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Web Gems for Librarians and Patrons


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by David Sniffin, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Part of the NCLA's RASS/DLIG "Current Trends in Reference" online conference March 14, 2013

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Web Gems for Librarians and Patrons

  1. 1. David Sniffin Library Manager Main Library - 2nd FloorCharlotte Mecklenburg Library
  2. 2. As we all know, there are billions and billions of useful web resources available for patrons and staff. Due to life/time constraints, we often as professionals have very little time to explore these options. That’s why I’ve created a handy guide for some of the more useful and relevant sites you can use and share with your patrons. Topics include: social media evaluators, presentation tools, reference sites, online storage options, and photography.
  3. 3. Sponsored by the Goodwill Community Foundation International Provides online learning opportunities to improve technology, literacy, and math skills via 750 different lessons Lessons can be specific for each patron based on their needs Most lessons contain tutorial videos, handouts, tip sheets, and detailed lesson plans Self-paced nature of the site allows for patrons to learn at the pace and style that suits them best
  4. 4.• Convert.Files is a free and simple online file converter that works with a wide range of file types.• It will convert any document, archive file, spreadsheet, audio and video file from one format to another.• The service is free and without the need to download additional software.• The output is immediate, or you can email the link to yourself and have the file.• Convert archives, documents, presentations, ebooks, drawing, image, audio and video files. Directions:o Just click the Browse buttono Select your file and upload ito The site will take care of the rest
  5. 5.• Prezi is a fantastic online presentation tool that is a nice alternative to other presentation software that’s available, and best of all, it’s FREE!• Create, store, and edit your presentations online. Simply create a username, login and present.• Pack and go with your presentation and take it with you if you don’t have internet access.• Users can collaborate in real time with others on presentations.• Mobility allows access to your prezi via the internet, smartphone, tablet, the Prezi app, and more!
  6. 6.• Wordle is a toy for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide.• The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text.• You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes.• The images you create with Wordle are yours to use however you like.• You can print them out, or save them to the Wordle gallery to share with your friends.
  7. 7. Dropbox motto: "Your lifes work, wherever you are.“•Dropbox is a free service that lets you bring all your photos,docs, and videos anywhere.•Any file you save to your Dropbox will automatically save toall your computers, phones and even the Dropbox website.•Dropbox always has you covered, and none of your stuff willever be lost.•Invite your friends, family and teammates to any folder in yourDropbox, and itll be as if you saved that folder straight to theircomputers. You can send people links to specific files in yourDropbox too.
  8. 8. Google Drive• Google is offering even more options with it’s revamped Google Drive online storage tool.• Google Drive provides 5GB of online storage available to users via one user name and login.• All of the other google offerings are available with the same user name, including gmail, maps, calendar, Reader, Picassa, etc.• Use Google Drive to create documents, presentations, spreadsheets, forms, and many more.
  9. 9. MyPermissions• MyPermissions helps you protect your information by notifying the user of 3rd party apps in their social media accounts.• Examine which apps are tracking you in Facebook, Twitter, Google, Yahoo, LinkedIn!, Dropbox, Instagram, Foursquare, Windows Live, Aol, Flickr, and Familio• Users can receive automatic permissions alerts when an app accesses their information, and can rectify it immediately.• Also available as an Iphone App for mobile permission tracking and cleaning.
  10. 10. •• This interesting site tracks your social media impact based on how much of your information is on the internet.• Log in with your LinkedIn or Facebook profile and get your Professional Online Brand score.• Tips are provided on how to increase or decrease your score, based on user preference.• The My Network option shows user connections to others via their shared experiences
  11. 11.• The this part of a Recipe is a Trigger. Some example Triggers are “I’m tagged in a photo on Facebook” or “I check in on Foursquare.”• The that part of a Recipe is an Action. Some example Actions are “send me a text message” or “create a status message on Facebook.”• An example I use: If I take a photo and post it to Facebook, then it also automatically adds that picture to my Picasa photo album.• There are literally thousands of ‘recipes’, or you can create your own!
  12. 12. This user-friendlywebsite attempts to show the scale of the universe through common objects Users can see objects bigger than the average human, up to the observable portion of the universe Users can see objects smaller than the average human, down to smaller than a Neutrino
  13. 13.• This site provides the user with instant street view (via Google) of whatever address they type in.• Users can use it to see what their destination looks like prior to going.• It’s fun and unique to explore random sites.• Destinations start popping up while you type in your inquiry
  14. 14.• Gigapans are gigapixel panoramas, digital images with billions of pixels.• GigaPan offers over 50000 extremely high resolution photos for users to browse.• Users can use the site to preview travel destinations, demonstrate photography techniques, or study urban areas in extreme detail.
  15. 15.• AirPano is a non-commercial project focused on high resolution 3D aerial panoramas.• The AirPano team is a group of Russian photographers and panorama enthusiasts.• During the next 2-3 years, we plan to shoot a variety of aerial panoramas and create virtual 3D tours of the most interesting places of our planet.
  16. 16.• This graphical based website demonstrates the time differences between time zones.• Time can be adjusted to the future or the past up to 24 hours.• Very handy for travelers, researchers, students, and librarians alike.
  17. 17.• This interactive site provides typing lessons from the absolute beginning user to the advanced typist• Lessons cover all aspects of typing, including symbols, numerals, and special keys.• Users can take lessons, play typing games, get certifications, and track statistical progress, all for free!