FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

This blog has been set-up as part of the 23 Things @ NEFLIN project. The 23 Things encourage all of us to experiment and learn about the new technologies that are changing how information is used and created on the Internet today.

23 Things @ NEFLIN offers ideas to "jump start" your learning. We hope you will share your ideas on how these Web 2.0 tools can be used in your libraries and media centers. We have used many Web 2.0 tools to design this program, including Blogger, Flickr, YouTube, PBWiki & Bloglines—which we learned as we went. You can learn them, too.

  1. How does this online learning program work? This is a self-discovery program that allows participants to take control of their own learning. Participants are encouraged to work together with others in their buildings and throughout the region and to share their insights and discoveries with others through their blogs and in person. 23 Things @ NEFLIN is web-based and not tied to any particular computer. You can work at home, at school, at your public or academic library. You may need to work at home if your place of work or local library blocks multimedia or other sites.
  2. Why Do This? This is a great chance to spend time on your personal and professional development. All library staff need to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technology tools that Web 2.0 is bringing us everyday. We need to take time to learn how the tools can be utilized in or with our libraries. And we will know what our library users, especially younger users, are talking about!
  3. Who can participate? This program is open to all.
  4. If I'm not a NEFLIN member, can I still participate? Yes, by all means. You can track your progress on your blog. We welcome participants from other libraries to join in the fun and follow along, but you do not need to register.
  5. What if I get behind? Everyone will work at their own pace.
  6. How long do I have to complete the program? You can take as long as you wish to complete the program.
  7. How do I track my progress for the 23 Things? You will create a blog of your own in Thing 1 to track your progress. Please use your blog to write your reactions to the lessons and add any ideas you may have on how to use Web 2.0 tools for yourself and your library. This is your time to experiment, have fun, and learn at you own pace. Links to the blogs of all participants are listed on the front page of this blog. Include the Thing # and title in the heading of each post. It will help you track your progress. It is helpful when you want to refer back or add something new on a specific topic or tool, too.
  8. How will you know I have done all the Things? You will write about each Thing you complete.
  9. Can I blog anonymously? Yes & no. Since you control all the information that you share on your blog, you can choose to use a screen name to keep yourself anonymous if that makes it easier/more comfortable for you. But, really, why be anonymous? Other 23ers want to know who you are so they can share and learn more. It is not necessary to put all your personal info in your profile, but complete anonymity works against the social community we want to create with 23 Things @ NEFLIN. Chip Halvorsen at ACLD wrote a nice bit about privacy issues if you have these concerns.
  10. How much do I have to write in my blog posts? Each blog post must describe which Thing you have completed (remember to put that in the post title, too), what your experience was learning about it--easy, hard, impossible--ideas how you can use this in your library or media center or in other areas, and other comments on the process. While we don't expect a dissertation on every Thing, we do expect thoughtful reflection and active participation that is clear in the post. Single line posts or those that show perfunctory participation will not be counted.
  11. Will there be any training classes offered on how to do this? This is an independent learning experience and can be completed on your own. We have linked to the weekly newsletter that includes hints about the Things.
  12. Is there any tech support? No.
  13. What if I need help - who can I call? Since this program is self-directed and is being completed by many staff members throughout the system simultaneously, you are encouraged to work with colleagues, friends and family along your discovery journey.
  14. Do any of the 23 Things @ NEFLIN require downloads? Flash is required to view many of the applications. Chances are this is already installed on your computer, but if it is not, click here for a free download. Adobe Reader is required to read a few of the links. If you do not have it, you can get it free here. Java needs to be enabled for many of the applications, too (instructions on how to enable Java). Always check with your tech people before downloading anything. A few of the Things have activities that may require a download. However, most of the Things have options that can be done without downloading anything extra. Most of the 23 Things are Web-based applications that do not require additional downloads or plug-ins to work. Many Web-based applications have third party features that require downloads. These are not required—although they are often fun and add functionality.
  15. I've seen the list of 23 Things on the website, but how do I know what to do with them? Blog posts have been posted that contain the details about the discovery exercises for that week. The reason for this staggered approach is to allow participants the ability to focus each week on a different area without feeling overwhelmed.
  16. I noticed some of the Things have a section headed Challenge? What is this and do I have to do it? The Challenges are there for those participants who are already familiar with that particular Thing and want to learn more and/or for those who are intrigued by what they have learned doing the first parts of the Thing. The Challenges are all optional; you do not have to do those parts to have completed the Thing. If you do one or more the Challenges, be sure to blog about it!

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