Archive for Library

How is being an administrator of a social network

I was so curious when I heard about this idea. Actually this idea came from one of my group mates Sam and he said he came across with this during his research to library 2.0. Sam has found a library which is using Ning.com to maintain their own social network.

Ning has launched in October 2005 and it is a platform for creating your own social network. They say their passion is putting new social networks in the hands of anyone with a good idea. When users create free social networks on Ning, they run ads on the right hand side of every page to support the service and that’s their main source of income.

I created my own social network called We Fans during my mid semester break and it was so interesting. I created my own logo for my social network and also I created a favicon so it will be displayed in the browser. I thought creating a logo and a favicon will enhance the branding of the site. Then I added my friends and it was not that easy to attract them to use the network since there are very famous networks such as Facebook, My Space and they are very familiar with them and used to them.

We Fans home page

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We Fans logo

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We Fans favicon

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Anyway I wanted to see what level of privilege the users of We Fans get so I created another account using another email address to see what users can do. They can customise their own web page as they wish. And also they can add videos, photos, invite friends, email them, chat with members in the network, write blog posts, change their status, create groups and many more. Apart from user privileges an administrator is allowed to customise the home page of the social network, add applications, block members of the network if they misbehave, change the appearance, content management (make photos and videos can only be viewed by friends) and can use the site as a money maker (but have to purchase Go Ad-Free premium service for $24.95, They provide four other different premium services as well). They allow the administrators to add third party applications such as WordPress, Twitter, Box.net files, Google docs, Quick poker and dozens more. These applications include office tools, games, collaborative, E-commerce and fund raising. All these tools help to add an extra value to the social network.

I found some of the social networks using Ning for really good purposes

I hope organisations can use Ning.com to maintain their own social network, where they can keep contacts and update their users, customers, employees and suppliers. And also they can use this as an advertising tool for them selves.

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Web 2.0 for Libraries

At the first time I heard Library 2.0 I was wondering how web 2.0 tools can be used in the libraries. Then I researched a lot to find out how we can use web 2.0 tools in libraries and what libraries at the moment are using web 2.0 tools. And I was able to find many tools that can be used and also in use in the libraries these days.

According to Michael Casey (2007), Ann Abor District library web page was selected by the American Library Association as the best website in the nation for libraries with budget of $60,000,000.00+. They mainly use blogs in their web site where they use several blogs for different audiences such as books blog, video blog director’s blog, event blog and many more. They also use the web 2.0 tools such as Comments, Review & Ratings, Tags and Rss feeds. The tool that admires my heart in this web site is the tool called Brain Fuse online help which helps the students to get help from the library staff to do their home work. The most unique thing I saw in this library is the Google translator they use to covert the content in the web site in to the language you prefer. This feature is very interesting and I believe it helps to admire more users to the library.

You can see Brain fuse demo clicking this link…..

Another library I could find using web 2.0 tools affectively is Darien library in America. I found they use a tool called Meebo to add the feature of instant messaging to their web site. That feature allows the student to chat with the librarian at the library open hours. The Darien library also use web 2.0 tools such as online catalogues, Comments & Reviews, Rss feed, Taging, Podcasts and Vediocasts. They also use web applications such as Flickr, Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, YouTube, Blip.tv and Delicious.

Also I found a library called Niagara which uses a search 2.0 in their library search. They use a tool called Wordcat that helps to find resources around the world. It allows the Niagara users to get the search results from 57 million items owned by 9,000 libraries worldwide. It is useful for identifying materials that can be borrowed through Interlibrary Loan.

worldcat_results

These three libraries are the most interesting libraries I could found through my research and these are the web 2.0 tools they use in their organisations. I trust the way these libraries utilise web 2.0 tools can be considered as an example when we are doing the proposal for the QUT library. Also I am confident there are many more tools that can be used to build into the libraries. Many libraries have accepted that web 2.0 tools have really made a change in their organisation where the productivity of the library is increased. Because of this many libraries are seeking in to adopting library 2.0.

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