Thursday, January 17, 2008

Must-Haves Redux

I had a lot of fun learning what other people term must-haves in the following categories:
  • Hardware/gadget
  • Application/software
  • Web 2.0 service/application
I also learned some things. One of the most striking things I noticed was that many people who responded via email after I posted to listservs remarked that they were not using Web 2.0 resources, or not much. Because they are such a big part of my present work and experience, it this was something of a surprise though that should not have been the case. Far too many K-12 educators have no access at work due to Draconian filtering parameters. Also, many folks are hard pressed to find time to experiment with new things because of heavy schedules, lack of support such as library aides, and mountains of paperwork. Those who did say they had dipped into social networking, mostly mentioned blogs that they followed and in some cases that they were writing.

Another interesting thing was the range of gadgets that were mentioned. I had everything from TV to the George Foreman grill named as favorite device! The two mentioned most often were the cell phone and flash drives. It was interesting how many people really must have the little drives, and helped me remember how important they were to me in the past. Now I store most things online and thus use them less.

Regarding applications, several librarians mentioned their library automation, causing me to remember how essential this was in my previous life as a junior high librarian.

For the rest of this entry, I am going to paste in responses that came to me via email rather than as blog comments. The comments are, of course, there for you to see already, and I certainly thank everyone who has already commented on my previous entry or who comments to this or to it in the future. are the email comments. I am off to get a George Foreman grill!


This may sound negative, but I really don't care for any of the gadgets that everybody has.

I like my life to be simple. Newspapers, books, and TV.
I think that my must have's are my plain old fashioned cell phone for emergencies only (no texting/no internet/no camera/etc), pen drive to store and carry info at work and internet for communicating. (I hate making phone calls.)

Once I leave work, I leave all technology behind. If people need to get a hold of me I am at work, at home or I don't want to be found.

1. What is your one (or maybe 2) must-have gadget/hardware/gizmo/appurtenance? My Palm TX: has my calender, task list, vital data, even a Bible reader, and more -- pretty well my life is on it in other words.
2. Same question, but for computer applications? Again top one, or maybe a couple. Email is a biggie, a primary way of communication for me (I actually don't like to talk on the phone); I have also got to say a good browser since as a librarian my work involves so much information literacy dealings
3. Ditto, for Web 2.0 services--and I am very curious about this! I would say blogs and rss feeds, helps me stay up with the news from library and tech land (and commentary on news)

Cell phone. I don't even have a home phone anymore, and neither does my

EMAIL, then a web browser. I use those two more than anything.

3. Ditto, for Web 2.0 services--and I am very curious about this!

Blogs are by far my can't live without thing. I think that reading
other teacher/librarian blogs is probably my most valuable PD. I've
"borrowed" more ideas from things people write about on blogs than
almost any other
source. After that, probably wikis. I use Wikipedia a lot, and then
I'm trying to get it together to use them more with my classes.

I’m really new to blogs and such, but I’ve recently enjoyed Beachwalks with Rox.

I find her videos with short comments (as she strolls Hawaiian beaches) so calming….almost religious but more like a nice thought for the day.

> 1. What is your one (or maybe 2) must-have
> gadget/hardware/gizmo/appurtenance?

I had to think about this for a while. Being an old fossil, I _can_ get
along very nicely without a lot of the electronic stuff. Here in the
library, though, the automated circulation system is the top winner for
me. At home, just having a computer is a big help.

> 2. Same question, but for computer applications? Again top one, or maybe a
> couple.

Automation system at school, general apps (email, web, word processing,

> 3. Ditto, for Web 2.0 services--and I am very curious about this!

Haven't messed with this area much. I do have a family wiki, used to
keep us informed of gift ideas. That's about it.

1. What is your one (or maybe 2) must-have gadget/hardware/gizmo/appurtenance?

When driving to new locations the GPS on my Husband’s handheld computer.

For myself, on an everyday use; I guess just my computer, I’m not a gadget kind of gal.

2. Same question, but for computer applications? Again top one, or maybe a couple.

Office Suite. I use all of it, really like Excel; I use it for all sorts of things.

3. Ditto, for Web 2.0 services--and I am very curious about this!

None, I’ve looked into them, I read a couple of different people’s blogs in the library world, but that’s about it. We tried to find a good teacher monitored blog system to use with our Jr. High students and just couldn’t find one. Will look into that again to see if something has come up yet.

For number one, at home, I guess it would have to be the desktop computer, with all it’s functions, from email to downloaded games, pictures, word processing—the whole bit. I probably don’t utilize it for everything I could, but for what I do, I’d hate to give it up! And then I’m not sure if this is what you’ve got in mind, but I’d also hate to give up my George Foreman grill! (Technology of a different ilk!)

As for a cell phone, it would be farther down my list than you’d expect. I consider mine a convenience for me….not an appendage to my person!

2) I use word processing so much, for so many things, both professional and personal. Power Point (again, for presentations not only for school but for personal life things, like United Methodist Women, etc.) is another thing I use quite often.

3) Can’t really make any comment—I’ve never used wikis, etc. (except to READ Wikipedia, and I don’t think that counts!)

Number one hardware item, my cell phone. Don't own an Iphone but my cell will do many things that help me pull it together, voice mail, address book, notepad of recorded messages to myself, calendar. If folks really used all of the features on their cell phones they could cut down on the clutter they carry and help themselves stay better organized.

Number two hardware item, four in one fax, printer, copier, scanner unit, just a must have

email, home and work
Our library database TLC
District-wide opac that allows students access to almost 1 million titles (60+ schools, PreK-12)
Virtual Library that helps me integrate print and non-print sources, provide 24/7 student access to the library resources, etc.

It is nothing fancy but it really helps our students

Web 2.0
Not using much yet, reading some blogs.


Mary Ann--I got an iPhone for Christmas and I LOVE it! My husband gave it to me so he could inherit my iPod Nano. The other gadget I can't do without is my flash drive!

As far as applications go, I'd say Windows Live email and chat.

1 comment:

  1. Mahalo for mentioning Beach Walks! Ans while I'm here, I will add another vote to the iPhone "I LOVE it!" community. It is an amazing time savings for me.