Wednesday, June 17, 2009

More Things on a Stick Thing 40: Mash Up the Web

Hai hilarity, as this thing starts off with a music mashup. I haven't listened to the radio since the 1980s, and have just begun listening to music again at all a small bit, having stopped when my mom died in 2005. So...not musically up to date to be sure, except for keeping an eye out for the ever fragile Susan Boyle.

I signed up for and put in three musical selections (all I could think of before my second cup of coffee):

Tom Petty
John Mellencamp
Los Lobos

The recommendations that came back were:
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
Bob Seger
Don Henley
Jackson Browne
Nobody recommended like Los Lobos? :( :(
Actually nobody recommended like John Mellencamp either. Hmmpf.

I can see why those suggestions were made because of musical style, but I am no fan of Don Henley or Jackson Browne so meh. If I ever decide to start listening to the radio again (unlikely because they do so much inane jabbering between songs) I'll race right on over here and get some suggestions.

Book Mashing

This helps you mark your place in a book by letting you say what page you're on. It also obviously serves as a nice "what people reading spot". My first thought looking at it was "too much pressure" to show I'm making progress in any given book. What if my son sees it and notes I dropped reading Twilight for Eoin McNamee's The Frost Child as soon as it came in the mail? Tsk.

Lazy Library
I personally pay no attention to how many pages a book has, but we have lots of book report writers who would love a source of books 200 pages or less to work from.

Book Tour
Book Tour has one of those Google Earth maps with books piled on those lucky states which will have author tours. The east coast has piles and piles of books and Minnesota has about four books. Hey, we're the ones stuck inside six months of the year, come and talk to us instead! I do see some states have no author tours at all sad for them.

Lib Worm

A library topical search engine! I searched for the topic du jour here in Minnesota, "unallotment" and got two informative articles. Very cool.

Social Mashing


Nice tool for finding restaurants in a particular area by zip code. Links to the restaurant sites on the left let you take a peek at menus if they are available. Very useful tool.

Wheel of Food

Actually, the area near our library is loaded with restaurants, which this colorful tool shows off much better. It highlights at the upper left the beloved "Carbones" restaurant so we give this one high marks.

Even More Mashed Photos

Visual Headlines takes photos from Flickr and puts them in letters and you get the date. I kept waiting to see more load on the screen but nope. You could use this as your daily blog or site header. Other than that...zzzzzz


Not so fascinating as they think!

Flickr Memari

I couldn't get the program to grab from my Flickr, so I'm using this bold public library example. They put their staff pictures up in this matching game. Nice way to familiarize the public with staff. Libraries could also introduce new services this way on their web pages. It has that interactivity factor we're always looking for on our web pages.

Parents could certainly use this to put their child's picture up and make a fun game of matching their photos, or even do some recognition of people you know vs strangers type lesson, or letters of the alphabet...lots of possibility here in what looks like something very simple initially.

Video Mashes

I typed in Vietnam War and walked away for five mintes, and still they were searching...So as not to strain its memory banks I tried searching Susan Boyle, and got this neato timeline display of her saga thus far.

It could be useful to track some current topic and present a sort of living timeline of events.

Googly Mashes

Let me Google that for you
I don't see the point. Google is simpler to use since you just type in your term and away you go. You type in your question here and then you have to follow their tiny url...I bet I'm missing the point. It can happen. I typed in that ever gnarly question:

"How much wood would a wood chuck chuck if a wood chuck would chuck wood?"

There are 2,180,000 results for that question so it is, in fact, a burning and valid query.

Crime Reports

Another Google Maps result. It found no crimes near our library and unfortunately we know that is incorrect.

Walk Score

Shows you places of interest in your area within walking distance of the address you put in. A nice way to get a feel for an area. Who knew there was a comic store near me? Off I go! The walk score for my home is only 48 out of 100 however, and it is listed as being "car dependent".

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