DS106 Minimalist travel poster

Don't you want to travel?

The Assignment:

I’m doing the design assignment: Minimalist Travel Poster.

This assignment is to take a location from a movie and create a minimalist travel poster of it. I might have taken too many liberties with this one, but I found the examples very interesting. Instead of a movie, I used the old computer game the Oregon trail. In conjunction with my CIS class in Tokyo, I used our framework of the pioneers of technology. I changed the Oregon trail to Vannevar Bush’s Associative trail.

The Process:

I used Photoshop for this assignment. I started with a background photo of the Oregon trail. Then I changed the title on a new layer. After that I overlayed the picture of the memex on top of the background. Inside the frames of the memex I inserted pictures of the cholera Wikipedia page, as well as the Oregon trail picture. I found the polygon cropping tool very very useful for fitting the images into the screens. Finally, I added the text on the right side using the text tool.

The Story:

I’m sure most people are familiar with the old computer game The Oregon Trail. One has to gather supplies and people in order to travel the trail to Oregon. All the while you encounter dangerous obstacles such as huge rivers, mountains, and sicknesses.  For me, it was my first introduction to computers and computer games.

This assignment is based on Vannevar Bush’s Memex and Associative Trails. I always found the idea of Associative Trails as an “Adventure through hyperspace” One can start on any subject, and follow associative trails throughout the vast database of knowledge that we have acquired throughout the ages. It is in this way that I thought of the relationship with the Oregon trail. In the Oregon trail, when one is presented with an obstacle, there are various choices to make. A, B, or C- each with a different outcome that leads to different circumstances in the future. Adding the memex into this, one can follow different trails of association to lead to different areas of knowledge.

If anyone has a nostalgic feeling for The Oregon Trail, leave a comment! I am half tempted to get the game again and relive my childhood endeavors of crossing the US in a wagon.

Photos taken from:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/daveward/69965183/ Oregon trail background

http://www-sop.inria.fr/acacia/personnel/Fabien.Gandon/lecture/saint_louis_2007_02/seminar/resources/memex.gif Memex

http://www.punny.org/money/the-carnival-of-personal-finance-68-hits-the-oregon-trail/ cholera Oregon trail

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cholera Choler Wikipedia link. (Printscreen)


First DS106 Assignment, “Haiku It Up!”

Limitless data

And associative trails

Behold- The Memex!

The Assignment

Im doing Haiku It Up! http://assignments.ds106.us/assignments/haiku-it-up/ by Takeru Terajima

For the writing assignment, take a random Dailyshoot photograph and create a haiku using that image.

I am combining this assignment with my CIS course at TUJ about the pioneers of the internet and today’s technology. This is based upon Vannevar Bush’s As We May Think. This haiku summarizes his hypothetical technology known as the memex.

The Process

To be honest, I didnt even know what a “dailyshoot” was when I read this, so like every misunderstood word I have, I turned to trusty old google search. Apparently its this site with daily photography assignments. I chose one at random from the technology assignment section-http://dailyshoot.com/assignments/689 And i ended up with this one of the iPhone by Raging3vil.

Then it hit me, a quote from the second day of class by one of my classmates, “The iPhone is the memex.” I brushed it off at first, but now I see it clear as day. I started counting syllables on my fingers: as-so-ci-a-tive trails okay thats 6, behold the memex- 5, li-mit-less da-ta theres 5 okay we can do this!

The Story

Our first reading was Vannevar Bush’s As We May Think (1945), in which he describes something he names as “Memex”. This Memex is basically a modern computer connected to the internet. It is incredible the way he describes with such precision the capability and uses of the modern computer. He envisions a table computer that has nearly unlimited data storage capacity, which can be shared with others.

Items, notes, and ideas can be joined together, following the “associative trails” of linking one thought to another. These trails can be shared with other memex users by way of Bush’s concept of what we would now call a USB device.

When I read this article, I was filled with chills. How can someone 60 years ago predict the type of technology that we are currently using? I wonder what technology that is seen as a dream will be possible in the future? How would Bush react if he saw the iPhone? I think he would be taken aback and announce “Behold- The memex”

First Post- “How’s Your Internet?”

The title of this assignment is “How’s Your Internet?” I will go into detail of how I use the internet and what it means to me. But seeing as how this is my first post, I will start with a brief self introduction. I am unfamiliar with blogging and writing about myself and sharing my ideas, so please bear with me as I grow accustomed to this new form of communication.

Self Intro

My name is Tony, I am a 4th year student at Temple University Japan, studying International Affairs. The reason for this major is my interest making the world a better place. I feel that the best way to make a positive difference is to work with governments and affect the system from the top. In the future I hope to engage in a career of diplomacy.

My hobbies

Uses of and Thoughts on the internet

I have been around computers for as long as I remember. In my childhood, I often found myself playing computer games and surfing sites for children rather than going outside with friends. Because of this prevalence of technology in my life, I feel that I am very computer-literate and up to date with most necessary computer programs.

My personal uses of the internet are those of news, communication, and entertainment. Everyday I read the headlines of BBC to keep in touch with current events. This is very important for me to understand the workings of the world. Secondly, I use the internet for communication. I use my school email multiple times a day, conversing with professors, classmates, and administration. I also use Facebook to keep in touch with friends and family. The final use of the internet is for entertainment. I watch movies, television shows, and video game commentary in my free time after school.

Although the internet is an important facet of my life (and the lives of myriads of people worldwide) I feel that it is also a double-edged sword. We boast that the internet is revolutionizing communication, information, and lifestyles. However there are many “poisons” that come with the internet as well.

How convenient is the internet for communication? In forums, emails, texts, posts or any form of internet communication, I feel that we are losing our sense to connect with each other. How many times are there posts containing as little words as possible, shorthand, incomplete sentences and incorrect grammar? The reliance of memes, trolling, and inside jokes is dumbing down our ability to have meaningful conversations. I am a fan of talking with people face to face. I feel that in this way people can connect better by way of facial expression, body language, intonation and so on. I’m sure we have all heard the phrase “Sarcasm doesn’t translate on the internet” Well I feel that other emotions and styles of communication do not either.

Don’t get me wrong, I am very content with the access to communication given via the internet. Without it, I would have a much more difficult time conversing with my family in America. Another interesting feature which I am discovering as I write this blog is the ability to express and put to word my feelings and thoughts. Although I am not satisfied with the “revolution” of communication from the internet, I am excited to learn from this class and eager to see if my opinion can be changed. At the end of the semester I will revisit this post and see if I see the internet in a different light.

So there you are world, here are my thoughts. Does anyone out there share my feelings of the degradation of communication? Does anyone oppose? If you have read this, please let me know what you think about the internet’s effect on our face-to-face communication.

Until next time,