Thoughts on Google Hangout and Online Classes

Being not-quite-part of the Born Digital generation and yet needing and loving technology is an odd place to be. I’m younger than some of my classmates, but older than others. I like to think that I have a pretty well-rounded view of technology, and I’m always happy to find new sites and services that help me do what I need to do.

I’ve had a presence on Twitter since at least early 2010. There is no easy way to find my first Tweet. Though now I have a second Twitter account simply for school (mostly this class): LibraryAllegra
Yes, I’m so original with naming things. But, one of my friends has pointed out that branding yourself is very important.

I started my first “blog” way back when in 2001 on Livejournal. I don’t use it much anymore, but I like having those posts, for the most part. It serves as a good reminder of who I was back then and how far I’ve come. Admittedly, some of those old posts are a little cringe-worthy.

I recently got my Google Plus account. I’m not sure if I like it much yet, but I do see a ton of possibilities for it. Google is amazing for things like Google Docs. I love Google Docs. I think that being able to use a shared document like that regardless of what type of operating system you are using (Mac, PC, Linux, etc) or where you are (home, school, work) is amazing. All you need is an internet connection. Google Hangout is a spiffy new tool as well. I think our class meeting went well. We didn’t have the whole class, clearly, but I think we had eight. It was nice to actually see and hear people. Plus, there was a chat window for typing, which I really appreciated. I’m always a little shy talking (I think my social abilities and knowing when to talk vs. when others have the floor is a little stunted, so I just stay quiet pretty often). All in all, I think the Hangout works, and it can be a great tool for students to keep in contact with other classrooms, maybe “pen pals” around the world, or for online classes in the future for K-12.

Side note: what ever happened to the pen pal idea? I had one though school in, gee, 4th or 5th grade, I think. We wrote to each other a couple times. She was somewhere in eastern Europe. I think she got really sick and suddenly our classes just stopped talking.

I use technology every day. I check in with friends, read posts, check tickets for when I want to visit people. I use Skype pretty regularly to talk to one of my closest friends in Philly.

All in all, I like technology. I’m not sure I would ever want to take an online class on something that wasn’t all about technology. I like going to a physical location and having a class meeting. It helps me get things done on time. I know I’m going to need these skills in order to do my job in the future. I think that having a school library Twitter account might help get students into the library more often. Knowing the tools can only help.

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