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Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Thing 13: Google Docs, Wikis and Dropbox

Here we are at unlucky for some Thing 13.
File sharing.  In our library and indeed at the hospital where the library is based  there is a thing called the Workgroup on the 'W' drive on each of the computers.  This allows each department to share their documents and files.  Every department only has access to their own Workgroup.  So.. the ideas here like Google Docs and  Dropbox are in themselves very clever and useful, but we wouldn't be using their services at my workplace.

Of course I can see their usefulness outside of the work place.  If you wish to share your files and documents with another party this would be an excellent way to do it.  Regarding Dropbox - very handy if you don't want to send loads of photos via email and clog up someone's inbox.  Also very handy that the other person doesn't have to have an account with Dropbox in order to view your files.
At home however a wireless connection that allows pcs to 'talk' to each other would be the answer here.  We did buy one at home ages ago, which allowed a wireless internet facility too, but we couldn't get it to work.  Perhaps we'll have another go at some point...

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Thing 12 - Putting the social into social media

There's something to be said about social media, it can be for either good things like the 23 Things or bad things such as the recent riots.
Tools like Facebook and Twitter can certainly be very useful and a quick way of getting the message across.  Also with working in the NHS I can see the great potential and extreme usefulness when it comes to sharing important info such as healthcare.  Our library has a Twitter account which we can share information with our patrons via our Intranet page at the hospital - such as informing them of the latest editions of journals.  Assuming not all of our users have Twitter accounts it was decided that we should add a feed to our Intranet page.
I think social media has become an important asset in linking up with others.  With the likes of Facebook we can discover old friends and maybe re-kindle the flame as it were.  On the professional side it can useful to form contacts and also gain knowledge to further one's career.
Social media will never replace actual face to face contact however, but in these times where travel is expensive and a lot of hassle! contact via a computer is very handy and convenient.  Also with the web conferencing quality getting better all the time, we can 'meet' people from almost anywhere!
On a personal basis I have only used Facebook for personal use.  I have never done conference calling and I have only just set up an account with LISPN.  Not sure if it's worth it, because I am not really a 'New Professional'... but I will carry on for now.  As for blogging I don't think I will carry this on in a professional capacity for myself, unless my manager wants me to set up one for our library or something like that.  I am currently thinking about setting one up for my hobby which is greeting card crafting.  I never know who might 'notice' me...

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Thing 10 & 11 Graduate traineeships, Masters Degrees, Chartership, Accreditation & Thing 11 Mentoring

Thing 10
Not wanting to sound negative but it seems like these 'Things' are more for people who want to be or already are librarians.  I suppose that's the next step from being a lowly SLA.
However I'm not sure if I want to be a librarian or Chartership etc etc.. so what else is there for SLAs?  It would be nice to further my career and maybe even get a better job with more money, but I'm not really sure what is out there for non-librarians who want to work in a library.
Also being a bit negative again... is it worth becoming a librarian when a lot of libraries are closing with the cut backs?  If anyone can help me be a bit more positive please feel free!  :-)
Thing 11
The only time I can say I've had a mentor is my manager when I joined the library in my current post.  I had never worked in a library so it was all very new to me.  It was the manager's job to show me the ropes and supporting me in the library, which my other colleagues have also done.
I can say my other mentor was my NVQ assessor, which you all probably know what they do.  She was very good, calming me down when I panicked because it was as clear as mud at the beginning and at the end when I didn't think I'd finish on time.

Friday, 5 August 2011

Things 8 & 9

Thing 8 was all about Google Calendar.  I haven't looked at it. It may be brilliant, but I don't really need another calendar.  We use Outlook at work so everything goes in there.  At home we use a real calendar - you know the  ones made of paper that you can write in the little squares.  Good enough for me.  Not used yet, but mobile phones have calendars on them as well, which I should use more, then when out and about I can refer to it.

Thing 9 was about Evernote.  Never heard of it before.  I have signed up for it and found it quite good.  I can definitely see it as a good tool for saving things like web pages and other notes.  I will have another dabble and see what else I can do with it.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Networking Thing 6 & 7

Networking with other library people can be useful.  It can give you an opportunity to share what you know (I don't know much) and get some info and ideas from them too.
I have been to a couple of library networking days where there are presentations and 'workshop' sessions, where you can choose which group you would like to do which is more relevant to your job. Not sure about there being another one of these as last year's was cancelled because of lack of attendance.  Reason being their Trusts wouldn't pay the travel fairs..  but cutbacks are another story...
The other networking I did was the NVQ.  There were monthly sessions where candidates could meet up and work and have opportunity to talk to their fellow candidates and their assessors.
As for online networking sites, I hadn't joined any except for the LISMED and JSCMAIL mailing lists.  On recommendation on the CPD23 I joined the LISNPN.  It says New Professional which I'm not but I thought there may be some library assistants on there.
I set up a Twitter and Pushnote account, which I don't think I will be doing a lot with especially Pushnote, which is largely a waste of time and will be deleting my account soon.  I'll give Twitter another chance, I may have to follow more relevant people.  Also I will have to follow more of the blogs.