Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Thing 25, #2&3

Weeeellll. Slid into the assignment #2 a different way, of course. It all started out decently enough, but I looked up the Library Commission, and, lo and behold, there was an obvious mistake I'd been told about by one of the vendors. So I thought I'd fix it. Plus one of the four pointers were pointing to the middle of the intersection of 12th and N. We aren't there. And we aren't in Texas. So I merrily proceed to the next step, never wondering who is supposed to really do this. Fortunately, the person heading the assignments is the one in charge of these corrections, and has been trying to get the Commission out of Texas for a while. Now she's trying to get us out of the intersection, too. Lesson learned--read the next paragraph before trying out the fun stuff!

I did work with the "getting directions" especially since I keep "losing" the South Walmart. I keep forgetting the east/west street it's on, and how far out it is. It's a little disconcerting on the satelite view, since it hasn't been built yet--and it's all built up now! A mini mall, separate food places-fast & slow, etc., and businesses across the highway, too. So that's what I did for my map--laugh if you want, but when I was buying cat food on Old Cheney, I managed to get to and from Walmart without calling the Mounties. Which would have been embarrassing this far from the Canadian border.

I think Google Maps are really impressive additions to social networking for Libraries--show how to get to your library, what it looks like, what you have inside, provide coupons for first timers, first time card holders, coupons for fine forgiveness for certain days--whatever your imagination comes up with! Bookmobile routes, I think someone mentioned, I thought was a really cool thing to show on a Google Map. Maybe coordinate with the local bookstores, too, and other important points of interest. (Like the libraries and bookstores in neighboring towns?) Hmm. http://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=5853448300527813539&postID=8342580170875171819

Monday, June 15, 2009

Thing 25, assignment 1. Google Maps

All right, the address we're sent to is the capitol building of NE--you can tell that from the satellite view, and that's were you can see the color of the cars around the capitol. Actually, it's come up at a great time, since there was an article in the paper about those circles in the courtyards--originally there were to be fountains in them. But the state ran out of money, since they built the new state capitol during the Great Depression. So, a state legislator decided it would be a great 4th grader project to raise the money for the fountains?! Of course, his idea was that we were in a recession, there was a nice parallel to it. I have to admit though, the green circles do bother me on a design level.

I love the street level shots in some cities, but in Norfolk, NE, it just made me disoriented. It was great to cruise Tokyo, and Edinburgh that way, but Norfolk never looked right. Wisnser, NE, on the other hand, looked fine. I do like the satellite views, and they do help me find things. I was trying to use the directions to find a tea shop here in town, that I thought would be easy to find--and was glad I looked on the satellite views first! For the store I chose, there were four possible locations--but one of the satellite views ended in a residential crossroad, another, out in the country, and the third was in the north! I still have to cruise to the locations of the two stores and check out what I saw on the map.

I really liked playing virtual tourist with the Eiffel Tower, although again, street view just didn't engage me. I really liked the street views of Tokyo, better photography? It seemed like you could really zoom in on things, that you weren't able to in street view in the smaller towns. And, of course, the kangaroos were fuzzy--both types of fuzzy. The photos are what I enjoyed most--when you put them in context of the maps, they're really more meaningful than, say, in an album.

And, it's really great that it allows for correcting, and suggestions about questionable content--you never know what a camera could pick up just going driving down a street.


Friday, June 5, 2009

Thing 24

Well, I did want to try out Twitter, and Google Apps. The Twitter entries for the area I'm from were different than I'd thought they'd be. The bulk of twitters on the first pages of any town I searched was for help wanteds, and they weren't all for fast food places, either!

I was disappointed in the lack of twitters about the library, even here in Lincoln. Of course, I just realized, I could have tried Love Library, but no one was twittering about Lincoln Libraries or any of the branches. Still, an interesting exercise, and a valuable tool.

Someone at work remarked that it was the 20-30 year olds that were Twittering, and that is a group you'd want to market to.