The Next New Thing

In today’s tech savvy era, it is becoming increasingly harder to excel in technological innovation. A miniature golf date has been replaced by Wii Sports and the feeling of playing with your new puppy can be fulfilled on Nintendogs. New Media is moving at an excelling rate. To come up with a new media technology would be quite difficult because I believe for things like this you just have to wait for your “that’s it!” moment, where a certain need is satisfied by a new innovation. As I was watching Man of Steel, the idea of being at more than one place whenever you wanted, just had me thinking.  If I had to name a fresh new media technology that hasn’t yet touched mankind, I would go with holographic communication. The need to be at more than one place in a short period of time would be fulfilled. Of course in order for this to become a reality, we would need a stronger push in the field of mobile technology. I picture it working with the smartphone. Think of it as apple’s FaceTime but much more interactive and lifelike than someone stuck in an LED screen. The smartphone would be able to take a projection of you and feed it live to other smartphone users in the place you would like to be. Although Man of Steel  was just a movie and Jor-El’s holographic projection was much more lifelike, we have to start somewhere. We only miss 100% of the shots we never take.

P2P File Sharing

The world of computer technology has come a long way. File sharing has become a very popular and convenient phenomena. File sharing is when a file is backed up on a computer or server and is copied/shared with other machines who have access to that server. This allows for multiple users to have immediate access and is very time efficient. There are many websites today that host file sharing such as rapidshare, 4share, and mediafire. Sometimes these servers may crash due to an overflow of website traffic.  P2P File sharing is a much more local and standardized approach found in homes where the need for a heavy duty server is eliminated. It is a peer-to-peer file based sharing on a network based connection using a specialized software. Torrenting software such as uTorrent and bitTorrent are examples of P2P file sharing. Torrenting has led to many piracy issues from media providers. In the New York Times article “Digital Pirates Winning Battle With Studios”, The Dark Knight  was a motion picture that had an anti-piracy campaign in place but it still failed. Anonymous users rip bootleg content and upload it online. Eventually that content is shared with torrenters and millions of illegal copies are made available before you know it. Some online games also use P2P file sharing.  Third party websites streaming video content may also use P2P file sharing in order to stream live  or pre recorded video/music content to the online population.

 

Privacy and Confidentiality

The internet is not always as it seems. There are many privacy concerns when a user is online taking advantage of New Media platforms, specifically those concerning social networks. Your posts on Facebook, Instagram, and other socieal media networks are available to the general public. Some websites such as Facebook and Google allow you to adjust your privacy settings allowing you to limit content to certain viewers; but this is not the entire story. Recently there has been much controversy surrounding Google and Facebook because they monitor a person’s likes, interests, and searches to generate data. That data is then released as advertisements. You may have noticed how Gmail generates ads based on what you have recently been doing on the computer. Today’s online user must know that whatever is uploaded to the internet can in some way or shape reach either another person or be gathered into a large pool of user data. Privacy is no longer an option. Confidentiality can no longer be an objection.

Creativity and New Media

The Xbox 360 is a game console which allows for a creation of an avatar. That avatar is your online persona when you talk with, play games, browse the internet, or watch movies with friends. The screenshot below is my avatar as I was customizing my style in terms of clothing and accessories. 

 

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Creativity

New media has been a game changer when it comes to communication, specifically Social Media platforms. As the technological frontier expands, so does new media. People love to personalize. The Smartphone case industry is a billion dollar industry.  Everything leads to how creative people are and wish to be in the future. Cloud Computing is a relatively new technology and has given leeway for users to let out their creative side. With apps such as Google Docs users can simultaneously edit and adjust content as they wish. The same goes for wikis. Google also offers open source software allowing for further improvements and possible a foundation for a new idea. Instagram is also a role player. It has changed the way people take photo and video. With a variety of filters and adjustable settings, people have made sharing and communicating creative and fun. The internet is a special place as it offers a platform to receive feedback and critique so running out of ideas will never be the case. In the article “Twitter Serves up Ideas from Its Followers” we see how the corporate world uses Twitter as a means of gaining feedback of what is good and bad about their company.   As we continue to develop technologically, new media and the creative mind will blossom. 

Modeling Reality with Virtual Worlds

Virtual worlds can be viewed as an escape for people living their day to day lives in reality. We have often seen virtual worlds in the video game industry with various role playing games such as World of Warcraft and MapleStory. I believe there are a few ways virtual worlds can be useful. In the field of health and science, a virtual world or augmented reality can be great for upcoming doctors and scientist to get practical hands on experience and perfect their craft. It can also be useful in Construction projects to simulate what has to be done and how things can set up.

There are a couple pros to having virtual worlds. Virtual worlds can prove to be very convenient and time efficient as people can begin to work from their homes.  Referring back to what I mentioned earlier about virtual worlds being used in the health and sciences, they can cut costs. Since virtual worlds can be simulated how many times a user chooses, there would be no waiting times or missing out on hands on experience because training can be offered on a much wider scale. They can also help children and mentally sensitive people foster a friendly as well as educational environment. In the article “Naughty Aunties’ battle autism with virtual interaction” shows how autistic people can interact with each other and be more social.  At the end of the day, virtual worlds just work to satisfy the user. In the article “No Budget, No Boundaries: It’s the Real you” we see how Ms. Rayna , an avatar on second life, is living in a exotic world of private islands and designer brands that she wouldn’t be able to afford in real life.  Along with the pros, there are also cons.  Too much of anything is bad. People may become too involved or occupied in their virtual world leading to poor health conditions as well as a lack of downtime. It’s bad enough that in today’s day an age people spend hours a day glued to their Smartphone screens.

Virtual worlds foster creativity for those people are who are shy or timid in the public. Virtual worlds offer people the chance to really assert their personalities in the privacy of their own time and space. Towards the future I see virtual worlds becoming more and more “close to real life”. As technology advances, virtual worlds will flourish. For example, Google has already released the Google Glasses and Xbox’s Kinnect allows users to control their avatars with body movements.

Social Networking Sites

Social Media networks have revolutionized the way we communicate with one another. I remember how popular instant messengers used to be before the social media boom. Sites such as Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, and Instagram have gotten today’s generation buzzing.

All of these platforms are used to communicate in different ways. Twitter is very crucial in today’s time. It provides for an efficient as well as time effective way for people to contact one another. The beauty about twitter is that it has even taken the glamour world by storm. Sports Athletes, celebrities, and major media moguls can now directly interact with fans. I once tweeted to Dallas Maverick billionaire owner Mark Cuban in order to have him as a guest for one of my college courses. Surprisingly, with all of his other followers, he was quick and very kind enough to respond. I believe this is where twitter can improve. It has become too congested. 

Facebook and Myspace are in a class of their own. Myspace offers a much more customizable user interface while having a very high emphasis on media. Users can post music to match their profile and generate different sorts of backgrounds and themes. Facebook on the other hand is much more stable and in my opinion, user friendly. It is easier to work with as well as find people you may want to contact. But in the bigger picture, both platforms offer the ability to post photos, status updates, videos, etc. 

Instagram is just different. Although it may not be a traditional social media platform, It has changed how we interact with each other using photo and now recently introduced video. The ability to synchronize with Facebook has only strengthened it’s approach to connect users. That way what we do on Instagram can also be shared with our friends and family on Facebook. It’s one app that makes photo taking fun, interactive, and simply easy but professional.  

Recently hashtags were introduced to Facebook following Twitter and Instagram. I believe hashtags have become so important. As the world wide web continues to grow and increase it’s virtual population, hashtags create some sort of organization. 

 

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Social Networking

Social Networking platforms have revolutionized the way in which we interact with the world. Appealing to all age groups from people of all corners around the world, social networking has created a convenient, time efficient, as well as interactive way of communication. As technology is skyrocketing, the opportunities are endless. With the introduction of the Smartphone as well as tablet computers,  we can virtually network at anytime and anywhere. New features are constantly being added; checking where your friends are at the moment and what events they will be attending plus much more.

Social Networking provides endless opportunity in the corporate world.  As business begin to develop and mature technologically, the need for creating a name on social networks is becoming more and more apparent. According to the NPR article “Social Network Technology Boosts Job Recruiting” social networking platforms could even serves as a means for job placement. Employers now have the ability to ditch the traditional job application and offer jobs through sites such as LinkedIn, twitter, and Facebook.  Not only can jobs be stimulated by employers but large domains such as Facebook allow people to be connected to both old and new acquaintances. It’s not always what you know in this world but who you know than can bring you food on the table. Approximately 90% of jobs are obtained through references or people you know. The process of creating more jobs can all trickle down to a healthier economy. The main point is, social networks are triggers for a richer and labor efficient society.

Social Networking also has its downside. There are many privacy concerns when dealing with posting personal information online.  In the article “In India, Using Facebook to Catch Scofflaw Drivers” by Heather Timmons, we see how rapidly people post information about others without them possibly knowing. Although the Facebook page is run by a government entity, the page and all information is still open to the public. The page was created for a positive purpose in reducing traffic violations but the largest loophole which is yet to be addressed on many social media platforms such as Facebook is content privacy. The article states “Critics say these methods could set a dangerous precedent. Relying on people to turn in their neighbors online is “Orwellian,” ”. How secure really is secure?

In the future, I feel these technologies will become more and more people oriented. And as the world consciously becomes more aware of what we’re doing at the moment, privacy risks will rise with it. And Facebook now has the “check in” feature and Apple iPhones have the ability to tell you where your other iPhone friends are as well. If people wish to become more aware of the world around them, privacy is a sacrifice which has to be made.

 

 

– Jatinder Singh

Blog vs. Wiki

New media has revolutionized the way we share information and connect with the world around us. Today we have the ability to literally add what we know to the World Wide Web, making knowledge accessible to anyone’s fingertips.  Blogs and Wikis are two platforms in which there is always an exchange of information.  Convergence is key; with the introduction of various social media networks as well as other Web 2.0 platforms, users now have the ability to “link” to personal pages, videos, and photos. Most Blog hosting websites by default have a setup involving Facebook as well as Instagram accounts. Even Youtube is efficient.  Many wikis reference various YouTube videos for a means of citing their sources as well as a much clearer understanding of information. Although wikis and blogs may share the same primary purpose of sharing information, there are still many differences as well.

The way information is handled in wikis compared to blogs is different. Wikis offer more of a collaborative setting encouraging users to constantly edit and make changes in order to maximize understanding of knowledge. In the article titled “More on How to Build Your Own Wikipedia” we see how employees collaboratively edit content in order for project management teams to efficiently and effectively understand requirements.  A blog is more single user oriented where multiple people would not have access to make changes but will be able to post comments and opinions. In the article “Wal-Mart Tastemakers Write a Blunt and Unfiltered Blog”, bloggers are portrayed expressing their personal views from minor topics such as their pets to more complex concepts such as religion.   I believe blogs can be used for more collaboration but the output would not be as organized and time efficient as wikis. Users would constantly have to post more comments, links and etc. to the original blog post. Periodically the initial user would have to update his blog to meet group needs but this wouldn’t guarantee that the updated information is valid because there may have been confusion.  Another way blogs differ from wikis is that blogs tend to follow a timeline of posts and updates where wikis are not “dated” by default once information has been edited.  Time is not valued heavily and there is not a chronological structure.

I think Google should encourage “Wiki-ing”. Since they deal with a lot of open source software, I can envision wiki pages filled with people who are collaboratively coding and editing apps to better assist people. It doesn’t necessarily need to be code but people can post ideas and start-up plans in order to kick-start off things from there. Imagine?

– Jatinder Singh

Sports Hit Hard By Social Media – Impact Paper Description

In today’s day and age, we are often spending our downtime controlling the world on our fingertips through a touch screen device. As various social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter have burst onto the networking scene, we have changed the way we interact. In the world of professional sports, social media has been a game changer. Professional Athletes are seen personally communicating with fans via twitter, polls on who will win the championship game are now taken using hash-tags, and players are fined for tweeting during games. In my impact paper I will discuss how as new media and specifically social media continues to evolve, it indirectly impacts sports professionals, players, and sports media platforms(i.e. ESPN, Yahoo SPORTS, etc.) along with it. Along with these trends I will try to answer other questions such as how old media is affected by this trend(will it become obsolete? will it also evolve? etc.), and how sports are evolving in the future do to them.

 

– Jatinder Singh

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