Choosing and Using Markers in Trailmeme

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Trailmeme builds linked web trails using bookmarked resources. After setting up your account you can import bookmarks/markers or add them manually to your pool. Once they’re added to your pool you check that they’re useable in a trail. If a marker appears correctly in a frame it’s useable.

At this stage you can see if any bookmarks have been used in another trail by anyone on the site. This could be handy if you’re looking for more markers for your trail – another trailmeme using the same marker may link to other useful resources you could use. I can’t help but think that it would also be useful to be able to link to any other trails that use the same bookmark- possibly creating a trailmeme of trailmemes! It would also be helpful to be able to search your bookmarks/ markers. If you make the mistake of importing all your bookmarks, it can take a while to find a particular one in the pool.

Next, you set up a new trail. You do this by giving it a title, submitting it and adding your markers to it.

Trailmeme Markers

Markers added to 'Java Programming' Trailmeme

For my ‘Java trail’ I decided to add more than just bookmarks for tutorial purposes. I included bookmarks for pages that compared java with other programming languages, the history/background of java, java documentation and videos, tutorials and links to useful books on Worldcat. I wanted the trail to give followers a varied view of Java, including a variety of resources they might find useful.

An aside: I included the programming comparison links as part of the ‘thought process’ experience. Before I started programming in Java I scouted around to see what language would be best for me. I wanted to learn a new language, as I wanted to get back into programming. I’d also seen some wizzy things on the internet that I wanted to find out more about, or create myself. I also thought that as a technical librarian in the internet dominated info world, updating my programming skills would be a good idea. The programming comparison links helped me decide – I went for Java and php in the end.

At the moment the markers in a trail aren’t organised in any useful way. For them to be of any use to others you need to link them together. This is when it becomes a trail. Up until now it’s still just a list of links.

(to be continued)

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2 thoughts on “Choosing and Using Markers in Trailmeme

  1. Good points. Once you add a marker to your own trail, you’ll see “intersections” with other trails in the sidebar, and can follow and explore them, but it would be nice to see the other trails even before you build your own. We’ll think about how to build that into the UX.

    Trail of trails…yes, on the roadmap, but its kinda like pointers in C for programmers. It can get seriously confusing, so we are approaching that sort of thing carefully 🙂

    Venkat

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