Wednesday, April 13, 2005

New DE page -- Table format

Well, the votes are in. A majority of people who responded preferred the Table format for the new Distance Education Library HomePage, so that is what is now linked from the Library HomePage. For those concerned about scrolling, I'll be shortening the tables as much as possible. For instance, we will soon have a Reference Database Resources page, and an E-books page, so those will help shorten the upper left corner of the table significantly.

Please note that I also have new icons for my online status for chat and IM. Generally, if I'm "online" for all of them, I'm likely to be in my office--so I'm likely to be available by phone and email at that time, too.

Please try the various services out--Skype may be of particular interest to our international contingent. If you download the software (and sign up for an account) you can call just about anywhere in the world to another Skype user for free--and to regular phones for a discounted rate. All you need is a broadband connection and a microphone on your computer (not an insignificant requirement).

The chat service ( requires no downloads or registration, only Macromedia Flash Player. If I'm not online, you can leave me a message (please include your email!) and I will get it as soon as I login.

The two IM services, MSN Messenger and AIM, do require registration, but they both have web interfaces, so you don't have to download the software. If you are not using them from home, please check the regulations at your workplace, school, or library. Many places still discourage the use of chat and/or IM and I don't want to get anyone in trouble! You may want to point out the number of libraries that are now using IM for Virtual Reference, if you want to try and get policies changed.

Jybe allows co-browsing (seeing the same webpages, web surfing together) in Firefox and/or Internet Explorer web browsers. I haven't used it much, but it should allow demonstrations of databases and searching help right online. (You might have to log into a database before we set up--I'm not sure how the proxy login will work if I'm on campus and you aren't! Test subjects--ahem, curious users are welcome to experiment with me.)


Blogger Snake in Fall said...

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10:06 PM, April 13, 2005  

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