Friday, February 29, 2008

March TechNotes

The March TechNotes will continue to be on Wednesdays in Room 026, but will move to 1:30 - 2:00 pm, in hopes that people who couldn't make the earlier time can come then. After polling both on the web and in person, and then chucking that out and picking out stuff I wanted to do, here's March's topics:

March 5 - 30 sites in 30 minutes
March 19 - Web/Library 2.0
March 26 - More Google!

Monday, February 25, 2008


For those unfamiliar with bookmarklets, they are little pieces of javascript that do nifty things in your web browser. You save them just like you do a bookmark to a web page or a My Favorite in Internet Explorer.

I created a few bookmarklets which might be useful, such as one to search the catalog, one to find journal titles, etc. But I also created a bookmarklet called ASU Proxifyer that will give you the proxied version of a URL, suitable for use by off-campus folks.

Check them out!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Slam the Boards!

For those of you who don't read the Information Literacy listserv (ILI-L) (and why don't you?), they recently had a link to an effort called Slam the Boards! It appears to be an event where librarians who were interested picked a day and attempted to answer as many questions as they could on answer board sites, such as Yahoo! Answers, WikiAnswers, etc.

The idea is that they answer the questions and provide citations and as much additional information as possible and make it clear that it is a librarian doing the answering. Perhaps with efforts like these, it will become clear to the general public what services reference librarians are able to provide.

It appears they are going to try pick a day each month to do it. What do you think?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

TechNotes Poll

Visitors to this actual website will notice the poll on the right, but for those of you reading through RSS readers, you may not know of its existence.

To get some feedback and help me figure out what to talk about for March's editions of TechNotes, I put up a little poll so people can give me a little feedback about what they'd like to hear discussed.

As always, if there is some other idea you have for TechNotes, or anything else, just let me know.

Today's TechNotes

For those who attended today's TechNotes, here is the link to the export.opml file. For most feed readers, you should be able to import this file and pick and choose which feeds you want to keep.

You can also go to and subscribe to any or all of the blogs I read there.

Please let me know if you need assistance of any kind.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Marilia told me about how she put a Meebo widget on her subject guide page at her last university, which looked like a great idea!

The idea is that someone looking at the subject guide is able to IM for assistance right at the point of need, instead of having to backtrack or find help in another way or just muddle through.

So, if anyone is interested in placing a Meebo widget on a subject guide page that they currently edit or are responsible for, just let me know.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

AppSearch Google Gadget

For those people that use My Google to personalize their Google page, you can now add an AppSearch Gadget. I haven't been able to find it with a search yet, but you can add it to your page by cutting and pasting this url:

It is also possible to add the AppSearch gadget to other webpages, and that would involve cutting and pasting in a bit of code. Let me know if you want to do it, and I'll get you the code.

If you have ideas for other Google Gadgets, let me know.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

ASU Multi-Feed Generator (and it WORKS!)

I have made several improvements to the RSS Feed Generator so I've decided to give it a grandiose name: the ASU Multi-Feed Generator!

Now, you can mix-n-match any number of categories and sub-categories of new materials to make your own personal new books RSS feed!

In addition, you can add the feeds for New ASU Browsing, New ASU DVDs, and the feed for this site in any combination you wish.

Of course, if you go supercrazy I can't imagine the resulting feed will be too fun to read, but I'll let you work that out.

Monday, February 11, 2008


I'm going to start holding a half-hour information session each week on a technology topic for anyone who wants to come and listen. Hopefully, both neophytes and technophiles will take away a little something they didn't know about before. These will be very informal and short, so feel free to drop in anytime.

This Wednesday, Feb. 13 will be about AppSearch, the federated search product.

Wednesday, Feb. 20 will be about Blogs and RSS
Wednesday, Feb. 27 will be about Google and its million and one products, at least a couple of which you probably have not heard of.

All sessions will be from 9:30 to 10:00 am in Room 026.

Everyone is welcome!

And if you have any suggestions for other topics, just let me know!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

AppSearch box

I have fixed the problem with the AppSearch box where the Both search would by default start searching through the databases associated with the Art category, such as Art Full Text. It now defaults to the databases from the Quick Search category, which includes NetLibrary, Academic Search Premier, the catalog, Gale Virtual Ref, Newspaper Source and Britannica.

This also had the happy side effect of allowing our home page to load much faster!