Since I began this blog my main problem has been identifying topics to write about. In the past I’ve been overly concerned with making sure every post could be fitted together under an obvious theme. While I’ll continue to search for my “writing niche”, I think the important thing at the moment is just to write, write about anything, write about everything. In April of last year I wrote a post titled Reflections on Writing. The post outlined all the benefits I think I get from writing. I’ve decided to rename the blog after this post in the hope it will remind me of these benefits and act as an incentive to write.
Okay so I didn’t make it in time after all (Edit: 1/2/16 Hang on turns out I did! Yay!)but I may as well finish off this final post. In truth I don’t really have much to say about social media management tools. I don’t really have much trouble keeping track of my social media accounts, largely because I don’t use them that often. I opened a Hootsuite account and I’ve added my Facebook feed. From what I can see the site seems to have a user friendly interface and if you are the kind of person who has spends a lot of time on social media and is really into analytics then it’s great if you can have all the information just there.
I don’t really have much trouble keeping track of my social media accounts though, largely because I don’t use them that often. And I don’t really see the point of the tabs, if I want to open my social media accounts in different tabs I’ll just do it in the browser. It might be different if I was using my social media accounts in a more active professional manner but they’re really more of passive social orientated thing for me. At the moment social media management tools just aren’t that relevant to me.
One app which I made extensive use of during my MLIS was the WeChat app. This is an app similar to Whatsapp that allows users to send free text messages to each other as long as they have an internet connection. I was informed about it my a member of my Capstone group who suggested it as a way of ensuring we could stay in touch as some of us were having problems with UCD’s email. The app allows for both single and group conversations and was our groups main method of organizing group meetings and getting in touch with absent members in order to assign them tasks for the project. As grad students on a budget it was an extremely useful way of keeping in touch with each other and making sure everyone kept up to speed with their aspect of the project.
Using one of the templates from easel.ly I created a road map info graphic that represented the main professional and social groups in my life as well as the years and places that I first came across them. Unfortunately I do not seem to be able to embed it in this post, here is a link to it. Infographic It was useful to see how I’ve progress in both my professional and personal life and gave me cause to reflect on the decisions that led me to those groups in the first place.
That said the info-graphic I created seemed to be quite simplistic. This could be because of the topic I chose but for complex topics I’d still prefer to use something like power point. Possibly If I practiced more I’d be able to fit a lot more information in concisely. I do think info-graphics would be quite suitable for use in school libraries for explaining basic concepts in similar ways to pictures of evolutionary trees or the periodic table.
I. hate. presentations. Having to stand in front of a group of people while explaining a usually quite complicated topic is basically my exact idea of hell. That said I do recognize the key role of presentations as one of the primary methods of informing colleagues about developments in your field. As such I’m trying to bite the bullet and work on developing techniques that allow me to speak accurately and clearly. I suffer slightly from stage fright and used to pace up and down in front of the screen while talking which I think distracted them from the talk. Thankfully I have managed control that quirk. I do still tend to mumble when talking and I am trying to learn how to project my voice better.
The presentation I’ve included in this post is one I did for my previous Masters. It was supposed to be basic description of my research project. When planning it I tried to follow most of the basic tips for Power Point presentations, e.g. avoiding putting all of my text on the slides and then just reading it out. I actually think I went to far down the pictorial route as it’s difficult to get the gist of it on it’s own. In hindsight it would have been a good idea to include an introductory slide to give the audience an overview of what the presentation would be about. If I was giving advice to someone I’d tell them to be sure to include a “Table of Contents” slide which describes the flow of the presentation and to stick to this flow when talking.
In the past my only concern with copyright has been to correctly reference other people’s work. For example, during the MLIS I had to locate a photograph of Jonathan Swift which was under a copyright license that allowed it to be used for educational purposes. I’ve never really considered copyright law with regard to my own work and this task has led me to reconsider this attitude. In general I don’t consider my posts to be of a quality that people would would post them elsewhere. However if that did happen I would probably prefer if my name was attributed to them. I think the line between people receiving deserved credit for their work and allowing said work to inspire and influence people is a difficult one to walk. However, having explored the Creative Commons website, I find it walks this line ideally. Based on the license chooser feature, I will consider using the Attribution license for any further content I create.
Below are two images from from Flickr which are licensed under Creative Commons.
Jardines del palacio de la Granja de san Ildefonso by Manuel is licensed under CC BY 2.0
starr-050216-9001-Pittosporum_undulatum-plant-Kula-Maui by Forest and Kim Starr is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Here’s the photo I downloaded from Flickr. It’s simply a scenic image of the Wilder Kaiser mountain region by the user Aah-Yeah. It is protected by the Creative Commons Attribution License.
I’ve never actually used Instagram before and I was impressed by the amount of library and book related albums available on the site. I left a comment on the British Library page about an exquisite illustration of Alice in Wonderland.
Many libraries hold photographic exhibitions on a certain topic or event. The library I did my work experience in recently held an exhibition entitled “West Connemara and the Great War” which consisted of photos of people from the area involved in the First World War. Both Flickr and Instagram would be useful distributing the materials to a wider audience and increasing in awareness of such exhibitions. “West Connemara and the Great War” would be of particular interest to historical societies and could possibly result in such groups arranging visits to the library.