web 2.0

OU Library iGoogle Gadgets

Posted on September 11, 2008. Filed under: google, library 2.0, technology, web 2.0 |

The OU Library’s Website Personalisation Project is experimenting with the use of web services (including gadgets) to provide content to Library customers. The gadgets are currently available within Library Toolbox, which is where we showcase new technologies that we are working on and invite feedback on them.

Below is the list of gadgets that we plan to implement using the NetVibes Universal Widget Application (in addition to the Library catalogue search and the new books list gadgets that are currently available). The Netvibes UWA enables you to write a widget once and run it anywhere, e.g. iGoogle/Pageflakes/Netvibes/Facebook, Vista etc. Is anyone else using this application to create Library widgets? Please share your thoughts on it.

  • ORO Search
  • OneStop Search
  • eJournals Search
  • Search boxes for key databases
  • Featured links (as per the links box on the Library homepage)
  • “My record” (similar in format to the Facebook iGoogle gadget; to enable people to see how many books they have out, how many requests pending and how many items are available for them to collect. Tabs for other Library services e.g. catalogue search, New books, etc)
  • RSS feed for each OU Library blog
  • New books (individual rss)
  • Library news (rss)
  • Library events (rss)
  • Library seminars (rss)
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Library related apps in iGoogle

Posted on September 11, 2008. Filed under: google, library 2.0, web 2.0 | Tags: , , , |

On the 6th March 2008 I did a quick search on “library” within iGoogle’s apps (via ‘Add Stuff’) and found various truly Library related apps (as opposed to things with library in the title that are nothing to do with ‘libraries’), which I categorised as per the below.  This (and other research) has informed the development of a list of Library-related gadgets that we plan to implement using the NetVibes UWA.


  • ILIM Library (India)
  • Pearland Junior High South Library
  • Penn State Life Sciences Library
  • The Library Channel
  • Library stuff (Steven M. Cohen)
  • Librarian.net (Jessamyn West)
  • Unshelved (Library Comic strip/blog)
  • The Shifted Librarian (Jenny Levine)

Children’s Books

Custom Search engines
These are iGoogle api’s that have been configured as search-engines. 6 in total.

  • Academic Libraries search (searches 62 college and university library sites)
  • ALA Best of Free Reference (Web sites included annual lists issued by the “ALA MARS Best of Free Reference Web Sites Committee” to recognize outstanding reference sites on the World Wide Web.)
  • Clark Memorial Library
  • The Librarians Book revoogle (searches book reviews on library and librarian websites)
  • Librarians e-library (Selected resources on Libraries and Librarianship from the American Library Association (ALA) Library and a growing list of volunteers.)



  • NY Public Library Events

Google Scholar

  • UNLV Libraries Google Scholar


  • Combined Library Job postings – lisjobs.com and library job postings on the internet.


  • D-Lib Magazine

Library catalogues

46 in total. 6 UK (university, plus the British Library); the rest appear to all be US based (mix of university/college/high school and public libraries), apart from Worldcat, and 2 Australian Libraries. Most provide a catalogue search only; a few provide a link to ‘my account’ or similar; a few provide an institutional repository search and/or a federated search box e.g. Metalib and/or links to databases/e resources/library blog/web chat service).

Database searches

15 separate api’s in total. Some were just a list of links to databases rather than a search box.

  • Amador Valley Library Online Databases (list of links)
  • The British Library (BL webpages, collect Britain, catalogue, Journal Articles)
  • Canisius Library (Jstor)
  • CLL Legal Research Engine (Easy access to authoritative legal research guides on every subject. Brought to you by Cornell Law Library.) (Inoperable)
  • DLP Library article search (Database links)
  • Foothill High School Library (list of links to dbases)
  • Gordon Library (Quick find (federated search), and links to: catalogue, databases & eresources, instant answers webchat)
  • Gumberg Library (Ebsco)
  • Gumberg Library (Proquest)
  • Gumberg Library (Journal Finder – metalib)
  • University of Kansas (eJournals – serials solutions)
  • Loughborough Uni Library (catalogue, insititutional repository, and metalib)
  • National Science Digital Library
  • Pleasanton Public Library Online databases (list of links)
  • Stamford University Library full text journal finder
  • Library Express (Log in screen, no details of what it’s for. A Wisconsin Uni ap).

Teaching resources

  • Amador Valley Student/Teacher Writing resources (list of links to copyright/plagiarism resources)
  • AVHS Teacher Resources (list of links)


  • Librarians’ Internet Index: News this week (Lii is a gateway to websites selected, described and organised by librarians)
  • LISNews (collaborative weblog)

Reference resources

  • Encyclopaedia Britannica (Library articles)
  • Dictionary.com
  • Wikipedia


  • BCCLS Member Libraries Map (Location of Bergen County Cooperative Library System Libraries)
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Institutional websites

Posted on March 13, 2008. Filed under: accessibility, google, rss, universities, web 2.0 | Tags: , , , , , |

Like Brian Kelly, I came across the University of Southampton’s “iSoton” website via Lorcan Dempsey‘s blog posting.

Having had a look at iSoton, I wondered why an organisation would choose to create such a site rather than make something almost identical within a PageFlakes ‘page’ or within an iGoogle ‘tab’ for example (for free)? People could then add and delete applications from their version of the ‘page’ or ‘tab’. New applications produced by an organisation could be publicised via an rss feed (and viewed in the Pageflake or in iGoogle or elsewhere).

The comments on Brian Kelly’s blog post’s include a response from the manager of the iSoton Project.

Personally, I would like to be able to drag one or more applications from within an organisation’s page (e.g. the catalogue search box on my Library’s website; or the new BBC homepage’s news and weather sections; or a flickr photo collection) into the tool that I use – currently iGoogle.

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More on Journal Articles: Ratings and Comments

Posted on November 22, 2007. Filed under: collaboration, del.icio.us, education, indexing, information, library 2.0, sharing, technology, universities, web 2.0 |

This post is further to my earlier post on Journal articles: ratings and comments (7th November, 2007).

Yesterday I attended the JIBS workshop: “Is Library 2.0 a trivial pursuit”. The presentations were all excellent. They included one by Dave Pattern, Library Systems Manager at the University of Huddersfield: “Making the catalogue a good place to be: Lipstick, cowbells and serendipity.” I asked the question:

“How long will it be before people can rate and comment on articles aswell as books; and how long will it be before we can find out ‘people who read/downloaded this article have also read/downloaded these articles’ ” and “Are fed search providers e.g. Exlibris looking at doing this sort of thing?” No-one was aware of anyone doing anything in this area.

However, Ale de Vries, Product Manager, Elsevier, in his presentation: “A publisher’s view of Library 2.0” mentioned 2collab, a beta system that will enable sharing and collaboration between researchers in particular fields. Ale’s presentation also included a last-minute slide (following my question earlier in the day) on how they are going to provide article download/useage information and rankings based on this. So perhaps the rating, recommendation and review of journal articles and papers is not far off.

Personally I think that this would work best as a mash-up of a del.icio.us type-system with a LibraryThing/Zotero type system so that you can save the references to the articles (and add your own tags and comments/reviews to them) wherever you have found them (e.g. within a web-based bib database to which your library subscribes or in a web-journal, e.g. Ariadne) and share them with your colleagues wherever they are based.

Anyone else have any thoughts on this? Anyone else blogging/writing elsewhere about this? Should I patent the idea?

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Journal Articles: Ratings and Comments

Posted on November 7, 2007. Filed under: education, indexing, library 2.0, sharing, technology, web 2.0 |

How long will it be before it is possible to rate and comment on articles and papers and see that people who read this also read…  these papers and these books and want to read these ones?

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End of PROWE event

Posted on October 5, 2007. Filed under: cpd, education, library 2.0, OU, PROWE, technology, web 2.0 |

I am organising an end of project event on Wednesday 12th December for the JISC-funded OU-led PROWE project (www.prowe.ac.uk) which looked at the use of informal repositories within wiki and blogs to meet the Continuing Professional Development needs of part-time tutors.

We will be disseminating PROWE’s findings at the event. If possible I would also like to include talk(s) by other speakers who have been researching or implementing web2.0 technology to support CPD. So I am looking for people who are working in this area who I could contact.

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Podcasts and indexing

Posted on September 26, 2007. Filed under: del.icio.us, education, future, indexing, lectures, podcasting, students, technology, universities, web 2.0, You Tube | Tags: |

Brian Kelly’s post “The Future As Today, But More So” started me wondering whether today’s university students, who audio/video record their lectures (or whose lecturers provide them with recordings) bother to take full handwritten notes. Perhaps it is down to the individual student and the quality of the recording/accessibility/reliability of the technology. If it was me I would probably store the videos on my PDA and make the odd handwritten note (probably on my PDA) – e.g. points I want to find out more about or questions I want answers for, any urls/references given by the lecturer that I want to look up etc.). I would want to be able to link my notes with the podcast file.  When it comes to assignment or revision time, is it more time consuming to revisit all the video/audio files, or to read through a load of ‘old-fashioned’ notes to find the piece that you want? Perhaps lecturers/students are tagging their videos, eg. within YouTube or del.icio.us? Or maybe they are using free web2.0 software that enables them to either manually or automatically index their videos? If not then is this something that we will see in the future?

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RL emulates SL?

Posted on September 6, 2007. Filed under: second life, technology, web 2.0, You Tube |

Real Life emulates Second Life?


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Google Reader

Posted on June 28, 2007. Filed under: feed aggregator, google, rss, technology, web 2.0 |

Within Google Reader it is possible to ‘star’ your favourite items and to then view your list of starred items; it is also possible to add tags to items and then browse them. Unfortunately it is not possible to search for items within Google Reader. So that item that you had thought to be fairly insignificant but have now realised is relevant to your current work is very difficult to find. Do other RSS feed aggregators allow searching?

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Posted on June 27, 2007. Filed under: feed aggregator, google, information overload, rss, web 2.0 |

This site http://www.blastfeed.com/ helps to reduce information overload – you can select your RSS feeds, define what you want to get from them (using keywords) and then get the filtered results via email, IM or RSS.  I currently use Google Reader to aggregate my RSS feeds.  I would love to have fewer posts to trawl through. But from a horizon-scanning pov, I’m not sure whether filtering them would be a good idea as I may miss important new things for which I don’t currently have a keyword.

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