Information/Communication Representations

1. Tv ad’s, the daisy ad for example, which uses propaganda and (not so) subliminal messaging
2. Twitter, espn having live debates with analysts arguing which team will win an upcoming game and people tweeting a hashtag in support of either side
3. Music, artists making songs and lyrics supporting different causes such as political ideas or candidates
4. Internet sidebars, how google tracks where you visit online and uses that information to show ad’s that may relate to you
5. Website surveys, the website will have you fill out a form to hopefully gain useful and profitable information before you can use something on the website

Projects I’d Like to Do

1. My favorite idea was to recreate an old movie using new technology. I think it would be neat to see how a great old movie would look except with modern special effects. One movie that really comes to mind is The Birds. When I was little, my aunt said that was the scariest movie she ever saw, but when I watched it for myself several years later, it didn’t seem like much to me. Part of this was because the birds did not look realistic at all. I think if that movie was recreated, or retouched, it would have a much more intense effect.

2. I’ve always been interested in ancient history, so I think researching the different ancient paintings and writings, then mapping and timelining(?) them would be exciting for me.

3. I also like the idea of recreating some old radio broadcast. Something that comes to mind is Franklin Roosevelt’s fireside talks or his telling the public about Pearl Harbor. Perhaps something like a timeline of a bunch of his fireside talks, so we could use timelinejs and the media program.

Reflection of Our Project

For our project, we 3D scanned several artifacts from the James Monroe Museum including Monroe’s Desk, a bas relief of Monroe’s negotiations regarding the Louisiana Purchase, and many other of the Monroe family’s personal possessions. It was really cool and fun to have the opportunity to work up close and personal with Jarod Kearney, the curator of the museum, and all of these objects. We got a behind the scenes look at many of them, which is an experience not many people get to have. To scan these objects, we learned how to use several different innovative tools and programs including Makerbot, Scanect, and Sketchfab. As interesting as it was to use these tools, technology was our biggest obstacle to completing our project. Due to these problems, we became good friends with Tim Owens of DTLT who’s help with these issues was invaluable. Our technology issues were the primary reason that we struggled to meet some our milestones stated in our contract. Thankfully, we anticipated that we would have some trouble, so we had contingency dates that we were able to meet. A vast majority of the time we spent on our project was during our several trips to the museum to scan. The scans take a good portion of time and are very easy to disrupt, so it was necessary to rescan just about every object. The scanners, the Makerbot in particular, are very sensitive, so anything that did not sit just right in the lasers, or was too shiny, or was not the right size were difficult to scan. The peace medal had each of these issues, so unfortunately we could not scan it. Due to the requirements of the scanners, we were not able to scan each of the original objects stated in our contract. We circumvented this problem by choosing some different objects.
As far as the individual responsibilities, non of the jobs stated in our contract went unfinished. Thanks to Ike, the timeline is completed and accurate, thanks to Victoria, the scans are all on the site and look excellent, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jarod and embedding the videos onto the site, and thanks to Amanda, everything on the site is consistent and looks professional. The primary part of our project was to scan the objects and put them online. The point of it is to enhance the museum experience and to be able to interact with some of the objects without even having to leave your desk. I mentioned that we could not scan all of the objects we originally hoped to scan, but we still fulfilled our contract by replacing the problem artifacts with others that worked. By working around the issues with technology, we completed everything by at least our back up dates, and accomplished what we set out to do in our contract. I think the four of us can now brag that we know James Monroe better than any of our friends.

Reading

The first article I read was the Nicholas Carr one, original I know. I completely agree with him. I actually had a conversation with my Dad about this topic a few weeks ago. I’ve noticed the same change in myself. I used to love to read, all throughout my schooling up until about 11th grade I read all the time, but once I started to have to read books that I wasn’t as interested in, I didn’t have time to read the ones I did. Once I started having time again, I struggled to get in to the books. The same is true with readings for school, even though I’m interested in most of the topics, I have to push myself through it because my brain is so used to reading short things online and moving on to the next one. I think that the internet is fantastic, but it has definitely affected my ability to focus for long periods of time. I hate to use this term, but due to the “rewiring” of our brains, I think we need to remember to practice staying focused and reading more often. I think its more important than ever to make an effort to read for pleasure, lest we risk losing even more of the ability to focus on long stories. Reading boring subjects for school or work or whatever is already hard enough, but it will only get harding if we don’t exercise our long term focus.

Lessons Learned from the Readings

The first article I read was Footprints in the Digital Age by Will Richardson.  The first thing I learned from the article was that no matter how much you think you are, you really aren’t in control of your web footprint.  However, you can take measures to increase the control you have and to try to make sure the footprint you have is a good one.  Kids are online more than ever before, so it is important that they are educated in the correct ways to safely use the internet in order to maintain the best control of their footprint and what people say about them.  The second thing I learned from the article is related to this.  While its nice to always have people agree with what you say, it is important to seek out different opinions, especially those which are different from yours.  Doing this will force you to see the flaws in your argument and learn how to reduce them, which in turn makes your thinking even stronger.  The second article I read was Personal Branding in the Age of Google by Seth Godin.  Although this article was short, it had a very important message.  You need to be very, very important what you put online, because once it’s there, its there for good.  Everyone makes mistakes sometimes, but the Godin said the best thing you can do is to put good things online as often as you can.  It is kind of similar to building a good credit score, everyone misses a payment here and there, but continually making payments on time, as often as you can will build up your score and can balance out the bad ones.  The third article I read was Vanish: Finding Evan Ratliff.  This was an extremely interesting story for me.  I learned that even with all the precautions he took to keep from being found, all the information you put on the web can come back to haunt you, and in Evan’s case it did.  Its a really good example of how even though you can try to hide behind things, misdirection or true, something like posting a picture of you drinking at a party can be found.  This ties in to both of the other articles I read.  It relates to the Godin one because although he was found, he put out all the other information to help it become much harder to find, and it relates to the Richardson article because it says that if you’re not careful, one little mistake online can hurt you.

Class

In class today we tweaked and decided on our theme for the website.  We also set up a meeting to do some scans at the James Monroe Museum tomorrow.  We really liked the theme we picked at first, except that the menu bar was on the left side and we wanted it on the right.  Luckily, after a little bit of tinkering and playing around on wordpress, we figured out how to move it to the right.  Looking forward to a productive day tomorrow with Jarod!