I just went to a New England Library Association Conference and I always pick up some new information that surprises me.
Consider the following from a 2008 survey of over 27,000 freshmen & seniors at 98 institutions:
98% own a computer (2007 survey)
82% own a laptop (%53 in 2005)
77% are downloading music & movies on a weekly basis
93% use their library website weekly
66% own internet-capable PDA/smartphones
85% use social network sites DAILY, up from 32% in 2006 (MySpace, Facebook) Students expect email, internet access, wireless to be available everywhere, all the time. Young peoples’ expectations are a real challenge for us librarians.
I also pick up great new tips on online resources for all sorts of information, many of them open source and free. Well, these tips are new to me, perhaps not to you….
Bing a great new search engine
Google Chrome is a new browser that’s giving Internet Explorer and Mozilla’s Firefox a run for the money.
Here are some open and free sources of software related to desktop publishing and graphic design:
IrfanView – an image viewer and converter that I’ve used for years and still like best for its simplicity and ease of use.
Open Office – an open source version of Microsoft Office
GIMP – a full featured pixel-based graphics and photo editor
Scribus – a free desktop publishing program
Kompozer — a web page editor
AbiWord – another word processing software
PDF995 – an open source PDF printer driver