There are just two descriptions that can sum up what this class has taught me, online communication and research. Twitter, blogging and blackboard has help me connect with the class. The wiki page we work on and the articles we read for our assignment are the research that helps us understand what we are suppose to be researching on and learning in class. The articles we read are intriguing but outdated. My own research on Second Life and Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games is becoming a problem, since the databases aren't showing any results leading to contrasting information between the two. The sources from forums seem to give more arguments than articles within the library's database and from articles found by Google Scholar but I won't be able to use them since they don't have citations. It would nice if I could use that information. This innovative hybrid class is more interesting than my lecture classes and it gives ease to helping us understand the material related to New Media.
Kinda late for this but I still don't really like twitter that much. Of course, twitter does make it much more faster to comment to others but 140 letters might be limiting in some instances. It does beat using BB's discussion board since BB itself is so annoying to use. I can check tweet pretty quick on my sidekick if I have service. BUT it is also annoying to keep track of who is replying to whomever they are talking to and about what tweet that are replying about. It is also more productive that in-class discussions but that might be because we need to tweet in order to recieve credit.
When it come to virtual worlds, the main thing people can do is meet up with other people to discuss anything they want in a serious or stress-free environment. Of course, the setting of the virtual world affects what people will be discussing. Rarely would there be any business people discussing there current phase of their project during a fight with a dragon in an MMORPG or dancing in a virtual club. Second World is providing a free virtual world that fosters a place where creativity can thrive. For a small fee, users can create a setting that might be a replica of the real world or fresh off their own imagination. In the article, "iReport: 'Naughty Auties' battle autism with virtual interaction" researchers are able to use the creativity to set up environments that might happen in real life so that autistic people are able to experience the situation beforehand.
As more and more people are able to access the internet, while possibly closing up the digital divide, more meetings might be held in these virtual worlds. The reasons for these interactions may mostly appear beacuse of locations or people might just get lazy about going to their office when technology improves to be much more faster and effcient. Not everything might have to be in a virtual world. Online webcaming or video phone/conferencing might be the next big boom, provided that there is a fast AND constant access to the internet or whatever service provider (such as phones).
Like in my previous post, Linkedin is a great way for companies to find new workers for their job force. For a fee, they can see resumes posted by the users in Linkedin's community as sort out the people that they want to hire from key words. This helps them lower the amount of work needed to be done in order to scan for potential employees.
Twitter has also been a hot thing that was recently developed and is spreading around as much as blogs are. In a recent article in the NYTimes by Claire Cain Miller, twitter has helped people in their protest as well as their praises. Just recently over the weekend, "one author noticed that Amazon had reclassified books with gay and lesbian themes as 'adult' and removed them from the main search and sales rankings, a protest broke out on blogs and Twitter." Because Amazon was able to see this, they quickly tried to rectify the situation before it got out of hand. In another article by Laura M. Holson, David Puner "will often scan what others are saying about Dunkin’ Donuts and re-tweet the most positive comments." Since he has more than 20 thousand followers, this tweet would most likely be re-tweeted and the process could continue for who-knows-how-long.
The first social networking site that I have ever used was Facebook. I have never touched xanga or Myspace in my entire life even though many of my friends have. When I first got into Facebook, it was when one of my friends sent me an invitation. At that time, Facebook didn't seem to be too sophisticated as much as Myspace was. Now, Facebook is just filled with many groups, causes, and fan pages each with many or few followers, although I should also point out that it is littered with hundreds of applications and ads as well as spam and hackers.
I have just recently tried Google Buzz with my Gmail account. From what I'm am looking at when I try to have interest and use it, all i see is something that seems to be a copied version of Twitter and modified to include other applications such as Google's own Picasa as well as Twitter and Flickr. At this moment, I don't see any real usage With Google Buzz.
On the other hand, Linkedin seems to be a well developed site. You are able to input your personal information regarding with jobs and education. There is also an option to upload your resumes. Although I am also new at using this, this site seems to be an efficient way of finding connections with other employees and managers. There not much useless ads floating around unlike Facebook and allows the user to upgrade his account for other features, for a reasonable price if they are interested at all. The basic account is enough for new people to show their work and educational information.