Monday, September 28, 2009

#11 Library Thing

Now this is an application I really like! I look forward to exploring it more and have added it to my iGoogle desktop. It is certainly useful for my own reading - 20 others have posted about the book I'm currently reading, and I found out more about it. Recommendations of similar books flowed as soon as I added 3 books in one of my favourite series to my library collection. I intend to investigate adding it to the OPAC at my work library, and to the library website (under construction).
I keep a paper list in a notebook of the books that I read - now they can go into the 'Read but unowned' collection on Library Thing.
Being a member of a group of like-minded people is reassuring - being an adult who reads predominantly YA books often puts me in a group of one in face-to-face discussions. My Library Thing catalogue is still quite small, but give me time.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

#10 Image generators

I used to make this logo. Mucking around with the image generators reminds me of when I first started to learn how to use computers way back in the 90's. One of the things that newbies liked to do was change the desktop settings, the background, the colours and whatever else we could change. Web 2.0 image generators are sophisticated tools to allow our creative expression to develop and to make publications more engaging to the reader/viewer. I feel that my visual design skills are significantly underdeveloped, and it would require hours more of my time to fully explore and become proficient in their use. I guess small steps will be in order.

Monday, September 21, 2009

#9 Exploring Virtual Worlds

To really explore virtual worlds would take lots of time. I'd like one of the Time-Turners that Hermione had in HP3. Experiencing second life would put a big dent in my first life - not at this time, thanks.
I can see that there is great potential for educational use of virtual reality, but I think lots of PD for teachers would be in order.
Perhaps in the not too far distant future, web users will naturally expect web pages to be in 3D, just as we expect films to be in colour, not b & w, or print texts such as books to be more visually engaging than they were some years ago. Does it enhance the users' experience? Perhaps it depends on the desired outcome.
Online games are popular with lots of people and will no doubt continue to develop to new levels of technological sophistication which gamers will come to expect.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

iGoogle is a convenient way to oganise my desktop and access gadgets. I think I will like it more when I make time to read the blogs which I can add to my iGoogle desktop, and when I make time to experiment with it. Like anything new, it takes a while to become familiar with it and use it to best advantage. Perhaps it suits people who spend lots of time sitting in front of their monitors, whereas my day is often consumed by ineraction with students.
As for working at Google, I'd like to work somewhere as stimulating professionally with such a fantastic work environment, but I'm not sure I'd make the cut at Google! No wonder Google is the most used internet site in the world!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Google Books

Thanks to Google for a huge book catalogue. It encourages browsing and gives useful information and links. It's interesting to see the cover view, and also consider the national character of books of different countries in each each genre. Young adult books on Google Books, for example, seem predominantly American publications, yet there is a very healthy YA book industry in Australia and other countries. I like the My library page, to which I plan to add various titles which I'd like to buy or borrow. I can find out if a particular title is held and available at my local library, and if not, where I might find it. Maybe I'll add a review one of these days.

Google maps

Google maps are fun to use because of the variety of views available. With the edit facility, all the maps should be correct in the course of time, as there are some errors in the maps currently. The country road on which I live is shown as a through road when it is in reality a no through road, an error which caused a visitor from the city to experience a much longer trip than he had planned. I like the street view, the satellite view, and the save and send facilities.
I plan to investigate the locations of places in the US to which I am travelling in the holidays so I'll have more prior knowledge of the destinations.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

I think the idea behind Google docs is great. I've created a document which will be of use and can be edited and changed as time goes on. I'm reminded of the concept of the creative commons - it seems a bit overwhelming to be part of it! I'm from the generation of passive absorbtion of information, and come into the I's in the Myers-Briggs personality types. I'm working on more sharing!