I is for…Innovation

…Bet you thought I was going to say iPad.

If you have been following for a while then you already know I am a big fan of innovation and imagination. I have used digital storytelling in my library programs and I am still trying to think of ways to excuse bringing the iPad to work. –Well, this one gives me an excuse for bringing the droid.

The first time I heard about QR codes, I think it was through Woman’s Day or Entertainment Weekly. All I can really remember was that it was a magazine left on the staff table. I downloaded the app and tried to scan the codes in the magazine. Needless to say it didn’t really work , but I think it might have been the start of the issues with the Blackberry.

The Daring Librarian had a great post last week about using QR codes in her library as a scavenger hunt and though I am eager to try it, I am not so eager to hand my phone over to the teens. (Let us just say that I know a former Teen Camp Counselor who did something similar and he still gets text messages to this day from former camp members who “added” him while they had access to his phone. Yeah, so not happening.) I do applaud the idea and if I thought that my library’s socio-economic area meant that every teen had a smart phone let alone a cell phone, I might even try it. –Yes, it is a misnomer that every teen has a cell phone, though I admit it does seem that way.

BTW know what I am going to do tonight? Yup, I am going to download a QR code scanner app to my phone. Who knows maybe I will change my mind about doing a program. While hands on programs are the best, there are sometimes ways around it. Very much a thinking out of the box ideology.

I welcome innovative thinking and new ideas and suggestions. I especially love hearing from other librarians. If you have a suggestion for a program, new tech activity, etc; I would love to hear about it.


H Is For Hot Apps

It has already been established that I am in love with my iPad. There are some great apps out there that are free or relatively cheap. Here is a list of some of my favorites:

Grocery IQ— Free. This app is also available for my droid which makes it even better. It keeps a running list of items I need from the grocery store; when I update on the iPad it will automatically update the droid and vice versa. The list can be divided by store which means I can have a list for Wal-Mart and one for Sam’s. It let’s me input the prices to keep a running total of how much I am spending and keeps those listed in my history. Very useful and such a time saver– it even has coupons!

Blogsy— $2.99. Now I have been having trouble updating my blog from the iPad. I use blogger and for some reason the two just don’t like communicating. That is where the new app Blogsy comes in. The app is new on the market and I mean new as of this week. Right now it has an introductory price that will change with the next update. It is compatible with both Blogger and WordPress. You don’t even have to know HTML code! (though I have to say, I am getting better at embedding the codes for links). Blogsy allows you to grab links and images from the integrated browser, Google Images, YouTube, Picassa, and Flickr. Simple and easy just like it should be!

Twitter— Free. I use to be very anti-Twitter, but I have since discovered that it is a great networking tool. I am connected to authors, librarians, bloggers, and tech news. It keeps me up to date on the things that I need to know about.

Angry Birds— Free. I am not obsessive about this game, but I can understand how some might be. It reminds me of an old shareware DOS game where these huge monkeys held on the top of these buildings and the object was to throw bananas at other buildings and helicopters. The one thing I will say about it is that it is very useful to have when you are sitting waiting somewhere with a five-year old who doesn’t want to sit still…it even works on husbands!

Do you have a favorite iPhone or iPad app? Any for the droid?