September 2006 Archives

Bush, ''As We May Think''


It's hard to believe it was written in 1945. The article was about how knowledge would eventually become accessible at the touch of a finger. Bush predicted a lot of the technology we have now: speech recognition, Wikipedia "A library of a million volumes could be compressed into one end of a desk", hypertext, computers and the Internet.

Lehre’s ''MySpace: The Movie'' gave us a satirical presentation on the popular social medium. Myspace has a lot of satirical profiles. This leads me to my question of: How long till politicians get their very own Myspace (another example)? At the moment, there only seems to be profiles created by supporters and non-supporters.

Stafford’s ''Why parents must mind MySpace'' taught us about online dangers and the importance of good parenting. As did Haddock’s ''Online Danger Zone'' (AKA: The Internet: Poison for Children). And Boyd’s ''Friendster lost steam. Is MySpace just a fad?'' looked at Myspace as a necessary coming-of-age practice.

Boyd’s essay said that being apart of Myspace was the equivalent to “being in the know”. Apparently I wasn’t “in the know” for quite some time. I had never heard about the website till I started college. My freshman year roommate had written an e-mail to me over the summer saying, “I don’t have time to write you an e-mail about myself, so here’s my Myspace.” This led me to think of Myspaces as a sort of social resume.

Over the summers, it’s all about Myspace. But like birds flying south for the winter, students seem to flock to Facebook at the start of term. Am I the only one who notices this strange migration? Is this “cultural phenomena” seasonal?

Young, ''The 24-Hour Professor''


"Is technology turning college teaching into a 24-hour job? ... The student asks when the grades for the last assignment will be posted. Mr. Grenci taps out a reply using one index finger (he says he never learned to touch-type)." -- Young, ''The 24-Hour Professor''

I think I discovered why it takes him so long.

It would be a difficult choice, but if I had to choose between a physical book and the PDF version, I would choose the PDF.

PDF’s win my love with their search option. No need to flip through page after endless page when you can just do a quick search for the phrase you’re looking for. Example: The only way to conquer the navigational nightmare that is the online course catalog is by utilizing the search option. Instead of an hour of scrolling, just search for “science requirement” and you will be shown every course that satisfies the science requirement.

It's nice to know I'd be willing to sell out books just to save a little time.

“American parents always have fretted over the newest recreation fad. A quarter century ago, they worried that Pac-Man and Donkey Kong fostered attention deficit disorder. A century ago, they panicked that a new pool table would trigger truancy, tobacco use and trouble in River City.” -- Haddock, ''Online Danger Zone''

If society can survive the hooliganism of the Pac-Man and the pool table, the Internet shouldn’t be too big of a problem.

We had our first computer in 1990. It was DOS: DOS programs, no desktop, no icons, no programs menu, no Microsoft Office, no recovery disks, no keyboard shortcut keys, and the only drive was floppy. You had to type things like “run//ex:” to start a program. There were commands for everything. The manual was the size of an encyclopedia.

My parents tell me that it was a display model and that it had “a lot of other people's crap on it from when they played around with it in the store.” They never could figure out how to get it off.

I’m struggling down memory lane with this but I’d say I mostly remember my sister playing Maniac Mansion and shouting at me for jumping around in the computer room because the slightest movement and the screen would scramble and she'd lose her game.

It only had about six colors so the characters in the game sometimes had blue skin or orange hair, even though they were human. There was also a Wheel of Fortune and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego game, of similar quality.

The games took a very long time to load and if you got impatient and pressed the space bar repeatedly, as I often did, it would either take longer or start to make frightening noises.

Other than the games, it was practically useless. My parents used it to print up a few invoices. The printer had cogs and the paper had holes on the side which had to fit into the cogs of the printer.

I discovered that the game I remember my sister playing fourteen years ago still exists today. This is how it used to look:

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

And this is how it is now:

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

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This page is an archive of entries from September 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

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