Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | October 13, 2010

Library Thing

Ooooh I like!

I’d not even heard of Library Thing before now and I can see what a useful and interesting tool it could be.  Signing up was very straightforward.  Managed to prove I was human easily, and change my privacy setting in my account.  I did try to take a tour of the site but found it a bit overwhelming.  There was also an option to take a short introductory tour, which was far easier on the eye and brain!

I did have a similar, although far simpler, application on Facebook when I first joined – and see that they are just beginning to add Library Thing to Facebook.  It is lovely to see what other people think of the books you are reading and very useful to see what books you have read – particularly for the public who don’t have a lovely Galaxy system to beep and tell them when they are re-borrowing a book!

I didn’t look into how to set up a group, but think that if it were possible to set one up for members of Devon Libraries Reading Groups it would be very useful.  A couple of our reading groups do interact verbally which I think they find very useful (and perhaps isn’t actually so useful to us as they can’t understand why they can’t just swap a collection from one group to another after the first has finished reading it!).  Whether our particular library group would benefit I’m not certain.  They did have a swap around of personal details last week and it became evident that not all were, or wanted to be, computerised, so perhaps it would leave behind those who didn’t want to take part in this way?

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | October 12, 2010


Ahhh, well, now….here’s a Thing that I do do!  I’ve had a Facebook account for some years now and have to admit to using it on a daily basis and, yes, I do play their silly games!

I originally joined when invited by an old school friend and initially thought of it as an extension to (and now in my eyes a replacement for) Friends Reunited.  I am pleased to say that, being a goody goody, I was already a fan of Devon Libraries!

I think that Facebook would be  a very useful tool to individual libraries too.  Being able to comment via Devon Libraries is useful, but I think that if libraries were able to take up the option of having their own pages too, this would be very helpful as we would be able to keep the information current and relevant to our borrowers, whilst the information on Devon Libraries would, presumably, reach a wider audience geographically.

I don’t put a lot of personal information on Facebook.  I did find an interesting section the other day which listed phone numbers of some of my unsuspecting friends – including home and mobile numbers.  I think there is still a lot of naivety about the amount of information that is accessible – if we can see it, surely Facebook are collecting it too.  Keeping an air of mystery seems very sensible!

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | October 12, 2010


For some reason it makes me think of cakes…..

I didn’t have a clue what delicious was before undertaking this part of the 23 Things, but following the instructions on the blog made setting up the account easy.  I did, however, have trouble with downloading the toolbar widget.  The instructions are there as you set up, but for some reason I couldn’t get my browser (Safari) to play the game.  But then again, Kev always takes off any new toolbars I download the minute he uses the computer, so perhaps I’ve just saved him a job!

I’ve managed to add 23 Things and other favourite websites to my delicious account, adding descriptions and tags, which I think will be useful.  I wasn’t sure about the privacy issue with regards to delicious so I’ve copied part of it from their webpages.  In this day and age it does seem pretty standard…

“We may collect personal information, including email addresses, when individuals register to use the Delicious website and services, post a link to the Delicious website or submit questions, comments or bug reports. We may also, at times, collect our users’ IP addresses and information regarding our users’ use of our website and services. We may use such IP addresses to help diagnose problems with our servers, track movement within our website and, if necessary, deny service in accordance with our Terms of Service. We may also collect information related to the referring URL, access times and browser type. Unless required by law, we will not share our users’ personal information, Internet Protocol (IP) addresses and usage information, except with their consent or in aggregate or anonymous form, with third parties.”

To be honest I don’t think that social bookmarking is going to make a huge impact on my personal life!  Perhaps I’m too set in my ways but I have my favourites already in my favourites account and I know where to go to find like minded people so I can pick steal their ideas too!!  I can see it would be useful from a library blog/professional point of view though.

I did get a message to say I was first to bookmark some of the pages I added so perhaps I’m doing other people favours!


Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | May 20, 2010

RSS? Yes, Yes!

Aha!  From one extreme to another.  No blogs for ages and now I won’t shut up.  Managed to add the link to NASA on my blogroll and have now moved onto the next step of 23 Things by setting up an RSS account.  As suggested I looked at the article about Google Reader v Bloglines and then took the Google Reader route.  It’s very easy to use (hurray!) and had a helpful little video for the technologically dim (though even I only had to watch it once!).  So far have subscribed to 23 Things feed, aforementioned NASA feed, the feed of a friend in the USA who is a stay at home dad caring for his three children (who is a former librarian who should blog about that life as it would make us realise how very lucky we are over here!) and finally to one of my favourite scrapbooking sites.  I think the last of these will be particularly helpful as I’ve tried several times to subscribe to email updates for the site and it’s never worked properly, so I never know about new projects until people start Flickr-ing them and I’ve missed out on the fun.  Hopefully the RSS feed will put all that right – now I just need to find the time to take part!

Okay….on to the next step!

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | May 20, 2010

RSS Feeds

Have to admit that I know just about nothing about RSS feeds!  Well, I know what they are and what they do but for some reason I’ve never had any joy subscribing to them, but then again have never asked for help to do so!  But, in the spirit of things, I’m going to ATTEMPT to do a link to the NASA image of the day RSS feed.  I know it’s not strictly technological, but on the other hand I don’t think you can get much more technological.  Hope it works and hope you enjoy the pictures.

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | April 5, 2010

Old Bag Generates Images

Or at least I hope I have…. Lets see….


Oooh, I like it!  This is an image of Holly I had stored on Flickr from August 2008.


Went onto the site from our Devon 23 Things site and the above War-Hol-ish picture is the result.  This may well become addictive!  Thanks Fliss – love this toy!

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | April 5, 2010

Flickr-ing Old Bag

I do feel a bit of a cheat at this point as our first two missions on our 23 Things adventure this time around are adding photos to your blog and creating/using a Flickr account.  I’d already had a go at adding photos  and I’ve had a Flickr account for coming up 2 years now.  I have tagged for the first time though, thanks to 23 Things – and discovered that you need to put your tag inside inverted commas unless you want Flickr to helpfully divide up all the words.  Yes, my first tagged photo has ended up in categories “Devon”, “Libraries”, “23” and “things” rather than “Devon Libraries – 23 Things”, but then that’s what the learning process is all about….messing up!

I do protect lots of my Flickr photos so that only friends and family can see them.  I started using Flickr after joining a scrapbooking project online – Flickr was one of the places that the group shared their photos – and it kind of grew from there.  A friend I made through the scrapbooking project was undertaking another project to take a photo every day that year.  I joined in – my project being called “Arfur” as I was just doing half a year rather than the whole thing.  We carried on and did the following year too.

Flickr’s a lovely way to share photos and be nosy!  Feel free to check out the photos in the box on the right of this screen.  Once you get onto the Flickr site, if you want to see my library photos you can type “Devon Libraries – 23 Things” into the search engine, top right, and they should appear.  Hope to see my fellow 23 Thing-ers adding some soon too!

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | March 29, 2010

An Old Bag’s Medical Requirements #1 – hearing aid

So, Kev comes home from work on Friday saying he’s seen some nice things destined for a skip (oh we do know how to live!) on the building site where he’s working and had the foreman’s permission to “save” them.  One of them’s a pinboard for our daughter’s room (of which I’m quite jealous), the other is a white board!  Hurray!  Yes, that does actually make me quite excited – how sad!  He said he’d put it up on the wall next to the computer so I could write important messages on it.  He came downstairs and said it was up and that there were a couple of squirrels on it, but it looked okay.  Hmmm, squirrels?  How ususual…had better go and have a look.  Came back downstairs to him and said it looked great but I’d not found any pictures of squirrels on it……  He just gave me a look and carefully annunciated the word….SCREW HOLES.  Ooops.  One hearing test coming up! The joys of approaching 40….

Notice board of "important" messages and "squirrels"

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | March 19, 2010

Out & About with an Old Bag #2

Another out and about so quickly?  Yes, because I wanted to tell you that this weekend is the National Trust’s open weekend, when non visitors can go and visit their properties.  You’ll find more details at

Killterton Old Bag

Here’s the Old Bag visiting Killerton at the end of February to see the beautiful display of cyclamen by the chapel – another view of the flowers can be seen in my current blog header.  Jenny The Boss had told us about it and recommended we visit and we were so pleased that we did.  It was an absolutely glorious sight and they were the tiniest cyclamen I’ve ever seen – so tiny in fact that it was actually quite difficult to get a photo without the flowers blurring out of focus (although perhaps if I was better with the camera perhaps that wouldn’t have happened!).  The rest of the walk around the garden was lovely.  Although the main garden was pretty bare, there were carpets of crocus and swathes of snowdrops – a glorious sight.  We also came across several squirrels, one of which was so intent on digging for his supplies in the middle of one of the pathways(!) that he let us get quite close to take his photo…including one of his very dirty nose having rootled around in the dirt so much!

More photos of our Killerton trip can be seen on my Flickr photostream on the right side of my blog.

Hope that you do manage to get to a National Trust property over the weekend.  We are going to try to get to Stourhead House, weather permitting!

Posted by: adventuresofanoldbag | March 17, 2010

Out and About with an Old Bag #1

The weather on Valentines Day this year was so beautiful that we decided to go out on a bit of a trip.  Since this time last year we’ve been geocaching.  For those of you who haven’t come across this before, it’s kind of a treasure hunt.  If you know about letterboxing on Dartmoor, it’s a similar principle but higher tech.  It’s all run from the geocaching website.  You can join for free.  All you need is a GPS unit which allows entry of north and west co-ordinates and off you go.  You put your postcode into the website and it will bring up a list of geocaches near to your location.  You download this information to your GPS and off you go to go and find the cache.  Caches are any size, from a teeny tiny micro container to big ammo boxes.  They can contain anything that will fit basically!  Each one will include a log book though in which you add your caching name (ours is HEJ Hunter) and the date found.  When you return home you enter on the cache’s page that you have found the cache too.  All sounds a bit mad I’m sure, but it’s a good hobby and has taken us to places that we’d never have thought of visiting otherwise.

Our walk on Valentines Day took us down to a cache in Cornwall called Tregardock Beach.  We really would NOT have visited here without the prompt of geocaching!  The beach is on the north coast of Cornwall just past Camelford and just before Port Isaac and basically seems to be a location for surfers and dogwalkers.  The path led straight down – literally – to the beach.  Unfortunately our timing was a little out and the tide was in, but in a way I was glad as the last little bit of the route down to the beach was via a rather shaky looking wooden set of steps.  It didn’t actually matter that we couldn’t get down to the beach as the view along the coast was absolutely stunning and well worth the walk.

Tregardock Beach Bag

Of course, being very generous Old Bags, the 2 of us stayed put and took the essential photos while the other HEJ Hunters went off and located the cache.  A brave sacrifice I’m sure you’ll agree!

Can you see it yet?!

There’s a link above to the geocaching website if you’d like to find out more.  I’d thoroughly recommend the hobby – please feel free to get in touch if you’d like to find out more.

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