Geek Out, Don’t Freak Out! At the Allen County Public Library

All you librarians out there, look at the cool Web 2.0 learning program the Allen County Public Library is doing for its staff!

The ACPL in Fort Wayne, Indiana has been running an amazing Web 2.0 program called “Geek Out, Don’t Freak Out” since March 29, 2006 for the staff.

Here is the information and the very first classes that were run at the ACPL last year:

Geek Out, Don’t Freak Out!
Last Wednesday of each month
8:00-9:00 am

What’s this all about? The Digital Collaborative has been talking about ways to help interested staff feel more comfortable with new technology, and we’d like to try a new idea. It’s part training session, part question and answer period, and part test drive: we plan to give a short presentation on the topic of the month and then allow time for questions, discussion, and experimentation. The goal is for you to see if technology will help make your job easier, and let you off the hook if it doesn’t. No registration is necessary; just show up if you can make it and join the (geeky) fun!

Episode 1: The Joy of Firefox
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
8:00-9:00 am
Genealogy Reading Room
Main Library, 3rd Floor

You have this new browser icon on your desktop — so what? Why use it instead of what you already know? We’ll talk about some of the features in Firefox that you might find beneficial, and give you a chance to see what the big deal is.

Episode 2: What’s So Simple About RSS (really simple syndication)?
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
8:00-9:00 am
location TBA

RSS is a way to keep track of updates to a website without having to go and check the site. This isn’t such a big problem with just a couple of favorites, but if you’re regularly reading a dozen blogs, and you want to keep track of headlines, and you want to see when new stuff is added to the Librarian’s Internet Index, RSS can make your life easier.

Episode 3: Blog Boot Camp
Wednesday, May 31, 2006
8:00-9:00 am
location TBA

ACPL has a blog. ACPL has bloggers.
Get practical information on how and why to blog for the library.

And the sessions have been ongoing since then! Here is a link to the latest set of classes (taken from the ACPL IT Blog – Innovation Through Technology). And here is the schedule. Doesn’t the ACPL sound like a fun and innovative place to work?!

Episode 13: More Tasty
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
8:00-9:00 am
Main Library, Meeting Room B

Access your bookmarks from any computer, tag them, and share them with the world. Good for home (bookmark that page you want to get back to when you have more time), and good for work (share your favorite sites with other staff).

Upcoming sessions will be on the last Wednesday of each month. Here’s what’s on the schedule:

Rerun! Episode 5: My Friend Flickr
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
8:00-9:00 am

Digital photography makes it so easy to document your life, and Flickr makes it just as easy to organize and share your images with the world. We show you what Flickr is, how it works, and how you can use it at home and at the library.

Episode 14: YouTubeTorial
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
8:00-9:00 am

Find cool stuff on YouTube. Put cool stuff on YouTube. It’s even easier than you think!

Episode 15: Let’s Play
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
8:00-9:00 am

Why should our patrons (or your kids) have all the fun? Come check out the world of gaming at the library, and try your hand at Dance Dance Revolution, Guitar Hero, and Wii Bowling, among others.

~Susan Mellott

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