Friday, December 4, 2009

Google docs

Google docs is certainly helpful for people who cannot afford or are not interested in having their own software appications like Word or Excel. Though the functionality is less it is still sufficient for people who are only interested in creating simple documents.

A small library with limited resources and strong community network may find Google docs and similar programmes useful. Without the necessity for expensive software, that is probalby more sophisticated than needed, they can create and use simple spreadsheets, wordprocessing doucment etc, that can be shared around with ease.

As with all network applications it can allow a library, particularly those that operate in small communities, to engage more with the community.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Library thing

I found Library thing a very interesting website. People can go in and add their favourite books and see what others say about them. From a library point of view this is a good way to communicate to readers what books the library has and give them some advice.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Delicious account

Setting up delicious took a bit longer than expected, but once done it was not difficult to follow.

It has some interesting possibilities in libraries. The subject approach, that the use of tags allows, is a good way to arrange those resources frequently used in the workplace. Instead of having to use bookmarks with possibly hundreds of websites attached, the tags used in Delicious categories them in a similar fashion to the way the catalogue organises the collection by subject headings. It would be of particular interest in online reference services such as LRA, where certain frequently asked questions arise.

Monday, May 25, 2009


I just added 5 new RSSs. One of my choices was a Volkswagen TDI blog. TDI are the diesel powered variants of Volkswagen's cars. My Volkswagen Golf is the first diesel car I've ever owned, and I am alway interested in leaning more about how they operate compared to conventional petrol engined cars.

Following this RSS would be a good way to see what other owners have to say on the topic.

If anyone else is interested in hearing my thoughts on this kind of car feel free to blog me.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Social networking

Social networking looks like an interesting way for people who share interests to communicate with each other. The ALIA Symposium "beyond the hype" site was an interesting example of this. People from the library world who attended the symposium continued to discuss the issues raised through the Ning site they set up.

Such networking has other potential benefits. Specialist librarians for example, could connect with individuals in the community with an interest in their speciality. The profile of the library and thus the use of its resources to contribute to the collective knowledge is one way of broadening the library's reference services.

It was also interesting to see how different people in some of these networking sites identified themselves. Some were quite open providing an image of themselves, their full names and the area they lived. Others were more circumspect. Personnally I value my privacy so if I were become part of such a network I would be inclined to use a psuedonymn and an illustration rather than a photograph of myself.

Monday, May 4, 2009


It was interesting looking at the various Wikis available and contemplating the uses they can be put to in libraries. The most interesting one I found was the book lover's Wiki from Princeton Public Library ( ). People writing their own reviews and posting them for others to read is an interesting alternative to the traditional book reviews found in magazines and newspapers.

Bryon's books created by Valatinians


The use of such a Wiki for public libraries would be a good way for people bemused by the hundreds of book jackets confronting them, to more easily select the ones they would like to read. No more slow inspection of the covers and reading the blurbs on the inside. All people need to do is read what others thought of the books they read. The more positive the reviews the more likely people will be to select a title. And as for the poor harried librarian, he/she will be spared from that question so often asked "what would you recommend for me to read?".

Sunday, March 15, 2009

In the beginning

This is my first attempt at a blog. My interests are cycling, photography, travel and reading.

Creating this blog from the online instructions I used was relatively easy although there were a few confusing points. I can see it being a great way to communicate with others of like interests.

If there is one thing I could change it would be the word "blog" itself. While its origin as a contraction of the words "web" and "log" is logical enough, the sound of the word, rhyming with "slob" and "flog" irritates my ears. However, the word is here to stay so I may as well get used to it.

While I love cycling, the downside is having to keep it clean. It is a real downer everytime it rains because the chain and other moving parts pick up so much dirt. If you ignore it the chain will only last a fraction of the life you should get out of it and will not work nearly as well.

To clean the chain properly you need a good degreaser or use kerosene. I personally use a citrus based degreaser. You need to go methodically over every link and then rinse it off. Finally you need to use a lubricant. Any old oil won't do. You need something not too thick designed especilly for bicycles.
Photo created by 00OJasonOoo