How Technology has Influenced Communication

Its crazy to think how communication has evolved over the years and how different communication is now compared to how our parents communicated when they were our age. Phones and social media are really the only way we communicated today and other forms of communication are almost extinct. Take writing letters for instance, that was by far the best mode of communication in its day and now it is very rarely used as people can just send there message via Facebook and get a response within minutes, rather than waiting a few days to a week to get a response

Even party invitations are almost extinct because its a lot cheaper and efficient to just make a event on Facebook, invite who you want and just click send. Its also much more convenient for the person receiving the invitation because they can just click going rather than the hassle of having to RSVP.

Technology has also influenced communications in sport a lot over the last few years, in rugby matches refs now have head sets to communicate with people on the side line to help with his decisions, TMO’s are also used to rewatch try’s that are difficult to judge. All this new technology has huge influence on a sport like rugby as it makes communications between referees, couches and players much easier and helps make the game that bit fairer. Communications have also evolved in other sports such as soccer and GAA.

Remember about 10 – 15 years ago if you wanted to go out to meet your friends you’d have to go to their house and ask them if they wanted to come out to play? And nowadays all you have to do is ring them or text them to see what they are doing, even if you are calling over to someones house yo’d rarely even use the doorbell because you can just text them saying ‘I am outside’. Really makes you think about how much technology has changed in just a short period of time.

People are almost always in constant communication these days, be it texting in a Facebook group chat, on iMessage or even just a text! The only time most people go longer than a few minutes without being in communication with someone is when they’re asleep! Even the way we communicate with each other now is completely different to how we communicated with our friends just a few years ago, back then it was all done on MSN and Bebo, now its all done via snapchat, Facebook, twitter and Instagram. With all the social medias, dates phones and tablets its hard to not be in constant communication with your friends and family!

Do you think that all these new ways for communication is good or bad for todays generation? Being quite honest I don’t really think so. Even though people are in a way being social they’re not really at the same time. I mean how often would you see a group of people in a restaurant all on their phones watching videos or texting but not actually talking to each other even tho they are less than two feet away from each other?

I think all the new social medias and methods of communication are bad for the up and coming generations because they become so indulged with modern technology I feel they don’t really know how to socialise properly, you’d rarely see a huge group of kids running around estates playing soccer or tip the can anymore because they can all meet up on xbox live or playstation network and chat online while playing video games when they could easily have just as much or even more fun out in the green kicking a ball around!

Personally I feel we could do with less virtual communication and a bit more real life interaction, especially with the younger generations, now don’t get me wrong all these advancements in technology are great and all I just hope that it doesn’t take over communication completely! I mean could you imagine a world where there is little or no physical communication and its all done online?  Because thats the way I feel our world is going and I really hope it doesn’t end up like that!!

Electronic Literature

Last time in our Digital humanities lecture we were talking about e-lit and how it has evolved story telling!

What is electronic literature you may ask? Well the ELO or the  Electronic Literature Organization states electronic literature “refers to works with an important literary aspect that takes advantage of the capabilities and contexts provided by the stand-alone or networked computer.”

In my opinion anyway e-lit has had the biggest influence on video games and how the story of the game is portrayed! Games are getting more intense and the gamer is getting more and more involved with the game. A gamer can now influence almost the whole game by picking different paths for his or hers character! Its kind of cool to think that two different people can both buy the same game but take both of their characters on completely different paths!!

Do you think electronic literature has influenced the sale of games in the last few years?I certainly do! These days avid game players are getting better and better at playing games and finish them in record time, which means they don’t really get their moneys worth but now the fact that a gamer can now buy a new game, finish the story mode and then restart the game and take the main character down a completely different path is fascinating! In some games a gamer could almost replay the game 3 times and take the main character down completely different paths each time! Perfect example of a game like this is The Walking Dead where you can chose what actions the character does in different situations!

 

REFERENCES 

ELO electronic definition “https://www.google.ie/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=elo%20electronic%20literature%20definition”

 

Thoughts on Hypertext

In our last Digital Humanities we were talking about hypertext and it really got me thinking about how much random information you can learn by just going with the flow and clicking on random hyperlinks.

It’s happened all of us in one way or another! We decide to go research a topic or even just watch a certain video on youtube but then before we know it we’re miles away from where we started on a completely irrelevant topic to what we started on! But isn’t that a great way to learn and broaden your knowledge on different topics? I’ve often indulged in this type of learning and I find it very effective and would definitely recommend it to someone who is bored and looking for something to pass the time! Hyperlinks are also extremely handy for making other websites much more accessible which benefits almost everyone!

Hyperlinks are definitely a great way of connecting relevant topics to each other be it on a blog, report or on a website to bring you to another part of the website and I find hyperlinks really beneficial for research.

But they can also be a bit of a hindrance as they may lead to the researcher getting distracted and getting very off topic and almost lost in all the information he or she had become swallowed in to! I mean how often have you been researching a topic to find that yourself clicking on a link that you think will bring you to a related topic but you then find yourself looking at a ad for a new television or fridge? Its ridiculous! And whats even worse is those pop up ads!

Do you think there is any type of tablet or computer that blocks out all pop up ads or hyperlinks that don’t relate to the topic you’re researching? Or maybe someone could make an app that you use as a browser and you type in what topic you’d like to research and it blocks all irrelevant topics? And social media’s to prevent procrastination.

There is lots of mixed opinions on hyperlinks and I can see why people would see them as more of a hindrance but in my opinion the pros definitely outweigh the cons and even though it is very easy to get lost in hyperlinks and go completely off topic the new information that you can learn definitely does more good than bad!

Thoughts on Serious Gaming

Throughout my study of digital humanities a topic I always found interesting was gaming and how it could effect education, it always makes me think could educational games be the way forward? Could they completely take over todays educational system? In what way could technology better the educational system?  Are tablets such as iPads going to replace books? In my opinion anyway I think they could!

Kids today are all about technology, they all have the latest iphone/android, they all have their own Ipad, xbox and/or playsations! The majority of kids start using all this technology at a very young age and grow up using it and it may cause a lot of distractions for them by why not introduce this new technology into todays education? I mean why not shape todays educational system to suit todays youth rather than the other way around? Does that not make a bit more sense since almost everything else is more or less being shaped by technology?

Yes there are educational games out there but they are mostly for young kids and there are very little educational games (that I know of anyway) that would benefit a secondary school/college student! I would much rather spend two or three hours playing a educational video game and I would definitely find it much more beneficial than sitting down at the desk in my room reading a history book that I am retaining little to no information from! Or even give people the option of either learning the traditional way with books and essays or introducing a new, more game based option where they could work through levels on a game console or tablet that contains all the same topics that they need to learn for the test?  Would that not appeal to more students in todays day and age? I sure think it would!

I think that introducing gaming into education would also benefit the teacher as well, students not doing their homework has always been a problem and excuses these days are getting more ridiculous! Teachers could tell there students to log onto a website via game console or tablet and complete a certain amount of levels on certain subjects and they could then view who did the levels, how fast they did them, what score they got, what time they did it at and so on! The teacher could then ask the students what they learned playing the game the next day in class, it would also save the teacher the hassle of checking homework every morning, asking why they don’t have their homework with them in class and save them the grief of writing notes or phone calling the students parents!

Another idea I would love to see introduced to todays educational system is gaming tests, instead of answering questions and just regurgitating information a student learned from the night before on a certain topic, why not let them play a video game which would test their knowledge on a certain topic? That would also save the teacher lots of the as the students would be presented with the result of the test straight after completing the game/test and the student would have their result right away so they would know what they have to work on instantly rather than waiting days or weeks to get their results back.

These are just a few thoughts I have had on serious gaming and I really hope to see more technology and gaming introduced to the educational system in years to come.

DH assignment Three

Digital Humanities Assignment Three

Jeff Hodder – Student Number 115506447

 

The tool I used was Voyant and the first text I decided to put into the tool was the poem Mending Wall which was written by Robert frost because this was by far my favourite poem that I did for my leaving cert!

I really like the way they have laid out voyent, it’s quick and easy to use! All you need to do is either copy and past all the words in the text into the space provided by voyant or you can just copy and past a link to the website, which I think is really cool! After you past the words or the link to the text, voyant brings you to a new page where it gives you a collage of the texts most popular words! The bigger the word, the more common the word is in the text! For example, the most common words in mending wall are “make , “Good” , “wall”! Voyant also gives you stats on the text, telling you how much times the popular words in the text are used, how many words there is and how many unique words there is! For example in mending wall there is in total 391 words and 198 unique words! It then tells you how frequent the most popular words come up, for example in mending wall , the word wall comes up six times, good five times, make four times, stone four times and neighbours three times!

There is a lot of things I like about voyant, especially the way it is so easy to use! I really like the way it portrays the more popular words by making them bigger than the least popular words! I also think that the stats are a great addition! I love the way you can change the display of the collage of words by adjusting the bar beneath the collage! The bar chart at the top right hand corner is also a nice addition to the page! Another fantastic feature is that you can pick a word from the text and voyant will find it and highlight it for you! I found this feature extremely handy!

Even though I found voyant extremely useful and fun to use, there is two things I would like to change! The first one is, in the collage I found it extremely hard to read the smaller less common words! I would definitely recommend making the words a bit bigger so they are easier to read! The other thing I would definitely change is, if you put the link of your text into the space provided, voyant gets the words from the whole page, rather than just the text and I feel this interferes with the results a lot!

But over all I found voyant to be a great tool to use and I would highly recommend it to anyone, especially any leaving cert student who are finding it difficult to learn about a certain text they are studyingvoyant1

DH assignment Two

Overall I really enjoyed my experience with Open Street Map. Although I found the initially signing up process quite annoying as you must hop from the sign up page, to your email where you must open another link in the email to finally get started, if I could change one thing about my experience it would definitely be the signing up process as I’d have everything on the one page making it easier and faster to sign up! But once I got started I found the tool extremely easy to use and navigate around.

The first plot of land I decided to navigate was a random one, I used the random choice feature on Open Street Map, this feature I found extremely handy as I didn’t know where to start or where needed to be mapped! streetmap5

This was the first plot of land I mapped, it is located just outside Serowe. as you can see from the picture the area mainly consisted of unknown roads(mapped by white lines), large plots of forestry( which are surrounded by transparent green lines ) and a few residential areas ( which are surrounded by transparent white lines). I was genuinely surprised at how easy it was to map this area, having all the tools on the screen right in front of your eyes and I found the method used to draw the lines was extremely easy to use and get the hang of! Another feature I thought was really useful was the was the search bar, which gave me the ability to quickly and efficiently find what I needed for my mapping e.g if I wanted to map a forestry, I would just have to search forestry and it would come up, which saved me the effort of searching through all the options manually. What I found weird was the fact that for such a large area, very little of it had been mapped!

streetmap4

This is the second plot of land that I had mapped, it was located right next to the first plot land on the right. At this point I became more familiar with Open Street Map and I was able to plot the roads, farmland and forestry much quicker than in the first plot of land. The search bar once again came in extremely handy allowing me to access the different features much faster allowing me to get this plot of land mapped quickly and efficiently.

streetmap3

This was third plot of land that I mapped, it was located on the right of the second plot of land. As you can see its much more built up and has a lot more residential areas than the last two plots of land which both just consisted mainly of forests and farmland. once again the search bar came in extremely handy and made the third plot of land really enjoyable to map, quick and easy to do! after mapping this I was really intrigued by the difference in the three areas that are only a few miles apart!

streetmap2

This was the area that I decided to validate, as we can see from the picture the person who previously mapped this area mapped mainly just the roads, so I decided to map one of thre residential areas ( the area surrounded by the transparent yellow line) this area is located just a few miles away from the three plots that I mapped, this area is much more built up and has no farmland of forest!

streetmap1

Here we can see the three plots of land that I mapped. I chose three plots next to each other because I was interested to see the difference in the land usage between them!

Even though I really did enjoy my experience with Open Street Map, there are a few things I would like to change, the first one is the signing up process which I already stated at the start of this blog post, I also found that when I was selecting random plots of land to map, that some of the areas were covered in clouds, this made it hard to  see any roads, houses, forests etc beneath them and making it very difficult to made. I also noticed that the pictures were a bit outdated when I decided to mess around with it and found my house and noticed it was an old picture!

But the positives really do out weigh the negatives. Open Street Map is a great way to see the world and is available right in your own home! I learned a lot about places I didn’t even knew existed from Open Street Map and ill definitely be using it again in the near future!

 

DH Assignment One

Assignment one – General Digital Humanities tools

By Jeff Hodder. Student number: 115506447.

 

The digital tool that has intrigued me is Twitter as it’s a social network that most of us would use on a day to day basis. Before I had started my digital humanities course I never knew that there was such a thriving digital humanities community on twitter. I find that twitter is a great way to express yourself and a fantastic way to share your ideas with other digital humanities scholars from around the world using just 140 characters per tweet and having the ability to add a picture to your tweet is a nice touch!

When you first sign up to twitter there isn’t much really going on as you have no profile picture, no tweets, followers and a very bland and boring news feed. But as you begin to use twitter more and more, get more followers and begin to tweet more and interact with other users you soon begin to realise why twitter is so popular because it’s not just a website, it’s a community. It’s a worldwide community where people share their thoughts, jokes, useful information and all their views on different topics. Twitter is more than just a social network, it’s a digital tool that can be used to learn more about nearly any topic and all that information is just one hashtag away!

From my experience of twitter I found that the display of twitter is a simple one and is easy to navigate from the very first time you log on! Signing up to twitter is an easy process aand you only need to give a few bits of information to get started such as your name, age, email address and some information about yourself! When I first began follow the people I know and follow pages that tweeted topics I was interested in I really began to get addicted. The search bar makes finding your friends or your favourite celebrities a breeze! Twitter has updated countless times from when I first signed up but with every update twitter make itself much more user friendly and more enjoyable to use! A feature I find extremely useful on twitter is the hashtag! This hashtag feature allows you to connect with people with similar interests, for example my digital humanities course has its own hashtag #uccdh and this allows us all to communicate with each other and share our views on different topics! Another brilliant feature on twitter is the ability to block users if you find any of their tweets or retweets offensive, this helps prevent bullying and helps make twitter a safe and fun place for everyone! Overall I really enjoy my everyday experiences with twitter and would really recommend it to anyone who wants to start using a new digital tool!

But there is a few things I’d like twitter to change. One is when you add a picture that it doesn’t take up any characters in your tweet even though a picture says a thousand words, it’s still nice for a picture to have an awesome caption! Another thing I hope twitter change in the next update is that when you log that you are able to see who else is online! Then you can direct message all your friends who are online! Another downside to twitter is the fact that if you block someone, you can still see their tweets if someone that your following retweets their tweet, I feel that twitter need to sort this as soon as they can! But the positives outweigh the negatives significantly and that’s what makes twitter such a good digital tool!

When I was gathering all this information for my review, I used the official twitter webpage (https://twitter.com/download?logged_out=1&lang=en ) and I also used the app (which I found much more efficient and useful!) Before the review I decided to try and explore every aspect of twitter and took notes on what I liked and disliked. But I also tried to explore the aspects of twitter that not everyone uses like the hashtags as a form of communication and I tried to see what twitter needed and how it could be improved. I also looked at other people’s reviews on twitter to see if they shared the same views as me. I found a great page that had a few short reviews on twitter called “common sense media” (https://www.commonsensemedia.org/website-reviews/twitter# ) and really helped me with my review!

Twitter was created in March 2006 and launched in July 2006, it is used worldwide and twitter has more than 500 million users – Wikipedia(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twitter ), twitter is an open source website! I have been using twitter for the last few years but only in the last few months have I really been using twitter to its full potential, twitter is one of the best digital tools on the web and I will definitely be using it for many more years to come!

 

REFRENCES

Twitter- https://twitter.com/download?logged_out=1&lang=en

Common sense media-https://www.commonsensemedia.org/website-reviews/twitter#

Wikipedia-https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twitter