Tech Roundup

Technology Committee members here at Towson University’s Cook Library are always on the hunt for new technology applications to bring into the library or technology-related issues our library should be addressing.  As we scour the internet for important, interesting, or just plain cool examples of technology applications, issues, or news, we post links and  summaries with our take here to the blog.

Fact Check your App

One of the discussions I look forward to in my library sessions involves fact checking. Students often say, it’s so easy to fact check with everything being online. However, I always ask them to go a step further. This campaign hoax around an app for drinking is a great example to bring up. The technology we are taking in everyday also needs a critical filter  and hopefully as we ask students to fact check their own research, they are also considering how critical thought applies toward more than just the written word. – Laksamee

Education Templates in Stormboard

Many of our librarians have been using Padlet this semester for student collaboration in a variety of classes. Recently, Stormboard was featured on Free Technology for Teachers as a similar tool, with additional features including templates for a variety of brainstorming and planning needs. Sticky notes, videos, documents, images, and sketches can be added to each “Storm” (i.e., “brainstorm” board). The “Storms” also searchable, each note can be color-coded, and users can leave comments on each piece of the board. The free version is capped at 5 users per “Storm” and requires users to create an account to participate. These limitations may make Stormboard more useful as an brainstorming tool for individuals or  small teams. – Kim

Foursquare and Recommendations

From ReadWriteWeb – An interesting interview with mobile app Foursquare cofounder Dennis Crowley about the beginning of Foursquare, “anticipatory computing,” and the power of data in apps like Foursquare to recommend or predict our future actions. As libraries continue to be concerned with data privacy and ownership, is there a safe way we could harness data like that collected in mobile apps to recommend information sources to our users? Does that cross the line? – Kim

XKCD: Manuals

And now a little technology humor, brought to you by XKCD.

XKCD Manuals comic

From XKCD: Manuals

We’ve been doing some usability testing on the library’s website over the past three weeks and this comic seemed to hit-the-nail-on-the-head with regards to creating a user-friendly website. They shouldn’t need a manual (or any other instruction) to navigate the website! – Kim

What do you think about some of the issues or technologies presented?  Have you found anything interesting online this week? Share in the comments!