Monday, April 27, 2009

It's an Endless World

So, last Thursday I went to Peter Bromberg's lecture on Information Technology in this Changing World -- this was not the actual title, but it was the one my head created after listening to it.

Due to some strange twist, I wound up being the first one there (I arrived at 5 PM) and actually got to shake hands with Mr. Bromberg while the two servers were readying the tables. He was quite a decent fellow, and even asked me to assist him with the sound for his presentation: I had to stand in the back while he checked his voice on the mic -- see, Mr. Bromberg was a rather tall gentleman who was afraid that his voice might come out faint.

After feeling awkward for a moment -- I've never actually been the very first to a meeting -- I waited in the lobby for more people to arrive. I fear I have gotten off-topic, so let me jump ahead: the food wasn't terrible, but they had no right calling the "vegen kofta" kofta at all; the presentation started finally around 7-7:30 PM.

What did I come away with?

Like I just sat through a good deal of MLIS classes in one sitting. Which was not a bad thing in the slightest.

Mr. Bromberg's cautionary tale in the beginning (Britannica yielded to Encarta, which in turn yielded to Wikipedia) was more of an overview of how the market for information, or anything for that matter, changes and that we as information professionals should try our hardest not to remain stagnant.

A lot of what he went over seemed appropos to almost all of the MLIS classes I have taken thus far. Highlights:

-The internet creating "information overload" was discussed in Human Information Behavior.
-Several Web 2.0 concepts (Twitter, Facebook, Blogs, even a mention to PB Wiki) were brought up in Info Tech.
-The notion of "caring librarians who teach their patrons to kick-ass" was brought up in Reference.

And so forth.

The presenation was great though. I always enjoy a good (or bad) mix of anecdotal humor, quotations (I have the Thomas Edison quote hanging on my wall at home), and a well-timed Conan O'Brian segment.

In short, I felt that a lot of the key concepts that I have learned in other classes were repeated here, and I found that very necessary. I have an open-mind to changes, especially since this is a field prone to change, and I was open-minded to what Peter Bromber had to say. I just hope I'll be able to apply improv to my everyday life as well as he recommended.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Web 2.0 Wrap-up

So, the Web 2.0 learning comes to an end. I can't help but feel a little sad, yet at the same time a little proud. I definitely enjoyed this class, and I really enjoyed seeing things on the web that I had either: a). never seen before; b). took for granted.

But here, to make things easier, I'm gonna take each question as they are. Let's see here...

Q: What were your favorite discoveries or exercises on this learning journey?
A: I really loved Google Docs, Zoho, Library Thing, PicNik, and even the Wikis -- even though I was terrible at trying to figure out PBWiki. A lot of these programs and apps were things I've always wanted to use in some capacity (like photo manipulation and posting) but I didn't have the money to afford something like, say, Photoshop. Many of these tools were easy to use, easy to get to, and I was able to show it to people who didn't know about them and make myself feel smart.

Q: How has this program assisted or affected your lifelong learning goals?
A: Before this class, I never really put much thought into web-design and stuff like that. Now that I have taken this course, I'm more than eager to find out more about Web 2.0 and really see what other materials I can take from them.
It's always good to know of programs online that you can use anywhere and show to other people to help them out as well. I feel like this has added more to my rather small "net vocabulary."

Q: Were there any take-aways or unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you?
A: Well, the unexpected outcome for me was jumping into Web 2.0 like this and really getting a hands-on feel for these sites and programs. I honestly did not expect this when I signed on for the course. I don't know, I guess I was expecting more indexing and banter on Boolean logic (I swear if I hear that phrase one more time...)
I didn't expect it to help me out so much that I now frequent practically EVERY site that we have discussed since the beginning.
In fact, I have actually put some serious thought into starting my own blog; which is something that, years ago, I would never have mentioned outside of a joke.

Q: What could we do differently to improve upon this program’s format or concept?
A: Nothing really. I know this was mentioned in the beginning of the class as something uncontrollable, but I would have liked to have had the computer lab AFTER the part that takes place in the classroom and not before. This is a minor annoyance, as this structure eventually grew on me. I think I'm more used to having a computer lab after a class discussion, if only because then I don't have to worry about another class coming in after us, so I can work on my stuff for a little longer.
But that's it.

Q: If we offered another discovery program like this in the future, would you again chose to participate?
A: In a heartbeat. I was not expecting to learn all that I have learned in this class. And if something similar could be offered, I would gladly take it.


I'm not very eloquent -- as probably evidenced by my past blog entries. And I am not very intelligent when it comes to most matters. But I did enjoy this class, and I did feel like that I had actually learned something valuable, and not just another grad credit.

I see myself really using what we learned here in order to make the internet a tool that can work for me, and not just some place where I can look at pictures of cats with bad grammar.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Zoho Writer

Author's Note: again, just going back and filling in what I thought was up here. Here's my original post for Zoho Writer.

One thought occurred to me as I was flipping through Zoho Writer: this is helluva lot like Google Docs. Which is not a bad thing in the slightest. Though I did start laughing when I found out that I could sign into it with my Gmail account. Anyway, here's what we have:

Here is my blog-posting for Zoho Writer. Pretty swanky, huh? I like utilities like this. Not because I lack Word on my computer or anything like that. This is much, much easier to write anywhere without having to open up a new file in Word, and I love the sharing options.

That was pretty easy. All I did was SAVE; hit PUBLISH; it asked me for my username and passowrd on blogger; Presto!

It works the same as Google Docs, which is the same as Microsoft Word...just minus all the annoying intricacies. It's basic, it's easy, it makes me very happy.

Librarything (Part 4)

Author's Note: I realized that many of my blog posts have not appeared on this damnable site. Luckily, I managed to save most of them, but I still have the oh-so fun task of posting them all over again.

Librarything is pretty fun. I mean, how else can I brag about my collection of graphic novels and Japanese comics to my online buddies?*

What I like is how you can use either the Library of Congress classification system or's. I feel bad because I've been using Amazon's classification as well. Although, it's not always accurate.

Some things are classified strangely though, mostly graphic novels. For example, (NERD ALERT) my Usagi Yojimbo books are classified by subtitle. So, Usagi Yojimbo, Book 14: Demon Mask is listed as Demon Mask (Usagi Yojimbo, Book 14). However, my Fables collection doesn't have that problem. All the books are classified as Fables, Vol # : Subtitle. I know this can be adjusted, but when your graphic novel collection reaches over 100+ books, it becomes highly annoying.

What's that? Oh yes, here's my account.

On a final note, the Zeitgeist tab does make me dizzy, just looking at it though. @_@


*they're real! Honest!

Youtube (Part 8)

I've pretty much been using Youtube since 2005-2006, which is when most people started using it. It has (regrettably) become a staple of my everyday life ever since then. I mean, where else can you find the opening to old Japanese cartoons from the 70's?


Saturday, April 4, 2009


Originally uploaded by johnathan.ender
Author's Note: Whaaaaaaaaaa!?!?! Where'd my Flickr entry go!? You know, rather than re-post EVERYTHING I thought of Flickr (been using it for years, I always upload photos here) here's a random pic straight from my Flickr account into this blog.

Seems to have come out right. Too bad I got rid of the picture of me next to the wax replica of Bruce Springsteen. I liked that one.


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Web 2.0 Awards - Zango

This was probably my favorite. No surprise there, I suppose. Here is, feel free to go there and do what I did: waste a complete hour of your time.

A little background, I game a lot but not as much as I used to. Sure, I own a Nintendo DS with a decent library of games, but I don't obsess over them like a lot of my friends do. Oftentimes, I will go on gaming website just to see what they have to offer. So, I decided to give Zango a shot.

It doesn't just offer games, mind you, it does have an interesting selection of wallpapers and videos. Though the videos seem like stuff that was specifically designed to make people on web forums LOL themselves silly, and the wallpapers seem no different than what talented 16 year-olds put up on Deviantart.

The games are pretty good though. However, most of them require the user to download them onto their computer. This wasn't a problem for me, but I couldn't see why someone can't just play them RIGHT OFF THE BROWSER. Newgrounds has been doing that for more years than I can remember, surely Zango (which hasn't been around nearly as long) could work something out.

I think some of the games do not require downloads, but I wasn't able to find any. Still, if you're craving that quick fix of flash game fun for free, then this is a pretty good site.