Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Week 4: RSS & Newsreaders: 8 & 9

Yes, I have heard of RSS and I have an RSS tag on this blog (look over to the right). Gotta love the Common Craft Show for making things easy to understand. Check out this video on blip-tv about RSS in Plain English. It will only take 3 minutes and 48 seconds out of your life and it is so worth it to understand how to keep up with the blogs and news feeds you read more efficiently. I follow Lee LeFever on Twitter. I set up a Bloglines account a very long time ago because I found out that I could RSS EBSCO documents right to my reader. Now when there is a new study done on Internet Safety it comes right to my account and I can read the abstract before logging into POWER Library. This saves me search time and it saves me from logging into POWER if the article is not really of interest to K-12 schools. I found out yesterday morning that there would be an article on Acceptable Use Policies in this month’s issue of School Library Media Activities Monthly (SLAMM) and when I went into school, there was my SLAMM with the article I needed right in my mailbox. If I didn’t check Bloglines yesterday morning I may not have been specifically looking for my SLAMM and may have missed the article. What I didn’t like about Bloglines has been changed and I like it much better now. Used to be that you had to read the article in the reader and I lost the feel of reading my favorites on their actual blog site. Now all I have to do is click on the post name and it takes me to the actual blog site… so much nicer. I used to avoid reading Bloglines even though I set it up because I missed the feel of my favorite blogs. I know it is all in my head but it is much easier to hear Joyce Valenza’s voice when I am on her NeverEndingSearch Blog than when I am reading a post from the reader.

So many blogs… so little time. A while ago I pared down my Bloglines to a more manageable 17 blogs. I was getting discouraged because I was not keeping up with the blogs on my Bloglines. Of course I couldn’t figure out why and then it hit me, I had over 30 blogs listed. So, when it came time to do Task 9 in PSLA’s 23 things I got a little nervous. I just cut down the blogs I read and now they want me to search for more. I knew I could find more but was I willing to add to my svelte 17? I used Google Blog Search and put in the search term “school library learning 2.0” and found over 6 million hits. The first hit was the California Library site that PSLA borrowed the 23 things from, so I was safe, I have been to this site many times and it was OK to add to my reader. What a surprise that I could not find an RSS feed for the page. I added it to my reader anyway. So, now I have 18 feeds. Will I ever get back up to 30? I sure hope not. Well, not until after I finish my grad program, these 23 things, and my grandson is sleeping through the night. :-0

Ok, so I lied. I am up to 19 feeds. Through the Bloglines search I found the librarians.net blog and decided to give it a try. If I don’t have time to read it or I don’t like it I can always pare down again!

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