Category Archives: web2.0

Gaming and virtual worlds: Activities

This week, we have kept the activities to a minimum as we realise many of you are busy trying to catch up on previous weeks.

1. Gaming Activity

Find an online game, play it and blog about your experiences.

2. Virtual worlds and Second Life Activity

Attend the workshop or read through the handouts from the workshop.  Create a Second Life account, download the software, create an avatar and explore Second Life.

3. Activity for whichever topic you choose

Finally – please also blog your thoughts on the possible applications in libraries and/or higher education.


Week 10: Gaming and virtual worlds

Welcome to Week 10: Gaming and virtual worlds.  This week we will be taking a look at gaming and virtual worlds.

Please note, you can choose to look at gaming or virtual worlds – you do not need to explore both of them.

1. Gaming

Due to the focus of this week’s workshop being virtual worlds and Second Life, we ask that you do some exploring of your own on the topic of gaming and libraries.

Some good starting points are:

Jenny Levine – the Shifted Librarian and her presentations wiki

When ‘Digital natives go to the library

The McMaster University Learning 2.0 @ Mac week on Gaming and Virtual Environments

Or, with all of the knowledge you have gained so far on the programme – why don’t you do some research of your own?

2. Virtual worlds and Second Life

The content we cover in the workshop is all you need to look at and do for this part of the topic.

Remember, you can view all of the links referred to in the presentation via @

or via the PDF file Virtual worlds and second life reading and links

Week 8: Social networking sites

Well we have made it to Week 8 of the programme – this week we will be learning about and trying out social networking sites.

What is a social networking site?

Social networking as a broad term can refer to the entire ‘Web 2.0’ phenomenon, but what we will be focussing on this week are usually referred to as social networking sites.

Many of you will already using sites such as Facebook on a regular basis.  Basically, they involve you setting up an online account, and then building a profile to reflect your interests.  You then add friends or contacts who can see your profile and interests and vice versa.  The next step is to add various applications and join various groups if you are interested in doing so.

Check out this Commoncraft video for a quick overview of social networking sites.

Features of social networks

1. Choose your social networking site

This often comes down to what your friends and/or colleagues are using.  However each does have different features/strengths, for example if you are really into music then Myspace is more relevant.  Facebook has a more generic appearance, where as Myspace enables you to customise your pages.

2. Sign up for an account, build your own profile, personalise your pages (depends on the service as to how much control you have over this)

As with most of these tools/services – you go to the web page of the service you want to use and sign up for an account (another password to add to your learning 2.0 collection).

3. Add friends/contacts, join a group and add any applications you like.

Some people like adding applications, join every group they can possibly find and send lots of invitations to you.  Others just have their basic profile and don’t do much more with their account.  It is completely up to you.

Each site has their advantages and disadvantages – if you are not using any of them at the moment, it’s worth taking a look at  a couple to see what you think.

The major players are Facebook, Myspace and Bebo.  Others out there include: Ning, LinkedIn, Elgg and 6pages (created by Imperial students).

For a comparison of Myspace, Bebo and Facebook, see: Myspace Vs Bebo Vs Facebook – the Ultimate Showdown of Internet Domination

How libraries/universities are using social networking sites

There are loads of examples of libraries and higher education institutions using social networking sites in various ways.  This could be to set up an institutional network, such as the University of Wales at Newport who have a Ning site up and running as do the University of Bradford, or creating a library catalogue search option, such as the World Cat search for their facebook application.

See the Imperial College Library account for more examples, try the tag socialnetworking or facebook.  Or do some searching of your own and tag some good examples.

Further reading

Social networking software on the Library Success wiki

See Brian Kelly’s blog for a post on: Revisiting UK University pages on Facebook for more local examples.

Social Network Sites: Public, Private, or What?

Online applications and tools: Activities

As there’s such a variety of options this week – we haven’t always given you more than one activity in each section, as there will be enough there to keep you going and hope that this may give you time to explore some other areas too.

1. Personalised homepages activity

2. Mobile phones activities

3. Web browsers activity

4. Google documents activity

5. Toolbars activities

6. Widgets activity

7. Mashups activities

1. Personalised homepages activity

Set up your own personalised homepage in iGoogle, MyYahoo, Netvibes or Pageflakes. Add some (gadgets, widgets, flakes, modules) including (if possible) one of the tools you have discovered so far in the Learning 2.0 programme (such as an RSS feed, your email account, your bookmarks, your Flickr photos).

If you want some extra guidance on setting up your homepage check out these videos:


My Yahoo



2. Mobile phones activities

1. Blog about what you think the potential is for providing services via mobile phones to library users in the next couple of years. Next, find out about how one of the technologies you have learned about so far in the Learning 2.0 programme is being provided via mobile phone.

2. Take a photo with your mobile phone and upload it to your blog. As an optional extra try looking at a website via your mobile phone and blog about the experience (and it’s success or failure).

3. Web browsers activity

Assuming you use Internet Explorer download Firefox. Read up about extensions and add-ons, find a few you like and add them to Firefox.

If you already use Firefox, try downloading Opera. When you have installed it, check out their widgets page and download a few.

4. Google documents activity

1. Go to Google docs and sign in with your Google account details (if you haven’t already got a Google account, you will need to create one).
2. Create a new document or upload an existing document.
3. Share this document with others – ask them to make changes to the document.

5. Toolbars activities

1. Customise your toolbar within IE, Firefox or Opera.  See Customizing Internet Explorer toolbar or Firefox or Opera for further information.

2. Create your own toolbar using Conduit

6. Widgets activity

Create your own widget of all of your Web 2.0 identities using the Show Yourself widget or Widget box.

7. Mashups activities

1. Spend some time exploring some of the award winning mashups at Mashup Awards

2. For those of you who really want a challenge, try creating a mashup using Yahoo Pipes or another mashup editor you discover.

Welcome to the programme!

Welcome to our Learning 2.0 programme.

Just a reminder that our opening workshop is running on Thursday the 24th July from 3.30pm – 5pm in the Level 1 Training room 1 in the Central Library, South Kensington campus.

Please do let us know if you can/cannot make it if you haven’t already done so.

Email the Learning 2.0 team

To find out more about the programme see our About page and our FAQs page.