Tag Archives: Browsers

Tech Sharecase, 19 November 2010

Stephen Francoeur, Ellen Kaufman, Jim Livornese, Ryan Phillips, Stella Varveris

Facebook Messages
We watched a video from Facebook about its forthcoming Messages service, which aims to integrate email, chat, and text messaging for Facebook users. We discussed how Google seems to be doing similar things with its Gmail service, which lets you chat and make VoIP calls in its interface as well as see text messages and voicemail messages from the Google Voice service. We also discussed whether we’d trust Facebook with all this personal communication.

RockMelt Browser
We looked at the new RockMelt Browser, which integrates tightly with Facebook and Twitter and watched this video explaining the browser’s functionality.

Firesheep is a worrisome new Firefox extension that makes it easy for people to hijack usernames/passwords people use as they login to various websites while on unencrypted wifi networks. What is alarming about this new packet sniffer software is that it is so easy to for the uninitiated to set up and run.

Web Conferencing Software
We talked about ooVoo and Adobe Connect as options for web conferencing. In addition to online learning uses, the software might also be useful for virtual office hours and for students working on group projects.

Interactive Pen Displays
We looked at a couple of companies (Wacom and Promax) that offer monitors that have built in tablets that allow you to write on the screen. These might be useful on instructor’s podiums (podia?)

Next Tech Sharecase

The next get together will be on Friday, December 10. Please come prepared to share any tips, tricks, or questions you have about Microsoft Office 2010. Don’t forget to check out the new BCTC page about Microsoft Office 2010, which offers tutorials, help sheets, and a form to sign up for training sessions.

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Tech Sharecase, 5 November 2010

Frank Donnelly, Stephen Francoeur, Gerry Jiao, Ellen Kaufman, Jim Livornese, Rita Ormsby, Ryan Phillips, Stella Varveris, Michael Waldman, Kevin Wolff

Overview of Browser Wars
Today’s meetup focused on comparing different browsers. Prior to meeting, we sent out a survey to library staff about their browser preferences (you can still take the survey or just view the latest results).

Maxthon Browser
Ryan Phillips showed his favorite features in the Maxthon browser:

  • Features the ability to sync favorites to multiple locations and soon will sync browser settings and history as well
  • Allows customizable speed dial on your start page
  • Has dual rendering to optimize display for old and new web sites
  • Customizes your preferences for searching by mouse, open and closing new tabs, mouse trails et cetera
  • Includes Smart address bar that suggest links and results by viewed sites

One issue that we have to keep in mind when using browsers other than IE or Firefox is that they may not be supported by the college to work in various applications and services we have licenses for.

Opera Browser
Frank Donnelly demonstrated the aspects of the Opera browser that appeal to him:

  • Has built in AVG anti-virus and malware detectors that alert you to pages that may be security risks
  • Since the browser is less popular, it is less likely to be targeted by hackers
  • Speed dial when you open up new tabs
  • Turbo feature can speed up rendering of slow-to-load pages
  • Has a built in HTML validator
  • Has a recycle bin that lets you easily view a list of pages you recently closed in a tab
  • Works across many operating systems

It was noted, though, that not all pages render properly in Opera, including pages on the Census.gov site.

The discussion of viruses and malware prompted a quick discussion of the spam filtering technology we use at Baruch (Proofpoint) and the disparate amounts of daily spam caught on our behalf by the filter (some people get 30 spam messages caught a day, others get hundreds or more)

Chrome Browser
Stephen Francoeur showed his favorite features and extensions in Google Chrome:

  • Nearly as fast as Opera and much faster than Firefox and Internet Explorer (at the moment)
  • Speed dial feature is automatically populated as you surf; items added are the most visited pages; you can customize which items are on the speed dial
  • The Evernote extension lets you clip web pages into your Evernote account. When you search Google, the search results page from Google also includes search results from your Evernote account.
  • The Google Translate extension will recognize that a page is in a foreign language and offer to translate it for you.
  • The Chrome Notepad extension gives you a clipboard on the toolbar where you can save snippets of text; this content will get synchronized across multiple Google Chrome installations that you may have set up on different computers

Firefox Browser
Stephen Francoeur switches between Chrome and Firefox regularly. Firefox’s advantages are:

  • The Zotero add-on for citation management. It was recently announced that Zotero will eventually release a desktop client and extensions so Zotero can be used in Chrome, Safari, and Internet Explorer.
  • Web Developer add-on, which is great for any web design work.

Next Tech Sharecase
Today’s somewhat planned meetup was an experiment. It was agreed that we should try it again, though maybe not every meeting. The next Tech Sharecase will not feature any topics scheduled in advance; the one after that, though, will be a day for all us to share various Microsoft Office tricks.

Microsoft Office 2010
Jim Livornese showed us a bit of the help pages and tutorials that are now available on the BCTC pages to help the Baruch community get up to speed on Microsoft Office 2010.

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“Friday” Tech Sharecase, 25 June 2009

Beginning this week, the college will be closed on Fridays for summer. Since we usually hold the Friday Tech Sharecase on Fridays, this week’s meeting was on a Thursday (as will be the case for the rest of the summer).


Louise Klusek, Ryan Philips, Stephen Francoeur, David Brodherson, Joseph Hartnett, Frank Donnelly, Jin Ma, Jean Yaremchuk, Linda Rath, Mikhail Gershovich, Luke Waltzer.


Scribd is a service for sharing documents. Simon & Schuster will begin selling e-books on this site. Upload your own documents, then get an embed code that you can put in your blog or website to display that document in a viewer (see example below).

Francoeur Effective Chat Reference METRO 28 April 2009

100+ Alternative Search Engines You Should Know

List of search engines that focus on specific content or that search or present results in ways notably different from traditional search engines. via ALA Direct, 24 June 2009

“What is a Browser?” Video

People in Times Square interviewed by Google staff to see if they knew what a browser was. Much confusion ensues…

Library Mashup

The web site for the Manchester City Library (NH), which was spotlighted at a presentation at the recent SLA meeting, features content that is pulled in from a number of different sources and aggregated on the library’s home page.


A project of the Schwartz Communication Institute, VOCAT stands for Video Oral Communication Assessment Tool. It offers online rubrics for scoring oral presentations and videos of recorded presentations (there are 6400 scored and recorded presentations in the system now). Used by Zicklin, Wall Street Careers, and other groups/units in the college. The system generates reports; data can be output to Excel. Maybe we could pull out scores for citations to help us assess the library’s efforts to instruct COM 1010 students about doing research. The Schwartz Communication Institute want to add the abiity to score group presentations and to allow for peer evaluation. They are alsofiguring out how this system might be shared with other institutions.

WordPress and the New Blogs

Demonstration of how to login to the Reference at Newman Library blog, edit your profile so your full name is displayed next to any posts, change your password to something more memorable, and add a new post. The brand new blog, Newman Library Idea Lab, was also shown. This latter blog features an automated way to apply tags to posts using Tagaroo, a WordPress plugin from Calais (a Thomson Reuters company).


The Baruch Blogs page and the LIS Blogs page (found on Reference at Newman Library and Newman Library Idea Lab) feature automatically updated displays of recent blog posts using a free service called Feed2JS, which gives you embeddable JavaScript based on any RSS URL you provide.

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