Monday, February 25, 2008

Weeks 7 & 8: Play Week


We hope you've been having plenty of fun so far in Blue 2.0, but with this module in particular there is no excuse not to enjoy yourself! This time, it's all about you. Explore sites and applications of interest to you. And just a reminder: we have headphones, microphones, and a still and video digital camera at Young Library Circulation. Have fun, Blue crew!


All are optional, or you can seek out your own. You need to explore at least two applications but the only requirement for the week is that you blog about your activities! Note: Some of these applications require admin access to your computer before you can install. It may be easier to try those from a home computer. If you do want to load one of those apps at work, contact LIB-TS@LSV.UKY.EDU for temporary admin rights. The fine print from IT:

Note that we take no responsibility and offer no support for software you install. If problems result (or occur independently) the best we can do is ghost your computer clean so it's back the way you got it. Be sure to keep current backups of files you keep on your local hard drive.

1. Get creative with an online image generator. Upload your favorite photo and play with goofy effects. Some examples are listed below, or just do a Google search to find others. If you create a cool image, post it to your blog and include a link back to the editor you used!


Review of online image editors (includes links to several)

Another one, with more links

2. Personal Portals.

3. Make your own search engine! Give Google a run for it's money and make your own search engine. Rollyo is a yahoo based search engine that allows users to create a search engine that only searches certain websites. After you create your search engine, Rollyo will generate html code so you can post it on a website, blog or wiki.

Activity: Try Rollyo
  1. Go to the Rollyo website.

  2. Create a profile by entering a username, password and e-mail address

  3. Enter up to 25 websites to limit your search to.

  4. If you want to add your searchbox to your blog or a website, visit the Rollyo Create a Searchbox page and it will churn out the code for you.

Examples of Rollyo search engines:

RESOURCE: See the PLCMC "23 Things" program notes

4. Encore ( Check out the UK Libraries’ new catalog! What are the web 2.0 features? What do you like / not like about it? What will patrons think?

5.Web 2.0 Award Winners ( Ok, we have a lot of options for you to choose from in this module. But, hey, you may not really like any of 'em! That's OK. If you want to find your own Web 2.0 application, take a look at this site for some other choices. Choose any site on the list and give it a try! Just be sure to blog about it.

6. Seond Life ( A 3-D virtual world application that is being used by Libraries and educators around the world. This activity may take more than the 3-hour estimate for all of Play Week. It can take a while to become comfortable with the application and there is a whole virtual world to explore!

Download the software (requires admin rights to your computer!) and create your account at

Note about installation on UK Libraries machines:
The SL cache can make your roaming profile huge. Please re-direct the
cache after you install thhe software:

Preliminary step:
Open My Computer
Pull down Tools>Folder Options
Select the View tab
Select the Show Hidden Files radio button
Okay your way out

Launch the Second Life client. Before logging in, click on
Preferences. Choose the Network tab. Click on the Clear Cache
button. Click on the Set button and change the cache location to this path
(you will need to make a new folder there): c:\Documents and
Settings\yourusername\Local Settings\Application Data\SL Cache

Explore educational uses of Second Life at the Second Life Education Wiki.

Read about the Second Life Library Project and explore their home base in SL, Info Island (This is an SLURL, which will launch the Second Life application and take you to Info Island. Info Island is a great place for SL "newbies" to visit.)

Find out about UK's island!

See some additional resources Beth posted from a workshop.

7. Investigate open source software with SourceForge ( “The world's largest development and download repository of Open Source code and applications.” Download something and play with it!

RESOURCE: Wikipedia article

8. Mozilla Firefox.

Almost everything we’ve covered in Blue 2.0 are web-based applications. And how do we access the web? Through a web browser. Internet Explorer is the web browser that comes with most computers and is part of our Microsoft Office package here at UK. You do have other options – options that will enhance your web experience and may make all of your Internet based time more pleasant.

One of the most prevalent alternative web browsers is Mozilla Firefox. Firefox is an open source browser, which means that thousands of people volunteer time and energy developing it and creating additions to it. These additions are called “addons” or “extentions”, depending on who you talk to. The full list of extentions can be found here.

Activity: Play with the Mozilla Firefox browser and try out at least 5 addons

  1. Go to the Mozilla website and down load the Firefox browser. (NOTE: requires admin access to your computer.)

  2. After that is downloaded, go to the addon site and download 5 addons to Mozilla to personalize your experience.

Not sure what to download? Here are some ideas:

  • Firefox's Recommended Addons Link

  • iLibrarian's 40 Useful Firefox addons for Librarians. Part one. Part two.

  • Computer World's 20 Must Have Firefox Addons. Link

  • Quick Online Tips 50 Best Firefox Addons for Power Surfing Link

9. Microblogging.

You know, sometimes you don't really have enough to say for a entire blog post. Sometimes you can update your followers in 140 characters (including spaces!) or less. This is called microblogging.

Activity: Try microblogging service Twitter and add a another twitter-er to follow.

  1. Go to the Twitter website

  2. Create a profile. All you need is a user name, password and e-mail address.

  3. Find at least one other twitter-er to follow. It will form an RSS like feed in your Twitter page.
Not sure who to follow? Here are some options:

10. Chat Aggregators - Try meebo!

Okay, now you've tried chatting on AOL. However, a lot of you already had accounts on other chat services like google or yahoo. How can you chat with your old buddies and your new AOL buddies too? Chat aggregators, that's how. Also called "multiprotocol instant messaging applications", chat aggregators allow users to chat with people on other chat platforms.

Activity: Try meebo
  1. Go to the meebo website (

  2. Create a user/name password and enter in all of your instant messaging account information.

  3. See if you can chat with someone on another IM client with meebo.

Note: If you're doing the Firefox activity, you can download a Meebo Addon! Also, if you're doing the Advanced Blogger activity, you can add create a Meebo Widget. This allows people to chat with you via Meebo even if they have no IM account at all. Check out UK Law Library Blog to see an example of this.

11. Advanced Blogging.

During week one you created a basic blog. Here's a chance to jazz up your blog with some additions.

Activity: Bling your blog
  1. If you're using blogger, click on the "Layout" link on the dashboard for your blog. Then click "page elements."

  2. By clicking "add a page element", you will have a list of elements you can add, such as a picture slideshow, a link list (perhaps you could create a blogroll of some of the Blue 2.0 blogs!), and RSS feeds.

    1. There is also the "HTML/Java Script" option. This is for adding "widgets". Many sites will have a link that says something like "add as a widget to your blog." (Another option is to get a list of widgets here.) It will then provide you with some code that you cut and paste into the box that appears when you click the "HTML/Java Script" link. After you cut/paste the script, click "save changes" and then you can drag the box anywhere you want on your blog.

    2. You can add as many "HTML/ Java Script" boxes as you want. One that doesn't appear on the list linked above is "Sitemeter". This free service will allow you to see how many people visit your blog, where they are (both geographic location and domain name), and how they got there.

  3. Blogger has also made it easy to change the look of your blog.

    1. You can change the color of the basic provided templates by clicking on "fonts and colors" under the "layout" tab/link. You can change colors either by clicking on one of the colors provided, or by entering a "hex color code". A list of those can be found here.

    2. If you're feeling really adventurous, you can change your blog template to one that's not an official "blogger" provided one. A list of template resources can be found here. Most of these require a simple cut/paste of provided code. You'll click on "edit HTML". This will show you the code that provides the look of your blog. Blogger will give you the option of saving your current blog. Do that. Then you'll erase your current template and paste in one of your choosing. NOTE: You shouldn't lose any blog content (the posts you've written) when you switch templates. However, you'll lose any extras you've added such as widgets or blog rolls.

12. Advanced Wikis - Wikipedia.

Now that you know the basics of wiki creation, why not give the 800 pound gorilla of wikis a try? Maybe you can bring some library organization and know how to the table!

Activity: edit wikipedia

  1. Go to the wikipedia main page

  2. On the top right hand side, there is a link that says "login/create an account." Click that.

  3. Create an account by entering a username and password. After that, you're good to go to make edits. Scary, huh?

A little hestitant to make edits? Check out the following pages first:

Wikipedia has 1000s of pages on 1000s of topics. Try editing one or create your own page. Here's some that you may have some information to offer about. Don't see your library listed? Create a page for it!

13. Clone yourself.

Okay, Web 2.o isn't advanced enough to clone yourself. However, not all of us are blessed with the photogenic gene. (At least that's what I tell myself so I can sleep at night!) Alternatively, not everyone feels comfortable with posting actual pictures of yourself on the Internet. What's the solution? Create an avatar!

Activity: Explore an avatar creator

Each avatar creator site is going to be a little different, so specific instructions will vary.

  1. Choose an avatar maker. A list appears at the end of this section, but if you find another one you like, feel free to choose that.

  2. Create an avatar.

  3. Either post it on your blog or upload it to your blog profile.

Avatar Creation Sites:

14.Promote your Blog - Try Technorati!

Blogging can be as social of an activity as you want. You can just blog for yourself, you can only allow a certain select group of people read your blog, or can keep your blog open to the entire world and hope that as many people as possible read your blog. One way to get more traffic is to link to other bloggers (who may then choose to link to you) and sign up for Technorati.

Technorati is a blog indexing service that measures the linking between blogs. The more times a blog is linked to, the more "importance" it is given. It also measures when blogs link to an item like a news story on the web. Technorati then lists the blogs that link to this story.

Activity: Try Technorati

  1. Go to the Technorati homepage

  2. On the top right/central part of the page in the green (above "technology") there is a link to "sign up." Click that and a window will pop up. Enter a username, email address, and password and this will create your account.

  3. Click on "blogger central", which appears on the right hand side of the page, under the search box.

  4. In the middle of the right hand column, there is a link to "claim your blog." Enter the URL of your blog.

  5. You'll be given the opportunity to choose three different methods of claiming your blog - open ID, quick, or post claim. Choose whichever one you feel most comfortable with.

  6. You'll then be given the opportunity to fill in a little more information about your blog.

  7. You can also check your blog settings to make sure that Technorati is getting "pinged" every time you update your blog. Instructions on how to do this for the different blog hosts (including blogger) appear here.

15. Share Presentations with Slideshare

Looking for some ideas on how to craft a class presentation? Or did you come up with an awesome presentation that you want to share with the world? Well, then, you need to check out Slideshare.

Slideshare is commonly referred to as the "YouTube of Powerpoint." It allows people to upload and download presentations in a variety of presentation formats. (ppt, pps, odp, pdf, keynote, and the presentation software on Google docs) There is also a social aspect of it - registered users can have a "contact list" and form groups, such as this one for people interested Library 2.0.

Activity: Try Slideshare

  1. Go to the Slideshare website (

  2. On the top right/center of the screen (next to the search box), there is a link to signup. Click that and provide a username, password and e-mail address. (This actually isn't necessary to explore the site or upload presentations, but you'll get the full use of the site with a profile.)

  3. Check out some of the presentations that have been uploaded. You can enter a term of interest in the search box, click on one of the terms that appear in the tag cloud, find a group that interests you and see what its members have, or maybe even see a conference that you didn't get to go to.

  4. Try to upload a presentation! Take one you already have or just create a quick one with 2 or three slides. Click "upload", which appears in the bar under the "Slideshare" symbol. Click the "browse and select files" button to choose your presentation and upload it.

Some Slideshare examples:

Estimated Completion Time: 3 hour+ It really depends on which applications you choose to play with.


Blue 2.0 is about helping each other! IM a co-participant or post a question to the “Need Help?” blog post if you need (you guessed it) help. We don't have a particular workgroup member as primary contact for this whole module, but here's a list of the applications we feel particularly comfortable with:

  • Beth: Second Life, online image editors, Encore, SourceForge

  • Sarah: Meebo, MicroBlogging, Mozilla, Advanced blogging, Rollyo, Wikipedia, Avatars, slideshare, technorati

  • Jen: iGoogle, Second Life, Meebo, microblogging

  • Stacey: I'm willing to help with any of these things. Have fun!

Or feel free to contact any workgroup member if you’re really stuck!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Happy Hour!

It's almost Play Week, so why don't we kick it off with a little fun?

What: Happy hour for Blue 2.0!
When: Wed., Feb 20, 5:00-7:00

Charlie Brown's kinda looks like a library. They have books. So call it a meeting and come early! (oh, just kidding....)

Spread the word to your Blue 2 friends in case they are not reading the blog faithfully every day!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

First party & prize drawing!

We had our first Blue 2.0 get-together/party/Q&A/prize drawing yesterday afternoon. Several Blue participants showed up to eat food....

talk about our experiences so far, and choose the first winner in our incentive prize drawings! The names of all Blue 2.0 participants who were currently on-schedule were put in a basket, and Shawn drew our winner:

Congratulations to Christina Zavos, who won a $50 restaurant gift certificate!

[Christina was unable to attend the party, but we're sure she was just this happy when she found out that she won!]

So stay on schedule and get ready for our next drawing, Tuesday, March 18, 10:00, when the prize will be an iPod shuffle. Good luck, everyone!

[BTW, someone left brown gloves at the party. They are being held for ransom in Beth's cube. Complete the next modules or the gloves are a gonner!]

Friday, February 8, 2008

Weeks 5&6: Tagging, Folksonomies and Online Applications


During this unit, you will learn to use, a social bookmarking website. You will also explore some of the word processing capabilities of GoogleDocs.

Tagging and Folksonomies

Sharing and collaboration are major characteristics of Web 2.0 applications. Tagging and folksonomies are somewhat synonymous terms. "Tags" are labels that people can apply to objects found online and a "folksonomy" is a taxonomy created by a community. Both allow people to share how they categorize items found on the web – be it pictures, webpages, blog posts, etc. Hmmm.....organizing information? This module should be a natural for library folks!


Activity 1: Create a account ( is a website that allows you to store your Internet bookmarks online. This means that you can access your bookmarks from any computer. When you book mark a webpage, you can “tag” it with keywords of your choosing which will help you organize similar pages. This is more versatile than bookmark folders since you can “tag” a website with more than one descriptor. For example, one could save a link to this blog on and tag it with “blog” “web 2.0” “UKBlue2.0” and/or “library.” Later, you could easily see all other websites that you’ve labeled with “blog” as well as “web2.0” is most commonly known as a “social bookmarking” site. This means you can share your bookmarks with friends if you choose (but you don’t have to!) You can also see what websites other people are bookmarking and what tags that they assign them. Many libraries use social bookmarking sites as a way to create online resource guides. Some examples of these appear at the end of the module.

  1. Go to and create a account.
    • provides easy to follow, step by step instructions through this process.
    • As part of this process, you will be offered the opportunity to install “post to” button on your web browser. If you choose not to do so, that’s okay! You can always go to and enter the URLs of the websites that you’d like to post to
  2. Find five websites that interest you (they don’t have to be about Web 2.0).
    • Assign them tags based on whatever organizational scheme makes sense to you.
    • If you make a mistake or think of another tag later, don't can always go back and edit your tags.
    • Additionally, tag all of your sites “UKBlue2.0”.
    • You can also import bookmarks from your browser.
  3. After finishing this, look at your list of bookmarks.
    • Click on “saved by – other people”
    • Click on one of the usernames of the people that have saved your page. See if they have saved some pages that you may find interesting.
  4. Go to the Blue 2.0 account ( and add it to your network. Also, you may want to check out some of the websites that have been tagged in this account.
  5. Write a quick blog post in your own blog with a link to your account.
Estimated completion time: 30 – 60 minutes.

So to recap, for this activity you will:
1) Create a account
2) Post 5 websites to your account
3) Tag this websites with whatever terms make sense to you AND “UKBlue2.0”
4) Add the Connected Library account to your network.
5) Post link to your account in your blog.

Optional Activity 1A: LibraryThing

LibraryThing is a website that allows users to post their book collection, assign the books tags (or catalog it) and then share their collection with others. You can also use LibraryThing to find people who have similar reading tastes to yours. Many libraries use LibraryThing as a way to highlight their collection, supplement their OPAC and, in some rare cases, completely replace their OPAC.

Joining LibraryThing is as simple as creating a username and password. There is an option for creating a profile, but you don’t have to do that if you don’t wish. After that, you can add books to your library by searching for them in sources provided by LibraryThing, such as library catalogs or online retailers. Alternatively, you can upload your library by, for example, using your Amazon wish list.

Here are some things to check out in LibraryThing:

  • After creating your LibraryThing account, you can join the UK Blue 2.0 group. This will allow you to find other Blue 2.0 participants and check out their libraries.
  • You can also make a widget and add a link to your LibraryThing on your blog.
  • Not sure what to read next? Use LibraryThing's Suggester.
  • Oh, look! LibraryThing has a blog with an RSS feed you can add to your list to keep up-to-date on LibraryThing enhancements!
  • Finally, LibraryThing has a wiki component of its website called Common Knowledge . This allows users to contribute information on authors and works.

Online Software Suites

As we learned in the last module, wikis are a great way to collaborate with others. However, sometimes you may need to use a document, a spreadsheet or want to create a presentation. This is where Online Software Suites come in handy. As an added benefit, they’re free!

Activity 2: Explore Google Docs

Google Docs is a free, online version of a productivity suite like MS Office. With Google Docs, you can create and edit documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Besides the obvious benefit of being free, you can also co-edit these projects with other people and then easily publish them to the web or post to a blog. We're going to just look at the word processing aspect of Google Docs.

  1. Go to the Google Docs page ( You can also find it by going to the Google homepage and then clicking on "more" on the top left hand side of the page.
  2. If you have not already done so, login to your Google Account that you created when you created an account with Blogger.
  3. On the left hand side of the blue bar, click on the word “new” and select “document”
  4. Write a brief summary of your experiences with either or google docs or both.
  5. Save the document by clicking on “save” in the gray button on the top right hand corner
  6. Publish the document to your blog.
    • Click the “publish” tab.
    • There will be two options: “publish to Internet” and “post to blog.” You want “post to blog” You will likely have to set your blog site settings, which just involves providing your blogger login and the name of your blog.
    • NOTE: This only works with select blog hosts. Blogger and Wordpress are supported, which I think almost everyone in Blue 2.0 is using. If you’re not using either of these blog hosts, just write a blog post about your experiences the normal way.
  7. Share the document with Sarah Glassmeyer (kentucky.sarah AT
    • She will make a revision to your document and send it back to you.
    • When you get it back, click on the “Revisions” tab. There you can compare previous versions of the document.

So to recap, for this part of the module you will:
1) Go to google docs
2) Write a brief summary of your experiences with and/or google docs.
3) Publish this document to your blog
4) Share it with Sarah Glassmeyer

Estimated completion time: 30 – 60 minutes.


For more information:

Tagging and Folksonomies

Social Bookmarking

Del.ici.ous Examples

University of Georgia Libraries Cataloging Department
This is a nice example of subject specific account. These resources are for library employees, not the public

Dublin City Public Libraries (Ireland)
Notice how they bundle tags by subjects.

Colorado State University Pueblo
Here is an academic library that uses subject bundles.

San Mateo Public Library
This library chooses to use the Dewey Decimal System numbers for its subject bundles.

Libraries Using LibraryThing

Librarians who LibraryThing - This is a group for librarians.
Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art
Duke Law Library
Kingwood College Library
Morris County Public Library

Other Examples of Sites that use Tagging.

Social bookmarking sites – These websites are going be very similar to in that they are used to manage webpages. Some of them have “extras”, such as the ability to discuss the saved websites with other users.


Social citation sites – These websites act very similarly to EndNote or RefWorks.


Social cataloging sites – These sites allow you to catalog and share your book collection, like LibraryThing.


Online Applications

For more information:
Office Suite
Lifehacker Faceoff: Zoho Suite vs. Google Docs

Office Suites
Google Docs

Need Help?

Remember, Blue 2.0 is about helping each other! IM a co-participant or post a question to the “Need Help?” blog post if you need (you guessed it) help. Sarah Glassmeyer is the primary contact for this topic, but please feel free to contact any workgroup member if you’re really stuck.

REMEMBER: There will be a party and prize drawing on Wednesday, February 13. Come with questions if you have any! Blue 2.0 participants who have completed Modules 1 and 2 (Chat, Blogs, RSS and wikis) by Feb12 are eligible for the $50 restaurant gift certificate drawing. If you're not caught up by that time, don't can still catch up and be eligible for the iPod Shuffle drawing on March 18 and the Grand Prize 80GB iPod Classic drawing at the Staff Appreciation Event during the week of April 7.

Friday, February 1, 2008

The prizes are here!

The Blue prizes are here!

Prize #1 (drawing is Feb 13) = $50 restaurant gift certificate

Prize #2 (drawing is Mar 18) = iPod Shuffle

Grand Prize #3 (drawing during Staff appreciation) = iPod Classic

So stay on schedule! Good luck in the drawings...

See the Prizes and Parties! post for more details about the drawing party events, where we'll also have an opportunity to talk about experiences, show our work and get help.