Thursday, November 04, 2010

Ambiguous Hashtag (which, incidentally, will be the name of my next band)

I got the meme wrong. A friend on Twitter used the #tweetyoursixteenyearoldself hashtag. Wanting to play along, I posted,
In basement, drumming along to tape 2, side 2 of Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. #tweetyoursixteenyearoldself
See, I read it as "tweetASyoursixteenyearoldsef" so there I am tweeting something I'd likely have been doing at the that age. Apparently the meme is more "tweetTOyoursixteenyearoldself" so I should have said something more along the lines of "Hey, you should listen to something other than classic and prog rock, there's a lot of other good music out there." Most of the posts are advice about lightening up, avoiding the mistakes of youth, etc. But I like my take on the meme better. :)

Friday, October 01, 2010

What it takes to complete a textbook request form...

Well in advance of each new semester, faculty members are asked to indicate what textbooks students will be required to purchase. A surprising amount of texts need to be coordinated to fill in a textbook request form. For mine, just submitted, it was:
  • Email transmitting the new form
  • New textbook request form: the document I'm "writing"
  • Last semester's textbook request form: to copy/pasting textbook info
  • Publisher's website: to see if a new edition will be available
  • Amazon pages (3): to gauge cost to students
  • University Class Schedule: to check section numbers, course cap
Oh, and I ended up having to email the publisher rep to ask about the new edition's ISBN. To inform her of the spring semester start date, I had to look that up as well (USFP website). We had a few additional exchanges about an an electronic exam copy, which would require re-setting my password on the publisher's "for faculty" access. Then I emailed the admin assistant back.

So, in total, 16 documents were needed to write a little under 100 words in a new form and transmit that form back to the admin assistant.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

4Cs Presentation

Saturday, March 14, 2:00-3:15 p.m.

O.14 Plagiarism and Intellectual Property
Franciscan C, Ballroom Level

Chair: Gail Offen-Brown, University of California, Berkeley

Speakers: Patricia Ackerman, Kansas State at Salina, “Navigating the High Seas of Academic Integrity in College Writing Centers”

Frank Gaughan, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY, “ Plagiarism, Technology, and the End(s) of Education”

Shaun Slattery, DePaul University, Chicago, IL, “Beyond Binaries: Teaching Intellectual Property in the Writing Classroom”

Monday, December 15, 2008

IT wish

I often find myself re-naming files, making them more meaningful to me to aid in retrieval later. Sometimes, this causes problems, especially when trying to coordinate work with others or because the file has effectively been given different names.

I'd like to be able to add a variety of meta-data to files, such as project name(s), participant names, importance level, and topic tags.

I've got a couple hacks to get at this functionality. Often I'll create shortcuts to files that live in various folders, effectively enabling the file to be invoked in varying project-based contexts.

Solutions, thoughts, additional hacks? Please comment...

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

A word for that

Thanks to AWAD, I now know there's a word for the back-borrowing of design features. Their entry puts it best:



noun: A design feature copied from a similar artifact in another material, even when not functionally necessary. For example, the click sound of a shutter in an analog camera that is now reproduced in a digital camera by playing a sound clip.

From Greek skeuos (vessel, implement) + -morph (form).

A skeuomorph can be employed for various purposes. Since people are used to the click sound of a camera as feedback that the picture has been taken, it is now artificially-produced in digital cameras. Other examples are copper cladding on a zinc penny (for familiarity) and wood finish on a plastic product (for a more expensive look).
As a word nerd, I particularly dig the etymology, but the W'pedia entry gives a more thorough description and several other examples.

I enjoy the tension between utility and familiarity. Sometimes the skeuomorph is superfluous, merely decorative -- a designerly harkening back to the design that informed it. Other times, there's a usability component -- the copper coat on a zinc penny, while not technically necessary, would seem to prevent a lot of errors. And I know some users who find it helpful to hear their digital camera "click".

And I am SO going to incorporate a skeuomorphs-hunt activity in my New Media Studies classes! If you think of any, please comment.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

News on the Digital Divide

From the press release reporting on a University of Minnesota study of Internet use among high school students:
First-of-its-kind study at the University of Minnesota uncovers the educational benefits of social networking sites

Study also finds that low-income students, contrary to recent studies, are in many ways just as technologically savvy as their counterparts
(But a brief Baltimore Sun article on broadband subscription is less optimistic.)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Friday, May 30, 2008

Podcast Interview

I was interviewed by Craig Roth, Service Director for Collaboration and Content Strategies for Burton Group, about technology and writing processes. Check it out:

Content Authoring and Enterprise 2.0

I can see the handwriting on the... hand

There are several Flickr groups dedicated to writing on one's body(and wrists!) temporarily or permanently. I'm always interested in notes, scribblings, lists, and temporary texts, though I've never been one to write on my hands. Here's an interesting product for those so inclined...

[via BoingBoing]