Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The next new thing

The next new thing should be something that would allow people using virtual worlds to actually feel what they experience there. I mean, be able to actually smell, feel, touch the virtual reality. Many people find Second Life unappealing because you can not feel what your avatar does, you do not feel what flying is like, you just watch your avatar flying. I do not know what kind of technology that might be 4D, 5D...10D?! But I am sure people are working on that and we are getting close to making that a reality.

Friday, April 23, 2010

privacy and confidentiality

When we speak about new media, privacy and confidentiality are the main concerns. I personally think there is no such a thing as personal privacy when you deal with Internet and new media. Just think of all the social networking sites where people put tons of personal information which is open to public and can easily be used by so called "friends" whom you might have never seen in your life. Think of numerous websites which require you to register by providing at least a valid e-mail address in order to read the content. Then these e-mail addresses are being sold and bought by marketers. And we get spam, junk mail and all sorts of things we do not want. Our actions are being observed, collected, and analyzed for different purposes. Another big issue is identity theft, hacking, stealing of confidential data like medical records which can cause serious problems.
There are no clear federal statues on privacy issues and things can go really out of control. So, it is our responsibility to protect ourselves. We should act wisely and think twice before putting and sharing personal information online whether it is a SN site, blog, or Twitter.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

About my project

I am so happy that I am done with my presentation :) I was very nervous (forgot everything I was supposed to say) even though prepared thoroughly. I am just not much of a speaker... actually have fear of public speaking.
The topic I was presenting on was "Virtual Worlds: Multiple Perspectives". First, I started with the definition and brief overview of virtual worlds (VWs) that included their common features and types. I analyzed VWs from three perspectives: educational, business, and sociological.
From the first perspective, virtual reality (VR) is a great educational tool. Faculty uses VR to hold lectures and meetings with students, get computer programming tutorials. Virtual museums, galleries and libraries are aslo a resource for educators. VWs have also been used for educational purposes in modern medicine and the military.
The second perspective looks at VWs as a business tool used for a variety of purposes ranging from marketing to recruiting. VR is also used by companies for internal collaboration. We watched a video that showed how that works.
The last perspective analyzed was sociological. One of the first sociological concepts to describe VWs was "community". Scholars often define VWs as "intentional digital communities" that provide new opportunities for interpersonal relationships increasing social capital for both individuals and societies. The popularity and global reach of VWs provide for cross-cultural exchange.
In conclusion, VWs do impact our lives significantly transforming the way we think about education, business, and social activities in the real world.
I hope it was a useful and informative presentation, thank you all for being a great audience.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Advice to Baruch college

There are several characteristics that all new media have. They are: communication and interaction, collaboration, community, and creativity. Why not enhance the class experience with new media?
First, I would suggest having a web page for each class or a wiki. That would serve the interaction and collaboration purposes as students will be able to access the class notes and assignments there or even post some articles or useful links to the materials that they find interesting and related to the class topics. I like this idea because in most classes you do not get/read additional information other than textbooks and PP slides (which summarize textbooks). Every next class student could look at materials posted by previous class and be better versed in the field of interest.
Second, I think it would be great to have all written assignments (papers and essays) be turned in electronic format such as blog posts. That would eliminate countless paper waste (I know professors don’t like to bring piles of paper back and forward). That would also allow for immediate feedback from professors in the form of comments.
Third, I would suggest incorporating more VR simulations especially for such classes as finance, business, and management. That would enhance learning experience and help students to practice and apply the concepts learned in class.
Finally, I would suggest posting video lectures on class webpages. That way professors would make sure that students do understand the key points of the lecture and can refresh their memories before exams at any convenient time. Someone can argue that students won’t come to class if video lectures are available. I think that classes can focus more on practice involving answering students’ questions, doing problems and exercises.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Our class wiki- so far

I feel like I am the only person in class who haven't started working on the wiki yet. This is because of procrastinating. I have signed up as a contributor to New Media and Social Change topic. I will also contribute to other topics as my project research is based on multiple perspectives which include several topics like education, health/medicine, and business among the few. I have made a considerable research that mainly relates to my project and was overwhelmed by the amount of research done in the field. I hope I will put everything together in the near future... :)