Aaron Tay's Blog (46)

Libraries & augmented reality, adding video reviews to books

Okay, so it wasn't very professional (I don't do videos much), but the effect is pretty cool. I recorded a video of myself doing a short review of a book. Then used the app to add the video to a image of the book cover. So when the user views the book cover with the app, the video appears superimposed over the book cover creating a "talking head"… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on May 25, 2011 at 8:08am — No Comments

Funniest library related movies made using Xtranormal

Xtranormal has the tag line "If you can type, you can make movies" and it's really that simple! Just select a background, select 1 or 2 characters, type in dialogue, select a couple of camera angle and special animations using point and click and you get a  cartoon animated movie with no programming required. It's mostly free and quite flexible and you get a passably good quality movie, though you have to pay if you want additional scenes or characters… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on January 29, 2011 at 9:14am — No Comments

12 User points of need - where to place your services online

Say you have a new service or page you want to advertise, what possible places could you put it? As libraries expand their reach online, it's no longer as simple as putting a link on your webpage.


In this post, I'm going to list systematically a dozen locations you could add online, some are directly under the control of your library (e.g. library pages), others are on third party servers that you indirectly control (third party hosted services), others could be totally third…


Added by Aaron Tay on January 29, 2011 at 9:13am — No Comments

Adding your library catalogue results next to Google results using WebMynd

Recently, I started to realize that our page on the proxy bookmarklet (a bookmark that allows quick access to full text articles via the library's subscription even when the user doesn't use the library portal as a starting point) is extremely popular, despite being burred deep in our current portal design. 


For instance it's one of the most shared/liked pages on…


Added by Aaron Tay on January 29, 2011 at 9:12am — No Comments

Are libraries popular venues? What location based services say.

Location based services like FourSquareGowalla , Loopt enable users to check-in at different venues. For those unfamiliar with the concept, people basically "announce" online that they are currently at a certain location.


They are still not quite main-stream yet, though with Facebook adding Facebook places this might…


Added by Aaron Tay on January 29, 2011 at 9:11am — No Comments

Library mobile apps vs web apps - Some analysis

In a previous post entitled, What are mobile friendly library sites offering? A survey.

I surveyed over 40 mobile friendly library pages.… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on October 17, 2010 at 9:22am — 2 Comments

12 good library videos that spoofs movies or tv

Are libraries really the "next Big Pop Culture Phenomenon" ? We have all read about the old spice libraries viral videos (and spoofs) of course. There's also,… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on October 3, 2010 at 11:15am — 3 Comments

More tools to help libraries do environment scanning

One of the keys themes of my blog is how to use free tools to get alerts of news of interest. More specifically, I have made a series of posts trying to figure out how to use tools to find and engage with library users who are online posting, tweeting etc about your library.

I first mentioned the idea in Dec 2009 , and followed it up with "… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on September 19, 2010 at 2:42pm — No Comments

How to check your library catalogue by using your IPhone as a free barcode scanner - RedLaser

Early this year, I blogged about using Zbar iPhone app as a barcode reader to search your library. You scan the barcode of a book with your phone and it would extract the ISBN and search the library catalogue. You could put a setting in the iphone app and it would work for almost any library catalogue.

Its uses are many, but one way I use it is when I visit a bookstore, and… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on September 19, 2010 at 2:41pm — No Comments

Getting information to travel to you on your mobile phone

I know I'm a bit late to the party but recently , I came across Helene Blower's "New digital divide" via @digicmb.

As I never had the privilege to hear Helene… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on September 19, 2010 at 2:39pm — No Comments

Customizable library portal pages

The rise of web 2.0 sites has led to the idea that sites should be customizable and personalized. FaceBook which was recently crowned as the most popular site on the web by Google, allows users to customize their Facebook accounts by adding and moving around Facebook apps. Users can also add tabs of apps they want to see etc.…

Added by Aaron Tay on September 19, 2010 at 2:37pm — No Comments

Why libraries should proactively scan Twitter & the web for feedback - some examples

I have shared in the past techniques that allow you to be aware of what users are saying about your library online. By using free tools, one can easily set up a system that alerts you in real time when your library is mentioned and gives you the opportunity to respond immediately if you wish. (See Twitter scan techniques and… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on July 3, 2010 at 10:00am — No Comments

Libraries and Google Calender

Google calender is a top notch online calender with many powerful features (see overview). One of the most important feature is that libraries can offer library events as public google calenders, and users who add that to their google calenders can get free SMS reminders (this works worldwide!) In this post, I will review how libraries have being using Google… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on May 15, 2010 at 4:01am — No Comments

Using RSS feeds to distribute library news - 6 ways

Okay, I'm a big fan of RSS feeds, many of the posts here involve manipulating or consuming RSS feeds in some form, and social media is essentially tied to RSS. "Aggregating

sources for academic research in a web 2.0 world"
is probably my

most popular post on how to consume RSS feeds from various sources. "…


Added by Aaron Tay on May 15, 2010 at 3:30am — No Comments

What are mobile friendly library sites offering? A survey.

Everyone knows mobile is hot now, and many libraries are scrambling to add mobile friendly pages. Currently the most complete listing of libraries with mobile sites can be found at the Library Success Wiki site , which lists over 40 such sites.

I thought it would be helpful to look at these 40+ sites to see what… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on May 15, 2010 at 3:30am — No Comments

Scanning mentions of the library - Twitter, Google alerts & more

By now many corporations including libraries routinely scan for mentions of themselves on the internet. The number one free tool used is of course Google alerts, but with the rise of real time searches and microblogging, attention has turned towards scanning for Tweets.

In this post, I will share with you some of my experiences doing so called "environmental scanning" using free tools.

The examples will be more impressive… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on March 26, 2010 at 9:29am — No Comments

QR codes for libraries - some thoughts

QR code stands for "quick response", it's basically a 2D barcode that can be used to store urls, text etc.

QRcodes can be used to quickly pull data from the physical world into mobile phones which are equipped with free QR code readers (many free ones exist,but Beetagg supports quite a few phones) automatically. Simply scan the QRcode with your phone's… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on March 5, 2010 at 8:10am — No Comments

iPhone apps for librarians

Got your IPhone recently and want a quick overview of what innovative librarians , library or library vendors have done with IPhone apps?

I was in this situation about 2 months ago and did quite a bit of research, so to save you all time, I offer the following list plus commentary .This is not meant to be a complete guide on what are the best general interest Iphone apps (typically this involves picking a Twitter client, IM Client, RSS feed reader, online storage service like dropbox… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on March 5, 2010 at 8:09am — No Comments

Does embedding search widgets increase usage? Using Google analytics to track this


There are two "movements" in librarianship that I'm quite interested in, one is of course "library 2.0" , the other which doesn't show as much because it's hard to blog about is "evidence based librarianship". I always liked figures and statistics (I enjoyed analyzing the heck out of LibQual+ data last year) and being able to "prove" that some initiative is worthwhile always makes me happy.

Some have suggested that Library 2.0 and evidence based… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on March 5, 2010 at 8:08am — No Comments

Scheduling meetings - Tungle & Doodle

I'm pretty bad with dates and appointments, so I rely heavily on my online Calender to keep track of my meetings.

My main calender is Google Calender (for the sms updates) synced to Outlook Calender (because we are on Exchange server) to keep track of my appointments using Google Calender Sync .

I know many librarians embed… Continue

Added by Aaron Tay on March 5, 2010 at 8:07am — No Comments


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