Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Thing #6 - Add on

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Well, here at last is a kind of a "mash-up". It criminal the way I had to pay for it. but I got it done.  When you click on Play, you will be transferred to a larger picture of the post card - with music.  When you click on each picture it will become larger and be in color

These are pictures from my trip to Atlanta  in 2009 for the National Book Club Conference.  I met Susan Taylor, former editor of Essence Magazine, Dr. Cornell West author of RACE MATTER and DEMOCRACY MATTERS.  Dr. West currently teaches at Princeton University.  I met 80 year old J. California Cooper, who wrote LIFE IS SHORT BY WIDE.  I also met many people from book clubs around the United States it was a wonderful trip.  I learned a lot.

Thing #23 - My Thoughts on 23 Things

Wow!  What a ride!  I have thoroughly enjoyed doing "23 Things".  I'm sure there were other times in my life when I was just as frustrated, angry, overwhelmed, truly amazed, enraptured, and/or awestruck but I can't remember when.  I've learned so much about programs and tools that I can use in my personal and professional life.  Instead of my old routine of taking it for granted that I don't have time to blog or learn about avatars, I have become a blogger with an avatar and so much more.  This will make a big change in my life.

The most exciting programs I learned about were the creation of avatars, creating my own blog, and learning about and gaining access to thousands of photographs that I can use at will.  In creating my blog I learned how to connect and share information with other blogs and sites.  I've also learned how to "follow" others blogs and I posted comments that a published blog page, ROOTS, actually printed.  Imagine!  But the cherry on the cake came when a total stranger became a follower of my blog.

I have been a member of a couple of book clubs for years.  Creating a blog about book clubs that all my book club buddies and blog followers could access and contribute to is now possible with what I've learned.  For the longest time, I've visited web sites that had little pictures and buttons that were a mystery to me.  Now I know what they are and can add them to my blog to link followers to other sites, instantly.  It will probably take all my will power not to let this blogging business take over my life.  I feel like I could do this for a living now, and I haven't completely learned all the "gadgets" yet. 

Fortunately, I had the time to struggle with the difficult parts of this learning process.  If I had not had the literally hours to study each new "thing", I would never have learned as much as I did.   Prior to "23 Things", I knew only the basics about PCs, the Web, E-mail and data entry.  The "23 Things" process teaches by immersion.  You just get tossed in and have to sink or swim.  In my struggle to swim (figure out how to do this thing or that) hours passed.  Just registering to become a member of all those sites, took up boat-loads of time.  A different password and account had to be developed for each one, not to mention birth dates.  I think this last was the worst of it.  There wasn't sufficient warning in the beginning that all these programs could only be accessed when the participant revealed their birth date, an invasion of privacy to say the lest.

To be sure, if another "23 Things" kind of program came along, I would jump right on it.  The painful parts are worth enduring.  Hopefully in the future "Things" training, a better way will be found for students to access the various sites to learn just the basics without having to register.  At this writing, I have twenty or so accounts that need to be deleted since they were opened with my County (work) e-mail.    As for promoting the program to new students, I would entice them by promising that they will be able to use any gadget ("Click-on") they see on a web screen, after doing the program.  All things considered, however, I'm glad I got the chance to do this.  I learned a lot.  Thanks!

GrandmaDeeDee and Mini-me

Monday, July 26, 2010

Thing #22 - E-books, audiobooks, Guttenberg

After reading the Thing #22 material, I set out to experience e-books, audio books, or downloading books onto my computer on blank CD's.  After struggling for quite some time, I discovered that my computer wasn't equipped to allow me to download onto my PC the program that would allow me to download a book to read.  I needed Administration permission to do that.

PROJECT GUTENBERG to the rescue.  Here was a site that allowed me to download all the books in the world that have an expired copyright.  I can simply search their library, find a good book (Hemingway and the like), then click and the book is right their on my home computer screen for me to read.  You try it.  Just click kon the words Project Guttenberg above.  Well, I did and searched and found Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.  Now I can read it on my computer whenever I want to by clicking on the title of the book above.  You try it.  It's all free, but the Gutenberg people would appreciate a donation if you can manage one.  How wonderful . . . and I found an old Disney picture from the movie on flickr! 

Friday, July 23, 2010


First Female Avatar
Originally uploaded by Goshua Lament
A while ago I set out to create a podcast. Podcasts are like short films or videos on a chosen topic that you can subscribe to and receive on a regular basis on your PC. I think it was intended for IPods initially and then someone found a way to get PC's to receive them. Well, every link that 23 Things offered to get acquainted with the medium failed - no longer available - "Error" messages.

After much frustration, I gave up and went to list of 43 Things at the bottom to find something to substitute for podcasts. I chose MY SPACE - how trendy is that - joined up and learned that there might be a way to create an avatar (cartoon version of yourself to represent you online) if I joined TWITTER. So, I did, and then couldn't get a connection for the Avatar maker to work. "Coming to FACE BOOK in August” is all it said.
So I went back and began setting up MY SPACE page and information, and since I'd joined TWITTER too, (trendy, trendy) I began to update my TWITTER PAGE, as well. While there I clicked on my favorite TV News shows to get Tweets from (I selected my "follows" like the Grace Maddow show, etc., etc.).

Before giving myself a much needed rest, it occurred to me that I might be able to find an online program that created avatars if I tried Google, so I did. I found avatar sites that allowed me to dress or role model in a fantasy world but not sites to help me create my avatar for other uses. Anyway, if you want to know what an avatar looks like, please see "First Female Avatar" above from Flickr.

My Space and Twitter are the new Internet craze where people share ideas and meet people. To protect their identity, somewhat, many people use an avatar picture (created to look like your self) in place of a real photo of themselves. I'll keep trying on the avatar thing.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Thing #20 - The You Tube Experience

YOUTUBE is a site where you can watch videos other people posted or post your own videos for other people to see.  With an account you can save a share your favorite YOUTUBE videos with friends who do the same.  An example of a YOUTUBE video is The Giant Spider in the Kitchen video.  Click on the title and watch.  It's hilarious!

Since anyone who accesses the World Wide Web (www) can post and watch videos, YOUTUBE has gained world wide attention and brought people together across oceans, continents and cultures to see, hear and, perchance, to understand each other better.  This last is quite an achievement.  The Noble Prize organization is planning to award YOUTUBE  the prestigious Peace Prize for its accomplishment.  Small wonder when you watch a YOUTUBE video like this one:  Watch it and feel all right.

I definitely subscribed YOUTUBE to my GOOGLE READER account.  There is always something going on there.  What a relief to be able to go to one place and just "click" to see what's new on YOUTUBE.

By the way, I learned for Annette Klause the way to embed a YouTube movie into my blog.  I go to UTube, find the movie and look (on the right?) for the "embed" symbol.  Click on that and copy the html code that appears (it's already highlighted).  Then go to the "edit" version of the blog date you want the movie embedded in - to the exact spot - then click on "edit HTML" which should be above the blog edit square (over the quote symbol).  Find the place in the html that pops up, insert the html taken from the UTube page and save.  Hit publish post and the movie is embedded in the blog - as you  can see above.

Thing #19 - LULU - WOW!

Originally uploaded by ognipensierovo
Of all the web sites about books, I think LULU.COM has got to be the mother ship of all book web sites. Think about anything in the world that you can do that involves a book and you can do it on LULU.

This site recommends books to read, sells books, publishes books, provides ghost writers, binds books, designs book covers, helps you create picture books and calendars, novels and tomes.

Even if you write a book and want someone to critique it, LULU can do that too, not to mention market it and publish it for as little as $599.00. Don't take my word for it. See for yourself http://www.lulu.com/  and feast your eyes.  I found it on http://www.seomoz.org/web2.0/short , a site that collects the highest rated web sites for people who have little time to just cruse the web looking for what's out there.  I also discovered BookMooch, a site that allows you to trade books, and StumbleUpon, a site that goes out and hunts up sites that you might like to see, but nothing rivals LULU.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Thing #18 - Zoho Web based "Word"

This is my second day working with Zoho. And it's the second time I spent a log of time trying to get what I wrote transferred to my blog. I'm sure there a way to get it done, but I haven't been able to achieve it. This business of clearing out without naming my documents is starting to get on my nerves. I suppose I'm not saving them.

The value of this site is that it allows me to create a document and do personal composing without using the County's "word" or my "word" on my home PC or sending documents back and forth in e-mails to finish working on them. Where ever I am, I can just log on to Zoho and my document is there, ready for me to work on it.

For now I guess I can cut and past this in my blog.  The ZOHO Word address is