This semester we were provided with valuable resources that will help to carry us throughout our careers. I felt that the most valuable book that I read this semester was the Courtney book. The Odin and the Shelley book had valuable information, but much of it was basics that I was already aware of. Courtney's Library 2.0 book provided me with some new information that I can use in my library. Two of the chapters were particularly helpful because I did not know much about the technology that was described and how it could be used in libraries or in the classroom. This included:
Courtney- Chapter 2 - This chapter talked about Catalog 2.0. I currently use an online catalog in my library at school, but this chapter provided additional information that will help me to choose an online catalog if we ever need to change to a new one. The chapter talked about features that are important in an online catalog in order to locate books. One thing I found interesting is that it is important to talk to the users about what they find useful in an online catalog. The book mentioned that librarians are often asked what features they want without regard to the users. The features mentioned provide some suggestions of what is important for users to have in an online catalog. I am going to use this book as a reference in choosing new online catalogs and evaluating our current catalog. I also found it interesting how the chapter mentions that catalogs can be modeled after social networking sites, allowing users to friend others, add tags, and rate and review resources. This chapter was very useful.
Courtney- Chapter 6 - This chapter talked about mashups and how they can be used in libraries. Prior to this course, I was unaware of what mashups were and that I was actually using them. Mashups are basically combinations of two web sites to make a different product that can be useful to users. This chapter combined with the online course helped me to see how mashups can be useful in library services. Applications like Library Thing help users to locate new books of interest, share book interests with others, and locate books to purchase or borrow. There are a variety of interesting mashups that can help libraries connect with users or help to serve their users and I was glad I got the chance to learn about them.
This course was extremely relevant and useful and I will carry what I have learned throughout my career.