This category contains 102 posts

Shooting Film (Part II): Reflections upon Receiving the Prints

Find Part I here. After waiting over a week, I got the call from Black’s telling me that our pictures were ready to be picked up. With a deep sense of anticipation, and a little fear that we had ruined the film or misused the camera, I picked up the pictures. Thankfully, even the pictures … Continue reading

Response: Brony Memes: A Form of Social Activism

My Little Pony (MLP) is a series of toy ponies, first introduced in 1981. Since then, MLP has grown significantly—it has created games, movies, and a television show. The television show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic was created and intended for little girls, however, its fan base has grown to boys, as well as … Continue reading

Summary: Nancy K. Baym’s “Digital Media in Relational Development and Maintenance” (Revised)

Examining results from several surveys, Nancy K. Baym’s chapter “Digital Media in Relational Development and Maintenance” argues that online relationships have similar potential for intimacy as offline relationships, but most often act as a supplement to offline relationships, offering additional unique, asynchronous spaces with varying levels of relational commitment. Baym concludes, however, that people who … Continue reading

Response: “What is Sticky Enough? Blogging and Privacy” (Revision)

Solove reminds that blogs are public – even those believed to be “a needle in the electronic haystack of cyberspace” can be and are read by people for whom they were not intended (51). After pointing out how wrongful the assumption that only “friends and family” will read our blog posts is, Solove talks about … Continue reading

Summary: Donald Norman’s “Affordance, Conventions, and Design” (Revised).

In “Affordance, Conventions, and Design, Donald Norman argues that the usability of a device’s design boils down to three major concepts: the model, the constraints, and the affordances. Since the appearance of a device should provide clues for its operation, a designer’s job involves knowing how people relate to an object’s functionality. Affordances refer to … Continue reading

Response: Revised Response #1: Matthew Kirschenbaum’s “Introduction:’Awareness of the Mechanism'”

According to Kirschenbaum, new writing techniques on the nanoscale are a good place to start the conversation about the locatability of textuality. As he points out, even though we do not always think about information or “text” in physical terms, even microscopic data can be regarded as text. Kirchenbaum seems to suggest that the commands … Continue reading

Summary: Frow’s “Approaching Genre” and “Literary Genre Theory”

In “Approaching Genre” John Frow begins by conveying the implicit rules of understanding a rhetorical text: “the knowledge the reader is expected to have is intertextual: knowledge of earlier reports and earlier controversies” (7).  The readers, through their common understanding of prior events, form a discourse community that both creates and decodes meaning, thereby continuously … Continue reading

Response: Revised Summary: Vannevar Bush’s “As We May Think”

As Director of the Office of Scientific Research and Development for the U.S. Government, Vannevar Bush was one of the leaders on the Manhattan Project which developed the atomic bomb. For scientists, the Second World War was a time of discovery and mass technological and theoretical advancement. However, with the war ending, Vannevar Bush wondered … Continue reading

Response: The Actual Ideal Self: Social Networking and Self-Discrepancy Theory

In chapter three of New Media, Lister et al. suggest that, when communicating through different types of media, we adopt different identities as a consequence of each medium’s particular affordances – the way we express ourselves through email is different from how we do so via Facebook, for example. The authors go on to address … Continue reading

Response: Revision of Summary: Carolyn R. Miller and Dawn Shepherd’s “Blogging as a Social Action: A Genre Analysis of the Weblog”

By examining the particular social context in which blogs emerged (the kairos) and further providing an account of the content and form and by tracing the origins and the social actions performed by blogs, Miller and Shepherd offer a comprehensible definition and analysis of the blog, a phenomenon which obtained the status of a genre … Continue reading