The Radar

Helping You Zero in on New and Exciting Technologies


Library Tech. Talk – Episode 8

Mick, Annabelle, Ruth, and Toby hold forth on many tech-related topics. Included are an overview of what the group has learned since the last podcast, some listener mail (including info on After Effects and replacements for Delicious), excitement about the bumper crop of summer tech classes, and an overview of the other podcasts the Library has in its stable.

Do you want to get in touch with us? We’d love to hear your questions. Drop us a line at askref at skokielibrary dot info, and respond on the next edition of Library Tech. Talk. Or just post a comment below.


If the embedded player isn’t working, please use this link.

Posted under Digital Media Lab, Featured, Podcasts

Upcoming Technology Classes

There is one constant about technology: it is always in flux. The Library is here to help you make the most of this rapidly changing digital world. We have four sessions available in the month of March.

Classes are held in the Mary Radmacher Meeting Room. All sessions are free, but you’ll need to register by calling 847-324-3179 or clicking the links below.

eBay 101: Selling Basics
Monday, March 22 from 7:00 to 8:30 PM

Ready to make some $$ selling some of your “stuff” on eBay? Plan to attend this fun and informative “eBay 101-Selling Basics” program by eBay University Instructor Jack Waddick. This lively 90-minute session will include real-time demos on and plenty of time for your questions. No technical mumbo jumbo; everyone is welcome! Jack Waddick will be back on April 29, 2010 for “eBay Advanced Selling.” Both programs require registration.

Jack Waddick does eBay full-time as an eBay University Instructor, Education Specialist Trained by eBay, Certified eBay Business Consultant, and active eBay buyer and seller.

Fun With Flickr (Sharing Photos Online)
Wednesday, March 3 from 7:00 to 8:30 PM

Do you have a digital camera? Not sure how to share your photos with others?

This presentation will provide participants an overview of how to upload, organize, edit, and share your fantastic digital photos using a free website called

Skype for Beginners
Thursday, March 4 from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM

If you want to find a way to connect with friends and family all over the country and world, this presentation on Skype is perfect for you. Skype is a software program that allows you to make telephone calls to people over the Internet. Learn how to make cheap phone calls over the Internet, contact other Skype users for free, and use the videoconferencing option to see people all over the world! Class is lecture-based.

Twitter for Beginners
Thursday, March 18 from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM

This class will teach participants the basics of the social networking website Twitter. The instructor will demonstrate how to set up an account, find people to follow, and integrate Twitter into your daily routine at work, at home, or on your mobile device. Class is lecture-based.

Don’t forget, you can also follow us on Twitter at @skokielibrary.

To stay up-to-date on all our technology classes, sign up for our email newsletter.

Posted under Classes

Adam’s 5 Most Influential People on the Web

Tiger Woods, Will Smith, Steve Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey, Donald Trump. We all are familiar with the name of these individuals who are at the top of their respective fields. But who are Mitchell Baker, Evan Williams and Chris Hughes? I’ll give you a hint: you probably use their product or service on a daily basis. Every year, Business Week produces a slideshow of the 25 Most Influential People on the Web. This year I’ve decided to compile my own top 5  Most Influential People of the Web by combining some of the people from Business Week’s 25 and mixing in some of my own. One of my mentors once told me that “the funny thing about history is that in most instances, you don’t know that you are making it.” Many of the individuals I’ve listed below are true pioneers and have changed the way we conduct our daily lives but most of them are not in the public eye.


07hughesaenlarge1. Chris Hughes –

Hughes, 24, was one of four founders of Facebook. In early 2007, he left the company to work in Chicago on Senator Obama’s new-media campaign. Leaving behind his company at such a critical time would appear to require some cognitive dissonance: political campaigns, after all, are built on handshakes and persuasion, not computer servers, and Mr. Hughes has watched, sometimes ruefully, as Facebook has marketed new products that he helped develop.

“It was overwhelming for the first two months,” he recalled. “It took a while to get my bearings.” 

The campaign’s new-media strategy, inspired by popular social networks like MySpace and Facebook, has revolutionized the use of the Web as a political tool, helping the candidate raise more than two million donations of less than $200 each and swiftly mobilize hundreds of thousands of supporters before various primaries.

The centerpiece of it all is, where supporters  could join local groups, create events, sign up for updates and set up personal fund-raising pages. “If we did not have online organizing tools, it would be much harder to be where we are now,” Mr. Hughes said. 

source: NY Times – The Facebooker Who Friended Obama [visit source]

evan_williams2. Evan Williams – Twitter, Blogger

Williams has a knack for figuring out how people want to keep in touch—even before they seem to know it themselves. In 1999 he launched Blogger, a service that allows people to post their every thought online. That turned anyone with a computer into a global publisher. After selling Blogger to Google, Williams created a podcasting startup named Odeo that didn’t take off. But in the meantime, Jack Dorsey, an employee at Williams’ company, came up with Twitter. Twitter has popularized microblogging, the streams of short posts people write to groups of friends. During the past two years, the popularity of Twitter has exploded, as people turn to new ways to stay in touch.

source: Business Week – 25 Most Influential People on the Web [visit source]

michelle_baker3. Mitchell Baker –

When Baker, the “Lizard Wrangler” at the Mozilla Foundation, launched the Firefox browser four years ago, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer was in her sights. Baker’s overarching goal was to keep the Web open. Now, Firefox’s market share has risen to nearly 20% while IE’s has slipped from 95% to 72%, and most Web sites treat all browsers equally. These days, Mozilla is faced with a threat of its own: Google’s Chrome browser, which launched Sept. 1. Baker says the new browser on the block “forces us to do our best.” Mozilla’s latest foray is into mobile browsing. 

source: Business Week - 25 Most Influential People on the Web [visit source]


matt_mullenweg4. Matt Mullenweg –

As the importance of social media expands, so does the influence of WordPress, the blogging service that most serious bloggers turn to. And though blogging might seem well established, WordPress just keeps on growing. Open source software is part of the reason for WordPress’ success. When Mullenweg started blogging in 2001, he used open source software to develop his own Web tools, which became WordPress. Traffic to WordPress’ service more than doubled during the last year to 103 million global visitors, compared with main rival Typepad’s 20 million.

source: Business Week - 25 Most Influential People on the Web [visit source]

6-tim_berners-lee5. Tim Berners-Lee –

Berners-Lee, an Oxford-trained scientist, invented the World Wide Web in 1989 by designing a way to create links, or hypertext, amid different pieces of online information. Berners-Lee began describing the next leap in the mid-1990s. Dubbed the Semantic Web, it’s a method of tagging online information so it can be more easily found, understood, and organized in relation to other data, automatically, wherever it may be nestled online. As the head of the World Wide Web Consortium, Berners-Lee is working to create the technical framework for the Semantic Web. Meantime, a slew of startups, such asRadar Networks, Metaweb Technologies and big companies including Oracle (ORCL) and IBM are beginning to make that vision a reality.

source: Business Week - 25 Most Influential People on the Web [visit source]

The original Business Week article can be read by clicking [here

Posted under Technology

Spring 2009 Tech Classes

1422888418_8ab95aac49It’s undoubtedly what you’ve all been waiting for all winter long. Yes, that’s right, the Spring 2009 technology class schedule is now available online! As usual, there is something for everyone, whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned tech user. Topics include:

And, of course, I can’t go without mentioning our regular series of Tuesday Tech Talks. On the first Tuesday of each month, we bring in a speaker to talk about something interesting related to technology. Upcoming topics include:

All our classes are free, but you must register! Register online, call 847.324.3179, or stop by the Adult computer lab to talk to one of our patron technology assistants and find the most appropriate classes for you.

If you can’t make it out to any of our classes or if you need instruction on other topics, take a look at some of our online resources like Safari Books Online or Atomic Learning. Or sign up for computer classes at Niles Township or Oakton Community College.

Photo credit: abac077 ( en voyage)

Posted under Classes

New President, New Resources

The Library had the Presidential swearing-in ceremony playing in five locations throughout the building today. As the photos on our Flickr page show, quite a few people took the time to watch the proceedings.

But now that the pomp and circumstance is over, it’s time to get to work. The new administration has wasted no time in making a number of new resources online:

All in all, the Obama administration has embraced a variety of new technologies in order to keep the public informed. Now it’s time to get to work!

Posted under Uncategorized