Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Module 1: Introduction & Web 2.0 Bootcamp

      First Day of Class (Nov. 30th)
1)  Join Twitter
2)  Follow instructor: @JessL
      by Nov. 30th (end of in class session)  send an introductory tweet with the
            class hashtag: #EXSM3989
      on or before Dec. 4th  

      Class Blog: Add a comment on the Module 1 post – introduce yourself and share with us
your thoughts on this week’s readings/video


  1. Hi all! This is Jag Dhadli (@jagantic)

    Well ,about halfway through class one and so far so good. I feel like the few stories we have looked at this morning - We Are Angry, Snowfall and the Guardian's story about Snowden and the NSA - were really fascinating and engaging pieces of work. Curious to see what I can come up with, taking into account my embarrassingly low level of technical know-how. But, I'm hoping that if the story is good enough. people may forgive a clunky presentation.

  2. Hello!
    I quite enjoyed the previous two days in class being exposed to new perspectives on types of storytelling and the interesting sites I was made aware of, ie. ProPublica. The multi-modal news sites were also a neat discovery,ie. NY Times Avalanche at Tunnel Creek, etc.I find it amazing how the nature of presenting news has changed so quickly in the last decade and this just adds to the conversation. Same goes for Inanimate Alice - I will be watching the first two episodes as I am now completely curious as to her beginnings. BTW, this is Matt....Trudo!

  3. Addendum: In the video 51 Responses, I like how they refer to it as electronic literature, like it's in its own niche; there is a world sub-culture of e-literature I had no idea about where authors are famous only in that sphere which I find interesting; someone said that "in hypertext, you can do anything" which I found intriguing and related to the whole multi-modal idea. The article on literature being dead was uninteresting, i find the provocateurs of this ideal, like the author has deduced, to be from a small and typical segment of society to which whining about issues gathers them more attention.I like the article Is Google Making Us Stupid? - although I find I don't succumb to this theory in the same degree as the author, I do notice the effect on many around me, especially the younger generation and i have little doubt that the way we read will continue to change to favour the electronic side rather than the print side. - Matt

  4. Hi everyone!

    This is Nyamal. My twitter name is @missngee.

    I am not enrolled in the Social Media Citation program so all of these concepts (born digital, twitterfiction, transliteracy, etc) is new to me. However it has been interesting. I have never used my twitter this much before.

    To be honest, I struggled with the character description activity because I do not write regularly but it was an important exercise. I spent more time reading and taking notes from the "11 Secrets to Writing Effective Character Description" article. It inspired me to want to practice writing and reading. Please let me know if you have any writing or book suggestions!

    I really enjoyed the "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" article. It is scary how many people (including myself) rely on the internet and consume too much information. Thus, I try to be more mindful of doing more creating than consuming.

    I also found "The 4 A.A. Mystery" Ted Talk to be entertaining. Reves was engaging and had a good sense of humor and energy on stage. His multimodal approach made his talk more interesting. I will keep this in mind next time I give a presentation.

    Anyways, I look forward to learning more.


  5. I feel really out of my element at the moment. It's 4 a.m. and it's so quiet and lonely...kidding! Sure, I'm out of my element, but it's totally not 4 a.m. I'm a communications coordinator and the only fiction that I'm used to writing is when I "massage" a quote for an article to make it better or more engaging. I'm also not an adventurous reader. I like to experience reading in certain ways like, physically holding a book in my hands, smelling the paper (not, like, in a creepy way), and turning the page. Though I'm not sure if I'll ever be an engaged user of this whole "electronic literature" thing, I am learning a lot.

    If you do a Google search for "4 am" you'll get 8.5 billion hits. Billion. I found the Ted Talk on the useage of 4 am throughout literature, songs, and art very interesting. Why is 4 am the quintessential loneliest and quietest hour? I started thinking about this. If you've been out for a night out, you're most likely home after the bars close and in best just after 3 am. If you work in the morning, you may be up and about by 5 am. 4 am is the perfect inbetween time that is still and calm, the late night people are just home and in bed, the early morning people are soon to be up and out of bed.

    Did you read 'Is Google Making Us Dumb?' Did you find it amusing that by the second paragraph Carr is complaining about how his concentration begins to drift quite easily and he becomes fidgety after reading more than a few pages. He proceeds to write 35 MORE PARAGRAPHS after this revelation.

    What stood out most for me is a quote Carr included that is from research out of University College London, "...There are signs new forms of 'reading' are emerging as users 'power browse' horizontally through titles, contents pages and abstracts going for quick wins." Why did this stand out? "Power browse" seems similar to both the term and concept of "power nap". Sure it's a way to sleep and recharge, but nothing can take the place a full eight hours of sleep. The same applies to power browsing. If I'm rushed for time, sure it's great to be able to quickly read a few key sentences or a short abstract about an issue or event, but I'd also like to be able to read more and not blindly trust that a headline is 100 per cent factual and isn't skewed by the ideologies of the author (or their publisher *cough* Fox News *cough*).

    In my head I keep trying to imagine Pearl Buck writing 'The Good Earth' (one of my favourites) as a digital story. Her beautiful prose, which evokes such strong emotions and creates lush and vivid imagery scenes in my mind, cut down to show only a small peek at Buck's vision. Imagine if some of the classics were written today for a digital audience? Would 'The Hobbit' be reduced to: a bunch of little people mug a dragon? Would The Great Gatsby be reduced to: party, party, party, let's all get wasted!? Well, no, but it's an interesting thought to imagine both and excess and absence of words and their effect on a story.

    tl;dr 4 am is a magical time in between night and day, the Googles have affected the way our brain learns and reads.


  6. Halfway through reading the third article (Is Google Making Us Stupid), I paused and looked across the kitchen to my mom to explain the gist of the article so far. "Isn't this fascinating?" I finished.

    "Fascinating?" she repeated. "It sounds kind of unnerving to me."

    Which... yes, that is also true. I think I found the article to be particularly interesting because I've noticed for myself how hard it is to read long articles despite the fact that I am generally an avid reader. In fact, that it is much easier to read something if it is a) a subject or story I am personally interested in, b) in a hardcopy print form, or c) both. Often if I have trouble reading online articles, I will actually print them out because it somehow does make it easier to focus. It's strange and comforting (but yes, also unnerving) to find out that this isn't just ME, but a common trend among people who spend time online.

    The "Literature is Dead (According to Straight White Guys, At Least)" actually made me think of the #MorallyComplicatedYA topic that showed up on twitter recently after author Scott Bergstrom declared in an interview that he was publishing a morally complicated YA book, unlike his perceived norm. This topic just follows a trend I've noticed of white male authors coming into the young adult genre and declaring "Look! I have created an awesome badass female protagonist for you! Finally! How come no one else has ever thought to do this?!" when really YA literature is full not only of strong and complicated female protagonists (among others!) but also strong and complicated writers from minority groups. It's the same thing happening in the Literature is Dead article -- this group that has long dominated a form of media is throwing a hissy fit because both the genres and the methods of consuming stories have been changing thanks at least in part to technology.

    Anyway, to wrap this up, I've been super enjoying this course so far. The two days in class were awesome and incredibly inspiring -- while I'm taking the class for my citations, I've always been rather interested in online storytelling but I never really grasped the depth that can be achieved when authors make use of so many forms of media to create one cohesive story. Looking forward to the rest of the course for sure!