Today is the 31st of march. I started SPOETNIK on the 4th of March and have enjoyed every minute of the course. I’ve learned a lot in a few short weeks and am looking forward to the next exercise appearing on April 7. This seems to me a good time to look back on what I’ve learned and see where this new knowledge had brought me. Which are the applications I’m using and finding useful, which have I tried and put aside?

Gmail is a winner, not only do I have lots of room for messages and photos, my Gmail log-in is also my Google Account for YouTube and lots of other Google goodies, such as Google Talk and Google Docs.

Blogging with WordPress. WordPress have made it really easy for me to write and present a blog. Even the spam filter is built in. WordPress is easy to use and the instructions are very clear. As you can see I’m still using it! The encouragement and inspiration from other SPOETNIK bloggers was a major factor too. I was a little late starting the program but I felt welcome from the start. I also learned from the comments made by others following SPOETNIK. Thanks also to Brughagedis who thought up a why to show us a diverse selection of SPOETNIK blogs in I-frames.

RSS feeds in combination with Netvibes. This is a winner too. I’ve made the upgrade from Netvibes Coriander to Ginger and am currently thinking about how to furnish my public universe. I’ve experimented with the country settings to take advantage of the preselected information resources available in the Netherlands and in Australia. A page of my netvibes is devoted to SPOETNIK feeds. I’ve got RSS for Ubaspoetnik posts and comments, for my own blog, and for the feedjumbler mix made by Klijt Berroo. I’ve been dropping hints about how I like Netvibes to my colleagues at the EUR, trying to get a few people interested for a Netvibes Universe for Economics and Business Administration and Management. Here’s one of the netvibes universes I’ve found that I’m using as an example to get the subject specialists on board. It’s written by Jason Welker, “a 21st century teacher using the collaborative tools of Web 2.0 to teach Economics to international students.”
http://www.netvibes.com/welkerswikinomics#Welcome Jason Welker also has a blog, welkerswikinomics

Chat using Google Talk and Meebo. Google Talk was really easy, at least once I’d invited all you SPOETNIKers to chat with me, before that I was feeling pretty shy and lonely. Do teenagers feel like that too, if they have no ‘contacts’ to chat with? Meebo was more difficult to get the hang of. I put a meebome widget on my blog, expecting to be replying to visitors directly on the blog page, and was confused when this didn’t work as I’d expected. It was good to have help on this matter from ubaspoetnik via Google Talk.

LibraryThing. I can see how people can like LibraryThing. My daughter, Bonny, loved it for tracing Manga series but I’m a little to set in my ways to use it much myself. By the way, Bonny also loved what AmazType did with the title word ‘Manga’. Thanks to Schwitter for this tip.

Flickr is great. Playing with Flickr was a lot of fun too. I’ll continue to use Flickr and Picasa for sharing photos on the web.

Del.icio.us. I was luke warm about del.icio.us at first, but since I added del.icio.us to my FireFox browser, I’m finding it quite easy to tag and add new favorites to my collection. It sure beats sending e-mails to myself when I want to remember a link that I want to add to my personal favorites on another computer. I’ve also started searching del.ious.us for links to interesting sites. I can see myself making collections of links and sharing them with others.

Google Docs is perfect for working collaboratively because it’s simple to use. So what if it doesn’t have all the features of Office? If you really want these features you can do a final edit in a word processor later on. Anyway, the simple version works better with blog software. I can see myself using Google Docs in the future too. I like how it’s possible to see the versions between revisions.