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it2go Episode 41 – IT Training on Twitter

On this week’s episode we’re talking about our Twitter presence with our new Social Media Specialist Laura Reed!

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it2go – The IT Training Podcast

Social Media Protip: Filter Tweets Based on Source, Keyword, or Person Using TweetDeck

I caused quite the stir earlier today on my personal Twitter account when I announced:

Oh man... global filter in TweetDeck, why have I not discovered you before now! No updates from Foursquare OR Tumblr now!!

So I decided that I would share with you all. If you’ve been a long-time TweetDeck user like I have been, you may or may not have noticed the added feature called Global Filter. (more…)

Steve Jobs Passes Away

Steve Jobs passed away on October 5, 2011, after a six-year battle with cancer. Over the last few days there have been a multitude of online tributes to the brilliant visionary. I came across this YouTube video this morning, and I decided I had to post it on the IT Training blog. Jobs narrated this video clip as part of Apple’s Think Different campaign in the late 1990s. While I am not one of those individuals who always think outside of the box, I certainly know plenty of others who fall into this category. Therefore, I am posting this clip as a tribute to Steve and all others who find themselves “thinking differently.”

WordPress: Including Category RSS Feed Links Using the Default Category Widget

One of the benefits of administering this blog is that it allows me to find gaps in the WordPress documentation already published to the web and/or find easier ways to do things than what has already been explained.

Today, I’m looking into how to create the category RSS feeds that you can see in our sidebar. This article will discuss how to create the following by editing the default WordPress category sidebar widget:

RSS Feed text links:

Category Text RSS Links

RSS Feed icon links:

Category RSS Image Links

NOTE: This article is intended for individuals who are working with WordPress at an administrative level. A familiarity with PHP is required.

WordPress Version: 2.8.0 and up

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Twelve Tips for Safe Social Networking

With the school year getting back into full swing, it’s a good time to think about your online identity and what you’re doing to keep yourself safe.

UITS  has just published Twelve Tips for Safe Social Networking. If you have a Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, or any social networking account, you should check it out!

See the article here. (opens in a new window)

Organize your Twitter space with new Lists feature

tweetsIf you have been using Twitter for a while, your Twitter Home page is probably becoming a blinding  jumble of unrelated messages. Because all your feeds pour into the same space, you need to do a lot of weeding to find what you want–that is, if you have the patience. Now, with the new Lists feature, Twitter allows you to categorize and filter tweets in any way you like. Just create and name one or more Lists and then assign people you are following to your various Lists.

Here’s how:

In your Twitter space, click the Profile link at the top of the page. Under your username, click the Lists  listsbutton button and choose New List. You can name your list anything, and make it Public or Private.

Once you have one or more lists, in the “Following” section on the right of your Profile, click the View All link. To the right of each of your followed usernames is a List button: listbutton  Click this button to see your lists, and then assign the selected username to a list.

Your Lists appear in the right section of your Home or Profile. Click a list to see only tweets that have been assigned to that list.

The More You’re Aware of Online Privacy Policies, The Less You Say

In a fascinating article in The Guardian titled “Facebook should compete on privacy, not hide it away, ” noted security expert Bruce Schneier argues that social networking sites with fairly robust privacy policies (like Facebook) should use it to their competitive advantage, rather than burying the details deep in the sites. Schneier describes the findings of a recent study at Carnegie Mellon[1] about perceptions of online privacy like this:

The social networking sites don’t want to remind users about privacy, even if they talk about it positively, because any reminder will result in users remembering their privacy fears and becoming more cautious about sharing personal data. But the sites also need to reassure those “privacy fundamentalists” for whom privacy is always salient, so they have very strong pro-privacy rhetoric for those who take the time to search them out. The two different marketing messages are for two different audiences.

And therein lies the rub: social networking sites are really just an amped-up version of the old-school telephone.  If Sally Sue is the only person with a telephone, the telephone has practically no value (except maybe to throw at an intruder).  When Sally Sue’s friend gets a telephone (and, more importantly, makes a commitment to learn how to use it and then actually use it), the telephone’s worth has just exponentially increased. The worth of social networking sites is entirely dependent on the number of members (in the short term), but also the members’ free labor to self-disclose (over the long term, as these member-offered knowledge bits are what increase usage and draw new users into the site).   The study cited by Schneier clearly finds that the more privacy policies are made evident, the more people are aware of privacy issues and less freely giving with knowledge bits. While many users would probably benefit from a privacy policy reminder (especially just before releasing pictures from an inebriated vacation in Cabo), it’s clear why Facebook and other social networking stalwarts trumpet everything but their privacy policies: it’s not in their best interests to do so.

  1. Read the original paper: “The Best of Strangers: Context Dependent Willingness to Divulge Personal Information.”
    Citation: John, L., Acquisti, A., Loewenstein, G. (2009, July 6). The Best of Strangers: Context Dependent Willingness to Divulge Personal Information. Social Science Research Network. Retrieved August 17, 2009 from ssrn.com: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1430482. []

A Quick Guide to Twittering

New to Twitter? Did you just log in for the first time, and you feel your Twitter profile looks like a lonely wasteland? And seeing that, are you wondering what all the excitement is about? Here are a few tips to get up and running with Twitter, and to find just the right people and information. Your Twitter space will be home to you in no time.

Sending Tweets

  • - After you sign up for Twitter, just enter a message (maximum 140 characters) in the entry field at the top of your Home page. All who follow you will see your tweets. If no one is following you yet, send a little introduction message anyway just for practice. It will be there for people later.

Receiving Tweets

  • - Your Twitter space will be populated by the tweets of all the people you follow, so go out and find some Twitterers. See Finding Friends and Following Tweeple, below.

Finding Friends and Following Tweeple

  • - Having an avatar is helpful when people start following you; everyone wants to know with whom they’re speaking. Therefore, as soon as you can, add a picture of yourself or supply an image by which people can identify you. A bio is helpful, too. (See Making It Your Home, below.)
  • - To find friends or interesting individuals who twitter, click Find People at the top of your profile. Type in their names, or just try searching “New York Times,” “Library of Congresss,” “noaa,” “oceanexplorer,” or other entities of interest. This is a good way to find news sites and other topics as well. To receive all their tweets, click the Follow button.
  • - People you follow will receive a notice that you are following them, and in turn they will probably follow you.
  • - To find more people or sites to follow, see who THEY are following and follow the ones that interest you!
  • - To find celebrities, people, or categories of interest, go to http://wefollow.com/.
  • - If you know someone’s username, you can travel directly to their Twitter space by going to http://www.twitter.com/[username].
  • - If you don’t want certain people following you, it’s easy to Block them.

There’s more!

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Using Twitter Effectively

Twitter

“One could change the world with one hundred and forty characters.”

-@Jack

This article is intended to give people new to Twitter or people who don’t have a good understanding of the application’s capabilities a brief overview of why Twitter is powerful and how they might start using it themselves. It’s focused on companies/departments/groups for an Indiana University audience, but the information is applicable for everyone.

What is Twitter?

This might seem like a simple question to answer, but in reality, if you look at each of the following definitions, you will see that they’re all different.

  • Twitter’s Definition: “Twitter is a service for friends, family, and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing?”
  • Wikipedia’s Definition: “Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that enables its users to send and read each others’ updates, known as tweets.”
  • My Definition: Twitter is a technology that facilitates synaptic, asynchronous, and individualized communication between its users.

They’re all similar in one respect, communication. The truth is that Twitter is whatever you make of it. The service’s architecture is open-ended and loose allowing users to use Twitter for whatever purpose they desire. Whatever you put into the service by way of interaction will be returned.

Check out the rest of the post after the jump!
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Enhancing Sound in Soundbooth CS4

Recently, while working on a project, I had need of a creepy bit of music.  I didn’t have an orchestra at my disposal, and I’m not a composer, so I used what I had:  a couple of acoustic and electric guitars, a little bit of creativity and Soundbooth.  With that, I came up with my final sound:

creepy effected.mp3 – The final sound

Soundbooth is an audio editing and creation program that is available through the Adobe/IU licensing agreement.  It is part of the Production Premium suite.  It can record, edit, and add effects to sound files.

Starting out, I decided since I was very out of practice with guitar, I’d just record a simple three note phrase.  I practiced with some different arrangements and ended up with what I thought was a suitably creepy beginning.  To make sure I had a good amount to work with, I played it three times into the microphone. Here is the sound that resulted:

creepy.mp3 – Feel free to download and follow along in your own copy of Soundbooth CS4.

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