8 June 2010

RSS Feeds, Screenshots, Blogging and Getting Social!

RSS Feeds
Today I have suffered a digital identity crisis!
As stated in my first blog, I knew I had set up RSS feeds as part of a workshop exercise. This was a couple of years ago, and I had totally forgotten about them since - today I found them amid much confusion.

I have two Google identities (don't ask, it's a long story). Last night while looking at the 'Cam23 blog', I decided to add the 'Cambridge 23 things' bundle kindly supplied by 'Girl in the Moon'. So far so good. I'd been editing my blog so Google used that identity when I saved to Google Reader as directed. Today after using iGoogle (using my other identity), I went to look at the blogs on Google Reader only to find no sign of them. However I did find all those RSS feeds I had set up before - quite a few unread needless to say!

All of which brings me back to my original view of RSS. It can be a great tool for keeping abreast of one's field of work and interests - but choose them with care, don't rush into subscribing to everything...it can be very easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer volume. Also be equally ruthless at deleting those that are no longer of interest.

With this in mind I've decided just to stick with the Cambridge 23 blogs to start off with, and build up others naturally as I come across others that are meaningful to me, so as not to become overwhelmed again (I'd sooner follow a few things in depth than skim many - part of me always feels I must be missing the best bits if I do that!)
Thankfully no such problems with Screenshots. I've always found this facility so useful - from use in a presentation when trying to describe how to set-up an online questionnaire, to explaining to the IT Dept. exactly what the error message said. Definitely a skill worth picking up (Also worth knowing that if you hold alt as well as print screen, then just the active window is pasted in - I had several windows open when I took this screenshot).
The hardest part of blogging has been thinking of what to say and how to say it - it is certainly an interesting experience. I must admit I am enjoying the technical side of the 23 things rather than finding the right words to explain the experience (this most definitely won't be the wittiest of the group!!). I suppose it says it all that the delay in starting the blog was the time taken to choose a name. I am hoping it will become easier with experience, but I think I can safely say that I am not a natural blogger.

Getting Social
So far I have only "dipped my toe in the water". I've commented on a couple of blogs (one under each of my pseudonyms- courtesy of  the Google Reader confusion). I know I will enjoy this part of the exercise - I am an avid commenter on Facebook, and a forum I subscribe to. Somehow it is always easier to respond that create... I look forward to making more connections in the next few weeks.


  1. Like the lizard! I'm using Google Reader but am not entirely sold on it either, it seems to be difficult to organise the feeds once you have got them!
    Had an interesting chat with Web 2.0 and Libraries yesterday, about skim reading v study in depth.
    Hope you enjoy this week's Things.

  2. Yes thanks - Doodle is my kind of application - quick and easy to set up and makes the job of organising a meeting much more pleasureable. Not moved onto Thing 6 yet, but I already use Google calendar extensively for home use.