Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Visual search engines

Silvia Tolisano's (Langwitches) review of kids Quintura caught my curiosity (thanks Bloglines & RSS). As my only experience of a visual search engine has been Pagebull (which I still love for its superbare search box screen and visual results), I thought I'd see whether there have been any significant developments in visual search engines (as in visual presentation of results of regular textual search rather than engines to find images).

Not with Quintura. Silvia's review: looking cool, and embeddable, with dubious results. MMM, I guess embedability is a desirable feature. But for a supposedly a visual search engine - What is visual about it? Aside from the overly cutesy picture background?

A cloud of words. Hm.

But google's top result (on: visual search engine) was KartOO.

KartOO uses Flashplayer to present the gathered and compiled results in a series of interactive maps - like concept maps. Stronger results (not necessarily most relevant) appear slightly larger. Mouse hovering over results displays lines to, I guess other pages to which it is linked, at the same time displaying more information about the site in the sidebar. Hovering over underlying association terms (eg 'lessons') gives different lines, and changes the sidebar list of associated topics with which you might like to refine your search. Icons you've perused are marked with a "/".

I still love Pagebull (Google's second result).
I like getting a preview of the top 12 results. It allows the resulting pages to speak for themselves - particularly helpful to people who absorb information visually rather than textually (ie people who register logos or icons more quickly than the point in words, or who recognise a word more quickly when in its familiar font/shape/colour)

Sunday, December 23, 2007

From wood to joy

First the path:
Sandra Dodd's Wood thinking-stick (my first thought? How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood? which I think is harder to type fast than say fast. second: mum's old camphor wood chest. third: I want to make a bookshelf for my paperbacks.)
--> Stephanie's post on her son's woodworking (at which I studiously avoid reflecting once again on gunplay)
--> her earlier post about late nights & trying to go to bed earlier (where I commented in sympathy: our nights are late, and I'd like them to be earlier - breathe out regret over the long-term visitors who destroyed our better habit a couple of years ago)
--> subscription to Stephanie's blog, and mildly curious about another post: The #1 song the day you were born discovered from
-->Josh Hosler that on the day I was born Judy in disguise (with glasses) was #1 in the US.
-->But what was #1 here in Australia? According to Oz Net Music Chart it was Sadie the cleaning lady by John Farnham. Lovely voice. Vivid character description - superficial characterisation. Ugh makes me cringe.
-->I did find a video at YouTube of the original performance but I hesitated to embed it here because it pre-dates sympathetic music-video and the dancers made me cringe worse than the lyrics - what a dreadful juxtaposition to the song's theme - so lacking in congruence.

<-- however Joy's birthday #1 was "Joy to the world" and that I've added to my happy songs playlist.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Cataloguing ... Derrida

I'm puzzled. A week ago I was to shelve Derrida (the movie) at MPOW, the call number: 801.95092.

Hm, I wondered, isn't 801 something to do with philosophy of literature? But the cover seems to suggest this Derrida (whose name I've only ever seen on a work in the area of art criticism) is a philosopher about everything. DDC: 801.95 'theory, technique, history of literary criticism'. (& I know 092 is persons standard subdivision).

Clearly I don't know enough so I borrowed it to watch for myself. I'm still puzzled. The DVD really seemed to be about the philosopher - a partial biography of sorts, with snippets of explanation about the area of philosophy that he spawned: deconstruction.

So... google 'deconstruction':
wisegeek "Deconstruction is a philosophy applied to literary criticism, as well as to criticism of the other arts"
... okay so maybe deconstruction is principally a philosophy of literary criticism?... No:

Wikipedia says: "Deconstruction is a term in contemporary philosophy, literary criticism, and the social sciences, denoting a process by which the texts and languages of Western philosophy (in particular) appear to shift and complicate in meaning when read in light of the assumptions and absences they reveal within themselves."
... which rather suggests, as do the movie and its cover, that this process applies to more than criticism of literature.

I'd be classifying it at 194 (persons treatment in modern philosophy, France) or 149 (deconstruction, modern philosophies).

Maybe the work was obtained (in this TAFE library) for use in the context of literary criticism?

Maybe I'll ask the cataloguers, they've not minded me asking in the past, but I don't want to be a pest.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Search fun at LibraryThing

HUZZAH! I have finally discovered how to search ALL fields of my LibraryThing including comments and review.


Yes using "" even for one word searches.

There is a WikiThing FAQ/help page that, although it doesn't make the method precisely clear, probably contains enough that I ought to have been able to make the logical extension.

It has been so frustrating: Stuck without a summary or contents field (why?) I could (though it feels icky) use the comment (or review - but that is way too icky because reviews are shared) fields to add information or keywords (not tags) that would enhance some items' findability, particularly summaries or notes from broad works' contents.

BUT for so long I couldn't work out how to get LibraryThing to actually search those fields.

YAY I know how to 'all search'.

Monday, October 29, 2007


Upwords HGM
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

Helen, Graham and I played today: Helen & I tied at 184. I was disappointed early on that my old dictionary (our agreed reference) did not have "meme", cause I could have switched three words for 22 points.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Ning - ?confusion

I'm stumped and I'm fairly sure it is not just because of the hour of night-morning. I've joined another ning network out of curiosity and I'm puzzling through the way ning friends work... I couldn't find a friend's page, or a way to add her to my ning friend list.

The Frequently Asked Questions: Friends says:

• What is the difference between a friend and a member of a network?

Members are specific to a network while the concept of "friends" spans across Ning. It's possible to be friends with someone without being on the same network as them.

Well, duh, of course its possible to be friends with someone and not be in all their network, but I just don't see how that is possible within ning:

That page then also says:

• Who can send me friend requests on Ning?

To protect your privacy, only people who have networks in common with you can send you friend requests.

So tell me again how the concept of "friends" spans across Ning? I guess it must work, and these two statements just appear to conflict each other, but if it does can someone tell me how I add a friend when I don't want to join the network they're in?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Exploring classifying while shelving: Rip Curl

About to reshelve Creating an Australian Icon [videorecording] : The Rip Curl Logo : a graphic communication case study, the DDC on the spine reads 796.1 - but I think ?sporting? what the...? What is the number where logos go? a design number? maybe 741.6?

Last couple of times I had questions for cataloguing their responses were helpful and kind, so I sent this one in too. And once again, a grateful and cheerful note came back: it had been re-classified (although my guess was off) 658.827

What tickled me most about the note though was that Paul challenged me to see why it had been given that DDC number. Grinning with delight that my desire to learn was recognised and encouraged I set out, thinking 658 sounds like a management number... hmmm?... Opening the enticing green, chunky code manual DDC22... sure enough: Management of marketing / Sales promotion / Use of brands and trademarks.

Taking another look at the DVD cover, the jacket did indeed refer specifically to the marketing context over and above the graphic design aspect:

"Provides a unique case study of the marketing achievements of a highly successful, all Australian business. Uses concise interviews, computer graphics, and attractive visual overlay, including excerpts from Rip Curl's own surfing films. Traces the evolution of the company's marketing images, and the important role played by Rip Curl's graphic design team."

I became curious: Which LCSH would apply to such an item? SMB & Libraries Australia agree only on:
Ripcurl. and
Surfing -- Australia -- Management.

Otherwise, at SMB LCSH:
Brand name products -- Australia.

and at Libraries Australia LCSH:
Graphic arts -- Australia -- Case studies.
Marketing -- Australia -- Case studies.

So cool, I do love to learn.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

bookmarked with diigo & 08/10/2007


  • I'm bookmarking this for my boys to find and maybe try.  Would I enjoy it?  Does it have a true range of options - like solar or tidal power farming?  Would I need such feature in a game to be satisfied with it?
     - post by moonflowerdragon

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Supreme Chief of All Hospitals

Supreme Chief of All Hospitals
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

A very proud gaming moment for me: becoming Supreme Chief of All Hospitals on "Theme Hospital"

"Print Screen" failed to grab a screenshot of this proud moment, so I had to play the end again to take a photo!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Blogging to productivity?

Diigo has some work to do on its blog post feature (with which it offers to help one post about a page to one's blog).

First problem:
By providing the link to bookmarked page at the top of the post, to insert my own comments before the link I went through a fiddly process of copying in some non-hypertext. Perhaps they could provide some default plain text preceding the link.

Second problem:
When creating the post at Diigo, while the difference between my annotations (sticky notes) and quotes (highlights) appears relatively clear, I don't see a differentiation between my post and the quoted (highlighted) components from the bookmarked page. Unless this gets fixed, I guess I could just continue to send as a draft ... which is probably a wise and elsewhere-advised move anyway. Having done so and looking at it later, I've tried using Blogger's quote style but it just looks messy now.

Third problem:
In forming this post, snippets I have sticky-noted have jumped ahead of snippets I only highlighted. I think I'll leave that as created so it can hopefully be witnessed.

However, that wasn't why I began blogging today.

Jumping between research for a current assignment, and feed-reading, Library Voice pointed me to Leo Babauta's post at Web Worker. I'm curious how it is going to appear.

10 Ways to be Productive with Your Blog Annotated
Leverage the power of a blog and an online audience — even if it’s just an audience of your friends and family — and become more productive.

1. Post goals.

  • potential conflict with # 3 below: one would need to consider whether a stated goal 'looks good' - post by moonflowerdragon

Once you’ve committed to a goal on your blog, you should also use the blog to report your progress.

  • I see how this might be useful... although there is a risk for procrastinators - what if career-related future readers lack compassion for the value of procrastination? - post by moonflowerdragon

2. Log progress.

3. Networking. The more people who read your blog, of course, the better it can be for networking.
If you’re ever short of ideas, post a question to your readers, asking them for ideas.

  • of course, for success in this you do *need* readers in the first place. - post by moonflowerdragon

4. Ideas.

5. Get help

  • I've certainly seen bloggers express gratitude for help they've received from their readers. Wouldn't I just love to have someone show me exactly how to prepare a consultation plan? - post by moonflowerdragon

7. Crystallize your ideas.

  • I've certainly found this to be the case. Unfortunately (for my posting rate) many times I also crystallize a realisation that I don't really want to reveal my discoveries so publicly. - post by moonflowerdragon

Friday, July 13, 2007

citing a widget?

Another quick post before bed...

According to MyBlogLog someone was googling for___ apa reference widget ___ which somehow turned up one of my posts. I wonder whether they were looking for a widget that somehow creates APA references, or wondering how to cite a widget (though I don't know why one would)?

If you ever stumble by again please let me know which, and what you've discovered?

Social Bookmarking Hack

I began today's diversion thanks to my +Blogger google alert (hoping to learn when if ever it becomes possible to daily post from delicious to Blogger). Today's alert included Palin Ningthoujam's post Automatic daily posting bookmarks to Blogger blogs. Apparently Palin's been waiting for the same feature to be made usable with Blogger. Palin has discovered that a daily posting can be done from Diigo. I've signed up but haven't set up a daily post yet, because my first or second act was to import my delicious bookmarks - I don't know what - maybe just to see what Diigo would do with them (My delicious notes became diigo comments)... but it was a lot of bookmarks and I didn't want them all posted just because they were all new to my Diigo account.

Diigo looks neat, focussing more on shared annotation than just bookmarking offering highlighting and stickies to whatever you select on the page. It even looks at first glance like it might help do what I was wanting between Notebook and blogging.

Somehow I went from that discovery to taking another look at adding social bookmarking buttons to my posts.

I'm very grateful to Hans of Beautiful Beta for his Social Bookmarking Hack

I'd love it if I could put the diigo add tool in line with the rest, but to work that out would steal more time from the assignment I'm supposed to be working on.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Ellipsis for me

Unlike Jennifer (Parenthesis) "Life as I Know It", I *can* often resist these online quizzes, however tonight I appear to have been in the mood. I almost quit right near the beginning because none of the optional answers appeared precisely relevant... I might do it again using other answers and see what happens.

On first go around I am apparently an:


I scored 46% Sociability and 64% Sophistication!

Your life can be difficult because of your insecurities, but you should know that it isn't your fault. YOU didn't ask to be thrown in around thirty times per page in every bodice-ripper on the shelf! Those who overuse you can kiss your . . . you know. You need to learn to hold your head high and glory in your solitude. You really do have excellent, scholarly tastes. You must never forget that your friend, the period, will be there to support you at the end of every sentence where you truly belong, and, if what is left out is as important as what is said, why, then you are as vital as the alphabet!

Link: The Which Punctuation Mark Are You Test written by Gazda on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test

Thursday, June 21, 2007

?Dodge Chrysler 318 v8 poppet valve clearances

I have a search challenge to play with. There was a patron in at the SMB library today who had been very well helped by the staff to find within the library what information was there.

He had been hoping to find the workshop manual for a Dodge Chrysler 318 v8 from which he might learn what clearance is recommended for the input and exhaust valves - he is fixing up the motor of such a car himself. Unfortunately we don't have a copy of that manual. I wondered to myself whether I might find the information he needs online.

I couldn't see anything immediately useful among the websites recommended by the TAFE for automotive students. The Yahoo autos directory mentions a Charger Club in WA catering to all Chrysler vehicles.

Hm, I've been googling with interest, but I'm not turning up anything that I can see being useful. There is a Chrysler owners club in Queensland, and an Australian Chryslers webring... Ah Chrysler restorers clubs... South Australia, Victoria.

LibraryLink responds to search for Dodge Chrysler manuals that there are manuals at Goldfields and Maribyrnong library services - only I have to check the details for each - and none appear to refer to the Dodge Chrysler 318. Actually there is only one that mentions a "Dodge Chrysler"again no 318 specified... how can I tell whether it would be useful?

I guess unless someone works out how to find online the specific information he wants, he might email one of the clubs.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Scribd - fantastic

I've just been helping Graham Bates with his blog over at Are we the Clever Country? His blog traces progress since he published his idea and rationale to colocate a thermal desalination plant at Portland Aluminium Smelter. After trying a variety of online document services we were able to publish a pdf version at Scribd and embed the document within the blog - so curious people did not have to leave the blog.

Today we wanted to check some of the references and couldn't read the embedded (ie relatively small text) version too well, so popped in to the Dying of Thirst document at Scribd. We discovered some of the features we hadn't noticed first time around:

  • Where people are who view the document, list and map
  • how they were referred to it (eg which searches / link sources), chart and list
  • comments
  • "Like it"
  • favourites
  • bookmarlets (people could digg it or tag it) (something we haven't been able to do with the pdfs Graham has cited).
I've just discovered that more people have viewed Graham's other document "Hot Topic or just Hot Air", yet they don't appear to have also viewed the otherone. I think we need to link from one to the other through description and/or comment.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Tammy Takahashi contends that Procrastination Is a Great Tool for getting things done. However what her explanation really reveals is that a valued large goal, broken into manageable chunks can actually be achieved if one is sufficiently motivated to complete the chunks and not procrastinate them.

I made sure to read the post because my day began with me wondering whether I might discover my own procrastination to have any value. Perhaps I'll examine the idea more thoroughly another time but for now I'll back to whatever I choose to do next: a task early; an overdue task; fun-easy or fun-challenging or not-fun... I won't know till I stop this one and move into the next moment.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

For my boys... WOW music video

While preparing previous post on citing YouTube videos, I was going to include this one as an example of one that did not have production credit... but then I found it did ... so it isn't needed there, but I can't NOT mention it here.

The video: World of Warcraft Big Blue Dress

was added to YouTube by Phenixxx. It does not contain any claim in-video or description as being created by Phenixxx, Credit in the closing scenes (not explained whether for music/video or both):
"Big Blue Dress"

As it happens, further research suggests that Cranius is also responsible for the video and music, and apparently vocal and character performance too. I'm curious, though I don't play the game myself, about the source of the dwarf back-up singers: are they Cranius-alts composited, or friends/guild members?

So surely the reference for this would be:

Cranius. (2006). Big Blue Dress [music video]. Retrieved May 18, 2007 from

How to cite a YouTube video in APA style

UPDATED: 5 March 2010

More recently a googler landed here from the query: ...directly quoting from youtube apa...

My original post did not contain a significant point for directly quoting: location reference.
{Note: A location reference would also be desirable if paraphrasing a point that does not represent the whole of the cited work.}

In APA style a location reference is included with the in-text citation rather than in the reference list: (Author, year, location) or Author stated (Year, location).
To locate a quote within a video I would use a time reference, eg:

"No monkeys were harmed in the making of this film" (Booth, 2006, 3:36)
Back to original post with minor edits:

I apologise if this page took a while to load, I love these videos because my boys love World of Warcraft.

I haven't really had occasion to need to cite a video myself, but as MyBlogLog tells me that visitors have browsed by my 'cite-a-blog' and 'cite-a-blog-comment' posts from google searches seeking APA style citation guidance for youtube videos, I've been wondering...

First, to cite a video seems on the surface quite simple:
  • title would be the video title [from the YouTube page only if there is no titling within the video itself],
  • as an electronic source there would be 'Retrieved -date- from URL' [since 6th edition, retrieval date not required unless source is likely to be changed] and 
  • author would be the producer of the video if known... which begs another question: identifying the producer. However for now, one calls to mind that
  • APA citation style for audiovisual media varies from print material in that the function of the originator or primary contributors is designated in parentheses, and the nature of the work in brackets after the title (American Psychological Association [APA], 2001, p. ?)... which brings to mind the music video which begs another question (if one's commentary refers to the music content is the reference to the song writer and if relevant performer?; and if one's commentary refers to the visual content is the reference to the video producer?; or does one in any case reference both?)

Back to identifying the producer:
  1. If the video includes an appropriate credit - great use that, (although one still has those questions about specific reference to either music or video content in music video).
  2. Many YouTube videos do not have credits, and there is a distinct possibility that people might post videos they did not create, such as the Slingshot Fun video in McConnell Library's example (McConnell Library, 2007) so that it might be best not to attribute to the YouTube member who posted it [and in this case cite and reference by the title], however:
  3. The personal web-cam style videos, apparently home-made by the one who posts them to YouTube - can they be credited to that one? If 'apparently' is not enough, what if the video's description contains a claim of creation? [I think if you believe the one who uploaded made the video, then cite their screen-name if they don't provide a proper name]
  4. What then about YouTube's "director" videos?
Perhaps I should test some... what about ....

Credit given in video:

If I comment upon Mike Spiff Booth's video content... maybe:
Apparently no monkeys were harmed in the making of Mike Spiff Booth's video Code Monkey (2006, 3:36).
to list in the reference list:
Booth, M. S. (Producer). (2006, September 23) Code Monkey [music video]. Retrieved May 18, 2007 from

however, would I cite songwriter and video producer both if I wrote something like:
The way Mike Spiff Booth shows it (Coulter & Booth, 2006) one is left uncertain whether Code Monkey gets the girl or just imagines he does "one day".
with a reference:
Coulter, J. (Songwriter & Performer) & Booth, M. S. (Videoproducer). (2006). Code Monkey [music video]. Retrieved May 18, 2007 from

Credit/responsibility appearing to belong to YouTube member/poster:

in text:
...when tipping in a loose page, only a minute amount of pva is required (molly1216, 2006, 0:17)...

molly1216. (2003). How to tip in a loose page [video]. Retrieved May 18, 2007 from

But what about characters:

Might one do this?
in text:
According to Ol'Chumbucket and Cap'n Slappy (2003, 0:47) "Avast" means 'stand and give attention'.
Ol'Chumbucket & Cap'n Slappy. (2003). Talk Like a Pirate Day: The Five A's [video]. Retrieved May 18, 2007 from


American Psychological Association. (2001). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Americal Psychological Association.
McConnell Library, Radford University. (2007, March 1). Citation Style Guides. Retrieved May 18, 2007 from

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Sunset on Lake Colac

Sunset on Lake Colac 16
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

On our way to visit my sister in Colac, my oldest son "Cricket" said "Take a look at the sunset on Lake Colac Mum, you'll want to take a photo". I ended up taking a series ... I LOVE a digital camera!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Cotton-eye Joe

♫ Where did you come from? Where did you go? ♫
Remember the Rednex lyrics?

Completely irrelevant but the above line has been repeating through my mind when a result in an 'any' Pagebull search on my screenname

reminded me to check out MyBlogLog to see whether anyone has visited my blog lately.

Sure'nuff some few had! <-giggle,clap-> And it was entertaining to see where visitors had come from and where they went
  • google searches for:
    • supunna picta (then followed my link to USQ)
    • citing YouTube (no, I haven't answered that yet, but I'm still planning to work it out UPDATE: yes, I've made a few guesses)
    • unschooler teen books (fairly sure my collation of library stuff wouldn't have answered that search)
    • "with that moon language"
    • pageflakes protopages netvibes
    • fun mmorpgs (did my story about my first experience help?)
  • eclecticlibrary even tagged my posts on citing blog posts & comments - is eclectic library actually Morgan of
That was fun. I don't appear to get enough visits to warrant a pro account with MyBlogLog though I have preliminary approval from the boys to do so whenever I like because they enjoyed my excitement about my blog being visited!

One guesses one has really contributed when...

one's post is included in's monthly roundup: this month in Australian library blogland! Thanks Morgan.

Funnily enough, I didn't notice that when it would have popped up in my rss feed, I only discovered it after experimenting with the visual search engine Pagebull, which looks like it could be immensely valuable for certain types of visual learners if the search ?algorithms? are as rigorous as we expect from textual engines. Not that I have the knowledge of such to compare, or guess whether it would be or not, just meaning to comment that while screenshots are great fun (and colourful) most important will still be relevance of results, with both it would seem to be a really good idea.

(thanks to Wanderings of a Librarian for mentioning Pagebull)

The Clever Country - Dying of Thirst

When Graham Bates was telling me about his interesting idea to solve Victoria's water crisis by colocating a thermal multi-effect distillation desalination plant at Portland Aluminium to make use of their waste heat to produce maybe 200 megalitres a day, I thought that a blog might be a great way to promote the idea.

A blog could also be a way to explore and develop such ideas, but Graham is still a little "computer1.0" (you know offline office tools ;) ) so he'd already fleshed it out into a documented concept paper. While I could cut and paste its sections into blog posts and link them together carefully, it wasn't going to be efficient for Graham's editing processes.

We experimented with Zohowriter, Thinkfree and Googledocs to get his concept paper online. Only Zohowriter included his footnotes, though it moved them from original page-bottoms to end of document. None of them completely retained his original formatting, and we did have to reconfigure the images, and convert a textbox to a table in Zohowriter. We discovered that Thinkfree would publish a pdf for others to view, although we couldn't upload a pdf there and Thinkfree lost the footnotes, so while ideal in the former respect, it became useless as a result of the latter. If anyone knows a free and easy-to-use file store and share site (that allows upload and public access of pdfs) please tell me.

I still thought that a blog would be useful for exposure, but I didn't get to it right away. With the media attention after the Glenelg Shire's Council meeting last week it became potentially even more useful an idea, so we sketched it up this week. Unfortunately someone who hasn't actually done anything with it has already tied up the preferred blogtitle, so Graham went with...

Are We the Clever Country?

Update: 16 June 2007

We finally solved the problem: I don't remember how we found it but Scribd has done the job in a wonderful way.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

inspired by advice

...or Bewildering curiosity

Hm, one of the CIL2007 bloggers mentioned MyBlogLog ... so I took a peek and I'm curious (well who isn't?) so I signed up to that too. An email telling me I'd been automatically joined to a (n apparantly default) community today had me checking back to see that a few people had at least scanned my profile there. I wondered why - did they like my avatar or screen name or just randomly clicked (if you're ever this way jessica217, sevn, holiday, please see if you remember and tell me)? They don't appear to have checked out my blog though - which I don't mind seeing as I blog for me.

However my curiosity did take me further, so though the latest posts at sevn's The Wrong Advices weren't relevant for me, his most popular post: Blogging is harder than you think, prompted me to at least make a note about the post, because it was interesting.

He's writing about Successful blogging - which presumes an other-centered purpose for blogging. Some of us blog more for the log than the web, with readership a bonus if it happens. A really big bonus for me if people who want to hear from me actually subscribe to my blog feed rather than wait for a letter (yeah I know letters would contain somewhat different stuff but if one wants to know what I'm doing one would at least see part of that here)!

The point that prompted me to write?:

Writing regularly:
It’s not easy writing everyday, let alone writing something interesting and insightful, but you need to try. Even if it’s just a thought or an idea you had, or a comment on someone else’s blog. You want to get into the habit of writing, so that in time you can slowly build up your output. Even if you don’t end up posting what you write make sure to save it. I often go through my old notes and find ideas that are worth revisiting.
There's lots of other advice too: about being honest, open, yourself; learning from others; not obsessing; commenting; joining blogosphere; helping others.

Somewhat related (at least in relation to the hard work) is advice at problogger. It's curious I drifted by two blogs about successful blogging today, maybe my guardian is trying to tell me something.

Hm, oh yeah I'm mentioning problogger because of that journey: Darren's post How Google Blogsearch ranks your Posts... In their own words! popped in my google alert for and +blogger (hoping to find a hack for getting a daily post here). Now because I don't have a daily post yet, and possible future relevance is a rather unlikely purpose for having tagged it for my own sake, maybe someone (like Rachel) might find it useful sooner.

Like supermarkets or anything 2.0? You *have* to see this...

Thanks to Library COGs, via Chadwick (InfoSciPhi) and I'd have seen neither without feeding from a Bloglines search on "Carnival of the Infosciences"

Sunday, April 15, 2007


Little Dot
Uncredited. (1988). Little Dot in the dotted town. Harvey Comics Spotlite, 4, [17-21].
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

I've been using Blogger's Dark dots template for everything *but* the dots, and I've finally had enough of the dots. And I spent so much time messing with the column widths to ensure they didn't split dots... no I truly have had enough.

Blogger's page elements makes changing templates easy, although I should probably pick one for certain before I go trying to hack things like the in-post bookmarklets.

I'd really like to make my own style, but I'm not sure I want to spend the time and frustration trying to find simple enough instructions.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

In what direction am I growing?

Taking a LibraryByte before bed tonight has made me stop and think. Helene shared some quotes, the third of which was

"People grow in the direction of the questions they ask” — David Cooperrider, PhD

[She had tagged it from the What I learned today... blog where Nicole had spotted it in an email signature {I'd love to hear from anyone who claims that email signature}]

Anwering my desire to know more about the source, google suggested an article which has given me another reason to spend some thinking-time on this quote. While Bloom & Martin wrote of the value of Appreciative Inquiry in academic mentoring, their perspective reminded me of a piece of knowledge I hope I act upon in my parenting.

we are by nature “heliotropic,” meaning that, “just as plants of many varieties exhibit a tendency to grow in the direction of sunlight (symbolized by the Greek god Helios),” there is a human tendency to “evolve in the direction of positive anticipatory images of the future”

Did you wonder about my first reason to think on this quote? I'm curious what questions I'm asking myself and whether the directions I want to grow might be better served by re-designing my questions.

Tell me, what questions have you been asking yourself, and is that the direction you want to grow?

For the practice and fun of it:

Bloom, J. L. & Martin, N. A. (2002, August 29). Incorporating Appreciative Inquiry into Academic Advising. The Mentor. Retrieved April 8, 2007, from

Blowers, H. (2007, April 6). Quotables.
LibraryBytes. Retrieved April 8, 2007, from

Engard, N. (2007, January 4). Great Quote.
What I Learned Today. Retrieved April 8, 2007, from

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

How does one cite a blog post in APA style?

Citing a blog post in APA style

Update: 5 Dec 2014
While I have closed comments to cut-off the spam, I still want to help puzzle through the query that led you here, so if this post is not enough, you're welcome to ask me through my new blog

Update 25 May 2010: APA's amended 6th edition example slightly better...

But it needs more explanation, particularly as there are likely to be cases where following their example could lead to the source becoming lost for lack of information. With corrections to the first printing of the 6th edition, APA have corrected faults in their earlier example of citing a blog post, and included an example for citing a comment to a blog post (APA, c2010, in pdf sorry, p. 6). Unfortunately three factors are still missing without explanation:
  1. Blog title. For the post, and comment from it, that have been chosen for examples, the blog title is contained the URL - however it must be remembered that not all blogs are hosted such that their titles show in the URL, and that sometimes blogs are moved. In such cases the title of the blog in which the post appeared might make it easier for other researchers to find the post (or comment) if the blog is moved after you have cited it. While in many cases author and post title might be sufficient, authors do write in different blogs, and over time might conceivably use the same post title in two or more different places.
    *By default I would encourage people to provide the Blog Title unless it would only duplicate information contained elsewhere in the reference (such as for this blog, where my name as author is the same as the blog's title).
  2. Retrieved date. Blog posts and sometimes blog comments are editable and removable, a retrieval date is advised when our source may be changed.
  3. Precise URL, the comment APA cite was one of a multitude, and I think that commenter did comment more than once on that date, the specific URL to the specific comment would be useful.

Update 28 April 2009: a.k.a screen-name

For my original post I could not find a word from APA on how to cite an author who uses a screen-name. Apparently since the 2007 update we are to use the author's real name if it is available, but if not then to use the screen-name as given (APA, 2007, p23).

Is this consistent with the APA style principle to provide enough information for the reader to find the source? Land (1998) proposed inclusion of an [a.k.a screen-name] sub-element... which would allow the source-checker to properly identify the item written under a screen-name. I'd prefer something like [as: screen-name] because it indicates how the author named themselves in the cited instance. To me "also known as" confusingly suggests that the author identified themselves by their real name when they are potentially better known by their screen-name. I'm curious how an [a.k.a] or [as: ] author sub-element might be handled by automated referencing tools.

Update 10 April 2009: APA's faulty example

See more recent update above. I have since discovered that APA (2007) has published a revised and updated version of section 4.16 (Electronic References). APA's example for a weblog post is a fail... for a start their citation is for a comment to a post, not to the post itself... In a new post I'll explain and encourage APA to edit their new guide as soon as possible. I encourage people citing blogs to use APA principles and guidelines rather than the failed if an example might be insufficient.

Original post 4 April 2007:

Clancy (2003) proposed one method for citing a blog post:
Vaidhyanathan, S. (2003). Universities, RIAA, and academic freedom. Siva Vaidhyanathan's weblog. Retrieved April 26, 2003, from /2003_04_23_blogarchive.html#200187673.
which I would only alter so that the publication date is in full, periodical (blog) title appears in italics and the whole thing not end in a period (fullstop):
Vaidhyanathan, S. (2003, April 23). Universities, RIAA, and academic freedom. Siva Vaidhyanathan's weblog. Retrieved April 26, 2003, from /2003_04_23_blogarchive.html#200187673
I'd have commented with my humble opinion to his post but I don't want to register to do so, having never been by Kairosnews before, and only stopping by today via my own google search for answers about referencing blog posts in APA style.
Citing similarly to Clancy is Scheidt [a.k.a prolurkr] (2004):
alan (Nov. 4, 2003). BlogWondering (what the heck is a blog?). BlogShop. Retrieved Nov. 22, 2004 from
It has been a vexing question for me in preparing my TAFE assignments. I have been working on a variety of assumptions:
When the blog has a distinct title I start from the Online periodical form (American Psychological Association [APA], 2001, p. 223):
Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (2000). Title of article. Title of Periodical, xx, xxx-xxx. Retrieved month day, year, from source.
but provide the exact date on the publication (APA, 2001, p. 225; cel4145, 2003,), the title or subject line of the blog post as the article, the name of the blog as the periodical and as most blogs do not have volume or issue numbers xx, xxx-xxx would be omitted. Also, according to the examples (APA, 2001, pp 272-281) and instruction (APA, 2001, p. 231) the citation would, after the source being a URL, not end in a full-stop (period, dot).
For example:
Shirky, C. (2005, January 27). Folksonomies + controlled vocabularies. MANY 2 MANY. Retrieved 14 March, 2007, from
The issue of volumes and issues does remind me of situations where blogs have moved from one place to another and the original site may stay up indefinitely. If one has referenced either site that shouldn't be a problem I guess. What if the whole blog is not moved, that is, what if the first few years of the blog remain in the first place, and the new place only contains from the moving date on? Then I guess that whichever I reference, so long as I do so precisely, will remain relevant.
When the blog is more a tool within a larger website (and doesn't have a clearly designated title) I've started with the online document form (APA, 2001, p. 223):
Author, A. A. (2000). Title of work. Retrieved month day, year, from source.
using subject line of the blog post for the title of the work, and giving name of the organisation (APA, 2001, p. 274) and section of their website in case the URL becomes irrelevant if the organisation restructures their website.
For example:
Blyberg, J. (2007). New website enhancements. Retrieved 22 January, 2007 from Ann Arbor District Library, Library News weblog:
It looks like I've followed instructions without realising it, because I've just discovered the instruction to look over the general forms and follow the format of the example most like my source and when in doubt "provide more information rather than less" (APA, 2001, p. 232).


American Psychological Association. (2001). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, (5th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

American Psychological Association. (2007). APA Style Guide to Electronic References. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
American Psychological Association. (c2010). Corrections to the First Printing of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Sixth Edition (July 2009) [online document]. Retrieved 5 May, 2010 from

cel4145. (2003, April 27). Comment posted to blog post by Clancy. (2003, April 26). How do you cite a blog post in your bibliography? Kairosnews. Retrieved 3 April, 2007, from

Clancy. (2003, April 26). How do you cite a blog post in your bibliography? Kairosnews. Retrieved 3 April, 2007, from

Land, T. [a.k.a Beads] (1998, October 15). Web Extension to American Psychological Association Style (WEAPAS) (Rev. 1.6). Retrieved 10 April, 2009, from
Scheidt, L. [a.k.a. prolurkr] (2004, December 12). Blog citation when found in an intervening blog. Professional-Lurker: Comments by an academic in cyberspace. Retrieved 4 April, 2007, from

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Powerpoint, making the most of...

ACRLog (StevenB) shared this video on optimising powerpoint presentations. I wonder whether I'd have improved my own presentation had I seen it last year. Perhaps I'll find a way to mention it to this year's students of the subject and my ABA colleagues...

(Irritatingly google has still not enabled us to post YouTube videos directly from YouTube to our New Blogger blogs).

Thursday, February 22, 2007

supunna picta

supunna picta
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

Unfortunately when I blog a photo from Flickr the description doesn't travel with it:

Cricket spotted this spider on the fridge. As it seemed clearly to not be a white tail I didn't kill it, but caught it and went looking for identification. I couldn't find its photo on the University of Queensland Find-A-Spider Guide, but then I was looking at medium-sized spiders because I measured it at 9mm rather than 8mm or less.

Thankfully the Melbourne Museum could identify it: "most likely the Painted Swift spider, Supunna picta. It is also known as the Swift Ground spider or the Spotted Ground Swift spider and is a member of the family Corinnidae (Sun Spiders)". They also linked me with the id page for the supunna picta.

supunna picta belly

supunna picta belly
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

I'm feeling very proud of myself because I've managed to add notes to this photo. (Identifying the anatomical areas involved in gender identification).

Thursday, February 08, 2007

23Things #23 Neither end nor beginning...

This 23Things program has been like a very eye-catching and satisfying pattern within the greater tapestry of my learning. While both life-long learning and web2.0 elements (blogging, RSS, wikis, YouTube, LibraryThing) had appeared in my learning tapestry before 23Things, Helene's (PLCMC's) project introduced:
  • a pattern (2.0 for the sake of 2.0 with library relevance),
  • colour (Flickr),
  • inspiration (other participants).
And this pattern is not ending abruptly... as Helene posts about other libraries' learning2.0 programs which have been stimulated by 23Things I find new threads with which to extend and vary the pattern. For myself I think I'll tag those '23+Things'.

For this, #23:
* What were my favorite discoveries or exercises on this learning journey?
  • That my posts might actually receive comments!
  • Flickr (for giving me a last straw excuse to finally obtain a digital camera
  • Bloglines (for a way to keep up to date without cluttering my email, and a source for a sidebar list of blogs I read)
* How has this program assisted or affected my lifelong learning goals?
  • It lent a rationale (encouragement from the library community) to play with some of the web2.0 tools that had caught my interest but for which I had no pressing need.
  • I've discovered (and subscribed) to interesting role models.
* Were there any take-aways or unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised me?
  • receiving comments
  • all the extras from and around Flickr
  • has been more useful than I expected: I can bookmark more pages knowing I'll be able to find one among them all, and I can easily send links to friends (after I've taught others how to use
* What could we do differently to improve upon this program’s format or concept?
  • As a non-staff participant I am hugely grateful and impressed that Helene foretold the potential from interest outside PLCMC and incorporated ways for us to participate. I'd like to know whether the extent of international participation caused any problems for PLCMC or Helene?
  • Ah I've just thought of a potential addition to content ... Ann Arbor allows non-patrons to add a review to their catalog-addon. Hennepin allows comments (which I think is even more inviting) but I don't know if one has to be a patron. Perhaps one Thing might be for participants to do so, to link to their comment and tell whether/how such catalog features would be a plus for library patrons.
* If offered another discovery program like this in the future, would I again chose to participate?
  • If non-staff participants are once again catered for, depending on the content, quite likely.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Ghost of Tintin - Brussels

Ghost of Tintin - Brussels
Originally uploaded by afkatws.

Having had so much trouble posting from elsewhere to my switched blog, I'm testing again from Flickr.

Lately I've been subscribed to the feed of PLCMC wiki of 23Thinging blogs, so I can take a peek at other peoples' 23 Things journeys. Pumpkin Pie & Willy Wonka mentioned searching Flickr for Tintin - I thought 'how interesting' and went to see what s/he had found.

What a clever, fun mural.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Problemoj pri Esperanto

Problems with Esperanto

Maybe I will continue to study Esperanto because it has been fun. However I continue to be irritated by the keyboard-unfriendly accented letters: even pre-keyboard by accent another letter to create the symbol for a different sound? Then there is the 'ts' sound of the letter _c_: why? Also why an accented _u_ for the sound for which a 'w' would better serve?

As it happens, I buzzed by an Esperanto page on Wikipedia, and thought I would check out the critiques. While there are at least two criticisms I consider trivial (ie some complaints about difficult pronunciations which don't seem too difficult to me, and complaints that Esperanto words resemble English words that they are *not* - {so!? that happens between languages and can help stimulate memory}) many I definitely recognised from my own experience.

Last night I was pondering how to represent the sounds with common keyboard letters. Geoff Eddy, among criticisms on phonology and orthography, offered a solution:
  • There really isn't much point in an accent which is used on only one letter; why not spell the accented U (which comes from Belorussian) as W?
  • There's no need to write the affricates as single letters. Replace C by TS; you can now spell SH as C and CH as TC.
  • There's no harm in replacing J with the otherwise unused Y. This allows JH to lose its accent, and GH can now be more sanely spelt DJ.
  • Assuming that HH is really necessary, the unused X (from the Cyrillic alphabet) can be used for it.

Whether X or Q or C is used instead of ĥ (HH) or ŝ (SH), another letter is available to represent another distinctive sound which could be used to create new words, or in suffixes to avoid homonyms. (Is there another distinctive sound that would be useful? I was thinking of 'th' [as in the] or 'th' [as in thin] but perhaps they are too similar to 'v' and 'f'?) Although going back a little... ĝ (as in gem or january) doesn't sound like dj to me.

I like the potential simplicity from word-building but it is regrettable that Zamenhof did not logically ensure that roots did not end similarly to his suffixes (or I guess begin similarly to prefixes). Throughout the criticisms were examples of compound words that could be translated in diverse ways because of this lack of distinctiveness. Justin Rye, among his detailed criticisms, discussed problems surrounding various word-builds.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Mi estas komencanto de Esperanto

Mi studas Esperanto ĉe lernu! danke al sennoma komentulo.

I first heard about Esperanto in a story whose title and even plot I've long since forgotten. I have a vague sense it might have been a futuristic science fiction novel, and I thought it might have been another word for a merged language like Spanglish.

Then some indeterminate time later I read about a homeschooling family from Ireland who had learned Esperanto. I found primers at either Wangaratta or Wodonga library and on the internet, playing with it for a little.

That anonymous commenter had directed me to videos at lernu!. Two clips were google videos (at least one of which is also at YouTube but the sound is not as good there).

Esperanto Estas:

While at google video I noticed "Wrecking Ball at the Tower of Babel" which documents a pessimistic view that constructed international languages are unlikely to become significantly useful because no international organisation has the authority to require teaching of it, no national governments would be willing to require teaching a language perceived as 'novelty' and "since language is related to identity, culture and memory, many believe that language erosion is comparable to cultural genocide" (Can anyone tell me if it is possible to link to a specific part in a video? This conclusion was expressed at 08:43).

That video suggests that learning a new language requires the elimination of the native language (citing for example Napoleon requiring schools to teach only one French language eliminating many dialects). However the Australian education system requires students to study both English and a language other than English (LOTE). {Tell me Aussies do any schools offer Esperanto?}. What if one then another then another (etc) school offered Esperanto?

Is Australia the only country that requires students to learn a second language?

Friday, January 26, 2007

23Things #22 Audiobooks

The original #22 of 23 Things was specific to PLCMC staff: create a NetLibrary account and access audiobooks from NetLibrary. Helene made an alternative suggestion for non PLCMC people: maybe explore MySpace or Facebook (I'm not in the USA).

When Missouri River Regional Library absorbed the idea for their own learning2.0 program they designated, for Thing#22: exploring Google Labs.

I started my trial of google lab's notebook before this 23Things endeavour ... I love it, although... I wonder whether I'll ever be able to post my notes to a blog rather than just publishing to a random alphanumeric googlepage.

In the spirit of exploring audiobooks: if you know where to look (within 'online databases') my local public library has Tumblebooks, but so far as I could see nothing for adults, and nothing downloadable like NetLibrary. This was a little disappointing: after exploring Garfield County Library's protopage (thanks to Helene Blowers' pointer) to find that their patrons can easily download a wide variety of audiobooks (through the Marmot Library Network)

In contemplating tags for this post it occurs to me that audiobooks - while a potentially valuable service (when they can be downloaded) - don't have the social elements of web2.0'ness. Would we want them too? Why not - I'd love to comment on, tag, and receive recommendations relating to items in my local public library's online catalog like patrons can at Ann Arbor District Library. If I had access to audiobooks I'd probably enjoy the same features in their catalogue.

So, please tell me if anyone has seen an audiobook provider with 2.0 features.

23Things #21 Podcasts Smodcasts

This Thing has given me an opportunity to contemplate how I listen.

I'm VAK, or VKA. When I think about listening I identify myself as a good listener. Yet if I need to listen to something which is not also visible I have to close my eyes. I prefer to learn things by reading or watching - it takes longer for me to process verbal/auditory material.

I believe podcasts are potentially valuable - many people find auditory input easier, quicker or more enjoyable to process than visual. They're just not for me.

For the sake of the exercise I did search (can search Title & Description, Keywords, Location, Host, Episodes),, and Yahoo Podcasts (easiest on the eye interface, more visual while less textual, gentler organisation) in my typical areas of interest: breastfeeding, peace and communication, library, finding nothing that I consider worth requiring the time to listen. Ah of course... with textual input I can scan for key points ... audio and even video are linear, chronological.

Also for the sake of the exercise I subscribed to Peacepod by copying the rss link to my Bloglines. It stutters - is that Bloglines or the source?

A cast of news items read in Esperanto reminded me of the language I would, in theory, like to learn. Logically podcasts could assist in language learning, but not for visual learners like me.

Perhaps other 23Thingers might have found interesting casts? Jamie mentioned the Dolphin Pod at Yahoo, I'd like to subscribe to it but there is no RSS, and Yahoo wants me to download a jukebox. Even if it is free I don't want to download it. However there is a blog which has an atom feed, so Bloglines can at least tell me when a new podcast has been posted.

Thinking about labelling this post, I decided that while I would not categorise podcasts as web2.0, the podcast directories are.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

23Things #20 YouTube... or other video sites

I've discovered YouTube awhile ago, so for the spirit of this thing I have been exploring Yahoo video and Google video.

Unfortunately I cannot blog directly from Yahoo video so I've copied across an embed script for a compilation of anime romance:

Although google video provided a button to blog and validated my blogger sign in, it then (twice), after I wrote and clicked the post button, told me that I had invalid login information! I can't be bothered doing it again. (It was only an animation apparently from Pixar with blue birds that was in a popular collection)... Oh okay, I've searched it out to copy the html (genre:animation birds):

Because I was frustrated I decided to post another video from YouTube - who told me it was successful, and it might take 24 hours to turn up.

When I looked back at the exercise I note Helene asked whether we could
see any features or components of the site that might be interesting if they were applied to library websites?

I'm not sure whether Helene was asking whether YouTube or other video sites might be useful tools to mash with a library's website, or whether library websites would be enhanced by social features such as patrons being able to upload their own stuff to the library site, or comment on things. On the latter: I don't know about uploading but I've already commented elsewhere that I love the idea (carried out at Ann Arbor) of patrons being able to comment and socialise around the collection via the online catalog. On the former sure - I've noticed a library tour video somewhere, and I can imagine something like the following playlist on a staff wiki:

Darn, I previewed three times before publishing and still forgot something:

I like being able to collect my favourites (or subscribe to another user's videos) at YouTube, which can also be done with Yahoo video but not google video. I went back to check, make sure I hadn't just missed it, but I still don't see an option for that, but I did find another funny video:

Saturday, January 20, 2007

23Things #19 Furl and other web2.0 tools

This post was originally published at 43 Things.

On first look at the "list of lauded Web2.0 tools": suggested by this Thing I couldn't see anything else I wanted to try however there are some I've tried prior to this suggestion - because I've been curious after other bloggers mentioned or demonstrated their own use of those tools.

For example:
* I've added a meebo widget to my blog, although I rarely sign in lately (because I've been too frustrated with my blog apparently being too big to transfer to the new Blogger).
* I tried and reviewed thinkfree when suggested after my reviews of googledocs and Zohowriter.
* MySpace to see what the fuss was about, but as I do not desire a large audience it serves no purpose for me.
* I've enjoyed finding funny or intriguing videos at YouTube and upon checking it today to see if I can show by link my favourites collection, I noticed I could create a video log even without uploading my own... so that's another todo!
* As the dates for nomination and decision are not indicated on the Web2.0 awards page I can't tell how out of date it is - because for sure protopage's update would have to rank it top of the start pages. I did consider PageFlakes briefly but when protopage came through with tabbed pages its movable, resizable, overlappable post-its make it far and away superior in my eyes (and I have tried both Yahoo and Google start pages).
[mind you, Firefox's tabbed browsing {yes, I know IE7 is reported to do it too now} means I can start with several tabs at once] Can you guess what I start with? (Or if you don't care and why would you?: what is/are your start page/s?)

For the sake of this Thing something new was to check out the awarded Bookmarking tools (although I don't know why was categorised as social tagging rather than bookmarking). While I was reluctant to try yet another place for bookmarking - Furl appears to offer more than that - by Furling a copy of an article I can retain access to it even if it is moved or deleted from where I found it. How tempting - I had moved from prolific just-in-case printing to a more philosophical if you need it you will find it whether it is what you originally saw or something new and yet now Furl tempts me to archive everything I think looks good again. Why this need (clearly I am hardly alone) to hold on to everything?

Actually as I am creating this post as a 43Things entry which offers for me to upload a related image I wondered whether Furl might have been useful in saving evidence of the effect of ZohoWriter's layer on my blog, which post (and pernicious [yup that's the word I want] layer) I've since deleted. Yes/No ... on furling a blog at a particular time does it save what that blog looked like at that time?

Soooooooooo... Furl account created and installed the toolbar Firefox must be restarted. There's little else to report until/unless (and in which case I hope to remember to blog about it): after a period of furling I do search and find within my Furl archive a page that has moved from where I originally saw it.

As I've been trying to find good sources for music for Fish (son#2) I might give MusicStrands and/or Upto11 a glance soon. A blogger recently mentioned Pandora but I was distracted into trying for myself: unsuccessfully (as yet) so perhaps next time I'll start with Fish's thankfully more easily identified current favourites. One Llama sounded promising with the reported 3000 attributes analysed but it is still on its way.

I note that I've asked a lot of questions this midnight hour. If all those questions were answered by comments .... unlikely as my readership is ME so I hardly need to comment, but let's pretend ... no but that explains why my midnight brain reminded me of Dave Pollards' tips for blog software/server ?programmers?designers to improve commenting features

So, three hours behind intention I'm going to shutdown.

Well my 43Things entry didn't get to here, so I don't know whether the image was supposed to transfer too, so here it is from Flickr:

supposed to be a screenshot uploaded to Flickr of the effect of one of Zoho's layers

Friday, January 19, 2007

From blog design to being loved

After admiring Colin's (on the glade) blog's design I started clicking from myBloglines to the sources themselves to try to work out what I like most in blog designs. I like cool, clean and simple, but I also love nifty things (attractive header, tabbed pages, sidebar widgets, even personalised icons) - my challenges, should I choose to take it further than contemplation, is to find my own design and then work out how to make it happen.

Today I found Elliott Black's Top 10, and although I don't really agree with those 10, I enjoyed a comment's pointer to Veerle, and also Powazek's Thoughts.

Then things got really interesting: not only were a couple of Powazek's thoughts entertaining, but an interestingly publicly intimate one sent me to subvert with Heather Gold (who I've added to my Bloglines).

Apparently during this Intimacy rundown (whose podcast and possibly video is still to come) Michelle Tea

talked about being loved for a day by love artist Kathy Izzo and what a difference it made to her day, knowing she was loved as she worked in a book shop

I'm definitely curious.

However the destination that tripped this from a diverting skim to a reason to blog was the poem that Heather Gold read: I Love You With Technology. I'm curious what my friend Cecilia's opinion of it would be. Can't relate from personal experience but I was definitely intrigued.

Using labels or tags

After wanting the new (or beta {I like 'beta' which might also be read 'better'}) Blogger for months for its promised labels, I'm now unsure how to use them.

See, I'm not sure I've tagged effectively at when I looked at the resultant tag cloud it seemed too diverse. Of course that could be because I'm not very narrowly themed, or because I use for too many purposes.

I remember reading about tagging methods, but if I remember one of the conclusions correctly (use numerous relevant keywords) they may have been for bookmarking even specifically Flickr and/or purposes. When one cannot search for words in the content more tags might help, although good descriptions might be better if they can be searched.

But when it comes to a blog, an overabundance of tags could be counterproductive.

How can I tell what will be a useful category? Sometimes my first thoughts for tags are keywords from the content, for which (now that I have a technorati widget instead of relying on Blogger's search box) I can search rather than cluttering my (admittedly as yet non-existant) label list.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

43Things to Blogger not working?

43Things entry
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

Before finally being allowed to switch, I couldn't get this 43Things entry to go to either the old blogger (because they no longer support it) or the new blogger (which I had created in case I was never to be permitted to switch). And the latter did not work even though 43Things said it did:

43Things Reported Post
Originally uploaded by moonflowerdragon.

How annoying - for all that fiddling I did compiling it with the ultimate intention of it ending up here, I'll have to copy it across, double-checking the html (because 43Things allows some nifty little tricks that I doubt will be permitted here).

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

I'm switched .... HUZZAH

Being frustrated that Blogger didn't want to (or couldn't for some reason) switch me, and not really wanting to start anew despite setting up to try out beta with a moonflowerdragon2.0, I once again (briefly) considered Wordpress.

Colin (on the glade)'s review encouraged me to persist with Blogger. And sure enough next time I went to post, and tried again to switch... it worked. /big smile/

So here it is, I've already been fiddling with some page elements (an easier way to add widgets) and my only remaining frustration is that this template does not have a header page element. I'd be happy trying a different template but Minima, harbor and scribe (the only other ones with a left sidebar, and a header) don't appeal.

So, in the process I've lost my pretty little bighugelabs thingy that I previously had at the top of my blog.
moonflowerdragon. Get yours at

Any ideas how I can get it there again?


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