Last Blog

In Response to:

This is the one you have been waiting for.  The last blog entry.  This one is a free for all.  Write about anything that you want, as long as it has something to do with communication technology.  If you can’t think of something to write then just tell us about your experience in this course as far as learning is concerned.  Is there any one thing that stands out in your mind as being especially important to know about?  Is there something that you thought we would cover that we didn’t cover?  You set the agenda and tell us something about tech.

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I would have liked to talk more about cell phones and the evolution of them. As stated in a previous blog, video chat has always been extremely fascinating to me. It is a technology on its own, however, it was enabled because of the cell phone. When Skype came out, it was popular, but not as popular as the Apple FaceTime has become. Why? Because it is so much more convenient to video chat with someone “on-the-go”. I think because of the convenience of the cell phone, more technologies are all being put into one. We are able to stream and watch television, the digital pictures, the social networking.. I can’t think of one thing you can’t do with your cell phone that you could do with your laptop or television only. Perhaps, video gaming systems are only specific to use on a television, but certainly it’s because you have to use controllers to play them. Anyhow, I would also have liked to discuss the creation of Siri on the iPhone. She’s completely phenomenal! Very handy indeed and she progresses with each new phone that comes out. Like who would have thought your phone would be able to talk back to you? Text for you? Find locations? Tell you how to get there? The evolving cell phone is yet the most rapidly growing technology! I could talk about my interest in it all day. How you go from a simple phone that can only receive calls, then texts, then video calls? The ability to access the Internet on the cell phones.. I mean, for my younger sister’s generation – they would never be able to appreciate the changes, but for me, I can! I remember when cell phones were just blocks you held up to your ear and only used in emergencies. Now they have become of every day life. I even do homework from my cell phone. If I wanted to, I could have posted this blog from my cell phone. Who would have ever thought it!? The rising capability is interesting, however, it becomes scary when you think of the future and what the next thing a cell phone will be able to do. I think sometimes, cell phones are a mere distraction for the government to have unlimited access to people. I mean, cell phones track location, search engines, voice calls, texts… anything the government wanted to know, they could seriously find out  with the use of a cell phone. But that.. that seems a little bit scary..

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BLOG 14

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All right, we all have been inundated with social media stuff.  How long is this going to go on?  Is social media here to stay or will it be just a flash in the pan — like diskettes and laser disks?  Or is it here for the long haul?  How do you think it will be used in the future, or do you think it won’t be and something else will take its place?  In other words, give us your take on social media.  What do you think? _________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Social media is here to stay. What could possibly make it go away? Ever since the very first social medias became popular, they have just been putting out more networks and changing certain things about them. They have grown in popularity beyond belief and I believe they will continue to grow! Diskettes are gone, because there was a more effective way to store information, music, etc. Hence the cd and usb. The idea is still around. Just like MySpace.. it may not be nearly as popular as it was before, but some people do in fact, still use it. Believe it or not, social medias are great networking opportunities. I said “believe it or not”, because a lot of people believe they are bad, because it gives access for predators to reach their children who shouldn’t have these social networking sites anyways. All in all, they are predominately for mature audience usage only. They are regulated to some extent and really, it is the person using the network site that needs to be more responsible in protecting themselves. 

In the future, however, I think they may be used on many different levels. I find that in the marketing world, products and services are rising due to advertisements through social media and how fast messages can be sent and viewed. So, there is for sure money to be made in this business. Speaking of money, in the career field, more and more employers are beginning to use social media to observe potential candidates for jobs. I’m still not how I feel about this. Social media is a time away from work. Although, one should be a great reflection of a company, I think it should highly depend on the job and the reputable significance. I feel like in the future, there will be less “for fun” social media and more business oriented purposes put to use. 

I, personally, enjoy social media. Although, with this new term, “catfish”, sometimes people aren’t who they say they are, I find it to be enjoyable to meet new people through venues I would have never met them otherwise. I actually have first met people through social media and then later seen them in real life at school or something of that sort. It is a great way to keep up with people, news, and food! Yes, I said FOOD! Chefs, recipe book publishers, anyone having to with food are taking the social media avenue to promote their goods. You better believe it! I see recipes in my FaceBook newsfeed every day. And don’t think I haven’t taken full advantage and have copied a few down for myself! Social media is awesome. It connects individuals in ways a normal phone conversation or day to day meet and greet would not. Of course it isn’t going anywhere. It may change a bit. but it is surely here to stay. 

 

BLOG 13

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The last assignment was about the mobile phone and its impact.  This one is about the Internet and its impact.  Unless you are really old, like me, the Internet has been around your entire life, so I won’t ask you if you recall life before the Internet.  I will ask you how you think the Internet changes your life.  That is, imagine life without the Internet.  What would that be like?  Think about how often you use the Internet and what you use it for.  A lot of stuff, huh?  Well, think about if you didn’t have it.  And think about people who DON’T have it.  How do you think their lives are in a world where everyone else has it?

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Oh dear Internet! Google.. my guilty pleasure! I kid you not, I will Google anything and anyONE! I will literally sit in class and if a professor brings up a topic, person, or even word I don’t know – I will get right on Google. I call it my guilty pleasure, but surely it has helped me in more than enough ways. Being able to quickly access information using the internet has helped me to engage in some quite interesting conversations. No one person knows everything, but it is enticing when you meet someone like my grandmother who is very wise and always up to date with the latest news. She has always challenged me to expand my knowledge. I remember as a child, she paid me to read books. Now, as she slowly but surely comes to be more technologically savvy, she now challenges me to “put my phone to use”. If ever I ask her a question, she always says, “well what do you have internet on your phone for if you aren’t going to use it? LOOK IT UP!” And I do exactly that. I look up whatever it is I want to know. So without having this ability, I couldn’t imagine life – seriously.

I know I wouldn’t be as knowledgeable as I am today. I get a lot of my information from beyond the classroom. I enjoy researching more on a topic and reading the news online. After all, one never knows who they could run into and wanting to engage in an intellectual conversation. Internet has also kept me in contact with many friends and associates through social media. I use the Internet very frequently. I couldn’t even realistically count the amount of hours a day a use the internet, because if I am ever doing “nothing”, I am sure to be utilizing the internet in some way. The internet is just incredible! All of the fascinating things on the internet, it is hard to imagine a world without it. For me, I literally have never lived without it. I was born in the time of technology. Everything has just become more innovative since I was born. 

For people who don’t have the internet, I have one question: WHY NOT? Seriously! Not to be rude, but why wouldn’t a person want access to the world? That’s what the internet is. It isn’t just social media. It is pictures. Information. Information. And more Information. The internet is opportunity. Now in recent days, you are even able to gain degrees on the internet. New languages can be learned on the internet. Just everything! I understand some older people are so against this new age of technology, but it’s time to get past that. It’s happening. It’s here! I even know people who can barely afford the internet, but still find it to be more of a necessity than a want.

If you are in high school or college, the internet is definitely a necessity. For research papers, or just papers in general. Homework often includes the need for outside information you didn’t get or retain in the classroom. Even if you have a book, often times it is still faster to search the internet for answers.

BLOG 12

In Response to:

For this entry you need not look up any web pages.  This one is about mobile phones.  The primary question is how do you think mobile telephones have changed the lives of users over the last several years?  Do you remember when you didn’t have a mobile phone?  OK, so when did you get your first mobile phone?  How old do you think kids should be before they get a phone?  You get the idea.  What I am looking for is a statement on the social impact of mobile phones.

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How do I think cell phones have changed lives? Oh, I could talk about this all day. Honestly, if you were to ask me what technology I thought was most fascinating.. cell phones would most certainly be at the top of my list. They have integrated so much over the past years and they are continuing to be more innovative. From only being able to call people, to text messages, to internet accessibility, and then to being able to make video calls.. no one could argue that cell phones are incredibly evolving at a fast pace. 

I can remember when I didn’t have a phone, but at that age, I was young anyways. I was too young to even think about a phone at that time and during that age before the turn of the 20th century. I got my first phone when I was in 5th or 6th grade. My first phone was the Nokia that had the game, “snake”. I had T9 texting and pre-paid minutes. I will never forget. I upgraded my 6th grade year to a flip phone with a contract plan. The flip phones were so dramatic when you wanted to hang up on someone (haha). Anyhow, back in the day when I had a cell phone, it was for fun. I really think I had a cell phone just because other kids had cell phones. I had no real need to use a cell phone. However, in more recent times, kids are needing phones at younger ages. I feel like they are becoming more independent from their parents and more dependent on cell phones. For instance, it seems as though as years pass, you see younger kids in the malls by themselves. They would definitely need a cell phone to call their parents if anything happened or if they were ready to be picked up. I think 6th grade is an appropriate age for kids to start getting cell phones. This does not mean they need to have the most updated cell phone like the iPhone5, but they can surely have at least a touch screen. It allows them to connect with their friends outside of school and keep up with family outside of the city limits. Because we all know, house phones are becoming more and more out of date by the minute. I think the only reason house phones still exist is because cable and internet companies add it to bundle deals.

It is sad to a certain extent that we have become so dependent upon our cell phones. It is like I feel empty without it. If I were walking down a dark alley, I would feel safer if I had my cell phone with me. Not like the cell phone is a weapon or can serve as any real protection against a predator, but it certainly gives some sense of security within one’s own mind. Cell phones are like the connection to the world. We can talk to anyone at anytime, anywhere. If we miss their faces – no problem, we can video chat. We can use location services to see what is nearby. Cell phones are simply incredible! Honest opinion – if a kid can operate a cell phone and you can afford to buy one – let them have one! 

Video Games Teach Us

In Response to:

The Latest Tools for Teaching STEM: Video Games”

 
 

One of the most talked about issues in education these days is the crisis we have in America involving the STEM disciplines. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.  Many researchers are coming to believe that video games may be a solid answer to the dilemma of how to get through to kids on STEM issues.  Do you have any experience with this?  Were you taught via video games?  And what do you think of this technique as a way of teaching?  Read the articles above to see what some teachers/researchers are doing and discuss how you think this may or may not work.

 
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The above article is about how video games are capable of stimulating minds and potentially assisting in addressing specific STEM issues in the world today. Do I have any experience with this? Not so much. Whenever I play video games, I am playing games that do not involve any scientific development of my mind. However, I can attest to the fact the video games do help one to learn certain aspects of concentration. They do focus your brain and have actually helped me to focus on a certain task at hand.
 
Video games did teach me patience and the art of doing something over and over again until I get it right.. Repetition that is. The only problems I have with this way of learning is that video games become very addictive in the sense it may take time away from real life interaction. I feel every needs interaction with people every day. Also, another issue I have with being taught these things through video games is that often times the video games are violent or should be Rated R and are not apporopriate for all ages. Although it does say on the game; video games are not like movies and many people do not pay attention to this. It has recently been argued about the uproar in violence of video games causing young children to want to reinact what they see and do on these games.
 
If, like the article states, teachers choose to implement gaming systems or video games into their way of teaching or lesson plans; they would most certainly have to be specific and causious of the route they take. The games would have to be education specific, but I honestly am very interested in seeing an outcome for this experiment. I think it would be a great idea, because it is true that many students are just bored within the classrooms doing the same thing over and over for years and years, back to back. I, myself, often get bored with how professors teach and actually do learn better when the class or material is being taught in a more engaging and interactive way.

In Response to:

 

David Lowery from the University of Georgia has recently published a list of the “Top 50 Undesirable Lyric Websites.”  These sites, according to Lowery, post music lyrics but do not have a license to do so.  Thus, they are violating copyright laws.  The music industry has taken note of this and the Nationa Music Publishers’ Association has declared legal warfare against these illegal lyric sites.  Do you believe this is illegal?  Should people be allowed to post lyrics on web sites?  How does posting these lyrics actually harm the artists?  Discuss you opinion on this issue and decide whether you think this is a good idea or not.

 
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The above link displays a list of illegal websites whom are illegally providing lyrics to the public. My first question becomes, what makes it illegal? I begin to think if these specific sites are posting lyrics before the albums or particular songs are released OR are they posting wrong lyrics? These are the first questions I would like to address before discussing how I feel about how this may or may not harm the artists.
 
IF these websites are illegal because they are providing lyrics to songs that have not been publicly released by the artists themselves, then I agree the sites should be taken down and should be fined tremendously. Although the song itself isn’t posted, the lyrics are such an important part to putting the song together. The lyrics ARE the song. If they are providing these lyrics, this will give access to other artists or individuals to use them before the original song is being publicized and released. This is not fair to the artist; just like their songs being leaked isn’t fair and harms the sales of their albums.
 
IF these websites are illegal because they are providing wrong lyrics to songs, then it shouldn’t be a concern. If artists are upset about that, they can provide lyrics themselves. I highly doubt this would be the reason these websites are illegal; however, it could be so. I know there are times I am listening to songs and can’t possibly figure out what they are saying. Either it is too fast or the music is much louder than the artist’s voice and hard to hear. Regardless, I often times result to lyric websites to get the words. Sometimes I have even come across lyrics that I know are completely wrong. This could be a hinderance in how the song is interpreted and could reflect badly on an artist. This could inevitably be a detriment to the artist’s reputation. I know this may seem like a stretch, but with media – anything is possible.
 
Overall, I am not completely sure how I feel about this issue. If an artist could explain to me how it is harming them or negatively affecting their sales, maybe I would understand a little better. As of right, I am not sure I can grasp the reality of these “illegal sites”. I honestly don’t see too big of a problem with posting lyrics. And as I stated previously, if the artists do not want their lyrics to be posted, then they NEED to provide them to the public.

In response to:

For this one you do not have to read any articles.  I want you to search your own memory banks and recount when you first discovered personal computers.  How old were you?  What were the circumstances?  Who taught you to use one?  And so on…..  The idea is for you to think about PCs and how they have affected you and your life.
 
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Oh wow! Thinking back to when I didn’t have a computer.. I was fairly young, honestly. I remember taking up a community program to learn about computers, how they operate and how they are made. They taught us how to take a part the computer and put one back together. They taught us how to use the computer, as well. At the end of the program, we were all given desktop computers. Granted, these were not brand new computers – it was still a privelage to have a computer as they had just become a new technology. I took this program when I was in either the fourth or fifth grade.
 
So, I had to have been in 4th grade at the latest when I first discovered computers. The crazy thing is, I never remember being awed by the thought of computers. They were cool, but I think I was more fascinated with the idea of the upgraded iPhone. For me, when computers were first introduced, there were no negative circumstances for me. I got a computer and was introduced into an entire new world. Social networks.. Microsoft Office.. Solitare.. everything!
 
Yahoo was most popular growing up, but as the years passed, I came accustomed to Google and stuck with it. PCs really changed my life all around. I was so young, so I didn’t notice at that time, but I honestly could not imagine a life without computers. I mean, they have enabled us to access so much information in the world. It has helped us to communicate in so many different ways.. by email, social networks, blogs, etc. It’s incredible!