Accessibility Issues

Posted in Uncategorized on November 7, 2011 by invinciblenerd

Whenever wondering about a disabled individual attempting to access the internet through a computer, it does seem like a more difficult task. The disability can limit the users ability to type, listen, read or watch the content that is desired. Of course, this would discourage the user from constantly trying to use the internet at all. At least, that seems like the main problem. As it turns out, the disability is not the major issue that conflicts with such users interacting with the web. The culprit: money.

The universal slap in the face, money has – pardon the pun – crippled the users even further when it comes to using the internet, among other things. As the polls detailed within this article will tell you, disabled workers make less money annually. This, in turn, causes finances to become an even bigger burden. Spending must be controlled, which means that certain luxuries have to be axed. Now what would cause the income to dip so low? Discrimination.¬†Apparently, the workforce still holds some form of discrimination. Disabled people may be seen as needing more help or being in the way. I guess it’s too much to ask for people to put such things aside and just see people as people.

Money problems are the primary issue, though the actual exploration of this medium is another major concern. Some people cannot use the technology because of the disability, so the government has enacted many plans in order to help these users. This is a nice step forward, but the help will only benefit those who wish for it. The expression “practice makes perfect” is the key for these users. Government aid will be beneficial, but working on certain skills and practice will be the actions that will ultimately help out these individuals.

 

Advertisements

Digital Divide

Posted in Uncategorized on November 2, 2011 by invinciblenerd

I found the reading about the “digital divide” very troubling. The reading contained polls about the percentage of black and Hispanics that use smart phones in order to access the internet. It continued to detail that these groups may be using the phones for entertainment (my god, not that!) more than anything else. The article went even further about this and that and blah blah blah…

Here’s my problem: why are we continuing to place people into groups? This article is placing blacks, whites and Latinos into different groups, comparing their use of phone use. What is worse, the article puts whites in its own group, segregating the black and Latino cell uses into its own section. The article says that there is a “digital divide” between these groups. You know what I think? I think I don’t care. I don’t see why this matters nor do I understand why this study was even concocted.

My god, people use their phones for entertainment more than anything else! What has this world come to?! Oh wait, EVERYONE does that. People place content within the web and others check out the content. That is the way of the digital realm. Now, does it matter that people use their phones and computers to access this content? No. Should we place people into groups and monitor their use based on their color? Hell no. This is 2011 and people are still being labeled. Groups are still being made. Ridiculous studies like this are still being conducted.

The only “digital divide” that is present is within those who want to see one. There is no divide. I used my laptop and phone for information and entertainment. My friends use their devices in the same way. Everyone does this. There is no divide amongst groups. The only groups that exist are ones created by those who wish to do so. For everyone else, there are just people. We are all people. We are all people who access the internet.

Evaluating Sources

Posted in Uncategorized on October 26, 2011 by invinciblenerd

While doing research, I never used to check my sources. I only searched for the information that I needed and quoted the sentences that added to my thesis. Never have I looked at the author to make sure that he/she is legitimate nor I have checked to see if a website was trustworthy. In all honesty, it never really mattered to me. As long as the sources I used furthered the point I was trying to make, I didn’t care where the information came from.

Now, I realize that I should do a little research about the sources I may be using. Some authors cannot be trusted, for some can compile pages full of ignorant or blatantly wrong statements, which would reflect poorly on my paper. Some websites could be untrustworthy, housing unreliable sources. I would not want such sites to be cited if they turn out to be the antithesis of legitimate.

I understand now that more research should be done while doing research. Not only do I need to find information to support my claims, but I need to make sure that the sources themselves are trustworthy, reliable and accurate. Anything below that would become problematic and would ultimately degrade my paper. By using the CRAP test and searching for reliable sources in which to quote, I can now produce an authentic paper that will be seen not only as professional, but insightful. This is the only kind of paper I wish to create and now I have the means to do so.

Google Google Google

Posted in Uncategorized on October 19, 2011 by invinciblenerd

Google is the all-seeing and all-knowing filter. The world over chooses to use its services, not caring about the price of using the search engine. Of course, most are unaware of the actions that Google takes while it filters the results for its searches. Google, being a free service provider, does not require the user to upload any information, sign any agreement or pay any fee. Instead, it takes the information. It extracts the IP address that enacts the search, tracks search histories, records and stores user information and countless other things. The service uses its information in its data reserves, applying it to later searches. Some people might find this troubling. A search engine that records information while I use it? How can it be trusted? Why would I use it? Let’s just call it equivalent exchange. Because Google is connected to almost every aspect of the internet, we need its services in our everyday lives. We need it when doing research or finding a specific page. We need it to check new emails and watch videos. But Google needs information to power its data-banks. It collects these things to refine its filter, finding ways to make searches faster and more favorable to the user. The exchange of info for services is just the price we pay in order to use the filter.

Filters and… Tumblr?

Posted in Uncategorized on October 5, 2011 by invinciblenerd

Unfortunately, I did not make it to class the day that this blog was assigned. I had the topic, but my understanding of it was a bit lacking. I didn’t want to just wing it and hope for the best, so I turned to Facebook and messaged my group to find the answer to my question. Rochelle, being very helpful, let me know the details of the assignment and gave me a few examples. Record my filter use for 24 hours? Easier said than done. I found it every difficult to keep track of every filter, search engine and web page I visited throughout the day. Of course, this became more difficult to remember considering I had to work at the theater until 11 PM. But I do remember the sites that I visit on a regular basis: Facebook, Twitter, Google, Wikipedia and Youtube. To keep up to date with friends and events, I turn to Facebook and Twitter. To satisfy research questions, its off to Google and Wikipedia. With boredom, I turn to Youtube and kill some time. I rarely dip outside of these sites (with the exception of IGN – which I use for nerd news), so it was difficult to consider using another filter. Would I use Bing? No. Stumble? Perhaps.

Eventually, I settled on using Tumblr. Another blog site, Tumblr is similar to Facebook, but with more focus on a specific theme. People create blogs and post random thoughts, pictures, poems, reviews, and so on. Most blogs center around a certain theme, which made it easy to search for a specific topic. The site was very user friendly, allowing the blog creation process to breeze by within minutes. The searches were also a cinch. Of course, there was a bit of a learning curve when it came to posting and tagging, but it wasn’t a major problem. Because of my exposure to Facebook and Twitter, it only took a bit of trial and error to figure out how to make it work. My Tumblr experience turned out to be favorable and I will use the filter more in the future.

Filters

Posted in Uncategorized on October 5, 2011 by invinciblenerd

Facebook: I logged on to Facebook to interact with my friends. I wanted to be up to date with their recent events and whatnot. I also used Facebook to search for other friends, comic store pages, events, etc.

Twitter: I searched through the Twitter feed to get updates from the local comic shops about the new releases for this week. I also sifted through the posts to find Tweets from my favorite authors to keep up to date with their current writings.

Youtube: I logged onto Youtube to watch recent videos posted form The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. I also searched through the multitudes of videos to find specific bands and songs.

Google: Whenever I needed to find an answer to a nagging question or search for a valid source, I used Google. It is my favorite search engine (I think it’s everyone’s favorite search engine).

Wikipedia: Occasionally I need to find answers and understand the random thoughts and topics that occur throughout the day. That is when I turned to Wikipedia to fulfill my burning curiosity.

(I had to work this day so I did not have much time to mess around on the computer).

High Distraction vs Low Distraction

Posted in Uncategorized on September 28, 2011 by invinciblenerd

This one seems like a no-brainer. Obviously the high distraction attempt was much harder to type than the low distraction. The constant postings on the Twitter feed and wall responses made it difficult to focus on the task at hand. Then again, I did choose a rather uninteresting subject for the first post. The low distraction attempt was of a topic of my interest and one that I had prior knowledge.

First off, let’s start with the high distraction. For this attempt, I chose the Tower of London as my topic. But before choosing the article, I opened up Facebook, Twitter and played Casino Royale on my television. I clicked the link and almost immediately lost interest. My friend and I began talking about our problems at work over the Twitter-verse. As I waited for Tweets, I watched Daniel Craig “play the man across from him” in a high-stakes poker tournament. Responses on my wall surfaced, causing me to further neglect the assignment. In fact, I did not read much of the article. I skimmed over a few sections and posted the main ideas that I found. The post was garbage.

The low distraction attempt was much easier. I will say that much ease came from the topic, Wrath of Khan. Being a nerd, Star Trek is just one of the many science fiction series that I have watched. So writing this particular post was not very difficult. The lack of Facebook, Twitter and a witty Bond did help me write the post much faster. The lack of constant distraction allowed me to finish the blog within a few minutes, instead of wasting about twenty minutes before starting the task.