changing world: bigger or smaller —final discussion about open sky

Posted On 12/04/2012

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In following chapter of Virlio, he discussed how the development of technology changed our eyesight as well as our ideas toward sex.

1.Cybersex: Change of sex, relationship and love

Virlio said that the modern technology changed the way to define relationship as well as the role of female/male in marriage. As the development of computer and Internet, we can find perfect “female” and “male” by online dating and even get married with those we never seen. All human have curiosity and potentially believe what we have “see” even this may be a “faked” theme. That may be the reason why more and more people prefer pornography and webcam sex; However, I am thinking about how different culture played a role inside the Cybersex issue. As we mentioned before, different nations have different beauty ideology, which also varies the standard of Internet-beauty. Does more conservative culture have been less influenced by technology in regarding to marriage and relationship? How?

 2.Eye lust: see more than you can

Not all part of modern technology is bad, as Virlio mentioned in the chapter of “eye lust,” he affirmed the positive influence on removing the difficulties of distance communication as well as multinational business. We all know the word” earth village” , which imply that our world has become smaller. However, as we can exchange more rather than isolated ourselves, we have wider scale of information that we can access to and we can think deeper, which means our world become “bigger” as well from another perspective. How do you understand that? Do you think it’s a evolution of human’s mind or do you worry more about the extinguish of cultural, geographical, as well as political difference?


HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH-more discussion about open sky

Posted On 11/28/2012

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In the followting chapter of Open Sky, Virlio discuseed further about how technology changed our sense of “proximity” and people’s idea of “space”. However, sometimes we need to consider what is the baseline of deciding good and bad.

First is deciding how fast the information flow will fall into “Bad” categories. Virllio afraid the technology moved too fast and we have been eroded by it. One good example will be the changing ideas of proximity he used by describing the changing of health care monitor.   However, we can’t deny the development of new technology because it’s feed the need of society and it promoted efficiency (productivity). Just like when writing was first invented, Plato warned that we’ll lose the true meaning of communication, but our verbal communication ability, especially communicating with far-distance people, seemed improved by the development of cell phone and Internet. Virllio’s worry is reasonable, but we also need to treat it in a reasonable way. So, how much information is too bad? How fast the information flow is too fast? Can we decide what the role of technology should take or the society’s nature pattern decides it?

Second is more ethical (moral) related issue about technology and our change of emotions. Virllio mentioned that modern technology altered our vision, our sense of beauty, as well as our ideology. That’s also combined with what he said about” Gray economy,” I have to say that as the development of multiple information-sharing platform like Facebook, twitter, we do have more chances to say what we want and express our ideas. However, the information flow seemed not controlled by us but by what kind of technology we used and how do we use them. Is this a kind of limitation on our thoughts and expression? Does technology manipulate what we want to say, or want to do in that way? How that connects with authority, for example, the situation in China? Do we really learn more or the technology is just a” great seduction” ?

Faked Time, Space, and SKY—modern technology, development or erosion?

Posted On 11/26/2012

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The book open sky describe how the development of modern technology may change the definition or ideas about “space”, “distance” as well as “real.” I will connect that book with my self-experience from two perspectives.

First is the blurring line of distance and space. As the development of telegraph and internet, we are able to connect with anyone in the world. Our concentration about separation of space has been transferred from physical space (provinces, nations, families) towards another dimension (visual space.) this is a paradox situation. as a international students, I can Skype with my family every time I want, which is the great advantages modern technology brought. However, sometimes we’ll “eliminate” the time of “face-to-face” meeting and use video talk instead if we are busy. That’s let me doubt about the real meaning of personal contact built by talk. Do we lost something and rely too heavily on modern technology? Can we maintain ourselves as self if we don’t need to build verbal connection anymore?

second is the social norms and rules attached with those “distance” and “space” situation. we tend to have different way of doing things in different “space”.however, as a shifting away from traditional “place”, we can create any “situation” (physical space) we want using internet. For example, I know I should not eating or playing games during class.As the development of online course, through, I can stay in a “class space” without necessarily follow the law of the original space. I know several of my friends said that they can do other things  like texting during a online vedio class. Do we have to have all those sets of rules, or regulations, if we can do the same thing under a technology crated space? If so, how can we distinguish the real space and newly-created space? do we have the necessity to distinguish them?

THEY Decide, not YOU—importance of audience

Posted On 11/19/2012

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this article explored the importance of audience, which is extremely important for our final project:web design. I’ll combine what I learned from the article with my ideas about my future website.

1. seven steps of understand audience

the article offered seven basic steps before creating a website to define audience group, which are: List your major audiences,Gather info about your audiences , List major characteristics for each audience , Gather your audiences’ questions, tasks, and stories, Use your info to create persona,Include the persona’s goals and tasks, and use your info to write scenarios for your site. I think this is a good summery of audience define process and I want to particular talk about the defining “individual audience” as well as define “general audience.” after defining general big groups of audiences,(like divided by age groups, or work groups,etc) the audience for website can always be subdivided into smaller groups. in addition to find out what big groups wants, defining individual groups needs also very important. How can we handle the balance between individual groups and big audience?  we can find out big groups need by inserting survey or ads into website, but how do we make sure it will not disturb audiences’ attention? as for the process of gathering individual need, we can create discussion board for them and let them say their opinion clearly.

2. the creation of persona-connection building process

the article call the best to understand user as “persona,” which is the description condensing in one person of your audience including their “attitudes, values, goals”.  it’s like a tag that collecting all kinds of information of audiences and abstract them into one person. by creating persona, we can make sure our contents of website fit the need of audience. this process involved both gathering and Anglicizing information. how can we deal with the blur line of audiences’ characteristics? how do we deal with the overlap of categories?

CSA project Vedio

Posted On 11/14/2012

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So..It’s time to enjoy watching videos! 🙂  Welcome to the world of CSA!(Chinese Student Association)

online editing: new oppertunities and challenges

Posted On 11/12/2012

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Chapter 6 talked about how to edit, design, and publish materials online and offered a outlook of responsibilities of editors in order to fulfill the purpose of creating a webpage.

  • Editor’s multi-skills: new information sharing process

As the chapter point out, the blur of distribution in editing process online requires editors have a multi-level (multi-task taking) skills. Editors need to know not only how to organize detail of evidence when the prepare the materials; they need to know how to design a webpage that both separately illustrate different topics as well as eye-catching; they need to have a highly professionalized writing and critiquing skills. However, can online editor really do that much of jobs without distraction? Do we prefer s more specialized editor in one area or a more flexible and adaptable whole-rounded editor?

Like the book illustrated how to edit materials online step by step, I’ll use People’s daily as an example to illustrate some key points of online editing process. First step of online editing is identify the readers and the purpose of the content. As one of the most famous newspaper in authoritarian china, the people’s daily’s main audience is Chinese public, but they also have English edition, which targeting a global scale of audience. Moved on to the structure and link part, I think this website do a good job in putting navigation bar ar the top of the page separated by topics. The usage of hyperlink is also appearance in that website. However, I think the usage of multimedia can be improved in that page. The article of People’s daily is usually text alone and there is not that much audio/video/photos inside. As for that, I wonder how editors can balance the need of using multi-media to attract audiences’ attention and concentrate on text to illustrate topics.


magic of editing

Posted On 10/31/2012

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The article talked about the important role of editing in video-making process and how editors put theories into practice by applying different editing strategies.

  • Way of storytelling and editing

Before talking about actual editing techniques, the first section of this article mentioned some key points that editors paid attention to when they editing. There are five ways of story-telling: Images and sound, shot order, shot relationship (transition), time, and rhythm and pacing. Like the article mentioned, every cut has it purpose. Editor control the flow of video by using different editing techniques. The arrangement of elements in video can actually influence how audience sees the whole stories. This is particular obvious in documentary videos. For example, I once saw two different version of Nanjing Massacre documentaries, the first one put dead body’s photos at the beginning part, which shocked me more compared to the second one. In addition to the order’s influence, I think the background music and transition is also important for meaning of video. How different types of video apply those theories? How can a pantomime use transition differ from a regular TV show? How different type of background music influence audiences’ emotional response?

  • Apply practically : continuity, montage, sequencing, and transition

Some other principles in editing process combined with strategies include usage of continuity, montage, sequencing, and transition. Those elements are tightly connected with each other especially transition and continuity. The purpose of using transition, from my understanding, is to keep the flow of thought and let the storyline continue. That’s reminds me of the switch between narration to second and third person in video. Is this also a part of transition and how it related to the whole structure of video?

how different point of view influence the process of vedio and film production

Posted On 10/24/2012

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The article stated the importance of point of view for storyteller, and it offered the definition of POV from three aspects: character of POV, perspective of storyteller, and audience’s POV.

  • Perspective of storyteller: First-person, second-person, and third person

First person is usually been used in documentary and narration “give character thoughts and provides opportunities for characterization and commentary. First-person narrative can also be used in creating credibility among audiences. In contrast, second person perspective and third person perspective offered another look at” other cultures, place or person.” In regard to tone change, I got a question: did first person tone control the flow of information and then, in certain level, make audience think less? I think first person narration may limit the imagination and shape audiences’ understanding towards those documentaries. First person tone can create a flow of thoughts, which decrease some space for audience to think in their own pattern.


  • Different sets of attitudes (POV) and truth reversion

The article mentioned that “we regularly see various film and video productions that present the same subjects from differing points of view (attitude)” and the purpose of many productions is to “persuade an audience to adopt a predetermined opinion or attitude about a certain subject.” Then the article stated that “the question of “truth” versus the documentarian’s point of view in the grey area of decudrama is an area of ongoing controversy.” I agree that it is almost inevitable to eliminate the film maker’s personal values (bias) in the issue when they portraying the issue, however I also believes that this phenomenon shows a diversity in thinking ways and should be encouraged based on the ground of freedom of speech. How can we separate manipulation of video productions and propaganda of government from the inspiration on variety of thinking?

experience design

Posted On 10/22/2012

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The article concentrates on talking about the importance of experience in design. It claims that the engagement of design need experience itself and it requires the differences from surrounding environment and complete for the attention of the audience and participants.

  • Data, Information, Knowledge, wisdom –different stages in a continuous cognitive process

There is a interesting chart illustrate the relationship between data, information, knowledge and wisdom in a continuous process of experience. The differentiation between information and data states the importance of organizing and the ability to transfer bunches of data into different categories of information. When information transfer into knowledge, it become “increasingly personal” and “builds upon in itself”.  However, in addition to the importance of organizing data and present them into different contents (like location ,time period, personal conscious ,etc) the article mentions, I also think the culture is important in organizing  data into information. How many percentage cultures have in the stimulation process of turning data into information, then into knowledge and wisdom? For example, the certain numbers in China have bad or good meanings due to the cultural belief, like number 4 means “dead” and 8 means” getting more money” while in U.S. 4 is a more neutral number.

  • Inherent creativity and   need of self-expression

The article stated that” human are inherently creative creatures and when we have a chance to create we feel more satisfied and valuable’; the article then emphases that “experiences that allow people to communicate with each others or simply to be heard tend to be rewarding, satisfying ones.” I love the ideas that everyone can be creative and creation (design) is actually a self-expression of experience. No matter what kind of form, (digitalized self-expression or traditional oral/written self-expression), the satisfaction n is same. However, is the emotional feeling we expressed in writing our dairy and writing on a digital blog same? Personally I think write on paper is easier. In addition to that, connected with my personal experience, I want to add a question here: how the education system and social ideology help the appearance of creativity or suppress it?  In china, creativity has a very limited scale of meaning and usually only connect to a specialized filed of education like art. However, things is different here in U.S.

framing the”screen”

Posted On 10/18/2012

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The article gives a detailed explanation on how we can construct and frame image within the screen according to different atheistic rules. As the article mentioned in the summery part: “there are six major types of field forces: Main directions, magnetism of the frame and attraction of mass, asymmetry of the frame, figure and ground, psychological closure, and vectors.”

  • Main directions: Top-bottom, horizontal-vertical, left-right

This part reminds me a lot in the previous reading about framing, I think it is interesting when discuss how photographers “manipulate” our vision’s baseline and evoke our emotional response towards that image. the horizontal direction (or orientation)  did give a peace, calmness, and rest feeling in common, but sometimes I fell fear or anxiety towards those kind of Continuous extension photos. For example, if showing me a photo of sea with black color, I will feel lonely, and uncertainty. Do those other elements of photos, like colors, atmospheres also influence perception of photos? How differ the influences are? Which one is more influential?

  • Figure and ground: illusion of eyes

The figure and ground principle has been widely connected with different layers of photos as well as our ideas toward the environment. Like the article said,” our perceptional tendency is to organize our environment into stable reference points (usually the background) against which we can assess the less-stable elements (the figure in front of it).” that’s also connect with the concept of illusion in psychology as well as multiple meaning of an image. In addition to the vase examples offered by the article, I find several other examples.

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