Participation in ENGSSCHAT
It was a bit of a maelstrom to get into a twitter conversation. The technical hassle and difficulties establishing a hashtag made me not even want to bother with the assignment. Once I got a groove of what was going on and what I was supposed to do I finally was able to enjoy this unique way of using message boards.
The conversation that I participated in was regarding collective intelligence and how it affects the classroom and others. I chimed in that we must harness the power of the group instead of just being individuals.
I was shocked to realize that what I said managed to get retweeted and sparked discussion among my peers. At first I was just trying to reference Rheingold for the sake of getting my participation points, but hearing people who are also in my field agree made my thought feel much more relevant in the scope of education,
Twitter is not something I am particularly fond of, but the quick and dirty format helped make this conversation much more efficient and allow everyone to give their two cents. The approach to how it manages a message board lets everyone drop in or out, making it much more accessible and welcoming than your average page.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Dr. Ryan Rish
December 12, 2012
Standards Narrative Reflection
I decided to focus away from my professional learning network for the sake of variety. In many ways it is diminutive at the moment so that would be wasting my time.
I instead focused on the learning network I have regarding my personal life, the club I lead at the University with my friend, and the collective that I seem to have conjured upon this campus.
At first I thought the Rheingold chapter on social networking was a bit redundant to the one on collaboration. It was not until I looked at the way he demonstrates the graphs that I got an idea of the message he was trying to relay. The ways groups connect so much easier thanks to digital networking is truly astounding, The centrality, degrees, and bridges example is essentially how the hierarchy of the group my friend and me control has become. We have individuals who are established in other groups and have joined us via the horror club, they introduce us to their friends, and quickly we end up becoming popular individuals with considerable influence. The section Rheingold speaks about regarding contexts in networking individualism really resonates. I have been able to blend in with very different groups and adjust my vocabulary and norms accordingly: from metalheads to Otaku, our club brings in very different people who have given us much social capital.
I must say, the script I made for this video essentially answers all the questions and concerns about this project.
I chose a piece of pop culture as eclectic as the Wu-Tang Clan because it has always bothered me how people refuse to think that a group of musicians cannot expand beyond their medium into other creative endeavors properly. The Wu-Tang Clan is a rap collective of not just a bunch of cool rappers, but martial arts connoisseurs, filmmakers, and visual designers. Their presence is a subtle, but powerful one. Composing the scores of the films by Auteurs like Jim Jarmusch (Ghost Dog, Dead Man, Broken Flowers) and Quentin Tarantino (Kill Bill, Pulp Fiction) to restoring lost films from the golden era of Hong Kong Kung Fu. Their best-selling rap albums are just a footnote to their influence on American pop culture.
The rappers of the Clan are all well versed in Eastern philosophy and culture, most notably the world renowned RZA, who has even published philosophy books like the Tao of Wu. RZA has so much clout in Hollywood due to his famous connections that he even managed to get his own martial arts film made, The Man with the Iron Fists, a love letter to the '70s Kung Fu films the members of the Clan all grew up with.
Getting into their groove is not hard at all. The discographies of the main group along with all of the affiliates are easily available for purchase digitally and via retail, the books are still in print, and the RZA's film is still showing in theaters.
People tend to interpret Hip-Hop as a single minded genre of music incapable of expanding beyond what is playing on the radio, by introducing others into the Wu-Tang, I hope to enlighten people with the myriad of ways that a great musical act can achieve.
Similarly to my this is believe video. I used Adobe Premiere to mix all of the video footage together. I downloaded the instrumental to one of their songs to frame the entire video, which I then adjusted in volume to allow my voice to be heard. Nothing too hard like my previous video, especially since I did not have to deal with stuff like editing myself into a chroma keyed background.
I actually sat down and read the bloody chapter! I am shocked at how entertaining it was to read about the author's experiences with networking and collaboration over the web. We live in an era in which we are lucky to forge true friendships and fellowships with others across the globe with ease. Problems are not isolated, we can share our obstacles and eventually have someone give us the boost to hurdle over it. Modern networking is about more than just sharing pictures of your food and drunken stupors, it is about exploring and curating our interests with different kinds of people, and always discovering something new in the process.
The whole talk about collective intelligence was very fascinating, since it is a concept that has not truly existed until recently. The internet has allowed everyone to chime in on any form of conversation across the world. High concept communications are not isolated to clubs and institutions, everyone can establish whatever group they so desire and address whatever concerns they might have. As it is expected from, we tend to focus on the negative; many individuals instantly associate internet groups with trolls and 4chan forum boards. Internet communities are not just that, as a group we can explore horizons that one person's narrow scope could never find.
Crowd-sourcing was something that I never took that seriously, it was not until I saw Kickstarter single-handedly save PC videogame developers. Anyone with a developed vision can get help from others through the internet resonate with the idea. The DS106 site is a perfect example, this guy needed a server, he pitched it to others, he got funding way before he met the deadline.
The one website that encompasses everything about internet collaboration is Wikipedia to me. It is a fountain of general knowledge about almost anything the average person can think of. It is funded solely through donations. The information is reviewed and revised constantly. It is truly remarkable to have resources like that available to us.