Thursday, February 26, 2009

Image Generators, Library Thing, and Rollyo.

I have been playing with some different image generators this week. I have had the opportunity to transform some of my engagement photos into a comic book, inserted my face onto a breakfast cereal box, put some of my students heads on animal bodies, and finally I fiddled around on Here is a picture of my ferocious house cat, Vash "The Stampede," using a tool named "embosser with ripples."

I have also been hard at play with The site connects you to a multitude of great literature blogs, blogs about reading in general as well as blogs about specific books. I have been sharing my reactions to my favorite books and adding more and more books to my library. Every book I searched for was in the database and I was unable to find a single book of mine that wasn't already listed. I also enjoyed the recommendations made for further reading based on my choices. Since I chose a lot of my favorite authors I found a host of books I had already had read as well as other books that sparked my interest.

Rollyo allows you to customize your own search engine so that it references only the sites that you see fit. I imagine that if used properly this could drastically cut down the amount of irrelevant information you have to sift through each time you enter a search into one of the larger search engines. I find that the responses I get to inquiries are more related to the aspect I am particularly interested in. I have always felt ill at ease when I type in a search in google and get "1-10 of 234,659 matches for library science." I think Rollyo will help eliminate some of the information overload that has become common with mainstream search systems.

Monday, February 23, 2009

The Agricultural Revolution of Information

Prior to this exercise I had not even heard of RSS or Feedreaders. I had been in the practice of hunting and gathering for information much like our ancestors did for food. It was often a long and laboring process but it was commonly believed that the gains outweighed the losses. (Food for our ancestors and tomorrow's weather forecast for me.)

Over time our ancestors adopted new, more sophisticated ways of their attaining their sustenance, turning from their hunter/gather paradigm to one that embraced agriculture. "What a boon to mankind!" it was undoubtedly argued, "All the food we could want in one place where we can more easily manage our food supply!"

RSS and Feedreaders seem much like that to me. Informational agriculture! "What a boon to mankind!" it is now argued, "All the information I could want in one place where I can more easily manage it!" Bloglines is in essence my information garden. You choose what you want to be exposed to and limit your exposure to things that are distracting like endless advertising space.

I have been tinkering around with bloglines for a little while now and currently have feeds which include The New York Times, The Shifted Librarian, Library Development, LISNews,, Librarian's Internet Index, and (one of my personal favorites) a Daily Dilbert Comic Strip. I have also had the opportunity to follow what other Learning 2.0 participants are doing and see how they are progressing through the program.

Here is a short video describing the benefits of RSS as the new, fast way to access and manage information.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Learning 2.0 - Fun with Flickr

This was my first time using Flickr. This is a picture of my fiance and I from our engagement photo shoot. We are getting married on June 27th, 2009. Flickr will make it very easy to share wedding pictures with our friends and family, especially the one who live furthest away. If anyone is interested in viewing the pictures I have recently added my flickr account name is "misterseankelly" and my pictures are available for anyone to view.
I checked out a couple of mash ups including the one I used on the digital photo above is aptly named "jigsaw" which I found at They have a bunch of different mash up tools to choose from including a magazine cover maker and the "Warholizer" which distorts your pictures to resemble an Andy Warhol painting.

Here's one last mash up from Big Huge Labs that I enjoyed. This one is called "Bead Art."