Reflections on the PLN

 

Now that the semester is drawing to a close, I’ve been reflecting on the tools we have incorporated into our PLNs.

Twitter

I had a Twitter account before this class but I never used it, nor did I really know how. I am a convert! I follow several professional organizations, groups, and individuals. I feel like Twitter helps me stay abreast of the current happenings, the buzz at the moment whatever that may be. While it is true that sometimes several days may pass without a glance at the feed of tweets, I scan through it at least twice a week. I always learn at least one new thing and I frequently see a job announcement of interest:)

I like being able to direct message people and to quote re-tweets in order to share something of relevance to others. My one peeve with Twitter is the abundance of ads, some of which include images or videos that I really don’t care to see or are even borderline offensive. Sure, I can swoop right by them, but you know what happens? When I open up Twitter on my phone, it is always centered on one of these ads. ALWAYS. I have to be ready to swish fast! Does this happen to any of you? Anyone know of a way to stop it? I should check out Twitter settings and settings on my iPhone…..

Blogs 

I have really enjoyed blogging about my experiences in  this class and tying in other classes, my internship, and past work experiences. My life feels wholly documented:) This is true since there is nothing else to my life right now but school and work! Ha! But that is about to change soon:)

Feedly

Following other people’s blogs has been harder than I thought. Even though the idea of tweeting to announce you have a new blog post is a good one, I rarely used this portal into peoples’ blogs because when I’m on Twitter I’m in a different mode of reading/scanning. I started directly following some fellow students’ blogs on WordPress and they show up in my Reader when I open WordPress so it has been easy to keep up with the posts by those folks. But I’ve complained before that I don’t think the blog platforms play well together, and I still feel that way. Feedly does help with keeping abreast of others’ blogs regardless of their home site. The beef I have with Feedly is that it doesn’t accurately reflect what I have read if I open it on a different device. I like to be able to go on to Feedly on my phone and on my laptop whenever I have the inclination and time. But it will show posts as being unread when I have indeed read them on another device. Ergh.

Lastly, I think the PLN has been very valuable in making connections with ya’ll. This felt more like a real-life class where I get to know my classmates than many of my other classes. I look forward to “following you” into your LIS careers! And you never know how we might be able to continue to help one another or where we might meet:)

huddle

Image source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Manzanar_Relocation_Center,_Manzanar,_California._Baseball_players_in_a_huddle._This_game_is_very_._._._-_NARA_-_538066.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

Reflections on the PLN

So many digital repository platforms!

So many digital repositories!“… was as a recent & great blog post by Camille. I’ve been thinking about So many different digital repository platforms! How do you choose? It is important to take your time and research the pros and cons of different systems and find out what users of those systems have to say about them.  In a previous post, I compared Omeka and CONTENTdm.  I have gained some experience in a 3rd repository this semester- Greenstone. Dr. MacCall mentioned it last class. He categorized it in the high level of repositories, I believe – those that have the most capabilities. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to witness or utilize those capabilities. I had to do my class project with Greenstone on a Mac and it just is not a very compatible piece of software on Macs. In fact, it is pretty much entirely ill-suited to Macs and built with PCs in mind. That is something to really research and consider when you are trying to choose a platform. While I am not able to thoroughly critique it, I will mention a couple things I noticed in Greenstone that enhance streamlining and standardization:

  • It is very easy to upload items, whether they are text, html, or image files. You just drag and drop, and you can do that with your entire batch, then wammo, they are uploaded!
  • You still have to enter metadata for each item at a time in a form, like Omeka, but Greenstone saves every previous entry you made in each field and it provides them for you to select for any successive entries. Sort of like a built-in Simple Vocab plugin being created as you index.
  • You have the capability to access and alter code very easily to customize your interface. I believe you can do this with Omeka but it more often entails using an existing plugin or writing a plugin. And with CONTENTdm, you can alter code only if your institution is hosting the instance. If you are on hosted instance, you can do a some amount of customizing through the use of WYSIWIGs. I suspect you have much more control, and therefore more customizability, in Greenstone (at least on PCs:).

So, another big consideration is matching the software to the staff who will be using it, or vice versa. What are their skills? Do they know coding? Can you, do you want to hire a specially skilled person for managing the system?  And many more questions…………

So many digital repository platforms!