Sunday, February 1, 2009

Picasa and Widgets!

If you've visited my blog before, you will be noticing a couple of changes today. For one, you can follow my last 5 comments on 'Twitter' and you can see the 10 pictures that I placed on 'Picasa' yesterday. For those new to blogging, those add-ons are called widgets; for me personally, it is another link to my life and internet activities that you can view. I have to admit, the pictures I've placed have not explored my family life and I'm not sure how far I will go that way if at all. Ethically, I think I should get permission from them before I do anymore of putting my life with them out in the "World Wide Web"! However, I do see it as an opportunity to explore the world around me.

I hate to admit it, but Twitter is addictive once you start using "TweetDeck". Twitter by itself really lacks intimacy; TweetDeck has you chatting in no time. Yesterday, I had a couple of longer conversations; one about Disney World and attractions in Orlando and another about 'Picasa' or 'Flickr'. I also managed to have a conversation with Alec Couros about things he would like to research with his Twitter Followers. I also learned that the Sarah Hill Alec talks to his EC&I 831 classes was demonstrating Twitter to a friend around the same time Alec was buying produce in a store! Twitter takes you from the ordinary life stuff we do to making connections about the things you want to learn.

For example, I learned about Picasa and Flickr through contacts on Twitter! As a result, I came to the conclusion that both are really about the same. However, because I have a 'Google Account," it was easier for me to go with 'Picasa.' I had actually experimented with Picasa before, but I can't remember my username or password for that account. I assume the images are still out there. That old cliche "use it or lose it" applies here!

The more I do, the more I realize these 'tools' and 'programs' are helpful to the way we communicate, they give us an opportunity to find people with similar interests, and really they provide the user with an archive of their activities on the internet. Picasa will help me organize some of the pictures from my past that I've been scanning and Widgets will help me make my Blog a little more interesting (or not). But when I show it to others who do not know this world, I can be a little smug and say, "Look what I've been learning!" LOL. To the staff of LLCS, I'm willing to help if you want to get started!


TH said...

Slow down Stpehen. JK! I regularly read your posts and not only do you push yourself I find your kindred exploration into technology also pushes myself to.

With your posting about Picasa & Widgets I decided to explore them last night (after the Cards lost). I have used Picasa before with some minor picture editing for family and friends and found it to be a rather simple and easy to use/follow picture editing tool. I have had some fun with the boys' pics.

The Widgets I explored to and have not found, as of yet, any major fun/interesting widgets I wish to embed in my blog right now. The ones from wordpress seem a little standard. However thanks for giving me a little push into something I overlooked in settnig up my blog.

Leanne Merkowsky said...

Well, you seem to be doing remarkably well when it comes to discovering and using new technologies . . . so I have a question for you . . . I am trying to figure out a way to put Flick'r on my blog as a widget - do you know how to do this so it works???

As for your comment about your colleagues and their willingness/unwillingness to incorporate technology . . . I am very impressed with your offer to help out and the encouragement/enthusiasm you bring to the table. Now, you just have to get others 'hooked'. It may be a good idea to have a pd day based on technology to give them some time to tinker and the novelty just may 'catch on'. Another thing that has worked in the past is writing about the teachers in your blog and including pictures (the great work they are doing with their students). . . they are usually curious enough to see what was written and will venture out to explore themselves. Good luck!

SKing said...

Thanks for your comments TH and Leanne! Knowing others are reading and seeing what you two are doing pushes me as well. Its strange by reading blogs I feel like I'm getting to know people I've never met better than I know some people I work with.

Leanne I had twitter conversation with @capohanka who knows about Flickr. She helped me with Picasa. I think you can google Flickr widgets. Or find @capohanka and talk to her.