Thursday, January 31, 2008

Common Craft

Hats off to Laura for alerting me to Common Craft...short videos that explain, with exemplary clarity, things worth knowing. Try for example "RSS in Plain English" (below)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


USA*ENGAGE - in its own words - "is a broad-based coalition representing Americans from all regions, sectors and segments of our society concerned about the proliferation of unilateral foreign policy sanctions at the federal, state, and local level. Despite the fact that unilateral sanctions rarely achieve our foreign policy goals, they continue to have political appeal. Unilateral sanctions give the impression that the United States is "doing something," while American workers, farmers and businesses absorb the costs." Read more

Friday, January 18, 2008

Cue Prompter

Nothing is more annoying than being told, just before addressing a stadium or a rally, that your communications folks have forgotten the teleprompter. Now there's help - with CuePrompter, you just type or paste in a text, and your browser prompts you with big white letters on a black screen, at your chosen speed. Also works for smaller audiences.

Google generation needs knowbuddies

‘Information Behaviour of the Researcher of the Future’

From resource shelf... "A new report, commissioned by JISC and the British Library, counters the common assumption that the ‘Google Generation’ – young people born or brought up in the Internet age – is the most adept at using the web. The report by the CIBER research team at University College London claims that, although young people demonstrate an ease and familiarity with computers, they rely on the most basic search tools and do not possess the critical and analytical skills to asses the information that they find on the web."

My bet is that this resonates with knowbodies everywhere!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Ideology of Facebook

UK philosopher Tom Hodgkinson takes a very dim view of Facebook in the Guardian earlier this week....

LC and Flickr

Here's an interesting use of Web2.0's "architecture of participation" by the Library of Congress at Flickr...and lot's of beautiful photos without copyright restrictions!

(excerpt)...."the launch of a brand-new pilot project the Library of Congress is undertaking with Flickr, the enormously popular photo-sharing site that has been a Web 2.0 innovator. If all goes according to plan, the project will help address at least two major challenges: how to ensure better and better access to our collections, and how to ensure that we have the best possible information about those collections for the benefit of researchers and posterity. In many senses, we are looking to enhance our metadata (one of those Web 2.0 buzzwords that 90 percent of our readers could probably explain better than me).

The project is beginning somewhat modestly, but we hope to learn a lot from it. Out of some 14 million prints, photographs and other visual materials at the Library of Congress, more than 3,000 photos from two of our most popular collections are being made available on our new Flickr page, to include only images for which no copyright restrictions are known to exist.

The real magic comes when the power of the Flickr community takes over. We want people to tag, comment and make notes on the images, just like any other Flickr photo, which will benefit not only the community but also the collections themselves. For instance, many photos are missing key caption information such as where the photo was taken and who is pictured. If such information is collected via Flickr members, it can potentially enhance the quality of the bibliographic records for the images."

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

10 library blogs for 2008

LIS News has named the 10 library blogs to read for 2008. Curiously, Knowbodies is not on the list, an oversight...but here they are. Those that are feeds can be sampled on the lib/tech pageflake page.

The Annoyed Librarian (Feed)
David Rothman (Feed)
iLibrarian (Feed)
Judge a Book by its Cover (Feed)
Law Librarian Blog (Feed)
Library Stuff (Feed)
Marylaine Block (Email list)
Off The Mark (Feed)
ResearchBuzz (Feed)
Stephen's Lighthouse (Feed)

Monday, January 14, 2008

Prosumers and future scenarios

Here's another future scenario for the information age, introducing the term "prosumer" which I encountered today for the first time.

And here, if you missed it, is EPIC 2015 Interesting despite unbearable music...

Buying of the President, 2008

From the Center for Public Integrity comes "Buying of the President 2008", the Center's quadrennial investigation of how money shapes presidential campaigns. "This website is a companion to The Buying of the President 2008. Like the book, this site explores the roles that money and special interests play in presidential politics. But unlike the book, which will provide a behind-the-scenes examination of how big money influences the presidential election process, this site is a work in progress — a continually updated window into the 2008 race that’s also richly supplemented with details, insights, and revelations from previous campaigns and, where feasible, those who engineered them."

Thursday, January 10, 2008

From here to there

Google Map's from here to there is amazing. Just enter your departure and destination points in the here and there boxes, and hey presto...up comes a map with your route marked clearly, and step by step driving directions on the left. If you run into detours...or are instructed to change your route to see some sights on (or out of) the way, just put your cursor on the route marker and drag it to the desired destination.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008


Hyplet is a neat web2.0 application that allows you to create nifty digital business cards and other promotional materials that can be pasted into emails, blogs, websites, etc. Fun to use!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Wikia search

Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, is launching Wikia search today. Here's the "about" page, and here's a New York Times article describing the service. In a comment to a very negative review at TechCrunch, Wales himself emphatically points out that Wikia Search is "a project to *build* a search engine, not a search engine."

Saturday, January 5, 2008

2 election sites

Congressional Quarterly has released a 2008 Primary Guide - read more about it here. For questions about historical election returns, Philip Lampi's A New Nation Votes: American Election Returns 1787-1825 is a treasure trove. Read more about it here