Thing 4: Google

I have a Google+ account but I don’t actually use it that much except for my Gmail account.

I do think that there are some very interesting and useful features on Google+ and my favourite has to be Google Hangouts which I hadn’t heard of before this 23 things course, so thanks again to the team. It’s a really good video and chat service and it makes it possible to see and speak to people from across the world! It makes collaborations such as this one possible.

I got involved in the Rudai23 Hangout which was shared with the rest of the participants and is available for the world to see on YouTube. Check it out

rudai

I am currently completing a free mobile learning course that teaches social media through social media for professional devlopment.

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Thing 16: Collaboration Tools

Both in my new library role and at university collaboration tools are very important. As I am part time for both of these things I often find myself out of the loop. It’s difficult for everyone to have to catch you up on what’s been happening whilst you have been away but thanks to the joys of the internet and collaboration tools, they don’t have to!

I am currently working on a group presentation assignment at university and I was a little worried at first because I am only in uni one day a week so this makes group work quite difficult. But we all have access to Google Drive so it’s as simple as setting up a shared folder and sharing our research. We have one document that is a presentation draft and then we are all just uploading our findings onto separate documents.This ensures everyone has access to what everyone else is doing so when we do come together it will hopefully be easy to put the assignment together. Some of the tutors have also had us working on documents in Google Drive and I think it is a fantastic thing! What would we do without it!?

It is also very important in my new role that we regularly update the contents of the shared documents on OneDrive. We use it for statistics, rotas, learning materials, finance and ordering and lots more! As we all work different shift patterns it is crucial that there is a shared space that we all can access and contribute to.

All in all, I’m a fan 🙂

Thing 10 – Hangin’ out on Google

rudai_tweet_When I first saw this post I contemplated signing up but then got a little bit scared by the fact that it would be aired online for everyone to see and resigned myself to be an observer…

But when I was approached to take part I couldn’t say no because the whole point of this course is to learn about new tools and to try things that I am not familiar with. It’s just an online chat with people… I can do that right!?

I was worried about a few things to begin with:

  • Worried my laptop would play up
  • Worried that the microphone wouldn’t work and I would sound terrible
  • Worried that I wouldn’t be able to connect and join the conversation (technical difficulties)
  • Feeling self-conscious and worried I would say something silly in front of a lot of people

I sat down about an hour before the start time to set up my microphone and prepare for the discussion. The email the Rudai23 team sent me was really helpful and covered everything I needed to know. Here are the example questions which I prepared for:

Can you introduce yourself and tell us where you work?
What’s your favourite thing?
How do you manage your time?
Are you enjoying it?
Are you looking forward to any of the upcoming things specifically?
Do you find the course a lot of work?
Did you think the course would be this much work?
Have you applied any of your knowledge in a practical sense yet? Although there hasn’t been much time for that yet!!
When or how do you think you would use each of the things in your library setting?

My laptop worked fine and I literally just plugged the mic into my laptop and that was it. I then logged into Google + and waited (I was a little bit worried how easy it was – I was convinced I’d missed a trick but it really was that easy). They just called me into the Hangout and I just had to click a few buttons that was it, we were online!

I am really happy that I took part because it was a really good experience. Because I had prepared some answers to the questions I felt it was easy to get involved in the conversation. The only difficulty is timing – so speaking when no one else is speaking otherwise it is very difficult to hear what people are saying. Overall I think we did OK with this though and everyone had their chance to speak and get involved. It would be easy to spend at least on hour on there because it takes a while for each person to have their say and we only got through a couple of questions in the 20 minutes.

The only drawback of Hangouts is that if you can’t get online and join the Hangout, lose your connection or the connection isn’t great in the first place it can make the experience difficult. But this can’t really be helped by anyone and should be considered when doing things online.

I will certainly be involved in the next one because it’s great fun and it’s nice to see everyone and have a real chat. If you have an agenda and a list of things to talk about like we did and the technology is reliable then I think Google Hangouts is a really useful tool. It would be really useful in the library to share a meeting with people who can’t make it in person. I think there is a lot of potential and I am going to explore it a little further. I haven’t hosted my own yet so I might have a go with that next.

Thanks again Rudai23! 

I am currently completing a free mobile learning course that teaches social media through social media for professional devlopment.

I am currently completing a free mobile learning course that teaches social media through social media for professional devlopment.