Wednesday, November 19, 2008

post learn & play... library crafting!

i thought since i finished learn and play i would continue to post in here about library & book related things. so this is post number one in that vein.

at reynoldsburg we discard our old magazines in bulk after a certain period of time. these are placed on a cart in the back room before they get thrown away. every time this happens i raid the cart for as much as i can carry of various titles.

what for, you ask? for art!

my boyfriend matt and i are both very fond of collaging. perhaps in the future i will post more about that. last night we tried something a little different. matt recently noticed the bowls and coasters that frequent artsy type (and sometimes pretentious) galleries, shops, museum art stores. we even saw them at the franklin park conservatory's shop when we visited last friday. i'd been seeing them for years- sort of dismissed them as cool but overpriced. i'd made beads from magazines in a similar fashion when i was younger. matt however, really took to these colorful little dishes. so i told him we'd make some! and make some we did- using cml's own discards, hot glue guns, scotch tape, some patience, and a couple online Office episodes. ( i did make cookies too... i don't know if that contributed to the process. )

this is a slideshow of the results of our first magazine dish venture. you can totally tell which one of us is a overly cautious and self critical perfectionist and which one of us was competing for completion.

i hope this is of interest to some of you- it isn't that hard, but it does require some time and patience. we're going to do night # 2 soon- we had fun!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Thing #23... The End!

This is my final post for the 23 Things in CML's Learn and Play Program.

While it was a bit aggravating to complete at points and difficult to find the time for completing all the exercises I am very glad I participated. I learned a few new things- but most of all I enjoyed seeing others learn new things and be so excited about it.

My favorite discovery was probably Picnik. I am also glad I finally registered for Delicious.

I think this program has affected my lifelong learning goals by letting me experience how encouraging it is to watch others learn and grow. CML staff of all different ages and technological stances participated in Learn & Play, and that is really cool.

If the Columbus Metropolitan Library did a similar program in the future I would definitely consider participation. Learning about the "2.0" library of the future is important, and this was a great way to get everyone in touch with some of the basics.

thing's moldi

Almost done!

MOLDI stands for the Mid-Ohio Library Digitial Initiative. I actually knew about this site already, through previous library website exploration in my late teens. I do not like to listen to books on cassette or CD generally, and most of the films on the site are B Horror and Sci-Fi. I looked around the site again- it has expanded a great deal since I last visited. I think it is a neat service, and I'm glad they are offering service to Ipods now.

I found one item that I might like to check out. I'm not very big on cartoons, but I love old things. I'd read about this somewhere, but since it is online to view for free I've got nothing to lose. "Cartoons That Time Forgot: The Ub Iwerks Collection Vol.1" has a high rating on IMDb and has consistently had good reviews from several places.

I'm glad that MOLDI exists for public use, and I'd like to see it continue to expand!

thing 21.:.podcasts

For this thing we were asked to look through some podcast directories.

I looked through podcastalley. I found a podcast that interested me- coverville - and subscribed to it on my bloglines account. A good cover is always a good thing, and there are never too many sources for them.

On a library related note I found several podcasts done directly by librararies across the country. One I thought was impressive was the Chesire Public Library Podcast. It's a podcast mostly dedicated to the teens of the library. They discuss books, share their own writing, and conduct interviews. Pretty impressive. A really great way to utilize the podcast technology in a library and social setting.

I have always enjoyed podcasts- I've been using them for several years now. Mostly since I purchased my ipod- just because it makes everything portable. NPR's podcasts are some of my favorites. Keeping up with the music scene is a lot easier when you can do it on the go as well. I think the idea of harnessing this technology for library use is a super idea. The teens at Chesire seem to be giving it a go at any rate. CML could use podcasts in a similar fashion- maybe even uniting all of the teen groups from all of the branches. It would be a great way to save book discussions for book groups- that way if someone misses a week it isn't a problem. It might also be useful for keeping staff up to date on meetings in general, or even training sessions. I love podcasts- I never see/hear things when they happen. I watch my tv online (The Office) or on dvd, and I listen to my radio shows via podcast as well. Having a public CML podcast to unify the entire community and keep everyone on the same page about events would be a great idea.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

thing 20: youtube

I've been using YouTube for a long time. I spend a lot of time on it, actually. When I can't sleep I watch videos- sometimes the instruction videos lull me off. But I use it a lot when I'm awake too. It's great for instructions, music videos, clips of old tv shows... lots of things. Even local stuff. My YouTube account is linked to my Google account, which is really nice. I wish the site had more in depth search and sorting options....but that is asking for the impossible, for the most part. Using YouTube in a library setting is tricky. I think having a library account with an account full of or favorited to lists of library related or helpful videos would be nice. But openly linking or embedding YouTube in a professional setting is always rather risky. After a video plays, more ads for other videos are shown. If one goes to the YouTube site, there is a barrage of advertisement in all directions, especially for more viewing. That isn't always the best.

The video I posted is of a very small Korean boy singing his version of "Hey Jude." I think it is one of the most adorable things ever, and whenever I need cheering up- this helps. I love how he is mimicking the lyrics by sound, not by word meaning, as well as occasionally remembering to strum the guitar and lean into the mic. Priceless. This video shows an example of how absolutely brilliant children are.

More on that note... Here is a collaboration Cosby put together honoring Art Linkletter. I'm out!

i miss jim.... a lot.

Thing 19: CML Power Tools

For this thing we were asked to look at CML's own Power Tools page. Along with many other cml bloggers, I did not know this page existed. I will definitely keep it in mind when helping customers navigate their way around the library website or even just online. It's a very useful thing to have on our homepage.

I have already used all but a few of the tools. So I decided to look at those.

Book Burro seems pretty straightforward & useful, but I'm not going to download it at the moment.
Digg is a site that I've known about for a very long time but never took any particular interest in. Much like BoingBoing, I end up linked to an article or a page on it sometimes. I have never visited it solely to visit. This time I spent some time looking around, and I think I've finally warmed to the concept. I will start visiting this site more often, and I will recommend it to patrons.

TechCrunch is a nice blog about all things tech. I don't have to have an iPhone to recognize why this site might be useful. I read an article posted earlier this month about Google winning the battle with the FCC for the unlicensed use of "white spaces" spectrum. Told you Google rules over us all.

On that note, I will conclude this entry after posting on the "Tooling Around" blog entry on gmail.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

thing eighteen...discovering web 2.0 tools

the 2.0 is back to goad me. oh well.

for this exercise we were asked to look at the list of nominees ( or merely the winners) of the web 2.0 awards. i looked at the list of winners first and was pleasantly surprised by how many of the sites i have already used. some daily. my favorites that were on the winner page: stumbleupon, craigslist, googledocs, careerbuilder, monster, myheritage, google maps, google earth, lastfm, yahoo answers, etsy, facebook, picasa, flickr, threadless, youtube, bbc video...i'm sure i'm even missing some.

i looked through several sites i had not visited before.

your minis:

your minis took first place under the widget category. i must say, i was not very impressed with this website. it's very cool that there is a go-to site for widgets, but the organization was not to my liking. too messy and unsorted- the apps did not have user ratings either. a lot of them were very unprofessional looking and sloppy. it appeared that users could upload their own widgets- and while that has perks, it also leads to more unsorted and untested chaos.

standout jobs:

this site looks very promising. i did not register for the 45 day free trial but i am sure i will give it a go in the future. i liked the layout and the clear navigation of the site. being able to recommend good job search sites is always a perk, and this is one i had not heard of before.


love it! how have i not heard of this site before? i will definitely be recommending this to others. up until now i have been relying on several sources to keep tabs on local events. now i can have one go to source! i was very impressed with the listings. i will probably still check in with my other sites to check on future events, but for a last minute idea resource this website is a really great tool. i like sites in the vein of discover ohio & ohio traveler, and use ilike and lastfm to keep up to date on concert tracking.


i am not a parent, but this site seems to be pretty neat as a one stop answer source for all things babies to teen. i like the design of the website and the collaborative community atmosphere. every person is unique- that makes group insight more valuable when it comes to guiding a person through life or even becoming a better person yourself.


this site is new to me as well. i looked around for a while & decided i liked it. i can see why craiglist topped it in the ratings- craigslist is slightly more organized and navigable. this site is useful in that you can sort by zipcode as well as city- something craigslist does not enable. i liked it, even though it came off as a bit sloppy.


i admire the ingenuity and creativity of this site. as much as i want to say "it's so cool!" i just can't. i spent a while with it, switching celebrity heads and inserting different pictures on my computer. it has the potential to be really cool- but none of the meshups really work. the head doesn't fit the hair, and it never even remotely looks semi natural or like a human. this site is a really neat idea though. maybe it takes a professional "hairmixer" to make it work.


i really liked picnik a lot. here's a "before" and "after" shot of a picture i took at clifton gorge.

thing #17: web-based apps

For this exercise we were asked to explore Google documents.

I have already utilized Google documents for some time now. I use a lot of the Google apps, and enjoy all of them. Google Docs is really useful for working on papers for school. In a work environment it would be a great place to keep all of a CML branch's documents. CMLSi already works in a very similar way- but Google would be great for everything else. I do like that you can see the changes and limit who has access in a group user setting. I don't really have much hands on experience with that aspect of Google documents as the majority of my use is personal.

For any CML library users that rely on public computers for completing all of their online/word processor, etc business Google is a great tool. All of their documents can be saved or even created online, making them permanent and portable. Hassle free. I'm pretty sure Google is going to take over the world. Seriously. We are putty in their hands. At least we have apps to play with!

For this exercise I created a brief "Presentation" in Google Documents to share:

cast: barnesville, ohio, franklin park conservatory, pidgeon roost farm, my boyfriend matthew, his sister katie, her two sons graham and charlie, alfred & stockton (the pumpkins).

thing 16: learn & play sandbox

After getting added to the cml learn & play wiki's registration I was able to post a link to my blog under "favorite blogs" along with other staff members. I didn't find this too complicated, but the process was definitely foreign to me. I will probably experiment with posting more to the wiki in the future.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

thing #15: what's in a wiki

For this exercise we were asked to take a look at some library wikis.

I looked at several through the links on the learn and play page. The differing ways in which they were constructed was interesting. I think the one I liked the best was the St. Joseph County Public Library System's website.

They had wikis in a variety of subjects, search tools, and a variety of options to communicate with and utilize the library staff.

Some of the other library wikis I visited featured book reviews organized by category. This would be a great tool for library staff to have and utilize when it came to recommending books to patrons. In fact, it might be useful to have a site like that for CML that was completely dedicated to book reviews. Staff could organize and add books, and patrons and others could add to the article listings It's a great way to keep everyone up to date on new publications and reader's reactions.

One of the wikis featured an organized "best practice" for libraries. I think this is an excellent tool- having lots of libraries from all over using one go to site to share best practice ideas and share experience with their application.

Other libraries have created home page wikis for themselves as a way to keep all informed on upcoming events and to keep users in touch with what other libraries are doing. I was impressed that one of these linked the public to WorldCat- which is one of my favorite virtual book tools, as well as Gnooks. Gnooks is a very cool site although I do not visit it over frequently.

The possible functions of the Wiki in a library setting is very varied and multifaceted. This is a great tool for reference and review. Massive amounts of information can be organized, labeled, searched, and added to with ease. That being said, some are better than others- and it is important to make sure a Wiki is not overloaded or hard to navigate.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Library 2.0

I don't like it when numbers are assigned to ideas. But I guess for this post I'll have to deal with that since the topic is Library 2.0.

I am very interested and even personally invested in the future of libraries as we know them presently. From my first Volunteen experience with the Southeast Branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library to spending all of my lunches working in the Pickerington High School Library, to working at two of the libraries on the colleges I attended, to my present job at the Reynoldsburg Branch of CML, I have watched libraries change and expand. I love libraries. I am still trying to finish my bachelor's degree, but once I complete that I hope to start working towards an MLIS degree with Kent. I have a lot of my work experience and my my future hopes invested in libraries. It's important for me to keep on top of the changes that many libraries are going through to be prepared for whatever the libraries of the future will look like.

lauren 5.60135

Yeah. Something like that.

This exercise has us looking at several "Perspectives" on Library 2.0 on a few different websites. I really enjoyed what I read- a lot of it being already familiar to me. Earlier this year I had the opportunity to attend an audio conference at the Main Library on Scenario Planning: Learning to Think in the Future Tense. A lot of the things listed in these sites were touched on there.

In his article "Away from the 'icebergs'" Rick Anderson talks about the changing notions of what a library collection consists of, as well as the "you come to us" mentality in dealing with library users. I think the Columbus Metropolitan Library has stayed very hip to those ideas- especially with our experimentational mailing out of Interlibrary Loans. As far as using the internet and computer technology in the library- I'm all for it. However quaint Microfish may be, a PDF document is probably a lot more efficent. Technology is not a bad thing. I truly believe that the library of the future will be better off for it- even if I might miss the silence and the due date stamping of a mere decades ago just the tiniest bit.

One of the other articles I looked at was John Riemer's "To better bibliographic services." In his perspective John talks about utilizing WorldCat technologies, RSS feeds, and different catalogs to broaden the library's services. He talks about including relevancy ratings and using more web features like "tagging" on a regular basis. He also hits on the library comes to you services.

While I might not like that we have to call it "Library 2.0" I am still very interested in keeping up with the ideas and changes that are flowing through not only CML, but libraries all over the world. It can be a bit scary to see things change- but it is exciting too!

mmmm.... delicious

The next exercise for the 23 things involves exploring tagging and the delicious website.

It's hard to use the internet and be oblivious to tagging. So many websites use it that I am hard pressed to think of a website I visit frequently which doesn't. Many popular search engines are based around a "tag" system as well.

Delicious is new to me. I had heard of it, but I don't think I ever realized quite what it was. Now that I know, I will probably use it a lot. Right now I am at work, but when I am at home later I will see if I can't start importing bookmarks from all the different browsers and computers I have used over the last few years. Some of them won't be reachable, but overall I should rake in a goodly number of internet sites. The hardest part of Delicious for me will be getting adjusted to tagging. While I have tagged and I am familiar with how it works, I've never liked it. Mostly because everyone has such different descriptive words and ideas about what a video or webpost or website is pertaining to. I've never liked the pressure of picking a few words to encapsulate something much bigger. Delicious will be a nice adjustment into getting me used to tagging on a more regular basis because my sites will be organized around my words and not someone elses.

I think this is a great tool. It functions in so many ways- and in both work and personal settings. It would be very cool to have a go to site when it comes to youth services or reference for all of the branches of CML. I love that since your websites are stored online instead of on a browser they are much more broadly accessible.

It really is Delicious. Yummy, even.

Saturday, November 8, 2008



i mean, sweet.

but really. twitter is actually pretty cool. it's not something i've used in the past although i've known about it. i guess i'm one of those people who is more into reading and listening then making my own noise. for this exercise i finally registered for my very own twitter account.

i checked out cml's learn and play account on twitter, but i couldn't access many of the things posted from my computer... i don't know why. i looked through the followers of the cml blog and recognized a lot of people i know.

i'm too shy to have a twittter!

the thing i enjoy most about twitter is the live update with all users from all over the world. that is very amazing to see- all the languages, all the faces, all the voices.

i think twitter would be an awesome tool to use for library staff, teen groups, book groups, etc. it's a great way to keep everybody in touch and up to date- a discussion and information board without having to be simultaneously conducted. unfortunately the search engine was down when i attempted to use it.

Friday, November 7, 2008


it's your thing, do whatcha wanna do!

had to say it.

okay, the next assignment was LibraryThing.

love it.

this is a very cool way to find books, keep track of your own books, or even find out what others are reading. there is a facebook application that is very similar to this which i already use.

this would be a great thing to use for a book group as well.

the LibraryThing Local is a great tool to keep in touch with area bookstores- if you have local bookstores that are in touch with LibraryThing and actually have neat events....

For those of you who are actually reading this and enjoyed LibraryThing you might also like to check out LivingSocial Books. ((It's the one there is a facebook application developed for, but just using the site works nicely too!))

Image Generators

Video Generator

Letter James

finding feeds

This exercise had us using several different sites to search for newsfeeds. This is my experience with the ones I used.


This was neat because you could use your zipcode to search for news focused in your area. One of the first articles that popped up was about my other employer- The American Motorcycle Association. Pretty cool. It was just as easy to search with other key words or use their more advanced search feature.


Cool name, but I found this site a lot more difficult to navigate. The pages all took a really long time to load and the layout was far from visually appealing.


This site was interesting because it features blogposts from all over the net that are rising in popularity on their homepage. The organization was fairly clear cut and searching was pretty easy. Using this site I found a blog called "The Happiness Project" and subscibed to it via Bloglines.

The Bloglines Search:

This is just what you would expect it to be, a lot like a Google or Yahoo news search, returning a lot of results not exactly sorted to perfection. I searched the term "Library joke" ((because it's been rather a dull rainy friday)) and I had to click through three websites to get to a story about a woman in Oregon who wanted to burn a book her son checked out from his high school library. Not that funny, and not that convenient.

Of the search engines I explored Topix & Technorati were my favorites.

RSS feeds

For this exercise I had to create a bloglines account and add at least 10 subscriptions. I don't really like RSS newsfeeds. I can see why others would- as for myself I'd rather take the time to browse the page or blog instead of reading all the postings in a super plain format. It is convenient to check all of your news and blogs in one place if you are in a big hurry. I think a lot of the charm is lost though- the color, the images, the layout... the stuff that makes a blog a blog.

I do think this is a useful technology. Incredibly useful. It's also helpful in cases where you might want to see what your friends subscribe to- you can just look at their public blogroll. Libraries could have their own public blogrolls to help with information and research purposes. Reading groups could have their own blogrolls, etc. The possibilities are endless.

The nice thing about RSS is the organization and convenience it offers. Googlereader is nice because it is linked directly to my google account without a Bloglines middleman.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

flickr fun

In thing number six we are asked to explore some of the online applications people have built around flickr. There are some really intriguing things out there that are very visually and mentally stimulating. One of the tools I find the most continually entrancing is the Flickr Color Pickr. This never gets old for me, probably because I love kaleidoscopes so much.

For this blog I created a trading card with FD Toys' Trading Card Maker. It felt really silly to do.....


I'm allowed to blog about anything related to technology!

I guess I'm going to write about the things I love about the internet.

I love what the internet has done for the music community. Music blogs and websites like Pitchfork, Last.FM, and even Myspace (to name a few) have really changed the way the music industry functions today. It's also really great how musicians can sell their own work with ease as well as get discovered via the internet. Altering the dictatorial power that major record industries once had over artists is a wonderful thing. The stunt that Paul Westerberg pulled this year especially amused me. He released a download only single track album entitled 49:00 which sold from amazon for 49 cents. A few weeks later he was made to withdraw it from the internet due to copyright issues. The initial download was short 5 minutes and 5 seconds of 49 minutes. Immediately following the downloads disappearance from purchase a free download appeared on Paul's personal site...a download entitled 5:05. I love Paul Westerberg. The Replacements may have not made it past 1990 but Paul is still every inch punk rock.

"I ain't about the money//If you wanna sue me//Can't see through me//Bring on a lawsuit//I'll bring my swimsuit//All you girls and guys//Make some noise//And join the 5:05"

I love it.

Music tangents aside, another internet feature I'm really keen on is StumbleUpon. After registering with this website and creating a user profile you download the Stumble! toolbar. You then proceed to lose hours upon hours of your life to the internet. Stumble is one of the coolest things out there, hands down. You rate every site that you visit thumbs up or thumbs down. That, combined with the user information you specified during your registration works together to generate websites targeted specifically to your interests and preferences whenever you hit the Stumble! button. It's one of the greatest random things ever.

Where else would I find a link to photographs of an exhibit which featured this amazing piece?


Originally uploaded by adelaster
The Next Learn and Play assignment is exploring the Flickr website.

Flickr is something I like and use on a regular basis. Mostly to look through the photostreams of others. I really enjoy the way the website utilizes grouping and tagging to make everything much more searchable and organized.

I do have my own account through. This photograph is one I took a few months ago when I visited Columbus's own Goodale Park.

I know you're just waiting to see a frog jump out. Keep waiting...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

seven and a half habits of highly successful lifelong learners

So, this is my blog for the Columbus Metropolitan Library's Learn and Play Program!

This is task one & two of the 23 things list that we need to complete by 12.02.08

We were asked to view a video on lifelong learning. The video's main message emphasized that it is never too late or too early to learn and encouraged a process in which to go about making that learning a reality. Seven and a half (although I failed to understand why the last one was only a half) habits were listed as crucial to becoming a successful lifelong learner.

These habits were:

-begin with the end in mind - determine a goal, then plan to achieve it
-accept responsibility for your own learning
-view problems as challenges
- have confidence in yourself as a competent effective learner
-create your own learning toolbox
-use technology to your advantage
-teach/mentor others

We are asked to list which of these habits we find the easiest and the most difficult and why.

I feel like I utilize many of these habits in my life already. I think the habits that have come most naturally to me are accepting responsibility for my own learning, using technology to my advantage, and creating my own learning toolbox. I've always been curious, and it seems to me that these three habits are only natural behaviors for someone who wants to learn and know things. How else do you learn?

The hardest things for me are confidence and following through with what I have begun. You can view a problem as a challenge, but many times a challenge is reason enough to drop something for me. Especially when that challenge is time. I never really feel confident about anything. That sounds terrible, but I bet that I am far from alone there. It is very easy to doubt yourself, especially when you are trying to learn about something new.

...Why is playing only half a habit?