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Posts Tagged ‘iGoogle’

Reflections for the day, by Seattle Miles @ Flickr

Reflections for the day, by Seattle Miles @ Flickr

So Thing 13 is here, and it’s time to reflect! Whilst I’m still struggling a bit with blogging, I’m enjoying what Cam23 has offered so far. I’ve learned a lot more about web 2.0 from a work/library perspective. Although I was familiar with some of the tools already, it hadn’t really occurred to me to use them in relation to libraries. Some of them have been a big hit! I’ve continued to use RSS feeds and Google Reader. At first I used them just to keep track of other Cam23 bloggers, but now I have all of the blogs I like to read on there. I’d definitely recommend them to a friend/colleague.  I’ve also started to take a bit more care tagging things, both on Flickr and on this blog. I haven’t used Doodle since writing about it, but I would if I needed to schedule a meeting. I haven’t been using iGoogle that much, as I find it a bit distracting!

I’m looking forward to the second half of Cam23 and the next set of things! I feel that I have become more confident in using these tools, and I hope that I can continue to improve!

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This is the first time I’ve used Doodle (well, it’s yet another tool I’d never even heard of before Cam23), and it was a far better experience than I had predicted. It’s very simple to set up and uncomplicated to use. I like the way it gives you some hints about how to get the best results whilst you are building your poll. Although I found it easy to use,  I’m not sure how much I would use Doodle for meetings within our library.  However, I would certainly consider using it if I were trying to organise a much larger meeting with people outside of our library. I’ll probably give some of the other suggested tools (meet-o-matic and Tungle.me) a go just to see how they compare.

Next up is  Google calendar! I haven’t been using a calendar of my own recently, as most of our library schedule is available through our CamTools site. However, I’ve been using Google Calendar to schedule when to do particular tasks (as well as stuff outside of work)  and it’s working well! It’s less fiddly than my phone calendar, and the email updates are useful.  The calendar is fairly simple to use and I’ve added it to my iGoogle page. As Emma-Jane mentioned in her entry about Google Calendar, I could see it being useful to our library during Michaelmas Term when we have lots of new groups of students coming in to register.

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I ♥ RSS (Thing 2)

Well ♥ may bit a little much, but I do like RSS feeds.

RSS feeds have always been on my radar, but I’ve never really looked at how to use them. Now that I’ve learnt a bit more about them, I’m kicking myself for not using them previously!

I follow a fair amount of blogs (both work related and non work related) and RSS feeds are the perfect way of keeping up to date with all of them in one place. Originally I just added feeds to a tab on my iGoogle, but it became harder to keep track of as I added more feeds. So I started to add feeds to Google Reader instead. For me, Google Reader took a bit of getting used to, but it’s quickly becoming a firm favourite. It’s easy to add and organise your feeds, and the format doesn’t distract you from reading the entries. I like that entry updates appear next to the blog titles making it easy to know which blog has updated, and that you can ‘star’ entries that you want to return to at a later time.

Now that I’ve started using them, I can see how they would be useful to library readers for updates on library news and stock. I’m going to start looking for more RSS feeds to add to my iGoogle!

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I have to admit, despite being a self-confessed internet addict I’d never even heard of iGoogle before looking at the 23 things list. I must have been living under a different internet rock.

After signing up for iGoogle, I set about adding gadgets and gizmos to the page (after the inevitable 20 minutes spent trying to pick a theme).

What do I like about iGoogle? I like being able to make separate tags for different purposes. I can keep all the useful, work related gadgets in one tag, and the distracting ones in another (whether I can resist clicking on to it is a different matter). I like that the gadgets can be rearranged easily by dragging them around the screen.

I’ll talk about Google reader and rss feeds in my next blog but I found adding them to my iGoogle page really straightforward. I’ve added both the COPAC gadget and the Cambridge library widget, both of which I’ve used and seem to work pretty well.  My favourite gadgets so far are TwitterGadget and My Flickr, which I think are pretty good compact versions of the orignal sites.

I’ve set iGoogle as my home page, and I’m hoping I’ll come to use it more over the course of Cam23 and find out if it saves me time, or if I get too distracted by shiny things. We shall see!

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