Blog - Jo Alcock Consulting
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Just a short post to share a great article passed on to me by a web designer friend. William Hicks (no relation to the comedian as far as I know!), a web designer and librarian at the University of North Texas outlines how useful libraries can be, even for those who work almost entirely on the web. He includes some great real-life examples of when a library might be able to help you with your work and why it could benefit you to visit your local academic (or public) library. Obviously, this is aimed at an American audience but I'm sure many...

A couple of weeks ago I attended a very interesting talk given by Kim Holmberg, a PhD student from Finland who is supervised by one of our lecturers at Wolverhampton. The talk was part of a series by the Statistical Cybermetrics Research Group. Kim's background is in information science and webometrics but he also has an interest in Library 2.0 and what he calls Library 3D (libraries in Second Life and similar). The talk introduced the concept of Library 2.0 which was great to see as I'm sure some of the people present had probably never heard of it. Kim tended to...

Thanks to a post by Nicole Engard, I have added the Facebook Blog Networks application to my Facebook page and registered ownership of Joeyanne Libraryanne. Facebook Blog Networks is a way to display on your Facebook profile which blogs you own, author and read so that others can find interesting blogs. It also means that each blog registered on there has it's own page where the feed is displayed (once you have enough fans!), and where readers have the opportunity to review and leave comments about the blog as you can see in the screenshot below (click for larger image, select...

One of my interests in Web 2.0 technology is using tools to improve productivity. It's the reason I love RSS feeds so much, I'm a fan of anything that can help save time or improve productivity in both my working life and life on general. When I bought my iPod Touch in December I was keen to integrate that to help increase my productivity which it did to an extent but it had the distinct disadvantage of requiring wifi to do most things. The release of the iPod Touch software 2.0 and the App Store has changed all that though...

I upgraded the blog to WordPress 2.6 last night - extra features in the latest WordPress include version history (could be useful for me as I tend to write a few drafts before publishing my longer posts), press this (a bookmarklet you can use to blog about websites etc.), picture captions, theme previews, and Google Gears support. Upgrading is always a scary experience as I'm terrified I'll lose my content (I didn't actually do it myself this time, Chris helped me). Although all seemed fine initially, I soon realised that the front page was working but the individual posts weren't showing...

As a regular user of RSS feeds (I currently subscribe to over 150 feeds and check them daily), I am keen to encourage others to use them. We have started trying to encourage students to use an RSS reader to keep up-to-date via our information skills sessions and I would like to try to promote them to researchers and academic staff also. There are a number of useful academic blogs as well as news feeds and feeds for new items in journals. I was therefore delighted to see Joe Hilton and Roddy MacLeod's article in the latest edition of SCONUL Focus detailing...

Visit mashed library There have been a number of library related unconference recently, in the USA, Canada and Australia to my knowledge. For anyone unfamiliar with the term, an unconference is basically an informal conference with a broad theme which is driven by the delegates. I've always thought these events seemed like a great idea so I was very excited when Owen Stephens suggested on his blog that maybe we should have an unconference event for mashed libraries in the UK. As you can see from the number of responses he got in the comments, it seems there are quite...

On Wednesday I attended a CoFHE event at the Open University in Milton Keynes. The event was titled "The Terrible 2.0s? Web 2.0 without tears" and covered a variety of Web 2.0 topics such as podcasting, blogging, wikis and social software in general. The keynote speaker was Peter Godwin, who started the event with a talk on Information Literacy and the Google Generation. Peter's presentation was very interesting with lots of thought-provoking points made about today's students (like those made in the CIBER report earlier this year). The main theme emerging from the talk was how today's students are visual learners who...

For anyone with similar RSS feeds to mine, you've probably seen a fair few of these tag clouds from Wordle recently. I thought I'd have a play myself and you can see my del.icio.us tags in the tag cloud below (click for larger image at Wordle): Although Wordle appealed to me, I hadn't really thought beyond the fact that it's an interesting way to display del.icio.us tags or a block of text, but then I read Sarah Faye Cohen's blog post with her thoughts about possible uses for Wordle and it got me thinking. Her idea of getting students to use...

Another problem/solution based post, this one is something I've been thinking about for ages but haven't been able to do anything about yet. I thought it might be useful to see if anyone out there has a solution to help with the nightmare that is reading lists? It's one of the responsibilities which seems to be shared by almost all academic librarians. During my experience supporting different academic schools, each seems to deal with their reading lists in different ways. Wouldn't it be nice if there was a standardised procedure so that all academic staff, library staff and students knew...