Monday, May 24, 2010

Three years later...

...and much has changed. Then again, much hasn't. At the beginning of this new year and new decade, I decided to live a more authentic life. But first, there's the matter of a VERY IMPORTANT addition to our family: Willow Kathryn Nichols, born to JP and Marianne on October 7, 2009. She is truly a bundle of joy, as Cal would say.

Little did I know that living a "more authentic life" would bring about a redefined primary relationship for Dan and me. We have been living in separate spaces since mid-January and my life has vastly improved since. No more fights! No more drama! It's amazing. I have more energy for gardening, get up much earlier, and even arrive at work early...consistently.

At the time of our new arrangement, I was awash with feelings of fear. Would I survive? It became clearer and clearer that I would not just survive, I would thrive. At times I knew God was very near, reassuring me with unbounded love and confidence, for which I am forever grateful. My emotional strength has grown, and the loving feelings for Dan have returned with this much needed space. Before the change I often despised myself for bitter thoughts and unkind words - all that is GONE GONE GONE....hallelujah.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Where did Blogspot go?

What happened? Why doesn't anyone say something, like "your blog site has changed, for these reasons, and here's how it affects you the user,etc." But no, it just changes with no comment, no explanation, no _____ing MANNERS! Well, at least that explains why I couldn't post a Youtube video I liked onto my blog - because the server I thought it had didn't EXIST any more.

OK, I've vented.

Since the last session, I have completed 23 things...I think. There was the brick wall or two. I had fun with pocasts, especially people's trained animals. The Gutenberg project was pretty impressive, especially for the vast array of languages available. It was good having wikipedia links for authors, and I liked the option for "human-read" which makes me wonder who'd want to hear an entire book read by a computerized voice? Some of the authors listed have been dead a long time, so this resource might be useful for literature research, say for a doctorale thesis.

Overall, I'm glad I did 23 Things, but like running a marathon or doing other good-for-you things, I'M SURE GLAD TO BE DONE. If you read any other posts here, you know it was often frustrating. It will be interesting to see which of these many gimmicky things will survive the test of scrutiny and become established parts of our 21st century computer culture. Then we can say, "Oh yeah, that was just getting started back in '07 when we did 23 Things."

I just hope some manners survive.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Further exploration of WWW possibilities

Today has been quite informative, and I have run headlong into the generation gap. More about that later. I listed "Favorite ways to renew" as my sandbox entry - no problems there. Then I checked out Googledocs. and created a file. Talked with my husband about how he uses this tool in his work, and about how Google might drive Microsoft into oblivion by making these things so user friendly and free. Tried to send the document to this blog, but there was no option for Blogspot as a host and I couldn't figure out what they needed to send it to a unique site.

Then I proceeded to the Web 2.0 awards and encountered the generation gap, using a "Questions and advice" category winner called say-so. One question near the top of the page put out for others' advice was "Do you fart in public?" Enough said.

I also explored the podcast category because I've heard some things about them, using That was OK, but it made me wonder if record (that dates me right there) stores can stay in business since people can listen to clips of music, then download their choice (even as a ringtone on their phone!) without ever leaving the house. No wonder Americans are becoming overweight, with so little motivation to get outside.

I also sneaked a peek at Youtube since I've been hearing about that as well, and then I saw that it is Thing #20, so I'm getting ahead.

Wiki session

That was better...after reviewing my prior postings, I realize how resistant I've been to this 23 Things project. Usually I'm pretty upbeat and enjoy the challenge, but thus far grousing has been the predominant mode. After yet another hiatus, I am more positive and found the Wiki exercise interesting, and well...almost fun. The Princeton Book Lovers wiki introduced me to a yet-unheard-of genre: CHIC LIT! Sounds like a chewing gum brand. The concept is good on this and a couple other wikis I perused, that anyone can contribute a book review. I like the egalitarian aspect of them, and they offer libraries the opportunity make links available to patrons on many levels. For example, if a person looks up pets, there are local links on related subjects as well as world wide links.

But then I wonder, what if an enterprising dog groomer posts her business there? How does that fit with the library's neutral stance on advertising or promotion of specific businesses? Would there have to be a library wiki watchdog? That could get complicated.

Another thing I wonder about is making Wikis vibrant and interesting enough that people keep coming back. Humans are creatures of habit, and we generally take a while to get something into our everyday frame of reference. I don't think wikis have made it there yet, or at least not judging from the one at Princeton...not many reviews posted, and quite some time since the last update.

An elderly friend mentioned to me the other day that she'd like to restart a round robin letter she used to share with her sisters. Wikis seem like the perfect forum for this!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

The future of libraries

Dr. Wendy Schultz is clueless. Another armchair librarian speculating about the future of libraries, when she likely hasn't actually helped a real live patron in decades...the reality is that libraries have become a haven for homeless street people and others who cannot afford a computer of their own....not brandy-drinking, cigar-smoking dilettantes. And frankly, I'm glad that's how our role in the community has evolved, because there aren't many so-called public places where they are welcome any more.

The Iceberg article hit the nail on the head, in my opinion. Its author suggested that librarians need to take a more humble approach to make libraries a place people want to be in the future. Historically we've portrayed ourselves as the lofty keepers of society's information resources, requiring that consumers come to us on our turf for the passkey, but guess what! Now any person of average intelligence or more can find it on their own, so who needs us? Just look at the stereotypes of librarians in the movies - they really show how much we need to improve our image in the public eye.

Technorati maze

This is a wonderful concept, making the blogworld a support group about issues near to our hearts...but yet again, I've lost the thread for putting tags on my blog. When I registered, the opportunity for listing tags appeared, and then somehow I wandered away without confirming the list, and I've spent an hour trying to resurrect it! However, it was fun searching for blog postings with tags that interest me, and I'll try this again later for adding tags to my blog.