Rudaí23 - Winter
Rudaí 23 (23Things) is being administered by members of the Western Regional Section of the Library Association of Ireland.
For Things 3, 4, and 5, I was asked to use tools that were new to me, or to look at familiar tools in a new way. I examined Flickr from the perspective of someone looking for a photo to fit a particular purpose, instead of as a user looking for a place to store her photos. I discovered that Google Images was a wealth of creative common photos, and that Pixabay is another viable option for finding photos that match up with one’s blogpost (et al) needs. Another new-to-me item is PhotoFunia, which I see as a useful tool for marketing, in-house sign-making, and clever postering. Finally, I did my first ever screencast, and surprisingly didn’t hate it. Screencast-o-matic could be useful for tutorial videos for library patrons, researchers, and staff, and as a MLIS student I can see how in my classes such as cataloging and classification, could use this tool as an effective method for teaching items such as Dewey, MARC, etc.
In my regular perusal of information-related websites, I’ve seen images that seem flat, or those that could appear attached to any other website on an unrelated topic, so it feels important to select just the right photo for the job, one that feels authentic and matches well with whatever it is that I am posting. For my own posts, sometimes I end up using a photo I took myself. Instagram has given me a lot of practice in the photo/caption/mood arena. It’s difficult to describe exactly how to go about choosing the right photo, but for these Things, I tried on a couple before deciding, and it somehow seemed to internally sit better when I matched them with their posts. When looking for photos, and when searching generally now, I see how important it is to be appropriately descriptive on the back end, so that users can type in what they are looking for, and have a better chance of that item showing up – whether or not they already know exactly what that thing is. Previously, it seemed as searchers we tried to use as few words as possible to get our desired results, but now with so much content available, the more words we use seems to get us closer to what we want.
Lastly, one of my personal goals is to improve my unrehearsed speaking ability. If I know something really well, it’s easier to speak on it, and now I want to work on becoming more clear and concise when I am speaking in an informal way, about lesser known professional topics. The screencast-o-matic was an eye-opener. I didn’t use as many “ums” and “uhs” as I thought I would, and I was relatively clear. The screeencast I posted was the second one, because the first didn’t use an external mike, and my voice wasn’t loud enough to hear the narration. The most difficult part of the screencast was finding time when the house would be quiet enough for me to record, and finding something to record myself doing.
While the tools I used were new to me, I didn’t have much trouble figuring out how to use them, or for which uses they might be appropriate. I am interested in what ways Librarians and information professionals have found these tools useful; I would love to see some examples. In the future, to remind myself that these tools are available I am bookmarking them in a "resources" folder on my browser, so I can look at the list and see if one of these new tools will help me mix it up a bit, and make the content of what I am doing more engaging for the person consuming it.
Looking forward to my next set of things.
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