Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Just couldn't resist adding "Cows with guns"

and a few 'revenge of the animals' cartoons...

and this just made me laugh when I came across it...


Monday, December 17, 2007

# 25 - Letterpop!!

Letterpop can be used "to create eye-popping newsletters, actionable presentations, irresistible invitations, beautiful product features, sizzling event summaries, informative club updates, lovely picture collages, and a whole lot more."

I can see the value if you're unable to access powerpoint or publisher - you can add pages, use the same or different layout for each page.

Here's something I quickly put together - thought I'd make me mother 'famous' (although don't know if she'll get a buzz out of it or not!!!)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Thought I'd give 2.1 a go: #24 - Zamzar

Well, I've decided to play around a bit with 2.1 - have been checking out Zamzar, a file conversion programme. This site offers 'on-the-fly' conversion of text, image, audio and video file formats without installing a download.

Unfortunately if you're using the free version, there's no timespan guaranteed for the conversion - a link gets emailed to you and then you need to retrieve the converted file, and it only gets stored for 1 day from the time of the email!!!!

I just converted a powerpoint presentation to html but yes, I'm still waiting for my email!!!!! so I don't know if it's worked yet.

Well, I received the converted files this morning... a powerpoint presentation converted to HTML and a word document converted to a .pdf file... seems to work ok... but don't know how useful it would be because you have to wait for conversion... and if you don't pick up within 24 hours you lose it... but could come in handy I guess... don't know that it's a tool that I would use much of...

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Is my skepticism misplaced?

Apparently Kevin and the Labor Party (and shouldn't that really be Labour???) have done it...

"Rudd signs Kyoto ratification document

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has signed the instrument of ratification of the Kyoto Protocol.

Mr. Rudd says it is the first official act of the new Government and demonstrates the commitment to tackling climate change.

The ratification document will be sent to the United Nations and it comes into effect 90 days after that…"
read more or check out the ABC news video.

I’m still skeptical, so I’ll ‘wait and see’… but let’s not forget that's only a beginning... we all have to take some responsibility and start changing the way we live - NOW!!!!

Interested in some "green living" tips? Check these out..

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Oh no, it's "that" time of year!!!!

Whether you celebrate Solstice, Kwanzaa, Christmas, Human Light, Dhu al-Hijjah, Hanukkah, Dongzhi, Hogmanay, New Year’s Eve, Saturnalia or any of the myriad celebrations from around the world at this time, it is a gift-giving time, and people give animals - but please think of the poor brood bitches when you see those cute little puppies in the pet shops… instead why don’t you adopt (or encourage someone else to adopt) a babe who’s had a hard life to start with… that would be a wonderful beginning to a new year for both you and them…

my girl Allie Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket would agree with that - the following YouTube videos show the cruelty of life in the puppy factories - where my girl spent the first 4 years of her life before she was saved (otherwise it would have been her death as well!!!)… they’re quite haunting...

and I couldn't resist the following videos - when you're sitting down to your festive, celebratory breakfast, lunch or dinner, I'm hoping you'll think of the cruelty inflicted on animals and say NO to meat - such inhumane treatment to provide rancid, decaying flesh for your 'culinary enjoyment' - I'm sure everyone's seen the brutality of the transport trucks... then there's the abattoirs, and the feed lots, and the battery farms... maybe you could support one of the many animal rights groups as presents for friends and family...

or adopt an endangered wild creature???

a bear...

a wolf...

gorilla maybe...

closer to home, a koala???
or, as Lovegod suggested... a possum Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

and then there are the interminable 'christmas carols' - they're enough to drive anyone crazy!!!! but that's for another post...

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The carnival's finally over...

Howard and Costello are out!!!!!
(with a bang apparently... Howard looks like making history - Stanley Bruce was the last prime minister to lose his seat in 1929!!!! That makes Howard only the second prime minister since Federation to do so - way to go Maxine!!! - you should have retired John!!!)

Rudd and Gillard are in - good to see a woman get there finally, but she is bound by her party's politics - will we notice any change??? Is there much of a difference between Labor and Liberal these days???
Will they ratify the Kyoto Protocol??? soon???

I'm sure these magnificent creatures need the answer to be YES!!! This is just a small selection of the amazing animals who stand to become extinct if we don't do something NOW!!!!

"Climate change and global warming impacts on species in a number of ways. Animals and plants that are suited to cooler climates will need to move polewards or uphill when the climate becomes even just that little bit warmer. This process has been observed in many places – in the Alps, in mountainous Queensland in Australia, and in the misty forests of Costa Rica. Fish in the North Sea have been observed moving northwards too – fish stocks that used to be common around Cornwall have moved as far north as the Shetland and Orkney Islands. The impacts on species are becoming so significant that their movements can be used as on indicator of a warming world. They are the silent witnesses of the rapid changes being inflicted on the Earth..." read more here.

and what about this little cutie... Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket... the Pika, the first mammal to be endangered by climate change...

and of course there's the birds, the plants... won't the world be a far more barren place to live without this beauty?!?! Would you really want to live in a world like that?!?!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

#23 - Is this really the end... or just the beginning?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

It's definitely not the end while I’m still finding new toys to play with!!! Found a great little application that allows you to edit animated graphics without losing the animation… Gifworks (my sojourner was a warrior with a body at her feet before I found an animated image editor - she just doesn't have any feet now!!!) - it’s basic, but it’s fine if you just want to crop something, add text (limited to a certain amount of space though – depends on the font and the size) – but hey, it’s available, it’s online, and it’s free.

This programme has been a great learning curve – I have had a ball creating the blog. I am hoping to keep it up – to ‘own’ it – that’s the plan anyway (but the downside to that is I'll need to upgrade my computer to deal with all of these graphics and programmes now - the price of 'progress' hey!!!!)

There have been a few ‘glitches’ along the way – I don’t know about any of the other participating libraries but my colleagues and I have had a lot of problems due to our council’s firewall etc. We had to laugh when one of my YouTube clips was blocked under the “satanic sites rule”!!! If we’re to be part of the Web 2.0 culture, we need access to the resources!!

Another problem has been the ‘instability’ of some of the applications… some things worked immediately, some worked some of the time, some didn’t work at all - even formatting within Blogger was problematic at times… a pain when you’ve got limited time to explore which resources are suitable and what they can do. My blog was done at home because I like to spend time checking things out – an hour per week just wouldn't have allowed me to create what I have - but I can totally understand the frustration and disillusionment of my colleagues confined to that timeframe in the workplace because there were so many things I had to redo a number of times or just give up on and find something else that worked… I guess the technology isn’t perfect (yet??).

Due to this programme and the knowledge that’s come out of it we are currently looking at the viability of a wiki in the library – we’re thinking book club and trialling one internally to see how the 'collaborative' aspects work, but there are so many other possibilities and avenues to explore - so much that could be incorporated - podcasts of author talks, videos of storytimes??

Thanks to Lynette and Leslie for administering the programme and for their encouragement (I'm sure you'll both be looking forward to some blog-free time!!!!)

The only thing left to say is CHEERS… Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket and congratulations to all those who participated (whether willingly or grudgingly) -I've enjoyed a number of blogs throughout the programme - there are some extremely creative and talented people out there!!! Hopefully those who didn’t get a chance this time around will have an opportunity in the future to explore and learn the wonders of Web 2.0 technology.

Monday, November 12, 2007

30s & 40s Technology - the Typing Pool

I worked in typing pools in the early 70s - but not quite as cramped as some of these!! Although I did learn to type on this sort of equipment in the 60s!!! (and I hope you're enjoying the wolf and rose graphic - I put that up because it's a great image).

I have to say I do prefer Photobucket over Flickr for the things I've done so far - it seems to be far more user friendly.

The end of the programme is looming... I just have to 'reflect' and write a few thoughts - but that's for another post!!!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Still no closer to the next task, but....

I did 'stumble' across another great site that has free content for blogs (surprise, surprise!!!)

This site provides a Dictionary lookup box, Word of the day, Article of the day, This day in history, Today's birthday, In the news, Quote of the day, and interactive content as well... you can see some of these in my sidebar. The articles update automatically in your blog which is good!!

These items about Harriet Beecher Stowe, Ida M. Tarbell and Susan B. Anthony all appeared on the same day - they were calling out to be put in my post!!!!


And I might just think about the next task soon... well, sometime this week...

Sunday, November 4, 2007

More YouTube stuff!!!

I know, I should be looking at downloadable audiobook titles but I just got caught up in YouTube (again!!!) and came across these two videos - one's a little gem from Mary Poppins called "Sister Suffragette" (I prefer Suffragist and you'd know why if you read my "Politics of language" presentation), and the other one has old images juxtaposed to more contemporary images of women... Hope you enjoy them...

there are so many good (and extremely bad!!) videos to watch on YouTube (of course, that's dependent on the search terms you use and what things are actually 'tagged' with - as we know, that can be problematic, and then there's 'individual taste') - but you can lose track of time!!! ooh, my animals are hassling to be fed - is it that time already? I will get around to the next task soon... if I can only stop playing with other toys

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

#21 - Podcasts

Does the concept of a "living library" interest you? Then check out this ABC Radio National podcast - it's quite long (1/2 hour) but very interesting... or click the image above to read more.

#20 - YouTube

Couldn't resist this when I saw it...
the Medieval Helpdesk... the trials of new technology!!

and the book... perhaps the 1st edition of the witch-hunter's 'how to' bible... the Malleus Malificarum ??

Sunday, October 28, 2007

#19 - Web 2.0 awards

There are so many Web 2.0 based applications out there... I've checked out the awards list and had a look around some of the 'winners'

Care2 comes under the Philanthropy category. I've used it for a number of years, especially it's petition site. I recommend it regularly for people looking for an alternative to Hotmail and all the usual web-based email providers. It is a site worth checking out. It's only downfall... it's American-centric but still provides good information.
Amongst other things it provides a News Network, Photo storage and sharing, email, e-cards, healthy living tips, environmental information, animal activism updates, newsletter and much, much more.

The next one I checked out was SpringWidgets... well, I have actually checked it out before but haven't had much success with the RSS Feed custom widget... lots of feeds didn't work properly in it... so not much of a recommendation there!!! Tried a couple of other widgets too but no success so I guess they're still ironing out the bugs!!!

Of course, then there's Facebook - apparently everyone's on this and I can't understand why... after joining it a while ago I'm afraid I just think it's a big wank!!!!... pretty much the only time I go into it these days is when I check my current games of scrabble - that's the only thing that really interests me in it, and apparently one of the only things you need to use your brain for... all people seem to do in this application is poke, slap, spit, throw things at you, invite you to join causes (which apparently means all you have to do is sign up to, you don't have to support the cause in any other way - don't quite understand that - obviously by doing this people think they're 'political' and don't have to do anything else!!!!); and then there's the endless stream of useless crap... every time someone sends you something you have to download a new application... frustrating and not at all mentally stimulating!!!!
I can understand if you're away from home (overseas maybe) that it could be a useful way of staying in touch regularly, but can't think of any other reason to use it. Guess I'm just not that social (if that's what being social means)!!!! My idea of socialising is actually conversing with people, sharing time, food, wine and intimacy!!! I must be a bit strange - much prefer playing around with my blog!!

This letter appeared in the Sunday Life magazine of The Age today... I did get a laugh out of it because apparently there are other people out there who feel the same way as I do about "Crap"book.
And then there are all of the applications we've used throughout this Learning 2.0 process... LibraryThing, Del.icio.us, Technorati, PBWiki, Zoho etc. Some are extremely useful and easy to use, others not so useful or easy to use. I also wonder about all the tools you upload things to, such as Flickr, Photobucket etc... seems to me there is still a need to back everything up to disc if you're trying to save your hard drive space - it would be terrible to lose everything!!!!

So all in all, the technology has a lot of potential... but there are still problems with some of the applications.
Guess what???!!!! Now it's on to Podcasts, Video and Downloadable Audio - YAY!!!! Made it through all those tasks that sounded so boring to start with!!!!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

#18 - Online productivity tools

I've played around in Zoho Writer and Zoho Show ... all these tools take a while to learn though... playing around is very time-consuming - but I guess once you've worked it all out then the time factor isn't so important...

Being able to do something from anywhere, have others check it out and then be able to edit remotely by choosing who can collaborate on the presentation would be extremely useful for those of us that work in different locations regularly, or who like to 'perfect' things from home. It does appear to have limited templates to use though... haven't been able to work out how you would create your own background in the programme - or whether you even can.

Here's a presentation I put together in PowerPoint and uploaded to Zoho Show... yes, you can import your own stuff but you don't have the same editing ability you do if you create within the programme!!! If you upload you need to make sure it's right... otherwise you have to edit in the original document and upload again... that's not a good way to create a presentation if you want others to have input!

But it was good for my purposes. This way I could create a background that I wanted. This is a condensed version of an assignment I wrote when I was undertaking the Diploma of Library and Information Studies (Library Technician's) course at Swinburne a few years back. It's something I feel strongly about and it fits in with my blog's theme perfectly.

These are the Zoho Services you can access:
Zoho Sheet
Online spreadsheet service.
Zoho Meeting
Zoho Meeting - Web Conferencing
Zoho Show
Online presentation tool
Zoho Writer
Online word processor
Zoho Notebook
Online Note Taker
Zoho Creator
Online web applications creator (one I'll definitely have to check out sometime!!!)
Zoho Planner
Online organizing tool.
Zoho Wiki
Online Wiki with public, private & group permissions
Zoho Chat
Instant messaging and group chat tool

Thursday, October 25, 2007

... a tip for adding animated gifs to your blog...

This took me a while to work out... discovered Flickr is no good for animations - they just become static images... you need to join Photobucket - I know, I can hear you groan - not something else to sign up to!!!! - but it works... it automatically generates the HTML code for each graphic you upload, and then you can copy and paste it into your post... grouse!!!!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

... and after my procrastinating over the Del.icio.us task, I am actually finding it quite an invaluable tool at home....
just thought I'd add this post while I'm procrastinating now over the online "productivity" tools task... doesn't that sound boring!!!!! learning how to upload animated graphics was much more fun!!!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

#17 - Learning 2.0 Sandbox Wiki

I'm just starting to play around in "the sandbox", and I've added the Port Phillip Library Service Learning 2.0 blog to the Favourite Blogs, added my blog as well, and you can get there by clicking the graphic - you need to scroll down a fair way (I've cut, pasted and manipulated - that's why it looks like we're up the top of the page!) - and then see how you go adding your blog.

This will take you to the Learning 2.0 Wiki Sandbox front page... go on, have a play around... I'm just learning what fun can
be had!!!

#16 - Wikis...

The wiki concept seems simple enough - collaboration and content... perfect Knowledge Management tools...

I can see a lot of useful applications for wikis...

Book clubs, patron reviews, subject guides, community guides, programmes, training calendars, event calendars, staff collaborations (instead of having to trawl through all those emails!!!! - everything relevant would be in one place and able to be manipulated/updated immediately!!!! that would have to be good!!!)... there appears to be a wealth of ways to use wikis... but there is a concern about 'authority', 'ownership' and 'hacking'... they would definitely need to be 'moderated'... how much staff time would need to go in to that??? must be viable because so many are using these applications already... depends on the funding source I guess, and what priorities and future directions libraries (and their 'backers') envisage for them!!

Here are a few wikis I thought looked interesting and could be useful...

and a couple of cartoons (from Google images)