M8.2 Goodbye!

WOW! Has another year of university already gone by? I feel like I’ve blinked and my final year has just disappeared before my eyes. It’s crazy to think in a few short months I will be walking up to the podium to receive my Bachelor of French Studies and then off to Teacher’s Education in August at Charles Sturt University!

To wrap up my final blog for COMM 2F00, I’m going to do a recap of each module and what I learned from it… (Here we go!)

Module 1: Introduction

During this module, we were required to set up our blogs (like this one) and explore/signup for different social media accounts. Never having done a blog before, I was a little unsure of the task and wasn’t quite sure where too start. Once I figured out the presentation of my blog (it only took my 3 weeks… hahaha), the writing came naturally!

Module 2: Social Media: I blog therefore I am

After establishing our place in the virtual world, we were asked to reflect on it, explaining how much personal information we actually divulge on social media networks. After this module, I actually went through all of my frequently used social media and adjusted all of the privacy settings. It is so easy to forget how easily accessible one becomes once connected to the  internet. I have nothing to hide, but I feel as though not everyone needs to know every detail of my social life.

Module 3: The Information Age and the Knowledge Economy

Ooooo! My favourite module component – Pinterest. During this lesson, we used Pinterest to define what exactly in meant to live in the “information age” and figure how to navigate its sometimes complicated waters. I can personally say I have had about 6 people specifically follow my “Being Human in the Information Age” Board. I find it interesting how other people from around the world can relate to my Board about this topic which includes Pin about how I perceive the age of information.

Module 4: Networks & Mobilities

How attached are you to your cellphone? I constantly asked myself this question while writing these blogs. This module made me so aware of how often I  have my iPhone in hand and am searching the web or updating my Facebook. I physically stopped carrying it around when I would be at home or my boyfriend’s because I came to realize just hoy much it distracted me from real human interaction.

Module 5: Film & TV: the Struggle to be Seen

During this week I was able to connect with my fellow Downton Abbey addicts via GetGlue. I love being able to share in the joy and sorrow of what Season 4 had to bring within the first few episodes…

Module 6: Music: an Industry Disrupted

This module discussed the limitations of copyright in the music industry. I voiced my opinion about that subject, go check it out if you’re interested. It’s too long winded to summarize here… I also got favourited by Noah Guthrie. I love his music. #WIN #IScreamedIWasSOHappy

Module 7: New Journalism, New Publics?

I enjoyed the opportunity this module presented to be a journalist. I loved being able to gather information about something that I’m passionate about and share it with the online community.

Module 8: Audiences, Transmedia, and Networked Culture

In my opinion, this module forced us to review what we’ve gathered from this course and how we’ve applied it to our daily use of social media. It’s interesting to see how I’m developed virtual since I started this course.

All of the tools and information I have learned about New Media Literacy has better prepared me to use it and adapt it into my future use. I now market myself differently in the eyes of the social virtual society. This allows me to show the online community who I am using different mediums such as Pinterest, GetGlue, Storify, etc, and communicate with others I might not have met if I hadn’t expressed who I was in my social media. Even though I am able to connect with an entirely new base of followers and friends because of social media, it still doesn’t beat face-to-face, “reading the behavioural and social cues” type of interactions that I get to know how to do to survive social (and in person).

I love social media and being connected to this hugely accessible online world, but I can’t tell you how glad I will be to get away from it for a while after exams are done. My essay writing days are almost done for the year.

 

Thank you so much for taking the time to follow me as I learn about the virtual “ME” these past few months. I have learned a lot and will continue to practice these tools in the future.

Signing off for the last time!

– HeidiOnTheGo

M8.1 “Produsing” a new virtual “ME”

This New Media Literacy course has given me a whole new perspective on how I see myself “produsing” in the online community. With the click of a few buttons and a wave of my magic cursor, the entire virtual world has access to me (if I have allowed them, suing my Privacy Settings). I am able to vocalise a part of me without actually verbally saying anything.

The web-based tools we have been taught to use in the course are:

  • Blogs
  • Pinterest
  • GetGlue
  • SlideShare
  • Storify
  • and Youtube!

My favourite out of all of these tools is Pinterest. Now I know, that’s pretty typical. I mean, I’m a young female, starting her early twenties looking for future apartment ideas, planning my wedding (hint, hint Derek), searching through baby things, looking through tips about getting back my pre-university body… Where else am I going to find this type of creativity unless I start making daily trips to Michael’s, Babies-R-Us and the YMCA???

Yes, I love all of these things that I am able to do with Pinterest because they inspire me to get off the computer and my phone and go and be CREATIVE!

I can recall one afternoon searching through pins when I came across this recipe for Peach Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake. I didn’t pin it for later and move onto the next pin. NO! I immediately got my butt off the couch, put down the phone and headed into the kitchen with a plan. That pin was reminder to me about a few things:

  1. I spend too much time on Pinterest.
  2. I spend too much time on Pinterest pinning things without actually doing them.
  3. I spend too much time on Pinterest pinning things without actually doing them, with all of the materials and tools physically at my disposal.
  4. I love cake.

I have to say that cake was delicious (I’m pretty sure I ate half of it by myself… There is photo evidence of its glory before it was devoured somewhere in my Instagram feed if you don’t believe me). The only reason I can tell you this it because I was inspired to “produse”.

I want to take what I have learn on my “21st century culture machine” (Lunenfeld 1) and apply it to everyday life. I don’t want to get stuck in a rut of constantly downloading information and never uploading it to my daily life. In his article “History as Remix: How the Computer Became a Culture Machine”, Peter Lunenfeld said, “When a person or a machine sends out data or information, that is uploading” (4) (See full article here).

I believe the purpose of the tools that we have learned in this course is to take the information they provide us and apply it to how we participate in the world around us, in reality and online. What’s the point in downloading something you will never use?

I want to take what is simulated before me on my screens (laptop, iPhone, iPad, etc.) and bring it into contact with my everyday life.

Thanks for reading!

– HeidiOnTheGo

P.S. Can’t believe we’re almost done!!!

M7.2 Welcome, Lammily!

Lammily is a newly introduced doll created by Nickolay Lamm. She promotes that “average is beautiful” as well as realistic and healthy body proportions. Unlike her fellow Barbie, Lammily has moveable joints, flat feet and minimal makeup (because really, less is more). Lamm wants her to be recognized for her healthy lifestyle and positive message, not because she is fashion oriented. Her simple wardrobe reinforces Lamm’s desire for the focus to be on her naturalism as an average American woman instead of the ideal American woman.

For more information and commentary on Lammily, please check out my article of Storify with it’s accompanying social media inserts:

http://storify.com/heidiwhitnall/lammily

To donate to this positive cause that could change future generations, please visit http://www.lammily.com.

 

Thanks!

HeidiOnTheGo

M7.1 Are you a 21st Century Reporter?

If you go to your Twitter homepage, you are immediately able to see what the current “Trends” are. These trends are created through a new form of organizing information – the hashtag. Alfred Hermida explains that “the hash convention means messages on a particular topic can be identified, tracked and grouped to reflect what new or newsworthy issues are capturing people’s attention on Twitter at any one time, displaying the aggregate interests and attention of these groups of users” (2012) in his article TWEETS AND TRUTH: Journalism as a discipline of collaborative verification (See full article here).

Everyday, thousands of people use Twitter to update others on their daily lives. Now even news reporters and large companies are using social media to update their audiences. This allows users to access global information in a more familiar and simpler way. Simply by clicking on a hashtag, a user is able to see all of the other tweets with the same tagline that are listed from most current to oldest. This ensures that the tweeter has a live feed of information about the topic at their finger tips. This past year, Facebook has also added the ability to hashtag to their list of capabilities to allow their users to participate in the same manner.

Hermida goes on the say that “Twitter provides a mix of news, information and comment, usually connected to current reality, but without an established order. As a result, journalism is not just in the process of negotiating a shift to a digital media environment, but more significantly to a networked one” (2012).

Check out this YouTube video by Twitter to see the 2013 top trending hashtags:

Not only has this made news more attainable, but also encourages the user to express their own thoughts or factual details of the trend if they are present at the time of its occurrence. This had allowed the average joe to become a 21st Century Reporter.

“The web environment provides extensive civic potential; there is a wide array of participatory forms available what we can call civic practices. The tools are more and more effective, less expensive, and easier to use; access and collaboration are increasing, and we are evolving from mostly media consumers to many media producers jargon calls this synthesis of traditionally distinct roles. From the standpoint of participation, these are indeed impressive and historically unprecedented participatory possibilities” (Peter Dahlgren, 2012) (See full article here).

By consumers and providers both participating in these social media environments, it allows a more connected form of communication. The user can openly share their thoughts and opinions that companies can refer to and collect information if the user utilizes the hashtag the company has provided. This is a more more direct means of contact.

There is no limit to what one can say on Twitter. Anything (and I mean anything) goes. A user can report on everyday life, whether it is from a personal standpoint or an objective one. Social media has made documenting information a daily aspect of modern day life.

I may not always update my Facebook statuses or my Twitter feed, but when I do, it is typically due to an important event such as a birthday, an engagement, a function, etc. My posts vary between my life and what I see on the news or in my social groups. I am a reporter of my own life.

Thanks for reading!

– HeidiOnTheGo

M6.2 SlideShare, Meet Noah Guthrie.

I personally try my best to listen to whatever is on my iPhone before I revert to using YouTube or my 8tracks apps (because they eat up my monthly data when not connected to Wi-Fi).

Typically, when I’m doing homework and I don’t already have the song(s) I want to listen to, I’ll throw up a YouTube browser window for some background noise. When I’m laying in bed while reading and want something different that I don’t have to select myself, I’ll open up 8tracks because you can choose a setting and a mood and a random playlist will upload for you. The less thinking required, sometimes, the better.

To listen to Noah Guthrie however, I’ll listen through YouTube if it’s one of his covers because they are not available for download or I’ll open up my iTunes to listen to his new album Among The Wildest Things (Available on iTunes for only $7.99).

The SlideShare presentation available on my account has a great overview of this budding artist! Can’t wait to hear your thoughts and comments!

 

Don’t forget to check out his YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/only1noah

Click here to check out my SlideShare account!

M6.1 “It’s not illegal if they put it on the internet!”

Who doesn’t turn on the radio when they get in the car? Or crank the tunes when they’re cleaning (to make scrubbing that bathtub a little more bearable)? Or when they’re studying to help focus themselves a little better? Well for me, music is present in all of these occasions.

*Currently Listening To: Hide and Seek – Imogen Heap*

I love being constantly surrounded by floating melodies that help me drift away from reality. Thanks to the Internet and Rogers LTE, this is always available to me.

I will admit that I have gone on an iTunes spree a few times when one of my favourite artists releases a new album or music video. I always buy my music if I want to own it instead of having the YouTube video on repeat.

In the past, I have written and recorded my own music. Let me say, it is not easy. It is a long, expensive process that requires a lot of hard work.

In their article “When creators, corporations and consumers collide: Napster and the development of on-line music distribution” (See full article here), Tom McCourt and Patrick Burkart state that according to the Internet Nirvana Theory of intellectual property “the Internet is an arena of free exchange in which everyone wins. Creators of intellectual property will regain control over copyright while reducing barriers to entry and distributor interference in their productions. Distributors will gain a huge new revenue stream, eliminating material costs, overheads and geographic boundaries while creating opportunities for subscription and licensing systems that require perpetual repurchase of their goods and services. Consumer electronics and computer companies will sell new recorders, playback systems and auxiliary devices. Technology companies will reap a windfall through patents on anti-copying software and license fees. Service providers like telephone and cable companies will see growing demand for lucrative broadband services. Consumers will find innumerable choices at low cost as the Internet becomes a ‘vast intellectual commons’ in which ‘nothing will ever again be out of print or impossible to find; every scrap of human culture transcribed, no matter how obscure or commercially unsuccessful, will be available to all’ (Mann, 2000: 41)”.

*Currently Listening To: You are Enough – Sleeping At Last*

Although I understand the basic concepts of this theory, I do not agree with it completely. I agree with the statement that the Internet is a space of “free exchange”, yet I feel that this idea has been used to liberally. When one does not purchase the material an artist has put up on the Internet or credit them accordingly, it is stealing.

One of my biggest pet peeve’s is when I ask my friends where they found the music they’re listening to and they respond with something along the lines of…

Friend: “Well I was browsing the web and stumbled on it. Sounded pretty sweet. So I just downloaded it.

Me: “Oh, cool! I like it. How much did the album cost you?”

Friend: “Nothing.”

Me: “Nothing? It was free?”

Friend: “Well, not exactly… I just typed [insert word here] before the url and it took my to another site to download it. So it was “free”, kinda.”

Me: *Eye Twitch* “Oh, okay. Isn’t that stealing though?”

Friend: “It’s not illegal if they put it on the internet!”

Stop right there. Haven’t we been learning in this course that we can use the Internet to market ourselves, immerse ourselves sin to the digital world and expand our audience? Isn’t that what these artists are trying to do?

Of course, Heidi! That’s why they post their music on the Internet! They want to reach more people. 

Right, okay. So, they want to get their names and they’re music out there, but remember they spend THEIR TIME and THEIR MONEY to create this beautiful music to post on their Internet page. So, shouldn’t we support them by paying for the download?

Well… I guess. But if they wanted us to pay for it, they should have just put it on iTunes.

Not everyone can afford the iTunes privileges. There is a pay button on the page for a reason. That artist has composed something wonderful that they want to share with you. If you like what they have and want to support them, buy it.

That’s how we can solve piracy. Just buy it. Someone took the time to create/invent it just for you.

Not that hard.

Next on the to do list:

World Peace

Until next time!

– HeidiOnTheGo

M5.2 GetGlue’d!

OKAY!

So my wonderful Professor Tracy had us sign up for this incredible thing – GetGlue (Check out my account here) – and I’m IN LOVE!

GetGlue is another social media platform that allows you to “check-in” when you are watching a TV show, movie or sports event and interact with other people who are watching that same thing at the same time. I knew people were into Downton Abbey (my latest TV obsession), but when I checked in on the night the newest episode in the series was airing, I didn’t realize it would be trending in the #9 spot over all TV shows!

When you “check-in” to watching a show, you are able to post a comment to go with it which then shows up on the TV shows live feed for their account. People all over North America could see my comments. I even got a few likes (obviously for my hilarity/genius)!

GetGlue also allows you to connect with your other social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. So when I was setting up my account, I added my other networks so other people could see what I was up to. Low and behold, I had something crazy happen…

TLC has some wonderful programming at the end of the week which they have dubbed “Bride Day Friday”. For those who know me well, I rarely miss weekly occurrence. So as I was watching “Something Borrowed, Something New” – a TV show where a bride has the option of choosing a new dress to be married in or her mother’s re-invented wedding dress – I remembered that I should check in to GetGlue for my COMM 2F00 class. About 2 minutes later, I received an email that one of the show’s Fashion Designers had not only retweeted me, but thanked me for my commentary! WHOA! I felt like an insta-celebrity! How cool is it that we can be so connected like that?!

Not only does GetGlue allow its viewers to communicate with each other, but it brings its viewers closer to the people they’re watching.

“GetGlue, of course, was one of the early social TV pioneers, promising to help drive mobile and tablet users to tune in to more TV shows and get them more engaged with the content through its app. The idea was that people were already on their phones while they watched TV, so why not try to hook them on a new, TV-based social network?” (See full article here).

This past February, GetGlue even redesigned their app to have a similar look and feel to those of us who commonly use Facebook and Twitter for easier movement. “The “Feed” tab shows a stream of friends’ activity as well as TV shows’ related media content such as images, videos, links and reviews… The “Guide” tab, which ditches the traditional grid format of TV guides, appears as a scrolling list prioritized by what’s on right now so people can easily see what’s trending on TV, streaming and in theaters. GetGlue taps into users’ check-in data to personalize the guide for each user. The tab also shows real-time scores and stats” (See full article here). Both of these updated features are seen in other social media platforms. “Feeds” allow viewers to see and communicate in real time.

GetGlue has even begun to team up with specific networks and TV series to create more in-depth viewer interactions. For example, in January of last year, “[t]he FBI and USA Networks [created] “Real Life White Collar Crimes” to let people help the FBI solve real crimes revolving around stolen items. The campaign [lived] online via photo galleries and investigative tidbits about open cases, while on-air promotions [showcased] one stolen item each week. Participants [could] submit leads to the FBI and earn GetGlue stickers related to “Real Life White Collar Crimes” (See full article here).

I didn’t think watching TV while sitting on the couch could ever actually be a useful tool until I read that article. Imagine figuring out how a $3 million violin was stolen, while lazily stretched out on the couch, eating a bag of potato chips and all you did was check-in to a TV show and then email the FBI. Is there a way to do this with our homework and earn virtual stickers? If so, I am totally signing up for that class!

Not only did this encourage viewers and users of GetGlue to check-in and watch, but also to collaborate to solve the mystery together!

Although cool stickers and needing over your favourite TV show so frequently that you are considered a “True Fan” is pretty cool, I feel like this is not necessarily a positive reward system. The more frequency you’re checking in, the more frequently you’re watching TV. Therefore, taking yourself away from other important interactions, such as real life ones. Don’t get me wrong, I love to watch a few episodes to relax, but I don’t know if I would want to have my named attached to too many stickers. A lot of stickers means a lot of TV watching.

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Until next time!

– HeidiOnTheGo

M5.1 My Online Confession

One of the best way to procrastinate doing an important assignment is watching YouTube videos between checking your Facebook and Twitters feeds while posting pictures of your giant pile of homework and empty Word document on Instagram. Admit it! Almost every student in the 21st Century has done this at some point (or every point) in their educational lifetime. It’s such a simple solution for “destressing” over that project that is probably going to be late now.

How else would we have found the piano playing cat? Jeffery Dallas and his deadly important message on jellyfish safety precautions? This important dance number? Or this epic and highly unlikely rap battle between fictional characters?

I confess to do all of the above (but not always because I’m procrastinating).

I love to post pictures on Instagram of something I feel is interesting. I update my Facebook status to let my friends and family know what’s new.

However, my biggest addiction/contribution in the online world has been Pinterest (confirm my addiction by clicking here)…

  pinterest1111-resized-600

pinjoke  pinterestmeme

As of right this moment, I have…

  • 51 Boards
  • 2,359 Pins
  • 3,880 Likes

YIKES!

Although I am a very active “Pinner”, I have yet to actually create my own Pin. Why you ask? Because I get so caught up in everyone else’s creativity I forget that I’M CREATIVE, TOO! It’s very overwhelming and exciting to see that people from all around the world have all of these great ideas and just want to get them out there!

Beside pinning wedding things for my future with someone (AHEM – Derek [his blog here]), memes are some of my favourite collaborations of different cultures and fandoms.

I think this one sums it up nicely…

m3

Wikipedia explains that a “meme (/ˈmm/meem)[1] is “an idea, behavior, or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.”[2] A meme acts as a unit for carrying culturalideas, symbols, or practices that can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals, or other imitable phenomena. Supporters of the concept regard memes as cultural analogues to genes in that they self-replicate, mutate, and respond to selective pressures.[3] (See Wikipedia definition of “meme” here).

Or as Urban Dictionary states “a pervasive thought or thought pattern that replicates itself via cultural means; a parasitic code, a virus of the mind especially contagious to children and the impressionable” (See Urban Dictionary definition of “meme” here).

Henry Jenkins states at the very beginning of his study “The cultural logic of media convergence” that “[t]he American media environment is now being shaped by two seemingly contradictory trends: on the one hand, new media technologies have lowered production and distribution costs, expanded the range of available delivery channels and enabled consumers to archive, annotate, appropriate and recirculate media content in powerful new ways; on the other hand, there has been an alarming concentration of the ownership of mainstream commercial media, with a small handful of multinational media conglomerates dominating all sectors of the entertainment industry”.

The great emergence of memes shows that we have started taking ownership of the things we love. We take these TV shows, movies, songs, etc, and we use them to show a different side of the characters and artists. Sure, the fans might use video clips and sound bites, but what is created is usually very unique from its original state. It reminds me of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”. It’s amazing how many different perpectives one can get from just one episode of BBC’s Sherlock. Just Google “the faces of BBC Sherlock” and over 157,000,000 results appear!

The problem for new media creators is copyright law.

This has been a personal struggle for me. On one hand, I love seeing people re-imagining my favourite movies and songs to invent something new for eyes and ears. On the other hand, I know how much work and time goes into making these different types of art and the costs that come with it. It is hard to believe, but when you see a meme or TV show clips manipulated from their original form, it has been “stolen”. You have taken away that artist’s original design and replaced it with your own, USING THEIR WORK that they have paid to copyright, not you.

So should we be allowed to use another artist’s work to create our own? Would it be considered “stealing” if there wee no copyright laws?

I’ll leave you with that to ponder as I rush off to the next thing!

À bientôt!

– HeidiOnTheGo

M4.2 To post or not to post?

© 2006-2013 HackCollege. All Rights Reserved.

© 2006-2013 HackCollege. All Rights Reserved.

6:45AM – Alarm on iPhone goes off. Hit snooze button.

7:00AM – Alarm on iPhone goes off. Hit snooze button.

7:23AM – Alarm on iPhone goes off. Hit snooze button.

7:25AM – Alarm on iPhone goes off. Check time using phone. (Eyes are barely open at this point.) Delete all Junk email. Check Facebook to see if there are new messages or notifications. Look at latest Instagram posts. Check weather. Text back best friend about question she asked at 11:47PM the previous day. Reply to Mel about singing on Sunday. Listen to voicemail left by telemarketer. Update Pinterest feed to see if Derek got the 8 Pins I sent him last night before I passed out.

7:27AM – Get out of bed.

I know I seem to rant and rave about how technology seems to being taking over our daily lives and is taking over and blah, blah, blah. However, what I often seem to overlook and underestimate is my not only consistent usage, but also my need for the use of technology. I can’t remember the last morning I got out of bed and didn’t look at my iPhone once to verify time or my schedule for the day. The plan is simple fact is this: ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) are altering and shaping our current and future way of life.

So why do I feel so compelled to be a part of this virtual communication culture?

Honestly, I can’t say that my life revolves around being up-to-date on the most current issues around the world or even in my own backyard. I feel such a need to be part of this type of communication because I am so busy working three jobs and going to school that if I didn’t communicate with family and friends via technology, I would probably never get the chance to actually talk to them! With my younger brother working nights and me working and such during the day, our paths never cross. So taking the time to send him a quick text to let him know that I’ve missed seeing his goofy smile around the house lately is how I keep in contact. Because most of family lives in Toronto or farther, it doesn’t always make sense to drive out their to seem them. Simply having a Skype or Facebook conversation can get us both caught up without costing us lots of gas money. When my boyfriend is in the middle of a production for the Dramatic Arts Department, we’ll go by for days without really ever being able to talk to each other. Because we both have cellphones, I know he’ll call be before I go to bed to say goodnight. In this way, technology allows me to stay connected to those I care about most.

In their article “Social Implications of Mobile Telephony: The Rise of Personal Communication Society”, Scott W. Campbell and Yong Jin Park explain that “we have entered a new personal age of communication technologies. That is, the communication technologies predominant in today’s society, particularly mobile telephony, are characteristically personal in nature” (see article here). This meaning that communications can now be adapted to assist each and every individual person with their specific communication needs. This allows the user to keep in contact with any person or any thing whenever they need to. So when my gramma falls down the stairs and cannot get up to reach the landline telephone, she can reach in her pocket, take out her smartphone and hit the 911 HELP app I installed for her to get exactly what she needs as soon as possible. This also allows me to keep all of my passwords saved on my new iPhone 5S using iCloud while still keeping them private and secure. Gerard Goggin says that “[t]here is an urgent need for such critique because smartphones, and apps especially, have become a central element of mobile ubiquity. As apps, and the software and hardware systems in which they are embedded, articulate directly into cloud computing, and other emergent technology directions, there is great portent to such research” (see article here). 

Technology is becoming more and more able to adapt on not only a global level, but a personal one, too.

Fabio B. Josgrilberg also shows us that this personal communication technology can change depending on our situation. We could be walking through a busy city square with our eyes forward, paying attention to our surroundings, or we could be scrolling through our Twitter feed when a bus comes out of “nowhere” and smokes us before we can even lift our eyes from the screen. His article “A Door to the Digital Locus: Walking in the City with a Mobile Phone and Michel de Certeau” (see article here), Josgrilberg states that “[t]he digital locus is than just one place among many overlapping ones that make “society breathable”. Therein people not only engage themselves in different prosaic social relations, but also work and do business.” The cellphone allows us to be in communication with someone while at the same time be texting a friend about going to a movie tomorrow night (one of the rudest new social conventions currently).

So it’s really no surprise that as technology advances, we see a bigger need to use it more frequently because it is literally being created personally for us. However, we cannot let this means of communication and massive amount of information blind us from what is really going on right in front of us.

As one wise person once said, “Everything in moderation… except cake. Let them have it.”

Exam tomorrow at 8AM (oh, joy… -.-).

Off to bed!

– HeidiOnTheGo

M4.1 I dropped my iPhone this week…

My Broken iPhone

As I getting out of the car from a wonderful date with my boyfriend Derek, I heard the worst sound an iPhone user could ever hear… The sound of glass hitting gravel. Now I’ve dropped this phone at minimum 3 times a week: off of my bed, falling out of an unzipped pocket, down 2 flights of stairs, 3 puddles, you name it! And NOT ONCE has it ever broken. Until that night.

Sure enough, I flipped it over and the screen had completely cracked all the way down one side with a few tiny shards of glass missing. Seriously?! This thing was practically a brick compared to what it has been through before and it couldn’t handle a 2 foot drop off my lap? Of course, the most expensive fixes are always right before Christmas time!

As I have mentioned before in my posts, my cellphone goes everywhere with me. I use it for my personal business (iTutor French Services). I use it to keep in contact with my family and my boyfriend. I use it for school. I use it to keep track of my daily schedule. I use it to communicate with my worship leader which weeks I am singing. I use it to do my banking. And I can do all of this through applications (a.k.a. apps)!

Edmodo, iMessage, Facebook, Mail, iCal, PCO (Planning Centre Online – Church Team Organizing App), RBC, just to name a few! All of these apps allow me to multitask to the extreme. I can be in a call with Derek while banking/checking Facebook/emailing/buy his Christmas present via Etsy all while doing my laundry that’s been pilled on the floor for the past two weeks. I can do anything! (I’m practically Super Woman…)

Ubiquitous (or ever-present – had to look that one up!) mobile communication allows the user to be in constant connection with not only the virtual world, but also reality. Scott W. Campbell and Yong Jin Park state that, “we do not consider the new personal communication society as a departure from the network society, but rather as part of the progression of it that offers its own distinctive social consequences. It does not take an oracle to speculate on what the next step in this progression might be. Considering communication and information technologies are becoming smaller, more personal, and more connected to the body, one might argue the next step will be the predominance of biotechnology” (see article here).

Can you imagine having a microchip implanted in your brain that would be the equivalent to the latest iPhone? Talk about the communication possibilities!

Although technology is moving forward quickly by making complex things simple by allowing us to access a broader spectrum of information as discussed in “From telephones to iPhones: Applying systems thinking to networked, interoperable products” by Guy H. Walker, Neville A. Stanton, Daniel P. Jenkins and Paul M. Salmon (see article here), is communication really becoming advanced by the amount of capabilities one can do right from your cellphone screen or are we losing contact with reality and building relationships with actual people?

Have to run to study for an exam! Check back later for more deep, thought-provoking questions!

– HeidiOnTheGo

P.S. I did get a replacement for my busted iPhone 4… and possibly an upgrade to an iPhone 5S… I might be an addict to #Apple products.