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Lesson 02 – Thursday, 2017-08-31

What is New Media?

Texts to have read:

Writing to turn in:

  • A post to the course site, introducing yourself to your classmates (and anyone else who stumbles upon it)

0. Groups!

I want to try these; they may shift. But please sit near the people you're listed alongside (prompting a name game, I'm sure...):

  • Alyssa, Abby, Gabi, Harrison
  • Annie, Lucas, Taylor
  • Caleb, Jack, Kyleen, Sammie
  • Casey R, Jojo, Will
  • Casey T, Jappmann, Jill
  • Eli, Gwen, Jeff

Here's a handout with Roles for Group Work. We'll look at that more in a bit.

1. Contract questions?

Anyone have any questions about the grading contract, or changes to propose?

2. Noticing: Five Principles as Lenses

For now: What were those "five principles of new media"? Take a moment to remind yourself; write them down.

If you have to look them up, do so.

Can we get those on the board?
numerical representation, modularity, automation, variability,
and transcoding

I want to use these terms as a set of lenses, a way of re-seeing the Wesch video. Get in the groups above, and take some notes together. What stands out as you think of Wesch's argument in light of each term? What stands out as you think of his presentation?

Take about 10 minutes in groups, then we'll share back.

EXT: If your group is waiting for others, consider: Manovich calls these principles of new media, not of digital media. To what extent do these require the digital? What else might have these features?

3. Applying: Categorizing

I'm using WordPress, in part, because it builds in a certain amount of "all three places at once"-ness through its use of categories and tags.

Pull up your post, and edit it.

If you're logged in and looking at a post you can edit, WordPress wants to make it easy to start editing.
screen capture of a wordpress post with arrows pointing to the three "Edit" links (top of post, bottom of post, top admin bar)
You'll find categories and tags in the sidebar – which, depending on the width of your screen, may actually be *below* rather than alongside the main menu.
screenshot of wordpress post editing window, with an arrow pointing to the categories dialog box.

Tags are right below that.

A question: Why would we want both categories and tags? Does WordPress give you any indication as to how they're supposed to be used?
+ Task
  1. If you haven't yet, please categorize your introductory post under "authors."
  2. Once you've done that, please add a few tags to express your interests or skills. (Question: should these be separate taxonomies? Why or why not?)
  3. Have a look at the "About Us" page on the site to see that these now show up – an automatic variation in the site's display... and a new navigation, in the tags.
  4. EXT: As you finish, and especially if this is all familiar, move on to the next section.

4. Moving Forward: gathering images

For the visual unit, which we'll begin next week, I'd like to build up a shared pool of still images that we can draw on. It's a way of productively constraining the vast universe of options.

But to start, I'm going to ask you to dip into that vast universe three times, and bring back three images depicting the following:

  • an action
  • a setting
  • an emotion

You can, if you choose, bring something that is personally meaningful to you; or something that you've seen recently in your travels through the digital media landscape; or the first thing that pops into your head.

Whatever you decide, post these to the media library (from the dashboard, go to Media > Add New) and add the appropriate Media Categories (yet another taxonomy).

EXT: If you've already found and posted all three, and you've filled out Alt Text for all three, you can start the homework.

Homework for Next Time

  • If you haven't yet, finish finding and posting three images to the media library.
  • If you haven't yet, please fill out the Tech Comfort Survey.
  • Read Karl Stolley's “The Lo-Fi Manifesto, v. 2.0”, an article in Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy. (It's the same journal where Sorapure's article appeared.)
  • Watch Git Basics videos:
  • Join GitHub and
  • Do the GitHub "Hello World" guide; it should take about 10 minutes.
  • Write a brief reflection and post it to the blog (under the "reflections" category): how do you feel about Stolley's manifesto? Are you convinced? Concerned? How does your reaction change, if at all, after the GitHub tutorials?