class has been using to collect useful sites, articles and links relevant to libraries and library and information studies. Where Diigo seems to be better geared towards research, Delicious is more fun (in my opinion). In fact, I've been having a great deal of fun bookmarking sites that are of interest to me. Sites belonging to my favorite authors (Ted Dekker, Frank Peretti), and those belonging to some of my favorite chefs (like G. Garvin for example). Of particular interest to me were the stacks. I like that these are theme based because it allows me to organize my bookmarks in a visual way that makes sense to me. I could definitely see myself using this bookmarking tool to store links to valuable sites that would help me as a School Library Media Specialist. Linking to other SLMS Websites or blogs for example. Linking to pathfinders for students. etc. The only thing I did not figure out is whether or not I can share my URL for my Delicious account like I can with Flickr for example. If I figure that out, I will add it in my next post. Thanks for checking in.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Google Reader & RSS

"RSS" Really Simple Syndication. Google Reader is a great way to have access to all of the content that is of most importance to you. Blogs, podcasts, and news feeds for example. In some ways, it seems that subscribing to multiple feeds would cause an overwhelming amount of content to sift through, but Google Reader organizes your subscriptions in such a way that streamlines the load (some). It may also eliminate the need to jump from site to site to view content since it's all in the one reader.

I found a number of feeds to subscribe to that I found interesting. The School Library Monthly blog for example, and Smithsonian Libraries. I also subscribed to the feed of my favorite author, Ted Dekker. I also found a feed to the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. I attended this event this summer and now I can be in the know for what will take place next year.

Which is the general idea, right? To stay in the know. For this reason, it seems like a good resource to use.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My Website is Live!

After much headache, blurred vision, hair-fulling and gnashing of teeth...my website is up and running-WOOHOO! Please do check it out: http://www.buffalo.edu/~cmjones

And please be kind in your assessment, I am a newbie at this and am still learning. Thank you!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Wikis

Wikis are collaborative Web pages that provide space for those with a common interest to share and create content, discuss topics of interest, and provide valuable resources in the form of documents, links to relevant Websites and such.

One of my LIS courses makes use of a Wiki for our learning environment. It is the place we go to to listen to the weekly podcast, download the week's documents, access links to additional resources, and participate in discussion forums surrounding the subject matter for the week.

I have two middle school aged children and their teachers make use of class Wikis. It's a place for parents to stay informed on what's being taught in each class and what assignments are due. My children can also find glossaries on the Wiki, links to homework helps, study guides and other helpful tools.

Of the Wikis I explored for this week's challenge, my favorite was the St. Joseph County public library system. I appreciated the many community resources that were available. For example, local authors, community organizations, voter information.

I think Wikis are a useful tool for libraries. With a SLMC (School Library Media Center), a Wiki can act as an interactive environment for students to access and use information. Leading to resources pertaining to their homework or class projects. It could also be a great place for book discussions, as in with a book club, for example.