Posted in tools

Free Library Science e-books!

In support of National Library Week, April 13-19, e-content provider ebrary announced that it will provide librarians as well as students and faculty in library science and related programs with complimentary access to its Library Center for one year. The Library Center includes more than 85 full-text e-books covering topics such as digital library development, general collection development, and the history of libraries and librarianship, as well as illustrated guides from the Library of Congress….

Here’s the link to more information:
http://www.businesswire.com/news/google/20080409005439/en

Posted in resources, tools, web 2.0 tools

The Future of Web 2.0

The third and last installment of this series by Michael Baird (OR-7).

Web 2.0 has been around for longer than most of us think. It has been labeled and made popular over the fast few years, but it’s nothing new. Blogs and online journals and ezines have been around for quite awhile. I think the basic guts of Web 2.0 are content that is shared and social. This happened back in the days of BBS (bulletin board service) via good ol’ dial-up modem at whopping 2400 baud.

I see the huge surge of web 2.0 technologies (see The Complete Web 2.0 Directory ) dying out and consolidating. Everyone and their mother have a widget or social networking site. It’s just too much. A lot of these are going to quickly die out when the advertising that funds them is withdrawn. I see a lot of mergers or go-betweens for the larger companies. As an example: MySpace and Facebook. Why can’t they play nice together? It’d be so handy to do all of the same things in one place and not have 80 different and overlapping friend sets online. Standards are being developed to facilitate this very thing.

Services will need to become more transparent and intuitive. What does this mean? I want my Facebook and MySpace photos to be derived from my Flickr account. Why should I have to maintain 3 sets of the same photos?

Keeping up

Subscribe to these blogs, skim through them and read what interests you. Do it every day.

Infodoodads (I contribute to this blog)

Tame the Web: Libraries and Technology

Techcrunch

DavidLeeKing

43 folders (not necessarily very web 2.0, but it will improve your life, I guarantee it)

Posted in resources, tools, web 2.0 tools

My Favorite Web 2.0 Tools

This week Michael Baird (OR-7), talks about a few of his favorite web 2.0 tools. Please feel free to post your favorites in the comments!

Flickr

Use Flickr to store and share digital photographs. I have a few thousand on my personal Flickr account. Whenever I’m watching a movie or TV I’ll log in and tag/title photos. Some people knit, I tag. Organize your photos into sets, collections. Join groups with folks that have similar interests, have discussions about those interests. Set privacy settings on your photos so your friends can see your crazy party pictures but your mom can only see those that are public or tagged for family.

Zoho

This is an online productivity suite. For those of you who may have delved into Google Docs & Spreadsheets you won’t be straying too far from home but instead get a massive remodel. Zoho includes a word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, conferencing, a notetaker, database creation, and a few more fun things I can’t remember at the moment. The notetaker is pure gold. It’s like Microsoft OneNote, but web-based. Feature packed with more options than Google and just as collaborative. I’ve used this for my last several presentations.

Bloglines

This might be a little basic for some of you, but I think it’s just important enough to cover anyway. A lot of sites out there have the little orange buttons to subscribe to their RSS feed. If you like the site and want to keep up with it, but not navigate to it every day to check if something new has happened, you’ll want to subscribe to their feed. Bloglines is what we call a feed aggregator. It keeps track of your RSS feeds and shows you which ones have new content available for viewing. There are a ton of these aggregators out there, some are programs you install on your computer, others are web-based like Bloglines. Instead of navigating to 60 different websites each day, I just open up Bloglines and take 20 minutes to get updated in all of the things I care about. It’s that easy.

Posted in conferences, resources, tools, web 2.0 tools

Part 1: Web 2.0 Tools/ Web 2.0 for Libraries and Librarians

This is the first part of a three-part series on Web 2.0 tools written by Michael Baird, (OR-7), Evening Reference Coordinator at the Oregon State University Valley Library. Michael is one of five librarians who post on Infododads, a blog which “reviews and discusses existing and new tools, services, and technology for finding information on the internet.” He will be the lead presenter discussing “Information Discovery for Librarians – Keeping Up with Web 2.0” at the Online Northwest 2008 Conference on February 22nd.

Two great introductions to Web 2.0 are a youtube entitled The Machine is Us/ing Us and this article by Tim O’Reilly entitled “What is Web 2.0: Design Patterns and Business Models for the Next Generation of Software”.

Subject Research Guides / Website Guides –

Use the del.icio.us linkroll feature for lists of links maintained in subject research guides or website guides. You don’t have to edit the webpage to change/edit/add links, just edit that group of links in your del.icio.us account. Look in the Other Suggested Resources section in the the Chelmsford Public Library for an example.

For a (relatively) small investment, Libguides is an amazing service that offers branded custom “widgets” that may be used as subject guides or portals for users. These widgets can pull in all sorts of information: RSS feeds, embedded video or podcasts, del.icio.us tag clouds and a lot more. Some even have live chat widgets (Meebo, Chatango, etc.) embedded. Here’s an example from Boston College University Library.

The Catalog –

What if you could rate items in the catalog? Comment on them? Leave recommendations for other users? Not possible? Sure it is. Check out this link for “A thread of grace” by Mary Doria Russell at Hennepin County Library. Note that the book has comments as well as tabs for summary, reviews, and excerpt.

Hennepin is also a great example of another web 2.0 technology in library catalogs. Is there a search you repeat on a regular basis? Do you have a favorite author? Add an RSS feed for your search and be notified when new items for that search are added to the catalog. Here is the RSS code for a keyword search on Miles Davis. Just copy and paste it into your feed aggregator (Google Reader, Bloglines, etc.).

Announcements –

Instead of updating text on your library homepage for each new event, service, or news update, use a blog. Again, this really opens the arena for any user to have the skills to create and publish the content. Aside from the initial setup, web skills are not necessary. Here is an example from Western Oregon University Library using a blog to feed news items to their home page. This library has two blogs feeding to their homepage: one for featured databases and one for announcements. The way these display is completely customizable so they “fit” the look and feel of the existing page and blend in.

Next week Michael writes about his favorite Web 2.0 tools.

 

Posted in research, tools, web 2.0 tools

Free Access to The New York Times

The New York Times‘s Op-Ed and news columns are now available to everyone free of charge, along with Times File and News Tracker. In addition, The New York Times online Archive is now free back to 1987.

This is the reason that the editors gave for implementing this change.

Readers find more news in a greater number of places and interact with it in more meaningful ways. This decision enhances the free flow of New York Times reporting and analysis around the world. It will enable everyone, everywhere to read our news and opinion – as well as to share it, link to it and comment on it.


Posted in resources, tools, web 2.0 tools

Open Library or Information Wants to be Free

Open Library is an online tool for finding information about books.The basic framework is being done by Aaron Swartz, who helped create RSS in his early teens and developed Infogami, a tool designed especially for the clueless to set up their own websites.

Open Library, funded by the Internet Archive, is especially useful for finding titles that are on obscure topics or which are out-of-print.If the text is available digitally, there is a link to it.It also includes citations, excerpts from reviews, and cross-references to other titles on related topics.