Friday, September 21, 2007

#17 Redo (kinda): I'm Back in the Sandbox Again

I was trying to help my co-worker, Robert B., with this one, & got totally confused. It seems that marylandlibrariessandbox has decided to play games. The Favorites home page has totally changed since I originally visited it. Logging in is still the same; however, there's no longer an HCL list to enter your registration. It's actually easier now. I just wish there had been a little note explaining the change. Some of us are easily "gaslite"(?). By the way, I added my 2 cents worth to several "favs" & added my own just for the experience--Mamma G's Favorite Discworlds (my favorite Terry Pratchett titles).

PS I'm still not too crazy about playing in sand!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Jaye brought my certificate to GLE today, and Darnice presented it me! I am very proud to be the 13th HCL staff to complete "23 Things." Didn't I tell you that 13 is a lucky number for us Italians!?! Ciao.

PS I plan to do #24 at my leisure. I also plan to continue posting to my Mamma G blog as I do more library learning.

Monday, September 17, 2007

#22 Revisited: John J. Is My Hero!

Oh, my gods (Pratchett)!!! After fracking (Battlestar Galactica) around with trying to transfer my eAudioBook again, it's finally working. (See previous scathing post for #22.) I'm afraid to turn off the MP3 player for fear it won't ever work again. Many thanks to John J. for his relentless quest for an answer to the age old question: "Why can't I get the d... thing to work!?!" I read and reread Prospect 112's info on the Cowon America Forums. Much of the problem lies, as usual, with not fully understanding how to go about the fix once you find out there actually IS a fix. There is an underlying assumption that all of us have an innate ability to decipher what I call "technobabble." Anywho, it was well worth those hours of frustration and effort just to hear those first few words of "Because of Winn Dixie." I hope I can do this some more.
You are my hero, Mr. J Samothrace's Nike, Goddess of Victory

PS I'm not really sure if I can duplicate this success so, Mr. J, you may hear from Mamma G again. No groaning. Filial piety for your elders at all times, please.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

#23: And She's Coming Into the Home Stretch

The finish line is within sight. I've just reviewed my notes on "7 1/2 Habits of Highly Successful Lifelong Learners" & my "2.0 Contract for Learning" posted on August 16th, just over one month ago. The challenges of using technology to my advantage coupled with my lack of confidence in this realm still exist; however, I have fulfilled my contract successfully with many positive results. I'm no longer "scared of the black hole" that is technology, but rather graduated to being shy & cautious coupled with healthy skepticism.
Here are the highlights of my journey:
>learned to blog--kept a journal of my Web2.0 experiences & had fun trying to be creative with it.
>got my Gmail acc't. & signed up for more stuff than I could have imagined.
>love my iGoogle page,, Flickr, Picasa, travel blogs @ Web 2.0 Awards, Rollyo, Topix, & YouTube.
> hugh frustration & usurper of time--learning the hard way, with much help from John J., to make my iAudio work for eAudioBooks (Here's a big "duh": Chris H. just printed the iAudio User's Guide that everyone should have before starting #22!.)
>Google Docs--learned that this handy tool will be replaced by DeskNow--great!
>most fun (I did learn to play!)--Flickr's geo tags, Montagr, Colr Pickr, etc. (I really enjoyed searching for photos to add some "pop" to my otherwise bland blog posts.) I also had too much fun with Meez.
>enjoyed the process of cooperation among co-workers with the prospect of helping to guide, of "passing it on" to others who follow me in exploring these pathways. My special thanks to DJ, John J. & the "old" Stacey F. for your patience & guidance.
>patting myself on the back as I am writing this for actually completing this often "black hole scary" yet fascinating & illuminating learning journey.

As the Virginia Slims slogan says/said (Are they still around?): "You've come a long way, baby!"
Phew! Hip, hip, hooray!! Finito!!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

#22: eGads! eAudioBooks=eNuff, aLready!!!

Okay, here goes. I believe I have matched John J. when it comes to eAudioBook induced migraines. Accessing NetLibrary, Overdrive & Project Gutenberg was a cinch. Been there; done that during LATI. Had no problem downloading Because of Winn Dixie to my home computer; HOWEVER, (notice how large this "however" is?) after 2 hours of messing about, my posse & I were defeated. Badly defeated. The process goes like this: one has to find an eAudio that was available, dump it into your bookbag, download it; THEN, transfer it. My posse included my very tech-savvy 21 yr. old son, Leo, & a very patient friend who used to build computers for a living. We finally managed to transfer the eBook to my snazzy, new MP3 player, but it wouldn't play. All we got was the theme song for iAudio. Mamma mia!!! These 2 brave men downloaded all sorts of programs in an effort to make all "things" compatible. Nada, zero, zip! Our conclusion: my cute little portable device is not compatible with NetLibrary or Overdrive. (Never attempted Gutenberg since there don't seem to be titles that interest me , & I was fried.)

Here's the sad part, I adore audiobooks. When I book talk, I speak of them with passion, honestly. I promote them unashamedly to any customer that will listen--to them & to me. I listen when I exercise, cook, clean, paint, garden, commute. (You'd be amazed how many "pages" you can do in 4 minutes.) Crazy as this might sound, but I don't mind being stuck in traffic if I have an audiobook. I really want to take advantage of this resource.

I've questioned John J. & Stacey F. re their eAudioBook experiences. John & I both used the HCL MP3 player. Stacey used her personal one that she purchased specifically for this purpose. To date John & I were unsuccessful while Stacey was successful. (John is still plugging away & will keep me posted--bless you, John.) I will bring this info to Jaye's attention. If our conclusion re this dilemma is correct, we don't want others to struggle unnecessarily. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

#21: Playing with Podcasts: Frustration to the Max

You must be kidding! I've just done an entire circuit amongst 4 different computers to try to listen to a podcast. Mine has NT so nothing "casts" on it; one doesn't have speakers & the headphones don't seem to work; one kept hiccuping; finally, I got one to actually work. I listened to a little of an ancient "Lone Ranger" radio show. (When I tried to listen to several different episodes of Classic Radio & Movie Network at, I was asked to make a donation & never got to hear anything else.) I watched a segment on Indian cooking in Ameena's kitchen. Since I don't own an MP3 player yet... This is way too much effort for too little result. Isn't this often simply an "talking blog" or in some instances, just a video clip?
If a customer wants info on this subject, I'd just refer them to Yahoo for their tour, "what the heck is a podcast?"
PS I'm editing this post after reading Stacey F.'s comments. I've always regarded her as my "techo-guru" & was almost speechless to read her slightly negative remarks re #21. I love the Zits commentary re podcasts.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

#20: My Man, Max, Is Back!

What fun! I played with YouTube, finding it fascinating. Out of the blue, Max Headroom came to m...m...m...mind. I loved that TV show. Even have a t-shirt & suspenders to prove it! I watched a bunch of the clips. Some were good; others I could leave. For library use: a few of these sure could add some to a bland presentation. B..b...b...bye for now.