ORB – Oregonian Research Blog

February 10, 2009

Come Play in the DiRT!

Filed under: research,tools,web 2.0,wiki — Lynne @ 3:39 pm

Digital Research Tools (DiRT) is a collaborative wiki that lists dozens of useful web 2.0 research tools for inquisitive people (like us!) to do our work better.

Created by Lisa Spiro, the director of the Digital Media Center at Rice University, this wiki displays tools by topical headings including: “Mapping”, “Mashups”, and “Data Mining”.

February 3, 2009

USA.gov Embraces Web 2.0 Tools

Filed under: federal,government,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 1:06 pm

hp_flag1The federal government web portal USA.gov has a page dedicated to Government 2.0 resources. The Government 2.0 page links to Web 2.0 tools from USA.gov and  other federal government sites. With these tools, USA.gov hopes to engage the public,  improve access, and put a face on  government information and resources.

Here are just a few of the Web 2.0 tools you can find:

    RSS feeds –  Library of RSS feeds from across the government
    Web Chat – Live personal assistance available weekdays from 8:00 AM until 8:00 PM Eastern Time

Side note: Do you find the name Goverment web 2.0 a little clunky? You’re not alone. Mashable recently asked its readers to help rename “Goverment 2.0”. Here are the results.

August 22, 2008

Dipity Wilco Timeline

Dipity is an interactive timeline sharing website. Timelines can be created from scratch or by grabbing a feed (blogger, twitter, RSS).

Timeline entries can contain text, video, photos, or maps.

Viewing timelines can be tricky. The default view is a left to right scrolling view, but depending on the computer or browser you use you may or may not have a scroll bar. If you don’t have a scroll bar, you can drag the timeline, use your mouse scroll, or view full screen. Flipbook view is another option.

Dipity has also created some cool mashups. TimeTube uses your supplied word or phrase, then searches YouTube and generates a timeline based on the video creation dates. Tickr generates an interactive timeline using Flickr.

Anyone can create an account and build a timeline.  Dipity also allows mulitiple editors to work on a timeline. Here is a link to one I created for the band Wilco. The timeline is also available on OregonLive.

August 14, 2008

Popular Web 2.0 Sites Are Also Great Research Tools.

Filed under: photo,research,resources,video,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 12:47 pm

YouTube is widely known as a place to share funny videos. It is that, and so much more.

A couple of weeks ago, an editorial writer was looking for a transcript of a recent Bloomberg show in order to verify a quote. I could not find the actual transcript in our usual places. A search on Bloomberg’s site also came up empty. I decided to turn to YouTube, this time my search worked. It may not be the most popular video on YouTube but it met the writer’s needs, and in this instance I think viewing the actual program again was better then reading a transcript.

The photo sharing site, Flickr, is another popular web 2.0 tool. In addition to being a site for users to share personal photographs, the site is widely used as a photo repository for bloggers and news outlets.

Last month Brent Hunsberger was reporting on Nike’s Hyperdunk ads. When Nike decided to withdraw their ads, W+K also removed them from their web site. There were 3 ads in all. Brent had a copy of one but needed to see the other two fast, so he asked for help. I was able to find all the ads on Flickr.

In short, it is time to start thinking of these popular web 2.0 sites as valuable information retrieval tools. You will be amazed at what you can find.

July 31, 2008

Delicious 2.0

Filed under: Social Networking,tools,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 3:07 pm

Delicious has a new domain name, a new look, AND more features.

First off, the entire site has been moved to a new domain. The confusing del.icio.us web domain has been replaced with delicious.com. The change requires a new login cookie, which is why you’ll be asked to log in again. The old del.icio.us url will stay active.

Along with the domain change, the Delicious site has been redesigned. Personally, I have mixed feelings about the redesign. I really like the new homepage. I am not a huge fan of the bookmarks page yet.

The new search engine is impressive. Searches no longer take eons to return results. Also, you can now search within one of your tags, another user’s bookmarks, or your social network (yes! finally).

For more info on the changes check out Delicious blog and be sure to read about all the new features on the What’s New guide.

July 21, 2008

Web 2.0 is all about you, but is that TMI?

Future doctors sharing too much?
A University of Florida study published this month in the Journal of General Internal Medicine found that many medical students act more like students then future doctors.

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Would it bother you to know that your physician smokes cigars and likes to do “keg stands”? That your gynecologist was a member of a group called “I Hate Medical School”? That your urologist is a fan of “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre”?

That is exactly the sort of information many people share on social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace. According to a new University of Florida study, many medical students are sharing far too much.

“College has traditionally been a time in life when non-normative behaviors are considered OK,” said Dr. Lindsay Acheson Thompson, an assistant professor of general pediatrics at UF’s College of Medicine. “I’m not sure I would want to have a permanent, public record of everything I did 10 years ago, but many of our students are creating just such a record, and they need to understand the problems this may cause.”
Read more on the University of Florida News site.


Gawker thinks newspapers should ban comments.

Let’s begin with some truisms: a newspaper is not a blog—not even its online version. Conversely, a blog is not a newspaper. However, newspapers have been in the toilet lately, partly due to the proliferation of blogs. One easy pseudo-solution some newspapers have settled on is to act more and more like blogs. After all, this 2.0 world is all about “You,” the user, which in practice means it’s all about a false sense of democracy through publication of comments and user-generated content—just like a common blog. After the jump: why newspapers should stop slumming as blogs and disallow comments. Full post.

Mark Friesen points out that the stock photo they use is of a copy of the Newport News-Times. Looks like it is a 2004 edition.

July 8, 2008

SeeqPod – Music Search Engine

Filed under: lawsuit,search engine,tools,Uncategorized,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 4:47 pm

I spent some time checking out SeeqPod (as promised) – I was happy that I did. This is my new favorite site. Why? Because I love music, but more importantly because I am a news researcher and SeeqPod is a killer MP3 search engine.

Anyone who tried the music search engines from a few years ago would have been disappointed with the volume of broken links in the search results. SeeqPod doesn’t just find links, it finds playable MP3’s. I am not saying there aren’t any broken links, just that I haven’t found any. Also because the music listed is hosted on other sites the quality isn’t always perfect, but again, I have had great results so far. And, it not only finds what you are are looking for but offers suggestions based on your search. This is especially helpful if you aren’t sure of the correct spelling of an artist.

SeeqPod also succeeds in its presentation. Search results are presented in a simple search box on one side of the screen. The other side is a moving tracker of the site’s latest finds. Click the options button to embed a playlist or to find out more about the artist or song, including lyrics. Although, I had the least success with the lyric feature.

My one quip with their presentation is that I had to try too hard to find the pre-filled playlist feature. Not good for new users because the playlists are a great way for users to get a feel for the site and the quality and variety of music on it.

As with other Web 2.0 companies, SeeqPod is currently in the middle of lawsuit. Warner Music Group has sued SeeqPod (docket, PDF) over copyright infringement (complaint, PDF). Read more about this slightly unique lawsuit at the Listening Post, Bit Player, and the Electronic Freedom Frontier.

June 27, 2008

Another day, another Internet visualization tool

Filed under: mapping,Social Networking,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 1:35 pm

Many Eyes is a powerful social visualization tool developed by IBM. You can use Many Eyes to easily convert data into word trees, maps, or charts like this one created by Nathan Skidmore. Another benefit of this tool is the social component; interaction and data sharing is welcomed.  I encourage you to take some time to explore and linger, then share your thoughts and/or creations.

Hat tip: Technology Free-for-All session at SLA 2008.

June 2, 2008

Monday ORB Roundup

Filed under: Google,health,land-use,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 11:01 pm

May 16, 2008

Thursday Afternoon ORB Roundup

Filed under: business,Demographics,web,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 12:35 am
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