iHCPL #57: Texting

Well, I have to say that I am not in love with Texting, but then I'm not really a phone person in general. I can text and have done so - I certainly find it easier with a QWERTY keyboard on my phone.

1. Yes, I have sent a few text messages. I can do it on a standard phone as well as using a QWERTY keyboard.
2. During Ike, I did send and receive several text messages.
3. I use some text lingo - it is easier. I had one phone where I tried to text message and it tried to be overly helpful in "predicting" words I was going to use. I finally gave up because it wouldn't let me type what I wanted.
4. I have never texted while I was driving and don't plan to do so. I think it would be impossible to drive and text at the same time. I know there are people who do it, but frankly I think they're an accident waiting to happen.

iHCPL #56: Twitter

To Tweet or not to tweet, that is the post. I joined Twitter about a month ago. I'm still not sure how I feel about it. I am currently following about 8 or 9 people (actually, it's apparently 18 - LOL & I have 9 people following me, which is weird) including people I know as well as a couple of celebrities. I do like Wil Wheaton and get a kick out of sockington - a cat who twitters. I'm just not sure if I totally enjoy having yet another thing to follow.

I mostly installed it as an easy way to update my Facebook status (I linked my Twitter to Facebook). I also installed the Add on for Firefox called TwitterFox. That certainly makes it easy to follow people as I have a little "T" at the bottom of my Firefox browser letting me know if there are any new Tweets.

1. I don't know if I have a particular topic I want to tweet about. I generally just do a status update. I am still exploring how I am going to use Twitter.
2. I tried a couple of different searches - Vampire Fiction and Wood Turning and didn't really see anything that popped out. Right now, I will probably continue to find people I want to follow by looking for references from other people.

iHCPL #55: Facebook

Well, since I wrote this post, I'm just going to go through the exercises.

1. I've had a Facebook account since we did social networking back in the original iHCPL.
2. At this point, I have 100+ friends. I actually just added a friend yesterday that someone had suggested to me. I do regularly review suggestions, although some of them can be odd (e.g. I have NO desire to be "friends" with Mayor Bill White)
3. I've become much more selective recently in adding applications. My favorites are: My Fairyland, Vampire Wars, Mousehunt, Pet Pupz, and Cute Catz. Since Facebook's redesign, I have come to hate applications that post multiple times to the home page. For example, Peeps was really bad about this.
4. I have recently reduced my use of Facebook. I used to be on all the time. Now, I am usually on for a little while when I get home to play with my favorite apps and check in with my friends. Then I'm off.

Overall, I love Facebook. It's let me connect and reconnect with a variety of different people from all aspects of my life from Elementary School up through HCPL folks. Very cool.


iHCPL #54: Social Networking Through Books


First, a disclaimer. I wrote most of this post, so I'm already very familiar with social networking with books.

Exercise #1: I've never been a member of a book club - in person. I'm intrigued by the possibility of joining an in-person book club, I'm just not sure if I'd like "forced" reading of specific titles. On the other hand, it would probably be good for me to stretch my reading choices a bit.

Exercise #2: Well, if I'm going to implement a book club, it's going to be online. From our experience with the teen book club online, I'm a bit cautious about starting one. However, I think if we try a general book discussion, that might be better. On The Gargoyle theme, I found a discussion guide on Reading Group Choices.

Exercise #3: Well, we'll go ahead and end with The Gargoyle again. On LibraryThing it has an average rating of 4.14/5 (with 716 members having it in their collection).
On Visual bookshelf on Facebook, the average rating is 4/5 with 539 reviews.
For good measure, I also checked Good Reads (4.05/5) and Shelfari (4/5 from the community).

A point of interest, LibraryThing, Shelfari, and Visual Bookshelf all offered similar titles. LibraryThing and Shelfari both had excellent suggestions. Visual Bookshelf's suggestions weren't very good. I couldn't find anything on Good Reads that offered similar books.

I'm personally a big fan of LibraryThing and Visual Bookshelf. I like the first to catalog my books (what can I say, I am a librarian) and have a lifetime membership. I like the second because I connect to my friends who read and can see what they're reading and it's a part of a service I actively use. I do have accounts at both Good Reads and Shelfari but don't use them very often, although I may have to do more with Shelfari after the suggestions I found.

iHCPL #53: Finding Books Online


Exercise #1: I wasn't overly impressed with the Houston.com search, so I went to my tried and true local search, Yahoo Maps. You can plug in your location and then search for nearby businesses. Searching around Admin doesn't bring up much - except for the Half Price Books warehouse nearby. The other stores are college oriented. When I expand the map out, I come up with more possibilities including Half Price Books in Rice Village. While they have an online presence, there really isn't an online search - there's a link to an Amazon search from the site.

Exercise #2: Well, I went to Amazon and found The Gargoyle in a variety of editions including for the Kindle and used editions. Having listened to this, I know it's available on CD and as a download from the Digital Media Catalog.

Exercise #3: I've tried eBooks, they just don't appeal to me. I look at the computer too much every day - at work and at home - to want to read a book online. I did find reading one on the Sony eReader was a bit more appealing and I'll be interested to see what it's like on the Kindle. The screens are not as tiring.