September 2008 Archives

Jumping around

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creative hypertext

"His flirtation with dumbness had taken the form of the ingestion of heroic quantities of cannabis smoke. But eventually that got to be a drag."

-is that pun intentional?

Highly unpleasant. That was waayy too much jumping around for my taste. I like traditional novels better. Not that they're exactly linear. I like subplots: Harry Potter is full of them. But they're so much going on here, too much exposition at once. I prefer when exposition is spaced out and events get to unfold. That's why I read: I like to see the process, not have everything thrown at me at one time. Half the time, I forgot what was happening. Sub-plot overload!!!

"He'd killed the man, and he realized that the only reason he'd done so was that he was afraid if the man got away with his money, the insurance companies would make him install a bunch of the new and expensive security systems they were trying to push on everybody"

I can't believe how deep I had to dig to find that out.

The Heist begins-!!! Only now is the action beginning???

layout of the bank-link no longer works

now he could go in-link doesn't work

General critic of the story: too corny. I went down the "Regina" path originally.

That was worse than "If On A Winter's Night..." 

Peter Pan, Purring and Snarling

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Kilian 7/8

"The Webby Awards recognize many types of blogs"-124
I had no idea there were awards for websites/blogs, so I visited the Webby Site. There are over 70 categories for websites. There's even a category for "weird".

some weird winners:

Peter Pan's Homepage-this man believes he is Peter Pan-this is a prime example of what can happen when anyone can create a website.

rathergood.com-I have no idea what this one is about. I can't tell.

snopes.com-rumors, folklore, and generally entertaining stories

I'm going to use 'Peter Pan's Homepage' as an example of an introvert blog-i don't know how anyone could possibly call this man an "extrovert". It certainly wasn't made to look professional. Most of the (long) paragraphs contain at least one of those evil smileys, and "Peter" frequently uses the words "kewl" and "boi". They say even when web writing, a person is writing to an audience. What was this man's audience???

But I suppose blogs allow people that are extroverted in real life to be introverted. I have said this before, but the lack of actual human contact can be a buffer and mask, giving a person a feeling of protection.

"a hazard of the job blog, of course, is that it can cost you your job if you're indiscreet"-126
I think it's best to stay away from this type of blog. One slip of the tongue (or in this case, the keyboard) could cost you your job. Even posting seemingly innocent pictures from an office party could spell disaster. Many jobs even ask to see your facebook and myspace profiles now. I think many employers find blogs unprofessional. We've been saying this all year: be careful. Or, better yet, don't let an opportunity to be unprofessional even present itself. Stay away from the job blog. 
 
That said, this type of blog would suit people working for such organizations as Doctors Without Borders.

"you don't have to be a full-time journalist to run a news blog"-127
But at leat with a full-time journalist, the reader can assume a level of credibility. What credentials does a normal, average person have to run a blog on politics? None, really. Maybe these blogs exist to point readers in a desired direction, via links. But personal commentary can quickly turn into a one-sided rant.

"the change in format seems to make your text infamiliar, so the errors are easy to spot. Then it's easy to go back, correct the error, and re-post it."-131

Very true. Many times I have noticed errors only when hitting the "preview button" at the bottom of the page. The black and white of the moveable type entry page seems to make all your writing blend together. The sudden briteness and heading of my main blog page makes the entry more noticeable, especially since the decorative elements are a lot darker.

"compose a post as a draft, let it cool off, and then return to proffread it before posting"-131
I like the draft options because I don't have to publlish what isn't finished. Right now, I'm on a break between classes. This blog probably isn't going to get finished before 1 pm, but at least I can save my headstart.

Another thing I like about moveable type is that you can go back and edit an entry. Instead of posting a revised blog, the entry appears as if it never contained an error. The mistake isn't on record for people to mock you with (maybe that's a little over-dramatic). Your first time around may not be professional: we all make mistakes. In a rush to get entries out, I've churned out my fair share of typos.

The section on resumes: There's just something about posting an internet resume that seems unprofessional to me. It's fine for someone applying for a job in html programming, but I feel that employers would rather have a binder or folder full of the proper papers right on front of them instead of having to click on a bunch of links. I like the traditional form better: it seems more tangible.

 Kilian 8:

"many words have complex connotations...they convey some kind of emotional aura as well" 137

"semanticists like to distinguish between purr words and snarl words...such words may refer to the same thing, but carry very different meanings" 138

This quote reminds me of a "non-sequiter" cartoon I have on my door at home. the cartoon features two identical pictures of a man and his client in a office. However, the captions and bubbles read

panel 1 "What they mean"

man: "bwahahaha, screw you pal!"

panel 2: "When they say"

man: "This is your standard buisness contract"

It was only using the second wording of the statement that the man would have been able to convince the client to sign the contract. Would I say the man out and out lied to his client? No, because many people understand the code of buisness jargin. it just so happens that the client didn't, so the man manipulated him using ignorance and ambiguous words. Standard doesn't have a "standard" meaning: I guess that's the beauty of the word.

"register doesn't just convey the proper manners for the ocassion. It can aslo determine the content of your message"-138

I hate it when politicians use the word "folks." It makes them sound like they're trying too hard to identify with the common, and I believe people do not want to be humored. People want sincerity. We already know the candidate is not a common person: it takes an extraordinary individual to get elected. There's such a thing as trying too hard.  

"yet manipulating readers by appealing to their fears and insecurities is deeply disrespectful"-140

And the real life political parallels just keep appearing. Campaigns play on people's fears all the time, especially the economic ones. I'm not going to talk about how stupid the infamous "Paris Hilton" ad made McCain look (which was an example of black/shock propaganda), but I recall one of the lines in the commerical is "He's the world's biggest celebrity....but is he ready to lead?" By comparing Obama to Brittany and Paris, McCain was trying to put the idea into our heads that Obama is no more fit than those two ladies to be president. And can you imagine if Paris Hilton was our president? That is a scary thought, and I'm not being sarcastic. Yet again, McCain's campaign (that rhymes) was playing off the "lack of experience fear." Then again, Obama's campaign could have spun the fact that McCain is much older into "he's not well enough to be president."

The rest has all been said before. Credentials are necessary. About.com experts don't have P.h.D.'s: they're just ordinary people. Don't quote them in your research papers.

 and now for a completely irrelevant shout-out:

"Glittering Generalities: "Liberty, Equalitiy, Fraternity"

I knew I'd seen this somewhere:

Paris, may 2008

    My memroy card as of 9-6-08 006.jpg 


 

Inform Screencast and Weekly Reflection

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This is certainly a strange semester. I can't say that I find Inform 7 particularly hard. The same problems with html happen with Inform: one missing puncutation mark can screw the whole game up. Inform has the added frustration of spelling: I had to do about 3 different screencasts because I kept spelling Marauder's Map wrong. Then, when I would go to examine the map, the game wouldn't recognize it. One thing I do like about Inform is that the broken clock of despair tells the programmer where the problem lies in the text. When dealing with html, you have to figure it out for yourself. I'm thinking of continuing the game as my term project.

This is where the link to my screencast will be if/when the avi uploads to youtube

or let's try uploading it directly:

as you can see so far, neither have worked. But I swear I have a screencast!!!

here's the source code for my screencast:

"Deathly Hallows-the right way" by Daniella Choynowski

include Basic Screen Effects by Emily Short.

When play begins, say "It is the beginning of 7th year. You, Ron and Hermione, though still continuing their search for the Horcruxes, have decided to return to Hogwarts. Severus Snape has been appointed Headmaster of Hogwarts . No one but you, Draco, and the rest that were on top of the tower that one night know about Snape’s connection to Dumbledore’s death. When you heard that he was appointed headmaster, you insisted that the group return to keep a watchful eye on him. Surely he must be up to something. It is the beginning of term. You, against Hermione and Ron’s advice, have gone to patrol the hall."

The 7th floor hallway of Hogwarts is a room. The description is "you are heading towards the Gryffindor common room. It is 1’clock in the morning. Barely-lit torches and suits of armour line the stone walls. You hear distant sounds. Nothing seems out of the ordinary, yet an uneasy feeling seems to grip your stomach."

instead of listening when the player is in the 7th floor hallway, say "[one of]It's just Mrs.Norris's claws.[or]It's just Peeves making Filch's life a living hell.[or] you hear whispers through the walls.[at random]"

The player carries Hermione's concealing beaded handbag.

The handbag is a closed openable container. Understand "bag" or "purse" as the handbag.

In the handbag are the invisibility cloak, your wand, and the Maurader's Map.

The description of the cloak is "It is very old, yet has no signs of wear and tear. The cloak is an ancient family heirloom passed down to you by you late father. It has saved your life many times. The cloak is one-of-a-kind. Wasn't there mention of a special invisibility cloak in 'The Tales of Beetle the Bard?'"

The description of the Maurader's Map is "This map was created by your father James, your godfather Sirius, and his friends Lupin and Peter. It now only shows all entrances and exits out of the castle, but can tell you where all people in the castle are, whether they be invisible, ghost, animagi, or human."

The description of the wand is "It is an 11' Holly wand that contains a phoenix feather. It's brother wand belongs to the Dark Lord. When the two wands come in contact, they become extremely powerful. The Dark Lord believes your wand posesses some special power, and will stop at nothing to get yours. Keep an eye on it."

Snape is a man. Snape is in the dungeons.

the description of Snape is "Snape has greasy black hair and a long black cloak that seems to encompass his whole body. There is a large, bloody, painful-looking cut across his forehead."

Instead of taking something that is in the handbag for the first time:

say "Before you can open it, Snape appears.

 

Potter, what are you doing roaming the castle after curfew? Surely you know that these are dangerous times we live in. You wouldn’t want your mother’s sacrifice to be in vain, now would you?

Portfolio Blog Entry

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portfolio

There have been so many blogs already this semester. I'm not complaining: there was a lot to say. The Student Newspaper Survival Guide is an excellent book for those who are unfamiliar with newswriting styles and practices. I definately wish I would have had the book when I took Media Lab for the first time.

However, now that I've been a journalism major for 4 semesters, I have found that much of the book is review. So instead of trying to explain the readings in depth, I've tried to relate the readings to experiences I have had or issues I have witnessed while working on the Setonian for the past 2 years.

As the book progresses, I found that the topcs kept getting more interesting (and as a result, my blogs got longer). I started to find parallels with other classes in the major, as well as current events. I found chapter 5 to be the most relevant to this specific session of Media Lab, since it dealt with politics and elections.

I know I'm not the only one in the class who feels that SNSG is geared more towards larger universitites. As a result, some of the material, such as beat systems, is a little irrelevant for our campus. In instances such as those, my blogs were a little more abstract than practical. Hammering out entry after entry can get a little stale after a while, so every couple of blogs I try to make a pop culture reference and inject some humor. in the past few weeks, this class and others, I've mentioned Harry Potter, Spongebob Squarepants, and Gilmore Girls, but all were relevant.

 My goals were simple for this class. I know how the paper functions. I just wanted to continue to track my progress as a journalists by reflecting on the past using the assigned readings as springboards. I think I've done that quite well so far.

My primary goal was to make my cartoons more intelligent and relevant to current events. In the past, their humor always dealt with pointing out the obvious. I've decided that in order to meet my cartoon goal. that all Setonian cartoons this semester will deal with the election directly or a related issue. My first cartoon was a comment on the issue of Sarah Palin's policy experience.

I suppose that in continuing to use the blogs as a reflective notebook and trying to craft each one into a thoughtful essay instead of spewing exactly what I'm thinking at the moment, I've met objective #4 for the class. The cartoons and Kilian 5 blog dealt with issues off the hill, so they helped me meet objective #5. Since I often critique myself and work personal ancedotes into entries, I had no trouble meeting objective #7. As I hit the publish button, I'm meeting objective #8: I have a professional portfolio that relates readings to myself and current events (election) relevant to the field.

 

Participatory journalism and the credibility issue

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"among them is the idea of citizen or participatory journalism, where visitors to a news site are allowed to contribute stories and other materials"-2 EOJ 1-3

To me, this kind of journalism should be looked at in the same way we look at wikipedia. Some people may actually write credible material, but there are thousands out there who will feel the urge to pollute the site with jokes and innacurate information in order to screw over readers actually trying to do research. I believe about.com falls under the category of participatory journalism. Anyone can join as "an expert", no college degree or professional credentials needed. This sites are best used as springboards: they can provide you with the basic information you should look into. Only then will you discovered the validity of what was provided. Often more helpful than the articles themselves are the links to credible sites at the end. Wikipedia has gone a step above about.com in that it can include in-text citations of information from credible websites and articles. That said, there are plenty of wiki entries that do not.

Never quote in an academic paper from these types of sites. 

Now let's talk about video editing. Maybe someone can solve this problem for me. I have Windows Movie Maker on my computer. So do my sister and our friend Brandi. How is it that they can edit videos in the program by dragging and dropping from their memory cards, yet my videos can't be edited because the player won't accept them. Does it have something to do with the fact that my camera records video as quicktime files? Is this "Avid" program available for download? The book says it will accept quicktime files. Is there any way windows movie maker will be able to accept quicktime files.

SNSG 6-9

"you can 'be nice' about your criticism or you can get really detailed with your complaints, but all of this is meaningless if you don't tell the truth and provide an analysis that comes from your heart. That said, you may want to use tact when criticizing student artists."-pg 65

This quote reminded be of a particular episode of Gilmore Girls: "Die Jerk." Rory, a journalism student, had been given another assignment: to review a student ballet production. Her editor had told her to write what she thought (he didn't think her previous reviews were good enough). During the ballet, the ballerina slipped once, and kicked her partner. Afterwards, Lorelai commented on the "roll of fat" around the dancer's brastrap. And since Rory had been told she wasn't opinionated enough, all of those criticisms appeared in the article, which was her first piece to get printed. Naturally the ballerine confronted Rory. She was correct in calling Rory''s review "mean, petty, and despicable." It turns out the dancer had huge dance credentials and was on the wait list at Julliard. I don't blame her for yelling "die, jerk!"

Rory used no tact in writing her review. Reviews are not just opnions-they have to include the good, as well as bad elements. A review is a type of article, which should always be balanced out by a counterpoint. The girl was a student, not a professional-she's still learning..Even though Rory's mom said the majority of the observations that got printed, she was shocked at what her daughter had done.

"Lorelai: well, this is just so harsh

Rory: again, you were there

Lorelai: I know, but there's something about seeing it in print. People don't write as mean as they talk. Except you"

Rory made a fool out of herself, as well as the performers in the ballet. When she sees the effects that a review can have, she wanted to try again.

The editor remarks that "hurting people's feelings is what we do."- He couldn't be more wrong. The truth may hurt people, but that is not what a reporter should set out to do. Before you publish an article, you must think about the ramifications it could have. Assess the risks. Turn it in only if you feel comfortable with it. Even after that, the editor will act as the final filter and will decide of the comments you make are suitable to be printed. 

 

Politics: they're everywhere

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Kilian 6

I'm just going to put my favorite quotes up here, then write an essay. The quotes all interrelate.

"they may want to know about your company, but chances are that they really want information that's within the company's expertise"-113

"imagine a loan officer who bragged about the bank's assets, but never asked about your own financial needs"-115

"The message on their sites is pure ego: we do this, we do that, we can make you happy, so make us happy by doing what we want you to do"-117

Did this chapter remind anybody of the election or politics? Lately, it's been all about image and what the candidates can do for the country. Very rarely do I hear it mentioned how they propose to change the world. Self-promotion seems to reign. I think it's pretty obvious why so many people are politically apathetic: they're waiting for the content.

People are more intelligent than campiagn designers give them credit for. Campaign ads appeal to the superficial side of us-but that's only one part. After the campaign commercials end, the rational part of my brain takes back over. I find myself thinking ,"what did I actually get out of that?" Often, it's not much. Who else thinks this ad made no sense?

Someone should let the campaign managers in on a little secret: much of the public cares more about information and how the candidates plan to implement their proposals than image. People are rational beings: we want to know the truth, not be spoonfed. The campaigns need to be more straightforward and promote policy. Substance, substance, substance!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The point: think of each coporate website as a campaign. If it's a good campaign, you won't have to dig for information.

random election humor:

Obama Llama Song 

The evil research paper and other things I've learned...

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Kilian 5

"a good editor can save you  from countless embarassing mistakes"-73

Take note of this, especially freshmen who haven't had newswriting. I'm not saying that you can't write well, but we were all inexperienced at one point. I have made my share of mistakes with articles, especially my first semester. My editor was always happy to give me feedback and constructive criticism.

"spell checkers are rubber crutches: they fail just when you need them most"-73

Not only do they not catch grammar mistakes, but they have a very limited vocabulary. Many of the words you use cannot be fixed using a spellchecker. However, dictionary.com is a great resource. Not only does it give spelling and definition, but it can also link you to articles that use the word in a variety of contexts-great for clearing up ambiguity.

"If you can't explain it clearly, you don't understand it well enough"-74

Our goal as writers, especially the journalism folks, is to make complicated information understandable to the common person. If someone says "it's too complicated to explain," that means that they themselves are still unclear. If you understand something well enough, your brain has translated the jargin in the textbooks and lectures into terms you can understand. A person who has truely learned can easily explain.

"Nothing is there just because it sounds good-you're writing,remember, not making music. you've packed the maximum meaning into the minmum text"-75

"your inner writer is ahving a great time being creative and showing off his vocabulary; your inner editor is watching over the writer's shoulder and tearing her hair out"-76

Despite the fact that music is a language, it's completely different from text. In whatever you write, there should be no fluff, even in a romance novel. Everything needs to aim at a point, to have a purpose. This quote is especially true for newswriting. I always try to go at least 60 words over my assigned limit so I can reexamine my article and decided what is truely neccessary.

The fluff problem occurs when you are 100 words or more away from the assigned word limit. You feel the need to fit the guidelines, so out come more words that basically say they same things as before-the article goes nowhere (this isn't high school creative writing class). I've gone to 600 words and cut down to 250. It's best to get an outline first, a rough layout of all points, ideas, and quotes first. In the end, the result is better than if you try to finely craft everything the first time around. I've written countless pages of research papers that completely dissapear after re-reading and reviewing. Don't be in a rush to get to the limit, because rushing to get content out often results in incoherency.

Websites, like newspaper articles, exist to inform using consolidated facts. Fluff doesn't belong in either medium.

This is the only good kind of fluff:

"You simply cannot trust your own proofreading abilities unless you proofread from paper"-77

"we revere text too much."-78

"we even tell ourselves that our ideas are so subtle and nuanced that only an elaborate stlye will convey them adequately"-79

"the condensation process demands utmost disrespect for print-source text"-80

a personal tale:

Last spring, I sat at a computer from 6 pm to 6 am writing my final paper for EL 336. I am not kidding when I say that I didn't take a break. Granted, all the research was done, but the process of choosing from hundreds of excellent quotes aimed at a theisis was exhausting. Plus, after that 12 hours, I still had more homework for other classes. Needless to say, I did not sleep that night. 6 am hit just as I typed the conclusion and bibliography. I looked over the paper and hit save.

Later that day, after a litte rest (you'd be surprised how precious a 2 hour nap can be), I went to go edit the paper. Most of the paper was great, but there were transition issues, not to mention a couple conclusion quotes that sounded a little like a cop-out. Everything, however, had sounded perfect to me the night before. I had really liked some of those Plato quotes. 

The resolution of the screen irritated my eyes (I'm also a contact-wearer, so it's worse). In addition, I had just used a ton of brain power. Brains get tired just as easily as other muscles.

The text on the screen blended together after a while. It was only after stepping away from the computer  for a couple of hours and printing it out that I was able to catch my mistakes.

In addition, we as writers are always going to look at our writing through a biased lense. Of course we're going to think that our original work is great! Not only that, but when you read your own work, your brain may read what you wanted to write, not what is actually on the page. Your mind will actually omit words and substitute others. This is why we're not allowed to copy-edit our own articles.

"amateurs don't know rules; genuises break them"-83

This quote sums up exactly what Dr. Jerz said in class today. Basics have to be learned to that experimentation can occur, otherwise you are grasping at straws.

But leave the experimenting to a personal website. If you're creating a website for a corporation, you should follow style guidelines. The company desires a certain look. That's not to say that there is no wiggle room for creativity (in layout and design).

pages 83-98-mostly newswriting review, but here are some interesting tidbits:

"National Biscuit Company=NABISCO"-86

I never knew that!

In reading the parts about abbreviations of calendar eras and "Montana Blackfoots" (I still think the term is offensive), I realized just how politically correct you have to be when writing for the web. Write as if everyone is able to view your site (which they are). People could be offended by the tiniest details. If so, god help you if you have a comment box or guest book-a useful tool for feedback, but also an impetus for a flame war. It's strange to think someone could be offended by "30 A.D."-that's how much attention you have to pay to detail. The website should be somewhat universal. 

 

 

 

Senator Speech reaction

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I had AP American Government my senior year, every day all year for 1 1/2 hours. I had issues and the importance of voting shoved down my throat. There would be weeks where all we would do is watch C-SPAN and other news channels. We had endless debates and had to attend countless local speeches. I get it: being active is important.

The senator said nothing that surprised me-I've heard it all before. He just re-iterated what many of us already know to be important: having no voter registry is archaic. A person may not think their vote counts, but what happens when more people start to have that mentality?  Allen Kukovich was right: "whenever you don't participate, you give even more power to those in power."

 

I feel like I'm back in high school

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Kilian 4

Did anyone else, after reading this chapter, feel like they read a high school/basic composition grammar review? Most of this stuff is just re-hashing, but here are my thoughts nonetheless.

Activating the Passive "this puts attention on the action, not the actors" 59

We have yet another parallel with newswriting: leave yourself out of the content. People are obviously reading your page to get some kind of information out of it. Unless the site is a personal opinion blog, chances are people are not reading to find out what you think on a subject (this excludes our academic blogs as well, since they are opinions). The book is talking about websites for organizations and groups. I believe a fundamental principle of communications applies here: manipulation. On page 59, active sentences are converted into the passive, removing the opinion aspect and making the statements seem more factual. Now, your audience will be more inclined to read if they are reading non-partisan content. They are now more free to form theire own opinions.

"a cliche is a phrase or expression that was once so new and surprising that everyone repeated it"-62

Like the smiley, phrases and jargon can be so over-used that people stop listening. I completely get turned off political speeches when the candidates begin using jargon and buzzwords. They are probably trying to sound smart (and I'm not saying that they aren't), but people listen to speeches to get content. The message is what counts the most. Half the time I can't understand what political analyists are talking about-I hear the word "economy" and then a bunch of cliche words familiar mostly to those involved in the field. Remember, you are speaking to an audience: you must adapt your style to ge the message across.

I don't think cliches make people sounds smart: I think they make people sound lazy.

Please, please don't use "proactive, synergy, paradigm shift, or green"-they're all so ambiguous. Be specific and to the point.

*now I'm starting to see how communications fits into this major*

Why I Thought I'd Die

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Kilian, Chapter 3

"we usually pay most attention to text at the beginning and end of a sentence, and especially to text at the beginning of a paragraph"-28

This quote reminds me of why the inverted pyramid exists. The truth is, we're constantly in a rush. Television and the internet have made us grow accustomed to instant image and information access. It's not so much a novelty anymore: we expect it. Media influence our behavior. People probably rarely sit down and read the entire paper anymore. Many of us scan for just the important facts. Writers have accepted this fact. Articles should identify their purpose within the first few sentence. Do not wait until the middle of the thrid paragraph to actually begin talking about something.

"Unusual Statement. Anything surprising will give your readers a jolt and make them wonder what other bizarre things you may have to say"-34

I'm noticing a lot of parallels between this book and newswriting. I guess web writing isn't all that different. This term was called an anecdotal lead in newswriting. We use the same principle in our blog titles: make your work stand out! Put some humor in there, but make it relevant. I think I have a good example here (note: I would have linked to the online version, but it doesn't exist).

this is the opening sentence of my summer article:

 "I recently spent 10 days in Paris for my capstone project and my first remark about the trip is that I thought I was going to die."

now, don't you want to know why I thought I was going to die?

 

"your readers, not you, will decide what your site really means and what value it has"-52

 

Okay, this is the last time I am going to rip on the hacker-bashing blogger*. This guy should have a section for feedback (and should listen to it). Right now, the blogger looks like an ignorant jerk making a bunch of fanatical statements.

 

note the comment:

"And every derogatory tip I get about your background, I will publish."

Ace of Spades HQ, I think you care a little too much about David Kernell. I'm gonna take a guess that a lot of people don't.

Doesn't this just say it all:

Amazon Honor System

 He said it. I didn't.

 

and now for some completely irrelevant but somewhat entertaining(?) comments:

 

*does the name 'hacker-bashing blogger' remind anyone else of the episode of Spongebob with the 'hash-slinging slasher'? Or is that just me?

Go to fullsize image

 

 

"On holiday just after the publication of his novel Les Miserables, Hugo sent the following telegram to his publisher" 39

 

LES MIS SHOUTOUT!!! BEST MUSICAL EVER!!! (I couldn't help it)

Go to fullsize image

 

The Good and the Bad

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Kilian 2

"Long, linear-text documents really belong on paper, however, a website acts as an archive for making them available for downloading" 17

"Clicking on an internal link will take readers directly to the section of interest"-17

Yes, Yes, yes. You all probably experience the same frustration as I do when you come across a webpage that's a long column.-many of these are old and abandoned, but still come up in a search engine when you are doing research. reading from a digital screen is different from reading paper text (not content wise). The LCD puts a terrible strain on your eyes after a while (especially now for me: I had an allergic reaction to my contact lens solution).

Don't get me wrong: I just spent my last blog praising computers and the internet for making our lives easier. Despite my frustration, I couldn't function properly without one. But one thing I dislike about electronic texts is the innability to highlight important sections and make notes. I cannot simply read a text-the highlighter and notebook are always at my side (only during school assignments-I would never dare desecrate my Deathly Hallows book). My Anthology of Drama has so many notations next to important lines-in a code probably only disernable to me. I still have to read electronic text the old-fashioned way.

The problem I see with the internal link system and the text search engine associated with Adobe is this: the reader might be missing some valuable material. The link may lead you to a useful section, but there could be much more information that you are missing because you aren't reading the whole document

This past spring, my copy of The Guttenberg Galaxy was stolen from a computer lab when I stepped out for a minute. But I found a substitute-I joined Questia for the free 2 day trial, copied and pasted the entire book (page for page) into a word document, and then deleted my subscription before I had to pay anything. I was able to search the seemingly endless document for the section I had been reading pre-theft. But this convienience tool could be used to cheat. If a professor assigns an electronic text to read and blog about, students could just skip to whatever section and not read the whole paper. Granted, the same can be done with paper text, but it takes longer. Instant information at our fingertips can be used for good, and can be used by lazy people who just want to get the minimum part of the assignment done.

 

 

Our Generation's Guttenberg

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Kilian intro/1

"even using a single-volume book to research a topic presents challenges"-3

Boy, does it ever. I'm in the midst of a theater history project, and I spent last night sifting through volumes. Yes, these books have indexes, but sometimes they are very little help. My project is on no theater, so i kept scanning for no in the back and couldn't find it. It turns out that no is referred to as nogaku, a term not shown in the index. So I had to find my info by scanning, which takes forever. In a way, its a mixed blessing, because I was able to find information that I wouldn't have if I'd have just relied on the index as my guide-I think the same goes for all books.

"This freedom of choice has its attractions, but some hypertext poineers have tried to make it look like a revolution on a Gutenbergian scale"-4

Well, I'm going to have to agree with the pioneers. Can you imagine how long it would take to complete a research paper if you had to find the information by scanning books? It would take forever. Even the invention of the electronic card catalog speeds up the process tremendously. I've found all the information I need to complete a research paper in under a half hour. (that having been said, there's still the process of going through it and choosing quotes). I think our parents appreciate the internet more than we do, since for our generation, it was always there (in whatever primitive form-green/black MAC's-yuck).

"Interactives tend to be egalitarian, respecting other people not for their social status or rank, but for their expertise and willingness to share knowledge"-7

The internet acts as a mask. Who we appear to be doesn't really matter: that can be reconstructed on the web. We can put our opinions out on the line. If someone doesn't like them, oh well-chances are you will never actually meet the person. There's no fear of rejection. If people didn't like something you said, you can ignore their comments completely.I've had rude spam comments on my blogs, but they don't phase me. I don't know the person, and don't respect them. If someone leaves a positive comment, that's great-and chanes are I know the person since I have an academic blog.

 

 

portfolio 1-not bad, so far....

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Writing for the Internet is by far the least painful class in the journalism major (in my opinion). I like that we have had a lot of practice with creating websites. We've been able to experiment with style and pictures, and it has been (dare I say it) kind of fun. Yes, the fact that the absence of one or two little puncutation marks can cause an entire webpage not to work is frustratin. However, as I have learn to troubleshoot, the frustration is relatively short-lived.I'm almost done with my course requirements for this major. It's nice to finally be having fun.

*I would like to state that I had this portfolio completed last night but I had it set to unpublished draft*

Coverage/Timeliness: all entries were posted on time and thouroughly covered the subject material

Be careful

All the World's a Stage, Even the Online One

Mistakes, I've made a Few

Sometimes, the stupidity of the human race mystifies me

Idiots

I do believe that I have never said this before

EL 236 quiz

I love Castro

good, but not good enough for me

Almost there

I've escaped to Miami

In the begining, before about.com, there was...usenet

when I see you smile

Another vault

the good and the bad

our generation's guttenberg

Interactions: People responded to my writing

Mistakes, I've made a few

I do believe that I have never said this before

good, but not good enough, for me

In the beginning, before about.com, there was usenet

When I see you smile

Depth: I get inspired and write long entries

Mistakes, I've made a few

sometimes, the stupidity of the human race mystifies me

Idiots

In the beginning, before about.com, there was...usenet

when I see you smile

another vault

Discussion: I left thoughtful comments on other's blogs

Maddie:

nobody knows where THIS film came from

Kevin:

Co-creators of chaos

Don't confuse me please

do we measure our lives in sound bites?

Aja:

castro's assignmentn ot to be confused with Cuba

Smile or frown

Chelsea:

new to the pot, new to the net

poor little smiley

Andy:

Email hacking 101

first inform experience

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class

I tried to open floatpoint, but could not suceed. So instead I decided to play "Figaro", a sort of fan fiction based on Beachmarchais' "The Marriage of Figaro." I was familair with the concept of the game, having read the play and seen the opera.

In the game, Figaro was hiding in a trunk to spy on his wife. He suspected that she was having an affair. Figaro kept peeking out of the trunk into the dimly lit room (a clue that the entire thing was going to be a misunderstanding). Once Susanna was visible enough, the game gave you two options:

1)she is kissing Cheurubino

2)she would never be with him

I selected 2, and another set of options came up

1)It is that bastard Count Alamaviva

2)no, it is not him either

I selected 2, and yet another set of options came up

It is Barbarina, Susann'a friend, and they are not kissing

1)yes, let's do that

2) no! In that case, I'd rather it be the lecharous count

I selected one and had Figaro pop out of the trunk and surprise Susanna and Barbarina. It turns out all they were doing was talking. Susanna had been faithful to Figaro the entire time, just like in the book/opera. That game ended with Figaro being ridiculed for not trusting his wife.

I would like to point out that the entire time, you/figaro could have hit 0 as an option, which was say nothing. This selected would further complicate the story.

These are just storyline options-Figaro is oblivious. The player's actions come afterwards.

While "Figaro" was short, it gave me ideas for my own game, such as selecting numbers for different options. I am sure that when the player selects Count Almaviva or Cheurubino, both options can lead to the same ending. However, I could not figure it out. Selecting neither and then Barbarina was the only way I could end the game.

*update*

I wikipedia'd the entry, and the entry said that the player's inventory is not initially set, so I am going to try playing the game again using my inventory. The inventory options are a camera, an axe, and a cream pie.

attempt 1: Figaro hacks Almaviva's brains out all over the wall

attempt 2: Figaro carries a cream pie as he spies on Susanna and Cheurbino.He threw the pie at Cherubino, who promptly cries and screams like a baby.

The second game I played was "another goddamned escape the locked key room". This game was much harder. All I could do on my own was watch the tv, which gave me one point. Then all I could figure out was how to examine the door with nailed boards across it. A review on IFDB gave me some clues, but i still had to figure out how to get to that point. And so, I cheated by surfing for hints

It was only after 5 more attempts that I was able to discover a fire extinguisher under the pillow on the cot. From this point on, I was able to adavnce the plot, discovering a desk with tape, an electric fan, and a photo.

There was a little sarcastic humor in the game, such as when I examined the desk. The game called it "a cheap particle-board desk-probably from IKEA"

This game took some time, research and patience. I got rid of the character's headache, and "got" several items. While I advanced the plot, I only scored another point: by eating swedish fish. I couldn't escape the room. This game gave me a heachache.

It turns out, not many players enjoyed this game either. Almost all the reviews blasted the default respones and called it "unplayable." And I agree with them.

At least Figaro was entertaining. 

 

 

 

Another Vault

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Kernell mum on allegations son hacked into Palin's email

After reading the headline alone, I had a picture in my mind of what the hacker looked like. I pictured a pale unkept man with glasses who sat at his basement computer day and night, only moving to microwave his burritos. A person trolling the internet out to ruin people's lives.

Then I read the first paragraph. Never would I have suspected a senator's son. But remember that he is currently a suspect.

"The evidence is tenuous. In fact, one of the first blogs to allege that the son of a Democratic politician was responsible relied on e-mail tips and described its evidence as “pretty thin.”"

The rumor mill can constantly output new accusations. As I am typing, someone on the internet is probably writing a blog blasting David Kernell for "doing what he did." I don't know if this one is supposed to be a joke, but it sure is twisted. The blogger has dug up so many things from kernell's past. To me, the stuff the blooger dug up makes him, not David look stupid. Why would you make fun of someone for being in a mental institution? They were getting help! Just because someone was in a mental hospital for a bit does not mean they are crazy. And of course, only a crazy person such as david could be the hacker (this is sheer and utter sarcasm here, folks). 

People have even began ripping David's personal blog.Yes, there are some gramatical errors, but it's a personal blog, not an academic one! While I pride myself in trying to be gramtically correct in all blogs, facebook and academic alike, my Seton Hill blog is definately of a higher standard. Give the kid a break.

And why is it safe to assume that "rubico10" is David. I don't remember how I registered for an email account (it was too long ago). I'm going to go attempt to do so under a fake name. If you have to offer identification such as a SSN, then the FBI would have no problem uncovering the identity of the hacker (unless the SSN was stolen as well).

 I just checked on yahoo. Any person can enter any information they would like about themselves, whether it be true or false. You can create a new identity.

"searches show someone uses the handle “rubico” on chess Web sites. In addition, an inactive blog, with one post dated May 2004, included “rubico” as a username. Its author identified himself as a chess player from Memphis named David."

That David could be anybody. Maybe that person's real name isn't even David. It's these kinds of comments that make people start thinking "hmmm..maybe it was him. But where is the proof? This is all heresay.

Now for the big, anticlimatic reveal:

"what I concluded was anticlimactic, there was nothing there, nothing incriminating, nothing that would derail her campaign as I had hoped"

Aww, what a let down, rubico10. I bet you feel like Geraldo when he opened the vault. Do you feel important? I mean, at least Geraldo had a reason for breaking into the vault. Al Capone was the most famous gangster in history. There could have been all sorts of things in there. What were you expecting to find in Palin's emails? (yes,I know this is an election year, and I know that people are going to try and dig up dirt on the candidates; but still, she hasn't been suspected of anything other than wrongfully terminating her ex brother-in-law).  

 

when I see you smile...

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Smiley

Falhman

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"maybe it would be a good idea to explicitly mark posts that were not to be taken seriously"

so the sideways smile began as a labeling mechanism. It actually had a point!

"After all, when using text-based online communication, we lack the body language or tone-of-voice cues that convey this information when we talk in person or on the phone."

This is very true. In text communication, all the nonverbal communications (body language, tone of voice) are absent. For this reason, text may be easily misinterpreted. The smiley was a way of non-verbally communicating intent. I never thought of the smiley as a message label before.This greatly applies to what I am learning in Communication Theory and Technology.

There are people who just got creative with the smiley for no reason. On aim now, there's at least 15 different smileys, ranging from devil to angel to winking. I agree with Falhman. The smiley has been exploited, and the original intent has been destroyed. Now, even a regular smiley in an email looks unprofessional. All because of the over-use. The smiley is used too casually.

In the context of the CMU message board, the smiley worked. It does'nt, however, belong in an email to your professor. Here, you should communicate your intent with full words. Shortcuts look lazy. An email should be like a news article, short, to the point, and above all: CLEAR.

Neal Stephenson

"since the streams of ascii characters flowing across the Internet (usually described as "cold," "mechanistic," etc.) cannot carry body language or tone, the missing cues must be supplied through punctuation."

-again, we need to supply non-verbal cues.

I don't think I agree with the comment that words on the computer are different than words on paper. Take fanfiction. How is that different from someone printing a story in a book? The only difference I see is that fanfiction.com doesn't charge a publishing cost, while book printers do. I guess you could take into the account that printed books usually have editors who scan the book for content, thus making them a higher quality that fanfiction, which is free-reign. But I've read plenty of books that read like fanfictions. Take Twilight*, for instance.

I agree with Stephenson's comment about not railing against popular custom, the key word being popular. There are too many people out there that like using smileys. Not enough people are angry about the smiley's unprofessionalism to have them banned.

"but innovations such as the smiley suggest that media-age writers may have a ways to go before they can compete with the average Civil War infantryman or Victorian diarist. The very ambiguity that, properly used, gives words much of their expressive power is viewed by many Net denizens as a glaring but ineradicable flaw in an otherwise promising system."

translation: words alone should be used to express intent and purpose. Take a look at the prose of Austen and Dickens. Compare that to a post on a discussion board. A great author is one who's words are timless and are read by different generations. Do you think our grandparents would understand the purpose of smileys? I don't. I think the smiley would be another reason for our elders to look down on us. They're fine for silly aim coversations, but leave them out of conversations where you are attempting to sound intelligent.

in summation:

"the very ability of the smiley to destroy a joke must be comforting"

It points out the obvious. The message is already there.

There are different kinds of writing. There's the prose we see in books, which has gone through many edits and revisions. It makes you wonder what the original copy looked like.

People do not continually revise their writing. AIM conversations and livejournal entries are casual forums often typed out in a rush. It is wishful thinking that everyone would take as much time as Dickens did to crafts their words. But Dickens was not an ordinary human being. Most of us don't have that much time.

I agree with Stephenson at the end, but I still want to avoid the use of smileys, because he made several convincing points in his 1993 article.

*I would like to state that I am not bashing Twilight. I loved it, despite the lierary critic inside me.*

 

 

In the beginning, before about.com, there was....Usenet

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Clueless Internet Newbie

I think "degraded" the discourse is a little harsh, since the "Jesus's Birthday" post was an earnest attempt to educate people. Now granted, some people are morons and posts stupid responses and answers, like on yahoo questions. Someone will give an earnest attempt at an answer, then three posts down you see something like "kittiecat19, you suck". Is there really any need for that? But that would bring us back to the discussion on trolls.

The wikipedia entry on eternal september reminds me of what facebook used to be: only availible to college students. You'd think that with a site only for bunch people going through higher education, there would be some level of sophistication. But then, high school students were allowed in. Soon after, anyone was allowed to join. facebook, I think, is slowly becoming like myspace, where anyone and everyone can have a site. I am all for freedom of speech and everything, but myspace has definately been degraded, and facebook, in a year or two, will probably also go downhill.

Back in the early 90's, a discussion group probably sounded pretty cool, like an online forum for shared knowledge.The idea was a legitimate notion. Now, it just brings to mind chatrooms, which are now often troll havens and forums for people to act immaturely.

The memex seemed like a good idea back them, but to me, it seems laughable, since what was proposed was in reality and ancient computer database. I'm so used to researching electronically that it is hard to picture conducting research any other way. Granted, I have a stack of books in my room for a project, but I found them through the electronic card catalog.

The cabal concept was sort of an usenet police force (from my understanding). There is such a thing as free speech, but there are also concepts such as standards and decorum that need to be applied as well. 

all this stuff about links and organization/archiving seems ancient; I'm so accustomed to it. To me and many of my other classmates, I'm sure we can't remember the internet being any other way than it is today.

"As a result, authors were expected to excerpt and cite the relevant passages in posts to which they responded."

Dr Jerz talked about how blogging styles influence. This quote sums up how we blog here.

The titles of those blogs mentioned shortly after this quote are surely meant to be good headlines. They are meant to draw curious people in; they are probably surprised when what they see is an intelligent conversation.

"Those standards rankled him, because it meant that he was being asked to change the writing style he had developed in his personal journal"

this brings us back to our discussion about appropriate blogging techniques. It's an academic blog: faculty will be able to see it. And I don't really think that any blog is private: there will always be hackers and spammers. I already got one within 5 hours of posting my EL405 youtube video.
 

"Yeah, Yeah, you know you gotta help me out"

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"Translate jargon. Interpret bureaucratic, legal, scientific or technical language for readers."

SNSG 5

This quote reminds me of something Dr Jerz said in EL 405 about processes. That the skills we are learning in New Media projects can be useful in the real world. while we may never create an animated cartoon after the class is over, we may be able to help write a "how-to" article on Blender, translating terms so that everyone will be able to understand. We can help people who hate to write but understand the process.

People read newspapers to find out what is going on in the world. They're certainly not going to keep reading if they can't understand the articles. We come from all walks of life, with different knowledge backgrounds. One person may be able to explain major dramatic structure, while another can explain what an interface is. Let's help each other out.

I've escaped to Miami!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I am finally free from Castro's evil grasp!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. It certainly took a lot of effort to get here. Mainly, the big problem at the end was organization. I tried to drag the entire folder instead of individual files-that caused the site to look like something from two weeks ago. Also, I had it saved on my usb and on the computer, so mistakes were being found and made in two different versions.

I can't believe how much the leaving in of one little command, or the absence of one tag, can cause you endless hours of frustration. So, it may not be perfect, but at least it's mine.

Frustrating, certainly. But at least we know how to make a website now. I don't care if I'm never going to use it in my profession: it's still kinda cool. An odd feeling being excited about a class. Usually I'm pulling my hair out.

I love Miami

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Almost There

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Despite the fact that some things started to go wrong towards the end, I have completed the website. Still, the following problems persist:

1)in Ceramics, I never could get the images to pad.

It turns out the mimic shadow function was working the entire time and I didn't notice.

2) in Index

the navigation bar jpg was not on the cookwood website to downlad, so I just grabbed the image directly from the site (the effect was the same)

<img src="http://www.cookwood.com/htmlvqj/examples/chapter2/leftcurls.jpg" alt="" width="75" height="314" />

3)in Index, for some reason I cannot figure out, the navigation bar links appear off the upper right had corner of the navigation bar

whatever, I'll fix these tomorrow in class. Maybe someone can enlighten me as to what I am doing wrong.

Screencast and reflections on Blender 3D

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The following is a link to my EL 405 screencast using Camstudio:

I didn't have any real issues with creating the video. People were talking in the background, and the volume of the microphone caused my voice to skip, so I had to redo the screencast a couple of times. I had to talked in sort of a hushed whisper, which caused my voice to start hurting after the 5th or so time. The program is fairly simple to use. It's all a matter of trial and error.

As for the actual Blender 3-D program, I don't have any real worries about the problem. There is a life-saver on youtube called"Blender 10 minute crash course". After watching this tutorial, the rest just fell into place. At the beginning, however, the sheer magnitude of all the buttons and functions frightened me. It was like looking at a foreign language. Now I know how to (simply) color, manipulate, and animate an object. I have a great appreciation for all of those animators at Pixar now. They have to spend years animating the entire movie. Just creating grass and liquid alone take endless hours. 

I still plan on my actual final project for this class being a flash cartoon.

 

Good, but not good enough (for me)

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I did get through the rest of the assignment. Besides the fact that I still cannot get the padding and mirroring the background to work right (but Dr Jerz did say that may not be my fault, since my coding is exactly the same as the book's), everything else appears just as it should. I evern tried to go beyond and start creating the header logo. And here is where I ran into some problems. I do not have photoshop elements, and I am not buying it. My computer crashed in March. Everything got wiped off the hardrive and the company only sent me the basics with the new hardrive. I downloaded "Gimp 2" and other than how to change the font, I thought I had created an okay header. I do not know how to make the logo transparent, because the instructions in the book are for photoshop elements on a MAC. I did save the header as a gif. It came up looking slightly squashed and placed to the left of the home page. We'll see what happens tomorrow.

back to class

I love Castro!!!

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That's a sentence I never thought I'd say, but it nevertheess caught your attention. I feel like I'm living in a strange world where Jerz's assignments are actually easy and don't involve boughts of screaming at my computer. I never thought I'd see the day.

Anyway, I found this book to be really easy to follow, except for the parts about photo-shopping, because the pic examples are from a Mac program. The only major issue was not being able to turn the background blue. This was because I had originally began in Microsoft Word, and when I hit the quotation marks, they were curved instead of straight. Evidentally, only the straight kind are read, so the entire command did not work. So my advice is to use notepad, where the quotations are straight.

For some reason, when I try to upload the site to my blog, it turns into 12 point Times New Roman font with an "x" in place of the picture. When viewing it from my U-Disk, the page displays perfectly. I think the problem lays with Moveable Type, and not me.

EL 236 quiz

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Sensativity training

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Before I write about what I really want to write about, I must say this:

to go up to a campus policeman and say "is anything happening" is really unintelligent. In order to conduct an interview well, you must come with questions already prepared. Campus polcemen are busy and don't have time to have friendly chats.

now to the real stuff:

"in a tragedy, never ask a victim's family, "how do you feel?"-pg 35 SNSG

This is a big no-no. You want these people to talk to you, so you must show the upmost sensativity. How do you think they feel?! They feel like someone punched them in the gut, like they're in some kind of hellish parallel universe. The family will be immediately turned off because they'll think you are ignorant and insensative.

Even worse is the dreaded "I know how you feel". No, you don't! You may have gone through something similar, but every situation is different. The circumstances and feelings between family members are most likely different from yuor situation. You may mean well trying to identify yourself with the victim's family, but they might take it as being selfish or trying to turn the attention on yourself.  Also, never ever ever tell someone who is in the midst of grief to "get over it." My grandfather died on a saturday night. Monday morning, someone who said they were my friend told me to get over it. First of all, this situation was my first experience with death. Second of all, his death had only been two days ago! I don't think I ever spoke to the person again.

Chelsea makes a good point in her blog about tv reporters. Never say any of these three phrases to a victim or the family, especially if broadcast reporting. The facial and verbal expressions alone are often enough. I remember a clip we watched last fall in newswriting of a man grieving over his slain grandson. I don't believe the reporter said very much. He just let the man talk about his grief. A good reporter is one who gets people to open up to them.

During my first Media Lab, the Virginia Tech tragedy occured. One assignment was to create a podcast of students' reactions. A girl who lived in my hall had a cousin who not only attended V Tech, but had been good friends with one of the victims. I asked if i could interview her, and all I did was let her talk about what she was feeling and what her cousin had felt. That was a great interview.

Gorillas in the mist....and on the hill?

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"some student staffs rent costumes, such as a gorilla or the school mascot, to hand deliver a paper"-24 SNSG

I scanned the entire chapter for an interesting idea, and there it was on page 24. As reporters, we hope that our writing is enough to draw people to the paper. According to Robert F. Stevenson, sometimes content alone is not enough. Staffers get excited whenever a new issue comes out, but a pile of papers stacked in a corner or on a table may be easily passed over by some. I think that the town crier approach may be too much, but there is perhaps an underlying point here. The locations around campus where we drop off the papers, I feel, need to catch the student's attention more. Maybe some new and colorful signs should be constructed. I'd be willing to do so-perhaps this could count as an excercise/project for the class ?

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my second question: I just want to know if anyone would actually don the gorilla suit..come on, you know you want to. Make distribution day memorable!

p.s. I will personally pay someone $20 if they wear a gorilla suit on a distribution day

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he's dancing because we had a good issue!

I do believe that I have never said this before:

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A Jerz assignment was easy!!!!!!!! And I thought creating web pages would be hard. Thanks to microsoft word, anyone can create a web page. Everything created in a MS Word document, even charts and graphs, can be instantly converted into html code. There's hardly any hand-coding involved. Just by googling, I found out how to change the background color of the web page and add pictures.

and I thought computers were evil

 

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The only problem I had was with steps 22-24. I could always see the bold text.

So here it is, my webpage, in all it's splendor and glory. web page.htm

back to class

Idiots

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Malwebolence

"Within hours, the anonymous multitudes were wrapping the tragedy of Mitchell’s death in absurdity."-Schwartz

Some people make me sick. They have no idea what else could have been going on in this young man's life. For all they knew, he could have had a chemical imbalance. I mean, killing yourself over an ipod does sound ridiculous at first, but then you start to think: there has to be more to the story.

How dare those kids torture Mitchell's poor, grieving parents!? Where on earth is the humor? It's not funny. It's sheer cruelty.

 "Rules would be simple: 1. Do whatever it takes to get lulz. 2. Make sure the lulz is widely distributed. This will allow for more lulz to be made. 3. The game is never over until all the lulz have been had.”

Trolling to me translates to: I am so bored and pathetic that I have to run around an attempt to ruin people's lives because mine sucks so much. I get pleasure out of watching people squirm. When people respond to my comments, it makes me feel important because people appear to actually car about what I said.

I'm sorry (not really), but trolls are morons, and I don't care who sees this.

"but his passion is trolling, “pushing peoples’ buttons.” 

That's really kind of sad, Jason. I'm sure you would be a fascinating psychology study.

I remember hearing about Megan Meier. Poor thing. And her former friend's mother wanted to know if Megan was gossping about her daughter?! All kids gossip! Everyone in this class gossips! it is a part of life.

Megan could have been a really lonely girl, which would explain why she would have become attached to someone (albeit an online someone) who was showing her kindness. People are vulnerable when they are depressed. She probably went into a state of shock when the boy, whom she had cared for, suddenly began rejecting her. 

Lori Drew is a fool. Her little experiment reminds me of a quote I found on a stupid goverment calendar:

"Extensive Navy research shows that under extreme cold, water feeezes"

Duh.

"The last she heard from Jason was a letter telling her to kill herself. “Jason is a young man in a great deal of emotional pain,” she said, crying as she spoke. “Don’t be too harsh. He’s still my son.”-Fortuny's Mother

A mother's love must be really strong, because Iif someone sent me something like this, I'd kick their butt.

"He, not Lori Drew, Fortuny told me, was the blog’s author. After watching him log onto the site and add a post, I believed him. The blog was intended, he says, to question the public’s hunger for remorse and to challenge the enforceability of cyberharassment laws like the one passed by Megan’s town after her death."

To me, that explanation sounds like a cop-out. There are probably more civil and proper ways to go about getting internet laws enacted. The situation was seriously enough. A girl died; death is the most severe thing on the planet. To someone who supposedly had a rough life, Fortuny conducted himself with little to no sensativity. If anything, I would expect someone with a past like his to sympathize with Megan.

“So the message is ‘buy a helmet,’ and the medium is a bat to the head?” I asked."

Yes! Schwartz sees the stupidity in the logic! 

 "The willingness of trolling “victims” to be hurt by words, he argued, makes them complicit, and trolling will end as soon as we all get over it."

Yes, but we are all human and we all let our emotions get the best of us sometimes. You can have a thick skin, but no one is inpenatrable.

 "We need to put these people in the oven!”-Weev

What a disgusting person. This man needs to be locked up. Fortuny at least tried to give logic behind his thinking (however warped it was).

"Does free speech tend to move toward the truth or away from it? When does it evolve into a better collective understanding? When does it collapse into the Babel of trolling, the pointless and eristic game of talking the other guy into crying “uncle”? Is the effort to control what’s said always a form of censorship, or might certain rules be compatible with our notions of free speech?"-Schwartz

Damn straight!!! There's got to be some rules; without them, there will be utter kaos.

"Be conservative in what you do; be liberal in what you accept from others.”

I think this quote sums up netiquette.

 What a fantastic article. Schwartz is a really intelligent person.

 Trollers may see themselves as:

But I see them as:

random fact: I typed "ugly disgusting evil trolls" in google images and one of the first pictures that came up was Hilary.

speaking of idiots, here are some famous ones for you, then back to class:

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Sometimes, the stupidity of the human race mystifies me

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 "Do the risque pages matter if teacher performance is not hindered and if students, parents and school officials don't see them? At what point are these young teachers judged by the standards for public officials?"

When Young Teacher Go Wild On The Web

I actually wrote last week's essay on this same subject. Long story short, last year it was discovered that my former high school's strait-laced choral director had a site devoted to sexual fantasies he had about his students. Naturally, after the discovery of the site (and his subsequent "resignation") copies got passed around. To say the man's stories were graphic is a severe understatement. Plus, the stories drew parallels to students he currently had. None of his former students, like myself, could have imagined the man to act on any of his fantasies; however, if he was stupid enough to post them on the internet, he may be stupid enough to do other things. My high school did the right thing by making the man resign.

It is often young people that are blamed for being too careless. But there are stupid people in every age group. You are a fool if you think even for a second that what you put on the internet is private.

The risque pages absolutely matter! There is no guaranteed lock down of your page. As I wrote in my essay, a student stumbled upon "Mr Michaels"'s sight after she saw that he had been on hers. Do adults really think that kids today don't know how to uncover an IP address or save a webpage?

 "At the same time, my work and social lives are completely separate"

yes, but at the same time, you have students that are part of the facebook world. While you may consider it part of only your "social life", facebook permeates each part of your life.

What a fool.

I think that it is a great idea for employers to check facebook profiles. 

" If teachers claim free speech protection under the First Amendment..."

I still can't believe that people who went to college still do not understand the parmeters under which this rule operates. You do have the right to free speech, but you do not have freedom from the consequences!!!

"Minutes later, access to her site was restricted"

It doesn't matter. Someone may have already made a copy and sent it to the superintendent. That it how my former HS choral director lost his job. And rightly so.

Back to class