Thursday, 8 April 2010
Monday, 29 March 2010
Monday, 22 March 2010
I thought Google docs (and the cloud) was a very neat concept and tool. The relatively limited options for changing the look of text etc is too much of a problem. In my case, all I need is to be able to highlight text in bold or with italics occasionally.
I find Wikipedia very useful - a good first stop to finding out about some things. I'm not sure I would trust it to enlighten me about higher mathematics, but it is great for getting all the trivia about T.J. Hooker or something. Google searches for films and people, say, invariably have it as the first result, or in the first five. I am cautious, though, and aware that the content can't be taken as Gospel. At the very least, though, pages generally have links to more credible and authoritative pages, so it can be a great launch-pad to more serious research.
Monday, 15 March 2010
Signed up to Webpaint, Web 2 Oxford Libraries, with my Facebook account.
Monday, 22 February 2010
Tuesday, 16 February 2010
Thursday, 11 February 2010
However, in the interests of the project, and of exploring more of what Flickr has to offer, I uploaded some more pictures - photos of last Christmas and a recent trip to the Royal Academy. I joined the '23 Things' Flickr group and, once accepted, shared a selection of pics (screenshot below). I then pulled photos from Flickr and Facebook into PicNik. There, I played around with cropping and found the 'contrast' and 'sharpness' features helpful in making the drawings I took pictures of stand out more from their background. I put one of the modified pictures below: the figure study (and I think I added it to the Flickr 23Things group too).
As usual, during term in my reading room, there's too much that needs doing or chasing up to spend a lot of time exploring these sites (or I'm too frazzled to want to). But I spent long enough on Flickr to learn that the site offers more than I had hitherto realised, by way of organising pictures: tagging them, putting them into sets and 'batch-editing'. I confess I didn't find the layout of the site enormously intuitive, or at any rate feel entirely at home with it (and, for some reason, when I tagged pictures with a word, a space, then a number - say, 'Thing 8' - it separated 'Thing' and '8' into two distinct tags; do tags have to be all one word, or do numbers within a tag have a specific role?). This would probably improve given more time, but I'm not sure I see the motivation for me to spend it right now: though I have a Yahoo email account, I have, as I mentioned, committed to Facebook as my means of sharing content (though ironically the email address attached to Facebook is my Yahoo one - so that my main inbox isn't clogged with notifications I get by other means) . With so many sites offering a suite of social networking and content sharing facilities, it makes sense to commit to the one that offers the right and most well-rounded combination of services, which suits your needs and which most of the people you care about use (assuming these sites aren't themselves intended as a source of new contacts - they are for some people but not me), so that it's a proper enhancement of your social life and not some futile narcissistic exercise in maximising your presence online. Flicker perhaps offers a wider array of organising possibilities, but the more basic, simpler facility within Facebook suffices - the amount of the organising parameters on Flickr struck me as overkill and surplus to requirements - and the photos there are more likely to be seen by the few people who might possibly care to see them.
Spending time on Flickr tagging and batch-editing and whatnot would be like going on your own to a really trendy nightclub and busting lots of spectacular moves on the dancefloor, while all your mates are together in the local pub wondering where you are...
The Picnik site seemed like a very useful tool, especially if, like me, your only camera is the one on your mobile phone, as it offers the enhancement of poorly lit or fuzzy shots and the cropping of poorly framed ones.
Wednesday, 3 February 2010
Hopefully I'll get time to check others' thoughts out and make a comment here and there, and update this post or post about it later.
Monday, 1 February 2010
Super busy at work this week so not a lot of time for this.
'Thing 4' was registering my blog which didn't seem worth a post. So here I am with Thing 5: RSS feeds. First thing I learnt was what RSS stands for (unless the 23 Things Blogger was joking). It was indeed 'really simple'. When I logged into Google-Reader for the first time, I found two blogs already there, under 'blogs I'm following'. These were for (art) blogs for which I had, some months ago, selected the GoogleFriendConnect function. 'Following' and 'Subscribing' seem to be essentially the same thing.
I subscribed to the 23 Things blog as suggested. For Thing 6, I also added some more subscriptions: My boss Jacquie Dean's '23 Things' blog, a British Library blog by the Harold Pinter archivist and another sketch blog, Urban Sketchers.
When I explored the settings I discovered, naturally enough, that you can add GoogleReader to your iGoogle page, so I did that. I was also intrigued by the 'share' function, which enables you to share interesting posts via a number of social networking platforms: Twitter, Facebook, etc. I already have 'share on facebook' tool on my personal computer's toolbar, though I just as often cut and paste url's onto my facebook 'wall'.
I can see the potential and usefulness of these technologies for filtering and sharing content, but confess none of it is woven enough into my lifestyle, nor have I a similarly motivated enough community, for them to seem like intuitive and useful enhancements - yet. My practices with online content and sharing are a little more sporadic and ad hoc at present.