Tuesday, October 30, 2007

FREE Fun Custom Images

Visual Poetry - ImageChef.com

This cool example of visual poetry is really simple to create. Register for a free Image Chef account and then use the poem feature. You can write a comment or poem in the shape of hearts or other symbols and easily post it to MySpace or your blog.

Monday, October 29, 2007

At the 2007 California Library Association

What a whirlwind four days I spent at the 2007 California Library Association! Here I am in the Maze of Technology showing the differences between an iPhone and an iPod Touch. I'm the one with the orange apron.

One of my roles for Infopeople involved coordinating presentations by master speakers; after months of communicating with Craig Newmark, Craigslist founder, futurist Bob Treadway, Shawn Gold,head of marketing and content development for MySpace and Shel Israel, co-author of Naked Conversations: How Blogs are Changing the Way Businesses Talk With Customer everything finally culminated in great programs.

You can share more of my experience by viewing Infopeople techie Eileen O'Shea's Flickr collection. The photos take you behind the scenes during booth set up as well as providing closeups of many of the mesmerizing offerings.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Halloween Necessity

You can order this Halloween necessity from one of my favorite online gift sources, Archie McPhee. Yes for only $17.95, you can have your own Creepy Hand Bowl.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Pot-Shots from Ashleigh Brilliant

I have been an Ashleigh Brilliant fan since I first saw his pot-shot postcards and books in the 80's.

If you aren't familiar with his work, brilliant thoughts in 17 words or less, be sure to visit his website.

I'm writing about him now because his creations are now available on t-shirts. The one I bought would be a great gift for baby boomers or anyone who feels like an older person!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Yahoo's Easy Avatar Design

If you haven't designed an avatar yet,
check out Yahoo Avatars.
Then use your creation with Yahoo! Messenger.
I designed mine as a reminder of my disco days.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Teaching Classes for Macintosh Users

I teach classes at monthy workshops sponsored by MacNexus, the Sacramento Macintosh computer user group. I used my iPhone to take this photo of some of the attendees looking at websites during a class on how to search the Internet.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Preventing Computer Stress Injuries

If you find yourself getting stiff or just concerned about the number of hours you sit at a computer, think about looking at advice from a few sources as well as trying software. The software I am testing out is MacBreakZ Macintosh software (by the same company, Ergonomix is available for Windows). It reminds you it's time to take a break and provides exercises on a timed schedule that you can preset.

Here are a few sources of information online that I have found especially helpful:
  • Ergoblog, a blog that provides lots of great information about office ergonomics and how to deal with repetitive strain injuries.
  • Office Space Ergonomics, an online slide show provided by the Mayo Clinic.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

My Personalized Logo Items

I have become a fan of t-shirts and baseball caps, so I decided to see what my logo would look like. I wore the outfit shown here at the American Library Association 2007 annual conference held in Washington, D.C.

My earrings are also part of my wizard identity. Since I don't want to have my ears pierced, I am always on the look out for interesting clip-on earrings. For this look, I found what are known as adhesive embellishments, and glued them to earring backs.

I liked these logo items so much, I also had a long sleeve t-shirt, sweat shirt, hoodie and mousepads made for me.

This photo was taken at a board meeting of the Continuing Library Education Network and Exchange (CLENE) Round Table. I am the editor of the CLENE quarterly newsletter, the CLENExchange.
I am also a blogger for the CLENE blog, CE Buzz.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Exploring Web 2.0 Tools

Another milestone along my Web 2.0 learning curve happening today!

I've had this blog since 2004 and have tried out lots of new online tools over the years, however, I've not learned much about html.

I'm a "template kind of person" who likes to find easy to understand examples and just customize them with my specifics.

I'm a Mac user and for blog entries, I use MarsEdit, a shareware program that costs $24.95. MarsEdit is described as a powerful blog authoring made simple with an email-like interface for editing and publishing.

My newest aha today was to figure out how to add a Twitter badge to this blog. Scroll down to the bottom to see the lines at the very bottom of this page. As you can see today I was reading about iPhones.

What I'm doing - Twitter
* Reading mail from Twitter saying the company bought iPhones for all of its employees! 16 minutes ago
follow me on Twitter

Twitter describes badges as "widgets that display your latest twitter
updates on your myspace, blogger, facebook, typepad, or other web
page. They're great for letting your visitors know what you're
doing right now and keeping your page up-to-date via SMS, IM, or
other Twitter device."

I tried it with great success because I got an email from Twitter saying they "recently made it much easier to grab, customize, and install the badge that's right for you." Even though I still consider myself using training wheels, at least I'm able to be creative!

Friday, July 06, 2007

On Blogging

Why are blogs so captivating both to read and to write?

Flash back to 2002 by reading these two articles...

The Blog Phenomenon by John D. Dvorak in PC Magazine online in February 2002

The Blogging Revolution by Andrew Sullivan in the May 2002 issue of Wired Magazine

Dvorak, a technology columnist provided a list of reasons why people blog (i.e. write personal diaries online):
• ego gratification
• antidepersonalization
• elimination of frustration
• societal need to share
• wanna-be writers

Sullivan, a libertarian conservative author and political commentator included the following thoughts in his article...

"Blogging is changing the media world and could, I think, foment a revolution in how journalism functions in our culture."

"Blogs do two things that Web magazines like Slate and Salon simply cannot. First off, blogs are personal. Almost all of them are imbued with the temper of their writer. This personal touch is much more in tune with our current sensibility than were the opinionated magazines and newspapers of old."

"The second thing blogs do is - to invoke Marx - seize the means of production. It's hard to underestimate what a huge deal this is. For as long as journalism has existed, writers of whatever kind have had one route to readers: They needed an editor and a publisher. Even in the most benign scenario, this process subtly distorts journalism. You find yourself almost unconsciously writing to please a handful of people - the editors looking for a certain kind of story, the publishers seeking to push a particular venture, or the advertisers who influence the editors and owners. Blogging simply bypasses this ancient ritual."

He ended his column by saying, "Check back in a couple of years to see whether this is yet another concept that online reality has had the temerity to destroy."

I checked Andrew's current blog, The Daily Dish today; it is one of five Atlantic Voices offered by The Atlantic Monthly online.

I love reading and contributing to blogs for two main reasons:
1. As a reader, I learn new things from those who blog
2. As a contributor, I am stimulated to generate my own ideas or search out interesting pieces of information to share with others

I write for two others besides this one:

Infoblog, started by Infopeople in 2004 as "a resource for keeping libraries up to date with new information and technologies."

CE Buzz, started by the Continuing Library Education and Networking (CLENE) Round Table of the American Library Association (ALA) in 2007 "to provide a thought-provoking resource for those interested in and responsible for Continuing Education (CE) and staff development in libraries."

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Magical Serendipitous Searching

I've mentioned serendipitous searching in past entries and today my latest encounter really was magical!

I listened to a segment on NPR during which synesthesia was mentioned. I wondered if my experiences in seeing colors while my eyes are closed were related. My experiences didn't seem connected, so I decided to do a Google search to return sites with all of the following words: seeing color eyes closed

That search brought me to When Our Eyes Are Closed, What Do We See?, a fascinating entry in a blog titled, The Splintered Mind. The blog is written by Eric Schwitzgebel, an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of California at Riverside.

Not only did I find lots of information about the topic, but also I was moved to add a comment providing details about my own experiences. This opportunity to share was truly magical.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Pacific Rim Street Festival

At Sacramento's 15th annual Pacific Rim Street Festival this weekend, I posed with one of the Lee–Jet-Don Lion Dancers, a Sacramento-based group that puts on traditional Chinese lion dance performances at local events. How magical is that?

Saturday, May 19, 2007

On Magical Things

I've decided to add a new element to this blog — to keep a weekly log of experiences I've had or things I've read that made a "magical impact" on me.

This week I had a wonderful evening with Carole, a friend I've known for over forty years. We met during college and both live in the same city, but don't usually see each other more than a few times a year. We caught up on what had been happening in our lives and watched a Netflix DVD, Keeping Mum, with Maggie Smith that wouldn't have had a magical impact on me if we hadn't been together.

It was a wonderful reminder of the value added effect of friendship on enjoyment.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Vintage Library Catalog Cards

For those days when you find keeping up with new technology wearing and miss the old days, mix technology with nostalgia by using John Blyberg's Catalog Card Generator to create virtual library catalog cards for your books or other possessions.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Podcast Potpourri

If you haven't checked what you can either listen to or watch online or even download to your iPod recently, take another look.

Here are some of my favorites:
Sit Down Comedy with David Steinberg
Coffee Break Spanish
TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) Talks
Real Time with Bill Maher
NPR programs
Nolo Press Legal Podcasts

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

My First Frappr Map

Check out this neat new social networking site, Frappr, http://www.frappr.com/
Make a map where others who share your interests can join you. This one is for Macintosh enthusiasts.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Interactive Learning Sources Online

Check out these outstanding websites.

The Newseum is the world's first interactive museum of news. Opened in Arlington (VA) in 1997, its mission is to help the public and the news media understand one another better. Be sure to look at two outstanding online features: Today’s Front Pages, a showcase of over 450 front pages of newspapers around the world and Pulitzer Prize Photos, selections from a collection of award winning photos each with a video narrated by the photographers who took them.

Nolo Podcasts
Nolo Press has been the “go-to source for do-it-yourself legal solutions for work, life and finances” for over 35 years. Now you can listen to free Nolo Podcasts in which “writer and attorney Richard Stim presents dynamic discussions of the law, interviews with authors and other experts, and answers to everyday questions — all in Nolo’s signature plain-English style.” Topics include: starting a business, buying and selling a house, patenting an invention, maximizing tax deductions, getting compensated for a personal injury, divorce and child custody,
credit repair and bankruptcy.

This wonderful site provides free downloads of paper models of motorcycles, rare animals and seasonal decorative items. The site features easy to understand how-to video clips, PDF instruction sheets and patterns overseen by ultra-realistic 3D paper craft designer, Nobutaka Mukouyama. Even if you don’t want to create a model, you’ll find the items included fascinating.

Friday, February 02, 2007

A Website to Help You Generate Ideas

If you could use some "fun ideas to stimulate your creativity," visit Creative Think by Roger von Oech, author of A Whack on the Side of the Head and the Creative Whack Pack.

For you Mac enthusiasts, be sure to look at von Oech's entry about Andy Hertzfeld and Alan Kay.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Funloving Librarians

If you think librarians still wear their hair in buns and say shh, check out the movie of me trying out my fancy foot work using Dance Dance Revolution dance pads with Jenny Levine. Jenny is an Internet Development Specialist and Strategy Guide for the American Library Association (ALA); she also has her own blog titled, The Shifted Librarian.

Jenny told me that libraries are using these dance pads in creative ways such as challenging teen library customers to a contest. If the teens win, the prize is wiping out their overdue fines!

The movie was made during the ALA Midwinter Conference in Seattle. Also at that conference I had a wonderful evening of dancing with the members of ALAP (American Library Association Players), a great group of funloving librarians. See some of the ALAP 2007 photos from Seattle as well as the ALAP website.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Videochatting with Skype

For those Mac Users who want an alternative to iChat that connects to any computer, read about Skype. You can download the newest version, that adds video for those using OS X 10.3.9 or later. It works on Intel Macs too.

A Mac User friend and I tested it and found it easy to use with no problems; however, we agreed the quality of iChat's video and audio is much better.