Web 2.0: Searching Innovations Online
(An Infopeople Online Learning Course)
November 6, 2007 - December 18, 2007
(break Nov. 20-26 for Thanksgiving)
With the 2.0 revolution, almost everything on the web seems to have become social, shared, collaborative, and focused on fun. For many of us in libraries, this shift to user-built content and trusting the wisdom of crowds seems chaotic, out-of-control, and threatening to our values for quality information and manageable services.
- Do you wonder where is 2.0 taking the web and the world of information?
- Do you know how to sift the worthwhile 2.0 content from the trivial?
- Do the wikisphere and the blogosphere seem promising, but you aren't sure how to find what's reliable and useful?
- Are you curious how Google is changing and where Google is going?
- Do you know the unique search strengths of Ask.com and other alternatives to Google?
- Do you wonder if there are ways to include social sharing sites into web searching?
- Have you discovered the most time-saving uses for tags, RSS feeds, and other new web tools?
- Are you concerned how to keep up with it all?
In this course, you will explore the questions above and others in practical everyday applications. You will become acquainted with the major 2.0 media spaces and how to search their content effectively. You will learn to use and find customized meta-search engines to drill vertically into almost any topic with a web presence. You will harness the convenience of RSS feeds to help you keep current.
Workshop Description: This five-week online learning course offers much of the same cutting-edge, rapidly-evolving content as the recent on-ground workshop with the same name. Through readings, individual exercises, quizzes, and discussion forums, participants will get a solid grasp of the usefulness of finding information using the best of the Web 2.0. The instructor will provide cheat sheets and a webliography that will help you apply what you learn and keep up to date.
Preliminary Course Outline: Using your web browser and your Internet connection, you will log in to the Infopeople online learning site and complete the following learning modules:
- Module One: The Energy and Power of Web 2.0 for Finding Information
- Trends, values, tools, practical applications of Web 2.0
- How tags work and the do's and don'ts of tagging
- Using tags in del.icio.us to organize and find quality websites
- Module Two: Web Search Innovation Trends
- What's new and what's not in Google, Ask, and other search engines
- Finding and using Customized Search Engines for focused topics
- Module Three: Blogs and Wikis as Rich Information Resources
- When to turn to blogs and wikis
- Finding quality blogs
- Finding quality wikis
- Module Four: RSS Feeds: Trapping What You Need to Keep Up With
- When RSS feeds are useful, where they occur
- Finding RSS feeds
- Optional activity: Bloglines as your RSS feed reader
- Module Five: Finding Within Participation Sites
- Finding unique content in sites like Flickr, YouTube, Ning, LibraryThing, Yahoo Podcasts
- Where does Web 2.0 seem to be heading in the future?
Pre-workshop Assignment: We ask that everyone who registers for this course create their own del.icio.us and Bloglines accounts before the course start date. Instructions for creating the accounts can be downloaded here: Word - PDF.
Online Learning Details:
This five-week course will be taught online using the web. We will take a break Nov. 20-26 for Thanksgiving. When you register, you will receive a registration confirmation which will include the URL to get to the course, as well as a username and password.
Every student proceeds through the online learning modules at his or her own pace. Students should expect to commit to spending a minimum of 2 to 2 ½ hours per week on this course in order to be successful. You can work on each module at your own pace, at any hour of the day or night. However, you will be expected to log in to the course each week to do that week's assignment. We ask that you log in sometime during the first week of the course to begin the course work.
Your instructor will be available for limited consultation support for two weeks after the official end date of a course, and the course material will stay up for an additional two weeks after that, to give those who have fallen behind time to work independently on the course. However, you will be expected to accomplish the majority of the course in synchronization with your peers during the first five weeks.
Who Should Take This Course: Anyone from the California library community with an interest in keeping up with or finding quality information in the new 2.0 web.
This course is taught over the web. You must:
- Have an Internet connection and Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher.
- Be able to save Microsoft Word .doc or Adobe .pdf files to your computer and print them out. (For .doc files, a free Word Viewer is available at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/search.aspx?displaylang=en. Search for "Word Viewer." For .pdf files, a free Adobe Acrobat Reader is available at http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/main.html).
- Be comfortable navigating on the web and navigating back and forward on a website that uses frames.
System Requirements: The online learning product that Infopeople uses is called Angel. The following are minimum system requirements for using Angel. You will need access to a computer that has at least these specifications to participate in an online course:
- Internet Explorer 6.0 and above, Netscape 7.1 and above, or Firefox 1.5 and above
- Mozilla 1.4 and above (which is the same engine as Netscape 7.1), Safari 2.0 and above, or Firefox 1.5 and above
- OS X and above (OS 9 will NOT work with our online learning product)
To be successful in this course, you should also be familiar with basic web searching.
If you are not comfortable with any of the above, please consider taking this course with a colleague who does meet these requirements.
Fee: This first session of this online course is free to those in the California library community and is not open to those outside California. Depending on the availability of future grant funding, additional future sessions of this course may or may not be free to those in the California library community.
Course Start: This five-week-long online learning course starts on Nov. 6, 2007.