Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Newspapers Online & Ebsco A-Z: So Much for Microfilm, Microfiche, and Piles & Piles of Paper!

Great practice using these databases!

Searching for my own hometown I whittled down the original 501,041 articles to a realistic set of 361 hits which ranged in date from 1999-2009. Lead paragraph helped some (27,192 results), but I found the Best Matches limiter to be the real ticket.

Searching for someone with local fame, I decided to use the owner of my favorite Colorado bookstore. Results numbered 664, but when I selected Colorado from the sidebar of location results, that number dropped to 444. It was fun reading through the history, some of which I knew and some of which was new to me. Although I had hoped to find some articles from 1985 or 1986, the dates ranged from 1989-2009. Not all papers go back far enough for us "older folks"...

I also decided to check out brethren fame and was happy to come across some articles by and about my very own brother! Name search resulted in 82 hits, but limiting it by the appropriate state I found 3 articles from between 1986-2005--fun to read and remember!

All in all, the limits do wonders in pinpointing the info one is truly looking for, and Newspapers Online, Custom Newspapers, & Ebsco A-Z offer a great time-saving service!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Google to the 100th Power!

It's all about me! Customization rocks with all these value-added Google features! I am most impressed with:

  • viewing already created power point presentations on any given topic
  • Google Video for easy locating and uploading of must-see episodes of favorite series--hooray for this season's episodes of Mad Men which won't be available on DVD until July!
  • igoogle: what an improved welcome screen! I love music and now I am getting updates of upcoming concerts in our area, not to mention other categories of arts & entertainment...
  • Discover Buried Treasure: educator posters on google books are way cool!
  • Google Scholar: ditto above!

So now the only trick left is to keep using some of these new discoveries...therein lies the rub....

Saturday Next...

I enjoyed reading the blog post by catsfin! funny that it is Saturday next and I am playing catch up with many of the features Cat spoke of. Impressive to say the least a la Google Books!! It is awesome! So easy to use AND searchable by the Table of Contents! Jump right to the poem or chapter you need--Wow! Love it...

Monday, February 9, 2009

BM Challenge #2: Laptop Presentation

Once a Children's Librarian, Always a Children's Librarian...when it came to selecting something to demonstrate I went with Tumblebooks. The only negative comment I must share is the difficulty in finding it on our website! No link is provided on the kids webpage itself! One must know to go to Find It! within our research page for access. I suppose the old kids page is kind of defunct, but if so, let's get rid of it altogether! Too many places to look, so little time....
Anyway, this wonderful new electronic resource can't get enough press! So I found a staff member who didn't even recognize its name, and went to work.

Aside from the fun of sharing all the great features, I will say that laptop presentations are a cinch, and a great tool to take on the road. Simple as pie even for the tech phobic population, it takes almost no time at all to plug in the projector, put power to the laptop, and connect the two with the blue, color-coded cable. Now if only I could get my hands on that awesome portable screen TRIS has! I'll be putting in a request for sure!

Anyway, Challenge 2 is being posted late, so please excuse the out of order sequence.....

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Well, having the digitized reference titles is a great thing for sure! I don't think I would have any problem convincing customers that it is the 'real thing' and that is just as trustworthy as paging through the physical book, but....

As with any electronic resource there are things that just don't seem to work correctly and so can be frustrating at times. For instance, I searched for Sojourner Truth within one of the biographical titles. I selected the very first entry with a 100% relevancy rating. Just under a photo near the top of the page there was a "view PDF" hyperlink. When I clicked on this it only brought up one page. So it is clearly important to choose PDF from the "Tools" box on the right side of the screen. If someone had chosen to go with the first PDF displayed, they would have missed the large majority of the actual entry!

As for typos, when using VideoHound I selected The Last King of Scotland. The digitized version on GVRL had wordwrapped the title into The Last King ofScotland--I wonder just how many typos of this kind there might be? Many I would surmise....

All in all, it is a great resource, but once again, we can rest assured that our jobs are secure--people will always need our assistance!

P.S. Translation is a cool tool!

P.P.S. Since we have VideoHound here in full text, I would love to get my Halliwell's back as a standing order Reference work, and ditch the paper VideoHound!!! Ah, how will we ever keep up?...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Listen NJ--BM Web Challenge
Shannon Hale’s magical retelling of the Grimms's fairy tale of the princess who became a goose girl before she could become queen is a wonderfully rich one, full of eloquent description and lovely imagery, and with a complex plot, a large cast of characters, and a strong female protagonist. I enjoyed listening to Part 1 before deleting it from the MP3 player! Children's librarianship never fully dies...
As for the process of ListenNJ downloading and transferring to the player goes, I found it to be more time-consuming than hoped for. Having to download the overdrive software, update the windows media security certificate, and then do the actual steps required to get the book onto the Sansa player, I can only hope that this is far quicker from a home computer where the necessary software remains available for regular use. A great service, but can we make it easier to use within our branches?
Happy to have completed 'Thing One' of the BM Web Challenge! Onward ho! Thanks for getting me back on track with new 2.0 technology learning!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Flickr Fun

With the multitude of photos being shared 'round the world with Flickr, I am happy to pick one to share with all of you OCL Bloggers! Can you imagine this small glass structure is the entrance to my hands-down favorite museum in Copenhagen? Largely unknown even to Danes, I applaud my world-traveling daughter for turning my husband & I on to Cisternerne, where we spent our final afternoon in Denmark. Visit the link to read about this awesome Museum of Modern Glass Art, an underground historic water reservoir which also houses an exhibition of sandstone sculptures from ca. 1700! http://www.cisternerne.dk/index1.htm