UWM Libraries IT Interest Group Meeting Schedule

December 8, 2011 12PM-1PM, E281

January 18, 2012 10AM-11AM, E281

February 22, 2012, 9:30AM-10:30AM, E281

March 28, 2012, 10AM-11AM, E281

April 24, 2012, 10AM-11AM, E281

May 22, 2012, 11AM-12PM, E281

June 27, 2012, 10AM-11AM, Classroom B

Our topic this meeting was the UWM Libraries Digital Collections, Ann Hanlon (Head of Digital Collections) was nice enough to share an hour of her time with us and answer all of our questions about our in-house digital collections.  

Ann spoke to the group about the content management software she currently uses, OCLC’s ContentDM, which will be upgrading to version 6 in the near future.  The new version will allow the digital items to be tagged and commented upon by users.  The images will also be easier to download.  After she explained how the Digital Collections team completes their work Ann fielded questions from the group about digital collections.  Questions like “What is the process for choosing what will be a new digital collection?” to “How many employees do you have?” were answered.  If you have any questions for Digital Collections I suggest you ask Ann, as she is most knowledgeable and friendly concerning inquiries. 

Tim G. - then showed us 10minutemail.com—which gives you a ‘fake’ email address that will work for 10 minutes, or longer if you need it to.  This service is especially useful for websites that ‘make’ you sign up or into that you really don’t want to give your ‘real’ email address to.  Often, these websites will then ‘sell’ your email address to SPAM-related businesses. 

We then talked about our topic for December—Telecommuting! 

Leigh D. - began the meeting with a breakdown of the rest of this year’s IT Interest Group topics, which include the UWM Libraries digital collections, and collaboration-oriented tools.

Theresa B. - showed us Google Course Builder.In order to use this tool you do not need much technical experience but will need to be able to control your computer at the administrator level.  The philosophy behind this tool to be open and transparent, and allow users to see progression as it occurs.  We then watched the video Story Wars: The Future of Storytelling, made by Jonathan Sachs.  Taken from the aforelinked website, the film is about “The story wars are being waged all around us. They are the battles fought by companies, brands, causes, public figures, and individuals to be heard above the unprecedented noise of the post-broadcast, social-media-dominated era. Today, most brand messages and mass appeals for causes are drowned out before they even reach us. But a few consistently break through the din, using the only tool that has ever moved minds and changed behavior—great stories. With insights from mythology, advertising history, evolutionary biology, and psychology, viral storyteller and advertising expert Jonah Sachs explores how social media tools are driving a return to oral tradition, in which stories that matter—in short, those with timeless themes and values—rise above the fray. In today’s media environment, marketers have become the most potent storytellers and mythmakers, and they have to work more closely than ever with audiences to create deeper meaning and stronger partnerships in building a better world. Story Wars is a call to arms for business communicators to cast aside broken traditions and join a revolution to build the iconic brands of the future. And it offers proof that success in the post-broadcast era doesn’t come just from telling great stories, but from learning to live them.” 

Rebecca L. - showed us an App that can be used for downloading journal articles and general reference material management.  Bookends on Tap Lite is free and has presets like PubMed, PubMed Central, Web of Science, JSTOR, & NAXOS etc.  

Andy R. -  told us about the new CS6 Adobe Creative Suite, which is for sale from the UWM SoftwareShop for on-campus use.  CS5 (Creative Suite 5) an earilier version of the same software, is still available and able to be installed on UWM machines.  CS5 can be found at WISC Software (please note that CS5 is no longer available for purchase as of 11/27/12).  Andy says to keep CS5 if you already have it installed on your machine, as it will be prohibitively expensive to buy the new licensing requirements needed for CS6 as we do not get any discount.  Alternatives to CS6 are Google Drawing (part of Google Drive) and Star Office, which all of the computers in campus labs already have installed on them.

Tim G. - also mentioned the 23 Things Project idea, which has been “borrowed” by numerous entities.  The 23 Things idea is to learn new 2.0 web-related technologies in the order they are listed; it is suggested to learn a new technology each week.

Our theme this month was eBooks.

Kristin W. - went over the Frequently Asked Questions for eBooks, which is located within the UWM Libraries eBooks LibGuide.  This LibGuide was first the project of Mary B., then Lori worked on it, and now Kristin is the guides primary administrator.  The guide is based of John Hopkins’ with its primary intention being to provide support for the search and access of eBooks.  Also discussed was the fact that if a person is ‘off-campus’ and chooses ‘guest’ authentication  they are unable to view some eBooks.  eBooks are also not currently within our ‘Citation Linker’ tool.  

Beth K. - had a good suggestion that we could link to the public library/Overdrive for new novels etc. 

Also discussed was the newish year-long pilot program via D2L where some students have free access to eTexts via the D2L course software.

Rebecca L. showed us the iPhone/iPad only phone app The Sonnets by William Shakespeare.  This app is made by Touch Press and features videos of actors and actresses reading all 154 of Shakespeare’s sonnets.  As the actor reads the sonnet the text of the sonnet appears and each line is highlighted below the video of the actor.  The app costs $13.99 and some of the sonnets are view-able via the website. 

Rebecca also showed us the first video ever recorded with simultaneous sound, which is located within archive.org.  The link to the actual video, known s The Dickson Experimental Sound Film is: https://archive.org/details/dicksonfilmtwo.  The sound element of this film was lost for some time and has recently been added to archive.org.

Leigh D. showed us NetGalley which “delivers secure, digital galleys to professional readers. If you are a reviewer, blogger, journalist, librarian, bookseller, educator, or in the media, you can use NetGalley for FREE to read and request titles before they are published.”  Basically, librarians can sign up and read and review books before they are released to the general public.  The content is delivered digitally via reader devices like the Kindle or Nook—occasionally a physical copy of the book may be substituted for the electronic version.  Readers are not obligated to finish reading any of the books or to write a review—but the publishers want the readers to write and share their reviews of the books.  New publishers are frequently being added to NetGalley.  Leigh does caution that once you sign up for the service you will receive numerous emails each day from NetGalley. 

Leigh also showed us the website SimplyNoise which creates white, pink or brown noise to help users concentrate or drown out other sounds.  Kathy B. uses this website often, especially during our construction periods.  SimplyNoise also has a sleep timer option—which is probably best used for at-home listening :)

Our meeting was relatively short this month and we may cancel our August meeting due to vacations and the start of the Fall semester rapidly approaching.  If any one has any ideas for a theme for a future meeting please let Sarah K. or Leigh D. know, we are more than happy to accept suggestions and ideas!  Additionally, here is the link to Madison’s IT Interest group—which inspired Leigh to start a group at UWM: http://liliit.blogspot.com/

All things Google

Theresa B: showed us Power Searching with Google a new course being offered by Google which helps users to become more effective searchers.  She then demo’d the Google Chrome browser, which she says (and I agree) works better than Mozilla Firefox or Microsoft Internet Explorer.  Theresa also showed us the Google + account, which she uses because her Facebook account was getting to “junked up.”  With Google + a user can put their Google + friends  into different circles which creates a semblance of organization within friends lists.  Google + also has a Hangouts option, which is a video chat service similar to Skype.  Google + was popular upon its release but many users have abandoned their accounts due to privacy and visibility issues.

We also saw how images can be searched within Google.  For example, if you download a picture of a flower or a famous building etc and then go to a Google Images search and click the camera button on the right side of the search bar and then upload the picture (or enter in the picture’s URL); Google will tell you what kind of flower is in the picture or the name of the monument.  Google Goggles is the mobile (cell phone etc) interface for this type of search.  

Kate G.: showed us how to use Google Scholar Citations.  You can change the language of the articles, browse the top 100 citations and search for specific journals.  Google Scholar Citations is helpful for individuals who are trying to figure which journals in their field are the best or where to publish within their field.  There is also a helpful function called “my citations” where a user can browse their ow citations or calculate them when their tenure period comes around.  Within this program users can search for their own citations or other authors once they have created a profile.  The default setting for any citations added to a user profile is “private”—so if you want others to be able to “see” your work you must make them “public.”

Theresa B.: then showed us Google’s official Blog and Google’s unofficial blog.  The unofficial blog posts more often then the official blog.  These blogs offer tips and updates regarding Google’s services and products.

Rebecca L.: showed the group Google Analytics, which the Music Library uses to keep track of how their website is being used.  It can show the number of visits to a webpage, the visitor’s operating system, and browser used to view the page.  You can look at statistics by the day, week, month and so on.  Additionally you can tell how long a visitor stayed on each page within the web page and how often they visited the page and what links they clicked.  Rebecca talked to Andy Ritter to get set up with this service and the UWM Library Music web page.

Beth K.: showed how to use Google Translate—which translate text or webpages into and from a variety of languages. 

Kristin W.: showed how to find free, Creative Commons licensed , videos etc via Google’s advanced search option.  Once in the advanced search mode you can add the filter under the “Usage Rights” area “free to use, share, or modify” to your list of results.  Kristin uses this to find previously made videos and so on to use within LibGuides and other resources.

Kate G.: showed us the Google service Picasa which is a picture sharing program. Picasa can be used online or you can download it to use it as a photo editor as well.  You are able to set up albums of photos, which can be commented on, and share them with you you please.  Photos can be made public or kept private with only select individuals granted access.  You can also order physical prints of photos directly from Picasa.  Pictures are searchable by tags, location and so on.

This meeting was iPad themed.  The UWM Libraries Media & Reserve Department recently acquired 10 second generation iPads to circulate to UWM students via Ed Tech money.

Brandon S. - explained the borrowing program which allows students to check out the iPads for 2 days at a time.  At the time of the meeting there were 4 paid apps installed on the iPads: the iWork suite which includes Pages - a word processor, Keynote - a presentation maker, and Numbers - a spreadsheet program and iMovie - a video production tool.  Additional free apps installed on the iPads include: Evernote - an organizational tool, Prezi Viewer - a presentation viewer, Dragon Dictation - a voice recognition tool, NetFlix - allows you to stream movies etc from your personal NetFlix account, Skype - an online video chat program, Facetime - Apple’s version of Skype for other Apple users, YouTube, and the reader apps: Kindle iBooks, & Google Books.

Brandon then explained that the iPads were “locked down” so that users will not be bale to download their own apps or transfer content from their own iTunes library to the device. Brandon can manage all of the devices via the Mac Mini computer and wirelessly via the iCloud , which hedemonstrated by using the Find My iPhone app and locked down one of the iPads being used in the room.  Users will be unable to use the Email icon because of the iPad settings.  Students will have to use the Dropbox function to store and retrieve documents on the iPad.

Suggestions were then taken from attendees as to what they would like to see on the iPads.  Some were: Pandora, Naxos Music, & EBSCOhost.

Leigh D. - showed us disconnect, which Michael P. from systems originally emailed us about.Disconnect helps Internet users control and understand what information about them is shared on the Internet.  disconnect is a browser add-on for Firefox, Chrome and Safari that ends tracking by third parties and search engines.  We also watched the video for Collusion for Chrome.  Collusion shows the user which companies are tracking your information when you visit specific websites.

Sarah K. - showed Scoop.it! which allows users to create a “magazine-like” page that aggregates stories from various online sources that are related to the topics chosen by the creator of the “magazine.”  There is a free version which allows the user to aggregate articles from up to 5 topics and two separate paying levels, which allow the user to add more topics and to track analytics. There is also an education version for about $7 per month, which allows up to 20 topics and allows up to 30 people to contribute to the “magazine.” 

Rebecca L. - showed a similar free service called Zite , which originally was only for Apple devices but can now be used on Android devices as well.  Zite allows users to create a “personalized magazine” that grabs stories form various online places, including blogs, according to the interests of the user.  Zite also has categories the user can choose from to help it decide which stories it will display.

Rebecca also showed us the website baroque.me while she retrieved a bit of information from her office.  Baroque.me is a website that “visualizes the first Prelude from Bach’s Cello Suites.” Meaning that there are “eight strings, as the Prelude’s natural phrasing is in groups of eight notes. The orbiting nodes pluck the strings, like a rotating music box. You can also grab and throw the nodes off track, and watch the system slowly regain its rhythm.”  Its best understood by just visiting the website though!!!

She then showed us the website caniuse.com which shows users if their codes are supported by various internet browsers.  For example, will Internet Explorer show a certain effect or SVG filter used within CSS?  This website would be most useful for individuals who are creating websites and unsure of if their content is displaying (or ever will display) properly on various internet browsers.  

Then as a group we discussed the projector that was left in the room from the previous nights class.  The “projector” is similar to this model and can be used to project images onto a screen—for example the pictures from a children’s book.  Theresa B. as requested that the library purchase a machine similar to this for the library to use in various capacities.

Brandon S. - then talked about the Media & Reserve libraries new iPad borrowing program, which is still in the works.  Essentially, the department is trying to decide which Apps to put on the devices and would appreciate any input from library staff.  The RIS department has had two iPads for some time now and are interested in how the Media & Reserve department will be managing all of the iPads (10).  I imagine in the future the two departments may have some overlap regarding these devices.  The iPads will only be circulated to students because of the way we are funding the program with EdTech money.  Another detail to think about is the version history of Apps—as new versions are released at times Apps will gain and lose functionality.  

Leigh D., Beth T., & Aaron D. - all attended WAAL last weekk and spoke about a session they attended called “IPads, Kindles and Nooks Oh My! How We Beat the Flying Monkeys and the Poppy Field To Integrate E-Readers Into Our Services and Resources.”  Apparently the Kindles and Nooks didn’t circulate as well as the iPads and the people at MATC were more focused on rolling the program out than on the planning process and therefore didn’t purchase MultiDock like we have for our iPad program.  The MultiDock will help the UWM Library manage the iPads in a more streamlined way. 

The meeting ended with Leigh telling the group about a few upcoming sessions we are in the process of planning fro the group.  We will have Kristin W. speak to use about eBooks and all of the details surrounding them.  Theresa B.  will also be speaking to the group about Google and all of the things it currently does. 

After reviewing our ground rules the meeting went as follows:

Beth K. - showed us Jing which is imaging software which ILL uses to create videos, GIFs and JPEGs to teach library patrons how to locate their requested articles using the UWM Libraries OPAC.  Once Jing is installed and Sun icon appears at the top of your open page or window.  This sun is the easy to use interface for Jiing and allows you to easily begin recording.  Beth showed us how to use the video capturing component of the software by searching for a JAMA article via the UWM Libraries OPAC.  When using the still picture option the user can place boxes aroung important items or highlight them. Videos can be shared or saved (indefinetly??), depending upon the subscription related to Jing.  For example the free subscription allows for 2GB of storgae and 2GB of monthly bandwidth.  The paid version ($10) allows for 25GB of storage and 200GB of bandwidth.

Rebecca L. - showed some add-ons for web browsers.  Specifically VideoDownloadHelper   which can allow users to download Flash-format videos to their computers.  Works well with YouTube and with audio files as well.  However, Flash-format for videos will become obsolete when HTML5 is fully recognized everywhere.

Sarah K. - showed the add-on Adblock Plus which blocks advertisements on webpages, like banners and pop up windows.  Lisa W. downloaded it and has said that it “changed her life.”  It changed mine too!!!  Also shown briefly were some technology based blogs which I will list here without descriptions: LifeHacker, Gizmodo, ZDNet, SlashDot, & engadget.

Brandon S. - wanted to show Cloud On, but the E281 computer does not have the needed HDMI connectivity.  But after brainstroming figured out that in the future we could always “check out” one of the TVs from the Learning Commons and connect it to an iPad.  Cloud On is a program that allows users to edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents via their iPads.  This program streams over the Internet, so its does take up a considerable amount of bandwidth to operate.

Leigh D.  - showed us TagWhat, which is “a mobile encyclopedia of where you are.” This app informs the user where they are in the world and what is around them using GPS.  Leigh is unsure of where the information provided by this app is coming from—so doesn’t trust it completely.   Updated 4/27/12 we, meaning the blog, received a message from TagWhat, here it is in its entirety:  "Saw your post mentioning Tagwhat, expressing concern about the reliability of information in the app.  Content comes to us from a wide range of sources from users’ blogs to universities, tourism groups, digital archives at media companies, and wikipedia.  The purpose is to provide a broad range of content.  For additional credibility, some publishers license branded channels in the app (like CNN would buy a branded channel from a cable service.)  The rest of the content found in our house channels is attributed to the publisher.  The purpose is not to be a fact-based tool but a place-based storytelling medium.  Some content is true whereas other content is entirely fictional.  Like Tumblr, you choose which entries are educational, interesting, or entertaining, and turn off the rest.  We would love for you to contribute to Tagwhat as we expand our network of location-based content as a new sort of tour guide available worldwide.  Best regards." Makes me happy that an outside entity read our blog!  Maybe we should start contributing to TagWhat!

Rebecca L. - then showed us the app TourWrist, which allows users to take 3D tours of a major tourist destinations.  Users can begin at a map level and then choose their tout destination.

Leigh D. - then briefly talked about Pinterest, which is an online “pin” board where users can pin webpages or photos they like to their own personal boards and then share with other “pinners” ie Pinterest users. It seems that the only way to access this service is by signing up through Facebook, which Sarah K. did not want to do, even though she has a Pinterest account (which remains unused).  The group discussed Pinterest and leaned toward the opinion that it wasn’t the most productive or useful program available online, but like Facebook, has social media implications and possible merit.

Leigh D. using an article found on C-NET "Four Matchmaking Services for E-Book Borrowing and Lending" briefly touched on a few services available to e-reader users for borrowing e-books out to one another.  Details can be disocvered by reading the article linked above.

Janet P. asked if we could go over the internet browser Google Chrome at our next meeting.  We will try to get this browser installed on the computer in E281 so we can demonstrate via the projector.

Rebecca L.  talked about her smartphone the LG LS670 (it should be noted that I am not sure if the previous link is to the correct phone, although it is similar if not exactly the same).  She likes how easy it is to take pictures and email to herself through the phone; her Gmail account works well with the phone as well. Rebecca mentioned the APPs: Colornote; Coolreader; Dropbox; TweetCaster; Viber; Shazam; and Naxos Music Library. She says that she manly uses the “smart” part of the phone for internet browsing and Twitter.

Janet P. also talked about her phone which is also an Android phone—an “older” Samsung Galaxy model (again, I do not know if the link is to the exact phone model). She says she has to charge her phone daily and has three separate email accounts on the phone: her UWM, Gmail, and an older ExecPC account. Janet also said that it was easy to take photos and to upload them onto Facebook from her phone. Janet mentioned the APPs: GasBuddy; Rotten Tomatoes; Twitter; and UWM Mobile

Brandon S. brought up the point that Android has not done a good job vetting the “real” APPs from the malicious apps.  Meaning that some, not all,Android APPs are actually viruses and more oversight needs to be done on Android’s behalf. Apple apparently has a much more strict review process when accepting new APPs.  He also brought up the new Windows phones which are being released.

Rebecca L. showed us the new Music Library webpage.  Notable changes/improvements are: increased mobile device usability; preset searches and formats are available; databases are already proxied (for the most part); numerous help guides; and the ability to search/browse by genre and to sort by author or title. The Music Library is currently working on LibGuides for study purposes.

Sarah K. showed the eBook management program Calibre. This free program allows the user to convert eBooks into different formats.  Each eBook reader device seems to use a different eBook format so this program is helpful if you gave a library of titles on your personal computer but then want to move them to an eReader device etc. Calibre also can allow you to access your eBooks stored within its library remotely from any internet-connected device.

Leigh D. gave a demonstration on how to locate eBooks within the UWM Libraries OPAC.  To search for an electronic book the user must use the “advanced” OPAC search interface and choose “eBook Collection” under the “Location” drop-down menu.  We also found that using this limiter brought up the music collection as well—for unknown reasons.  Apparently, the “Electronic Resources” link has disappeared as well.  Which puzzled some of our attendees…….

Brandon S. and Sarah K. had a friendly “debate” over the merits and pitfalls of the Apple iPad vs. the Amazon Kindle Fire.  I will post the details of this debate in a separate post—as it was a lengthy discussion!