Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Cool tools and websites for the Librarian2.0

My 2 big discoveries this conference (yes, I'm hopelessly behind the cool kids, but I love running to catch up!)

[and somebody told me to check out the booth of Answers.com today, I believe... I haven't gotten there yet...]

Of course, what makes these tools truly cool is that they're free and/or open source! 3 presenters gave this entertaining talk at a ridiculously overcrowded session in a slightly too warm room (don't tell the fire martials down here about how things went - I'm sure we were in code violation... fortunately, no one was hurt and I didn't faint after all... ) All 3 presenters taught at the Webmasters' Academy preconference (which was also excellent): Jeff Wisniewski, Darlene Fichter, and Frank Cervone.

See a post on this topic at http://comartslibrarian.wordpress.com/2007/04/16/webmaster-cool-tools/:
From Jeff Wisniewski of the University of Pittsburgh:

  • pipes.yahoo.com - RSS feed aggregator (use it to manipulate feeds, perhaps filter, e.g., and create a master feed)
  • My Maps (new @ Google Maps)
  • developer.yahoo.com/ypatterns - Yahoo's open-sourced the hard work their web developers have done in this Design Pattern library by sharing patterns and code with other developers (yes, that means you, library webmasters!)
  • The Rasterbator (allows image to be enlarged into huge dimensions (E.g., for banners, posters, etc.; usually that's the kind of thing you'd have to pay a printer/copy shop to do - or to get $$$ software to do in-house)
  • Firefox Web Developer Toolbar - a suite of indispensable webmaster tools that plug into your Firefox browser

From Darlene Fichter, University of Saskatchewan - see http://library2.usask.ca/~fichter/blog_on_the_side/2007/04/cool-tools-and-toolkits-for-webmaster.html:

From Frank Cervone, Northwestern University:

  • Google Webmaster Tools
  • SiteMapBuilder.net — download a freeware application to make Google XML Site Maps
  • oswd.org — Open Source Web Design: stylesheets, templates/CSS
  • openclipart.org - Open Clipart Library (it's all free, aggregated with public domain creative commons licensing; they won't hassle you to buy in either, since it's designed to be like an open source software site)
  • freedigitalphotos.net - 1,000s of royalty-free photos to use on your site/in presentations, etc.
  • Gvisit.com — geomap the visitors to your website
  • Last.fm - online "radio" that learns what music you like & offers appropriate selections
  • dbWiz — open-source federated search tool for libraries
  • Talis Keystone ILS

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