Thing 4: Current awareness – Twitter, RSS and Storify

Posted: June 5, 2012 in Uncategorized
Tags: ,

Twitter

When I wrote about Thing 4 last year, I said that it had taken me a while to grasp the point of Twitter, but when I did understand it then it became indispensable. One year on, I’m still finding Twitter a vital way of staying in touch of what’s going on in the LIS-world. I’m still trying to remember to be a contributor and not just a lurker – but jumping in with both feet on Twitter and talking to people you don’t actually ‘know’ really pays off.

If you’re new to Twitter, then I recommend finding a couple of people you think are interesting (perhaps by searching for them by name or by typing topics you’re interested in into the search box), then see who they follow. Most people will have a short bio so it’s quick to see who on this list would be worth following. Then see who they follow!

If you want to follow me on Twitter, then feel free! I’m @maniccharlie

RSS feeds

I have a Google Reader account for keeping up with blogs, but I’m not terribly good at keeping on top of it. I find Twitter a much better way of finding interesting blog posts, and then seeing the reaction to them. Google Reader is good, though, for blogs and websites that have a fairly low profile or aren’t updated very often. It would easy to miss these on Twitter, if indeed they are even on Twitter, whereas Google Reader captures it and has it ready for you when you next log in.

I also find it useful to categorise blogs into folders on Google Reader. (I think it’s that innate librarian desire to categorise and classify everything in life). There’s numerous ways to do this, but – since most blogs I subscribe to are library-related – it’s done by sector or theme e.g. ‘Libraries – academic’; ‘Libraries – health’, ‘Libraries – new professionals’ etc.

And if everything gets a bit overwhelming, then I take great comfort in admitting defeat, clicking ‘mark all as read’ and just vowing to start again!

Storify

This is the first time I’ve used Storify. I do like the fact that you search for a topic over a range of web 2.0 interfaces really simply. That in itself is quite handy. The ‘walled garden’ approach of the internet annoys me sometimes, so I like that I can really easily assemble a story that pulls together info from Twitter, Flickr, YouTube etc. I wasn’t overwhelmed by the finished story, though. I wanted to be able to play around with it, resize the images and drag them into a new order. Instead everything is just linear.

Since it’s the Jubilee bank holiday today and I am multitasking and watching the service in St Pauls while writing this, I thought I’d make a small Jubilee Storify – simply because I knew there’d be loads of material to choose from.

I’m glad I had a go at using this tool since it was new to me, but I’m not I’ll be sticking with it if I’m honest.

[View the story “Diamond Jubilee” on Storify]

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