robertogreco + vine   17

Why We Loved Vine So Much - The Atlantic
"Few of the core features we think of as “Twitter” were invented by people employed by Twitter. None of the founders invented the 140-character message, the constraint that gives the service its verve; instead, they adopted it as a technical aspect of SMS texting. Nor did anyone at Twitter invent the @-reply. Not the hashtag or the retweet, either—all were first created by users, then borrowed by the company as an official feature.

The company didn’t quite invent the six-second looping video. It bought the startup that did—Vine—in October 2012, right before it was to launch. But it can get credit for introducing the world to a form unlike any other online: Vines were too weird a thing for users to generate themselves.

When Vine debuted early in 2013, Twitter boasted that its brief videos were the visual equivalent of a tweet. How the student excelled the master. Twitter is where you joke about sports and whine about politics. It is always wordy—and thus inescapably political.

Vine? Vine is art.

Joyful, astonishing, frenetically blissful art. Like the 14-line sonnet or the 12-bar blues, the six-second loop accepted its defining constraint and therefore transcended it. Those six seconds could show you anything—a tiny Japanese owl, two teenagers joking in Tulsa, a water bubble on the International Space Station—but they were always six seconds. The curtain always slammed down, and you were always sent back to the beginning again.

This made every Vine an experiment in form. Some had a beginning, a middle, and an end. Some rebelled against any clear point: They started by showing you something crazy and the craziness persisted right through to the end. And the best ran along next to you as you tried to figure out what was happening: You began watching, you thought you saw the joke, then the premise of the whole Vine would shift to reveal a new joke, and then—wham—you were back where you began.

This weird formalism is one reason why Vine—the social network—could have only happened when it did. Only the flood of venture capital that followed from Facebook’s mass popularity, only the lack of good investment options after the global financial crisis, only the hundreds of investors looking to spot the next Google, could have produced a little app as strange as Vine. (Think about it: For a time, a whole planetary class of bankers and hedge-fund managers invested their money not in better ways to mine a rock or ship a box across the ocean, but in inventing new tools of expression. How world-historically weird.) And only a generation of teens and young adults newly empowered with smartphones—a wacko device with a web connection, a video camera, and a link to the whole staggering breadth of global pop culture—could have produced Vine, a medium that requires a willingness to show off to friends and strangers, a freedom to look a little silly or stupid, and hours and hours of waiting-around time to workshop ideas."
robinsonmeyer  vine  2016  twitter  video  socialmedia  community 
october 2016 by robertogreco
You may not have understood Vine, but its demise is a huge cultural loss - Vox
"Ultimately, Vine was less a cultural melting pot and more a kind of cultural Breakfast Club: a place where artists hung out with meme makers, who hung out with unruly teen pranksters, who hung out with musicians and comedians and families using Vine for personal reasons. Sure, they may have been brought together through hashtags and a collective love of perfect six-second looping edits, but at the end of the day, the artist can work on any platform while the prankster just wants to join a YouTube network, and the family can use any number of video services. Vine’s ragtag, unexpected found community will scatter, but we can thank the site for giving us one glorious moment (or four years) where so many people came together for six seconds of magic."
vine  2016  socialmedia  ajaromano  twitter  video 
october 2016 by robertogreco
youtube-dl
"youtube-dl is a command-line program to download videos from YouTube.com and a few more sites. It requires the Python interpreter (2.6, 2.7, or 3.2+), and it is not platform specific. We also provide a Windows executable that includes Python. youtube-dl should work in your Unix box, in Windows or in Mac OS X. It is released to the public domain, which means you can modify it, redistribute it or use it however you like."

[works for Vine, Twitter, and bunch of other things:
https://rg3.github.io/youtube-dl/supportedsites.html ]
youtube  video  downloads  vine  twitter  onlinetoolkit 
october 2016 by robertogreco
China Residencies: An Artist's Guide to WeChat
"WeChat is *the* most important app in China. It's absolutely crucial for navigating life in mainland China, and we tell all artists heading that way to download it immediately. To help convey all the wonders of WeChat, we here at China Residencies commissioned Katy Roseland, artist & co-founder of Basement6 Collective, a Shanghai artist run space and residency, to write this guide. Katy's been based in China since the construction of the Great Firewall in 2009, she makes performance work and research centering on the Chinese internet. This guide was generated from her years of researching WeChat along with interviews from Chinternet Noobs and her fellows at the Swatch Art Peace Hotel, where she's currently an artist-in-residence.


An Artist's Guide to WeChat

1. INTRODUCTION (LIFE WITHOUT WECHAT)
2. DOWNLOAD!
3. SET IT UP
4. TALK TO PEOPLE
5. LOOK AT PICTURES
6. GROUPTHINK
7. MONEY, MONEY
8. WHERE R U NOW ?
9. JUST HAVE A GOOD TIME
10. MOBILIZE YOURSELF


1. INTRODUCTION (LIFE WITHOUT WECHAT)

In preparing your transition into the "other side of the world", it's safe to assume you have done a bit of research no? You're thinking about what to pack, but you might not have anticipated how to plan for your first encounter with the Chinese internet. The Great Firewall. The big data dissolve. The weirdest facet of this country.

You say censorship, I say xxxxxx xxxx xx.

Once your flight touches down, instinctively you’ll reboot your phone to what might feel like a data void. Maybe you’re adorably surprised by all the new things you can’t access... Not all internets are the same, I met a girl from Japan who couldn’t understand why her Gmail wouldn’t refresh, a friend thought her Facebook had been hacked, and, for a visiting writer, his “critical tweets” were out of reach. If you’re wondering why you’re lacking notifications, it’s because you’re in the land of 404. This is daily life on the Chinese internet, VPN off, we survive.

2. DOWNLOAD!

Let me show you how... Tencent’s China-centric answer to Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp, Twitter, Vine, and Paypal in a single application. You download this one thing [download it now! do it!] and place it very centrally on your homescreen. You have not a single choice.

…"
wechat  china  chinternet  2016  katyroseland  socialmedia  messaging  mobile  whatsapp  twitter  vine  paypal  facebook  instagram 
july 2016 by robertogreco
DIGITAL-MATERIALITY-OF-GIFS
HI, my name is Sha.

I love gifs.

Some of my best friends are gifs. One of my sideprojects is GifPop, a site where people upload gifs to print animated cards.

But that's a longer story.

What I do want to talk about is animated gifs as a design material.

But first off, a quick reminder: no one owns language.

People argue about gif or jif, but it doesn't matter. No one owns language, and even if anyone did no one is a jraphic designer or jraffiti artist.

What i love about gifs are their history and their materiality.

First specified in 1987, the creators later stated in their 1989 revision that "the graphics interchange format is not intended as a platform for animation, even though it can be done in a limited way."

And what a gloriously, gloriously limited way it is.

Animated gifs, whether you are hypnotized by them or nauseated by them, have become a visual language unto themselves, an emotive vocabulary made out of culture.

Gifs are now a medium, and their portability and accessibility to anyone allows for endless remixing and reinterpretation.

Gifs weren't always this way.

We all remember the various under construction or dancing baby gifs from the 90s, and all the bedazzled backgrounds on myspace pages.

The gif spec limits color palettes to 256 colors, and must store the pixels that have changed for every frame of animation.

This makes them very inefficient for rendering or storing entire movies, but has made them nicely equipped to capture the most delicate of moments.

Because gifs can specify an infinite loop, they both break time and increase legibility, creating the beauty we call a reaction gif.

But gifs aren't just about cutting up bits of media.

The inefficiency of the file format and the upload limits of the social networks themselves have created a whole ecosystem of experimentation and juggling around constraints.

In Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg's work, they realized that by isolating movement they could make gifs at a much higher quality than most, and still fit Tumblr's strict upload requirements, creating the style they call cinemagraphs.

Sports editors like @dshep25 have taken this technique even further, taking advantage of controlled camera angels to collapse and collage many similar shots into a single gif, like this one of Lebron James.

Artists of course are leading this exploration.

The work of dvdp and 89-a both explore extremely limited color palettes while using tight loops and large swaths of black to reduce file size.

The work of Nicolas Fong explores this dense looping to a ridiculous extreme, creating hyperintricate animations that evoke the phenakistoscopes of the 1800s.

And we even see the seams of the network in the content that's posted.

On Tumblr, where upload limits are small but multiple side-by-side gifs are permitted, people collage snippets of dialogue together.

On Imgur, the preferred uploader for redditors, upload limits are much higher, enough for entire scenes to be remixed.

Here on Newhive, artists like molly soda take advantage of the support for transparency and collaging to make pieces like this, displaying messages from her Okcupid inbox.

Content like this just explodes, and with attention comes money.

Newer networks like Vine have popped up, creating their own medium of looping video.

These days for every Vine THERE are a dozen competing looping apps trying to capitalize on this meme economy.

But while these advances are exciting, the mainstreaming of gifs is not without its losses.

Tumblr now has a minimum resolution size.

Imgur is now promoting its own videogif format.

Facebook and Twitter have started converting gifs to video by default.

While individually these decisions to decrease file sizes or stop gifs from autoplaying make sense, this desire to optimize as well as commercialize gifs ends up siloing these animations from each other, removing the portability and ease of remixing that makes gifs exciting at all.

Gifs are a dumb, limited file format, and in the end this is why they are important:

They do not belong to anyone.

Because of their constraints they become a design material, to be played with, challenged, and explored. to try and domesticate them would be missing the point.

This was written BY SHA HWANG For a Pecha Kucha talk in Brooklyn and made into a remixable newhive. The ideas are from the internet.

Thank you to animatedtext for creating the amazing title gif. more detailed sources are INLINE ON THE PAGE to the right >>>>>>>>>

[Also at this URL: http://newhive.com/shashashasha/digital-materiality-of-gifs ]
shahwang  gifs  animatedgifs  internet  web  facebook  vine  twitter  fileformats  constraints  art  webart  tumblr  memes  remixing  portability  video  animation  emotions  imgur  okcupid  redit  newhive  phenakistoscopes  dvdp  89-a  @dshep25  cinemagraphs  jamiebeck  kevinburg  history  media  legibility  resolution  reactiongifs  accessibility  1987  1989  gifpop  culture  remixculture  multiliteracies 
january 2016 by robertogreco
The Decay of Twitter - The Atlantic
"Do other things get smooshed on Twitter? Definitely. The public and the private smoosh, as do the personal and professional. I’d even argue that subjectivity and objectivity get smooshed—consider the Especially Serious Journalists who note that “RTs are not endorsements.” But understanding Twitter as an online space that, for a long time, drew its energy from the tension between orality and literacy, and that—in its mid-life—has moved more decisively toward one over the other, works for me as a model of its collapse.

This tension also explains, to me, why the more visual social networks have stayed fun and vibrant even as the text-based ones have not. Vine, Pinterest, and Instagram don’t traffic in words, which can be reduced to identity-based magnum opi, but in images, which are a little harder to smoosh. Visual conversations have stayed chatty, in other words."



"In the final paragraphs of this article, let me assert something I have very little data to support: At some point early last year, the standard knock against Twitter—which had long ceased to be “I don’t want to know what someone’s eating for lunch”—became “I don’t want everyone to see what I have to say.” The public knows about conversation smoosh, and that constitutes, I think, a major problem for Twitter the Company. New products like Moments—which collects tweets, images, and video into little summaries—are not going to fix that.

I’m not sure anything can fix it, honestly. But I wonder if Twitter can’t arrange a de-smooshing, at least a little bit, by creating more forms of private-ness on the site. Separating the private and the public could, in turn, delineate “speech-like” and “print-like” tweets. Twitter’s offered locked accounts for a long time, but it has always been default public. (For a few early years, a pane on Twitter.com displayed every tweet.) Making it so an individual tweet’s publicness can be toggled on or off might help users feel more comfortable spending time there. And pushing new users toward secret accounts that can toggle individual tweets public might even allay some of their fears.

Or maybe nothing can be done. No one promises growth forever. Communities and companies of all sizes fall apart. And some institutions that thrive on their tensions for many years can one day find them exhausted, worn out, limp, their continued use driven more by convenience and habit than by vibrancy and vigor."
robinsonmeyer  2015  twitter  socialmedia  bonniestewart  walterong  secondaryorality  orality  literacy  internet  web  communication  online  communities  community  visibility  surveillance  contextcollapse  context  instagram  text  conversation  chattiness  vine  pinterest 
november 2015 by robertogreco
The People's Platform ["No medium captures everyday life like Vine"] - The Awl
"Vine Compilation no. 123 features a high school teacher dancing to Nicki Minaj, a meme about trying to put on fitted sheets (it’s impossible), an animation likening Bill Cosby to a fighting game character whose special attack involves quaalude Hadoukens (ugh), and a gang fight involving baseball bats. This is the content mix viewers have come to expect, a mix most representative of real life filtered through the internet, for better or worse. Unlike YouTube, whose video sensations skew white and “dreamy,” some of Vine’s most effective users are often minorities, specifically black users, making the platform far more representative of culture than its intensely whitewashed counterparts.

This isn’t to say that the most “successful” users on the platform are minorities. In fact, according to Niche, a service that works sort of like Linkedin for viral celebrities, the majority of the most followed Vine accounts belong to white kids who look like members of a failed One Direction spinoff, aka fuckbois. Still, the cultural capital exchanged on Vine—dances, memes and expressions like “ayyy”—originate with the app’s black users. That the majority of the app’s black creators are shut out from the new celebrity status created on Vine is the entertainment industry’s systemic discrimination played out in a new sphere, which makes sense considering who the fuckboi Vine stars cater to: middle-class teenage white girls.

Still, while “Black YouTube” isn’t a thing, and “Black Twitter” exists as a nebulous idea that somehow involves Piers Morgan, Black Vine is simply Vine, inescapable for anyone looking to really really engage with the platform. The app’s format lends itself perfectly to hip hop, too. The six second loops put rhythm at center stage and as Hannah Giorgis says in The Guardian, “Blackness thrives rhythmically, and Vine puts that percussive precision on infinite loop.”

This makes sense given the rash of hip-hop hits to surface through the platform. Songs like Silento’s massive “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae),” or Bobby Shmurda’s “Hot Nigga” play both to hip-hop’s affinity for hooks and Vine’s repetitive hypnosis. Most of the songs to emerge on Vine are one hit wonders, sure, but they’re also unrelenting in their ubiquity. There are thousands of “whip” compilations on YouTube, as well as instructionals, parodies and every other form of online re-purposing imaginable. Bobby Shmurda might even be a major force in rap music today, were it not for the accuracy of his hit single’s lyrics.

World Star Hip Hop occupies the ground floor of this social video culture, making mini-celebrities out of kids like WelvenDaGreat, whose “Deez Nuts” meme has managed to generate a modest bit of fame, or Lil Terrio, whose “Ooo kill ’em” video spawned a maddeningly extensive series of spinoffs. World Star’s compilations afford cultural capital to traditionally marginalized voices by amplifying their work where the platforms themselves won’t. The content creators who thrive on WSHH are, in a lot of ways, models of what companies like Vine tout in press releases: On World Star, you can become a viral celebrity even if you don’t have a name like “Skylar” or “Connor,” making the still-often despicable site the closest we’ve come to the utopian platform we’ve always hoped for."
vine  internet  2015  socialmedia  video  media  race  deeznuts  whatarethoooooose?  jeffihaza 
august 2015 by robertogreco
Byte is a wild new creative tool from the founder of Vine | The Verge
[See also: http://www.byte.co/

"Hofmann’s tinkering led him to create Byte, an impressively ambitious mobile app for iPhone that enters a private beta today. (It’s scheduled to open to the public later in July; an Android version is coming later this year.) Byte is a creative tool and a social network. Mostly, though, it’s a playground: if Vine encourages creativity by giving you constraints, Byte aims to destroy the notion of constraints and see what emerges from the chaos.

The most familiar thing about Byte is its basic structure. As on Vine or Instagram before it, there’s a feed of creations from the people you follow, an activity feed, and a place to edit your profile. Byte’s take on discovery is a rocket-shaped button that takes you to "worlds," which are themed collections of content that can be about anything. (Think subreddits.)

But the heart of Byte is its creation tool, which you’ll find at the center of the bottom row of buttons when you open the app. Tap it, and you’ll find a gradient of randomly chosen colors as your canvas. Tap again on the canvas, and a staircase of buttons pops up. On the bottom right, there’s a camera you can use to take photos and insert them into your creation. As on Snapchat, there are tools for adding text or drawing with your finger.

One of Byte’s more original features is a "soundtrack" button, which lets you create miniature, looping synths that play inside your creations. You build them using trial and error, placing emoji on a grid. The feature was inspired by Mario Paint’s composer, and as with that game, it’s designed to be forgiving. "You can’t really make anything that sounds bad unless you’re trying," Hofmann says.

Byte’s most ambitious tool, though, is the computer — an app launcher within the app that lets you pull a variety of images, text, and memes into your Bytes. An app called Trendy pulls in news headlines; Drizzy surfaces Drake-related quotes and images; Weather does as you would expect.

The content is selected at random, but you can cycle through it by tapping arrows on either side of the rectangle that houses the content. And more options are coming to the computer: Hofmann plans to let developers write their own apps for Byte using an API.

For my first Byte, I snapped a photo of myself, added several looping GIFs of swimming dolphins, and wrote out "Dolphin Party" in text. Using a magic wand tool, I added a fireworks effect to the text, causing it to constantly shoot out smaller versions of itself. The result looked like a nightmare GIF party straight out of GeoCities 1998, and I was quite pleased.

There’s lots more you can do with a completed Byte. You can remix it, scrambling its constituent parts and adding new elements of your own. You can share it to Instagram, Vine, or the web, or just save it to your camera roll. And Hofmann says there’s much more on the way, including a feature called "blocks" that will introduce programming capabilities into Byte using the same grid-based interface the music feature uses.

It’s wildly different from the simple tap-and-hold simplicity of Vine, but Hofmann says there’s a spiritual connection. Vine was about time as a storytelling device, he says, and Byte is about space. "Most people are not used to arranging things" using software, he says. "Most things don’t make it easy enough to do that."

There are a couple other big ideas here. One is that the line between applications and the media they create is getting blurrier and blurrier. Byte represents an effort to blur it further. "A perfect user interface that’s super designed and made up of a couple colors — that’s something that evolved out of older computers that couldn’t really do that much," he says. "That was the best they could do with a GUI. But there’s no reason that a UI couldn’t be a piece of media.""

[via: https://twitter.com/senongo/status/558418819803512832 ]
byte  applications  ios  vine  2015  donhofmann  mixel  ios8 
june 2015 by robertogreco
Three Moments With WeChat | 八八吧 · 88 Bar
"Despite being only four years old, WeChat is more popular in China than Facebook is in the US: 72% of all Chinese people with mobile devices use it, versus the 67% penetration rate Facebook has among American internet users. Yet its Facebook-esque feature, Moments, manages to avoid feeling like the Walmart of social interaction. When my soon-to-be cousin-in-law posted that photo, he no doubt received both sincere congratulations from his professional contacts and older relatives as well as jokes from his closer friends. On Moments, however, each user can only see activity from their own contacts: not even a total count of Likes is available to anyone other than the original poster. This automated privacy curtain means that group social dynamics can remain hidden in plain sight without any moderation effort required from the original poster. In other words, my cousin-in-law could perform his groomal duties without worrying about messy (and potentially embarrassing) context collapse.

This decision to prioritize context separation over the ability to perform social popularity is an important concession to what sociologist Tricia Wang calls the Elastic Self. In a culture where connections are everything, many of WeChat’s features are subtly optimized for “saving face” in complicated situations. You can chat with people without adding them as contacts: someone you met on a chat-coordinated dinner doesn’t automatically become a Contact with access to details about your social life. Even while adding someone as a Contact, there is an option to secretly prevent them from seeing your Moments updates. There’s also a conspicuous lack of presence and typing status indicators as compared to iMessage and other apps, allowing the receiver some measure of plausible deniability about when each message is received.

These days, the buzz around WeChat centers on its impressive sprawl into an entire operating system of features: in certain regions, a user can hail a cab, shop, and even manage their bank accounts all in the app. But these features, introduced in late 2013, only work because they capitalize on WeChat’s already dizzying adoption rate. What lies at the core of WeChat’s success is a series of smart design decisions that reflect the culture they were created in and, together, generate a unique experience that is as functional as it is addictive."



"WeChat privileges another mode of communication equally to text: “Hold to Talk.” This featured, used by almost as many people as texting, allows the sender to record a short voice message which is then sent in the conversation. The receiver taps it when they want to hear it, and if there are multiple messages, each subsequent one autoplays. It’s a brilliant feature that marries the intimacy and simplicity of voice with the convenience of asynchronicity that makes texting so appealing.

“Hold to Talk” may have been created for its convenience, but it’s also a powerfully expressive feature with interesting affordances of its own. In the process of writing this piece, I was thinking about a Chinese phrase I only half-remembered. Forgetting a language is funny — there are some words I can read but not pronounce, and others that I can parse while listening but not recognize visually. I remembered the vague shape and meaning of the phrase, so I sent two voice clips to my mom, fumbling the words awkwardly. An hour later, she responded with a voice clip of her own. I listened to her laugh and rib me about my illiteracy, and chuckled alongside it as if she were next to me."



"Periodically, one of our hosts would pull out his phone (a Samsung Galaxy S4, possibly shanzhai) to shoot video clips of the gathering, documenting everyone who was there. Other relatives crowded around the phone afterwards, watching all of the videos on the phone. They were so interested in the videos taken of our hosts’ lives in Beijing, where they lived for most of the year as migrant workers, that they went to desperate measures to attempt to copy them.

WeChat natively supports a surprising number of media formats: images, custom animated stickers, uploaded videos, natively captured short videos called Sights, and even PowerPoint and Word documents. It also facilitates passing these files from one conversation to another through a prominent “forwarding” option for files.

Now that my 80 year old grandmother is on WeChat, the whole family forwards anything amusing they find to the group chat we share so that she can see it. Often, it’s jokes, articles, and photos of ourselves and our food."



"Scrolling through my WeChat today, I see pictures of my cousin and cousin-in-law surfing and glowing on their honeymoon, pictures of my parents from a friend’s graduation ceremony, at least five jokes I can’t quite grok, and even the occasional dispatch from Nanzhai village. Using a chat app to hail a cab with your phone is cool, but at the end of the day the killer feature of WeChat will always be its ability to shorten distances and navigate social situations as deftly as we need to."

[via: http://tumblr.iamdanw.com/post/119597750700/despite-being-only-four-years-old-wechat-is-more ]
christinaxu  socialmedia  facebook  2015  wechat  china  contextcollapse  privacy  metrics  socialdynamics  social  interaction  moderation  mobile  application  socialnetworks  communication  tumblr  vine 
may 2015 by robertogreco
What's Your Favorite Slang Word? From Swag to On Fleek, Tweens Explain the Changing English Language - The Atlantic
"This is the first episode in a new series from The Atlantic, where we ask tweens for their thoughts on everything from middle-school jargon to what it's like growing up in the digital age. We interviewed students at Alice Deal Middle School in Washington, D.C., who shared some of their favorite slang words with us: swag, on fleek, and werk (with an "e"). "Sometimes slang words come out of famous videos or Vines," Max, a seventh-grade student, says. "It's social media," says Ricardo, another seventh-grader."

[Also on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvSDh0OQ6Zs ]
kids  language  vine  english  slang  2015  teens  youth  middleschool  tweens 
may 2015 by robertogreco
FutureEverything 2015: Alexis Lloyd & Matt Boggie on Vimeo
"From New York Times R&D Labs, Alexis Lloyd and Matt Boggie talk about our possible media futures, following the early days of the web - where growth was propelled forward by those making their own spaces online - to the present, where social platforms are starting to close down, tightening the possibilities whilst our dependency on them is increasing. Explaining how internet users are in fact participatory creators, not just consumers, Alexis and Matt ask where playing with news media can allow for a new means of expression and commentary by audiences."
public  media  internet  web  online  walledgardens  participation  participatory  2015  facebook  snapchat  open  openness  alexisloyd  mattboggie  publishing  blogs  blogging  history  audience  creativity  content  expression  socialnetworks  sociamedia  onlinemedia  appropriation  remixing  critique  connection  consumption  creation  sharing  participatoryculture  collage  engagement  tv  television  film  art  games  gaming  videogames  twitch  performance  social  discussion  conversation  meaningmaking  vine  twitter  commentary  news  commenting  reuse  community  culturecreation  latoyapeterson  communication  nytimes  agneschang  netowrkedculture  nytimesr&dlabs  bots  quips  nytlabs  compendium  storytelling  decentralization  meshnetworking  peertopeer  ows  occupywallstreet  firechat  censorship  tor  bittorrent  security  neutrality  privacy  iot  internetofthings  surveillance  networkedcitizenship  localnetworks  networks  hertziantribes  behavior  communities  context  empowerment  agency  maelstrom  p2p  cookieswapping  information  policy  infrastructure  technology  remixculture 
march 2015 by robertogreco
Risk, Reward, and Digital Writing - Hybrid Pedagogy
"Digital writing is political because in every pixel, every DNA-like strand of code, we are placing ourselves into the public. Even if we are not writing for a wide audience, even if we make no plans to disseminate our work, the craft of writing now takes place within other people’s software, in other people’s houses. This page the borrowed sheets. Me the writer a couch surfer.

Owning our own homes in the digital requires an expertise that this writer does not have. I don’t own my own server, I haven’t learned to code, I haven’t designed my own interfaces, my own web site, nor even my own font. I must content myself to rent, to squat, or to ride the rails. But in this I find a certain freedom, a resistance in the willy-nilly. I cannot build my own home in the digital, but I can mark my territory.

In November, Hybrid Pedagogy — along with the UW-Madison Division of Continuing Studies — will once again host Digital Writing Month, a 30-day writing challenge that asks participants to create works of text, image/video, and sound. The form these works take, and what they say, do, expose, problematize, or solve, is entirely up to the author(s) and artist(s) who join the fray. The work should be challenging, inventive, and should give the digital writer a chance to do something they’ve always wanted to do.

Here, in this piece, I am offering an additional challenge: to make the act of digital writing truly political. To rouse and incite, to question and provoke, to mark our territories on the spaces delimited by their designers. By creating, hack; by writing, rebel. We must make the sites of our work little bitty Bastilles, our tweets and Vines and sound clips tiny marches on Versailles. Imagine a blog that flies the Jolly Roger, a podcast that bows to no one, a Vimeo channel that riots and runs amok. These are the ways the insurgence begins.

In this, I recognize I speak of rebellion playfully, when in truth most revolutions are terrible, bloody affairs. That playfulness, though, is the invitation. We are creating a revolution of digital handicraft, of makers and shakers. We shall not throw our bodies upon the machines, but we shall throw our words there — and our images — and our voices. The approach may look joyous and celebratory, and the fervor may delight and inspire, and the result will have meaning.

Hybrid Pedagogy has been accused of being Pollyanna, our work too blithe and easy, our seriousness not nearly serious enough. Our editors on the tenure track have been reminded to publish with traditional journals, lest their academic work wither under the glare of rigor and double-blind peer review. But there is nothing casual about Hybrid Pedagogy, just as there is nothing casual about any other digital work. What digital work does is change the landscape of all work. When we write in the digital, our words behave differently; when we broadcast our ideas, the reception re-broadcasts and re-purposes those ideas. Digital publishing, digital writing, digital humanities, digital literacy, digital citizenship — these are not terms à la mode, but rather they are new components of very real human communities, very real human craft. We may approach them with equal part suspicion and exaltation, but approach them we must.

Insisting on such requires a certain risk, especially in academia. We must be prepared to look back in the faces of those who think our digital work lacks merit and tell them otherwise. And we must do so to the ends of our wits.

To change the perception that the digital is not as consequential as work in traditional media we must participate in it. We must put our best work there, and eschew the paper-bound, readerless journals that grow mold in library basements. We must reinhabit libraries, as sites for conference and debate, crafting and creation, community and not simply curation. We must likewise redefine what matters, what has impact factor, and grow the traditional so it’s not so obsolete. We must show up in digital places in throngs and masses. No algorithms will change unless we move against them. The LMS will not die its death until we put it in the ground. Our work in the digital will not begin if we never recognize that it is work that must begin.

Digital Writing Month, and digital writing at any time, is never frivolous. In doing things differently, we sow difference. “Essays quake and tremble at the digital,” I said. “They weep in awe and fascination. And they throw themselves into the abyss … Digital writing is a rebellion. An uprising against our sense and sensibility. Différance.” By refusing to do what’s expected, we frame a space of new expectations, new possibilities. When we recognize the oppression of autocorrect, the hegemony of the algorithm, the charade of rigor, we light the fires of revolution. And though they may glow softly at first, enough of them gathered together will burn down towers."
seanmichaelmorris  2014  writing  digitalwriting  communication  pirates  squatting  hobos  nomads  digitalnomads  adomainofone'sown  blogs  blogging  googledocs  renting  creation  conversation  vine  twitter  photography  podcasts  lms  revolution  academia  participatory  participation  howwewrite  digiwrimo  culturecreation 
november 2014 by robertogreco
The Future of UI and the Dream of the ‘90s — UX/UI human interfaces — Medium
"In other words, we’re expected to translate our emotions through emotionless interfaces."



"While application interfaces probably don’t need to make use of immersive soundtracks, the addition of sound effects can add to a user’s experience (provided they have the option to opt-out.) Apps like Clear and Duolingo added cheery and triumphant sound effects to their completion actions. These sounds are a recognition of the user’s success and reinforces the visual mark of a, typically green, success state."



"What can we learn from the masters of animation and how can we apply that to our work in UI? Replicating what we see in everyday life reminds us of our personal experiences. In Disney animators Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas’ book, The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation, they outline 12 basic principles to creating more realistic animations.

While not the key point of an interface, we can apply these principles on a micro-level. Excellent examples of delightful animation can be seen in Tweetbot, Apple Maps and Vine."



"While seemingly a very obvious way to communicate—copy and how we deal with inputs is often overlooked. In our rush to replace popular actions with iconography, designers often forget that sometimes copy can be just as powerful.

We can make use of copy to speak to users conversationally, eliminate the chore of form input or provide discoverable and fun easter eggs. All three ways give the illusion of a person behind the product or device."
ux  helentran  ui  interface  2014  design  minorityreport  animation  emotions  sound  frankchimero  journey  clear  duolingo  vine  tweetbot  pixar  maps  mapping  copy  content  writing  gestures 
january 2014 by robertogreco
Twitter Shows Epidemic of School Boredom | New Republic
"We do know that boredom is its own unique emotion. In research studies, people tend to describe boredom as something different than the absence of stimulation; they describe a feeling that is aggressively unpleasant, characterized by a desire to escape, to make the feeling go away. Because researchers love to name things, they have recently identified five types of boredom, from indifferent (the most benign) to reactant (the most negative version, characterized by anger or aggression).

In general, boredom of all kinds seems to be caused by repetitive, pointless tasks over which people have little control, according to studies of conducted over the past few decades (nicely summarized by Jennifer Vogel-Walcutt and her colleagues at the University of Central Florida’s Institute for Simulation and Training). But some people are more likely to experience boredom than others. Boredom is a function, then, not only of a dull situation but of a person’s general disposition—just like anxiety. The teacher, in other words, is not the only one responsible for boredom in a classroom.

Students who get bored a lot at school also tend to get bored a lot at home. (Twitter is littered with bored-at-home Tweets, too, some of them from kids cutting class.) Boys are more likely to be disengaged in school than girls through middle school, according to Gallup Student Poll data, but girls catch up by high school. (By then, about six in ten students say they were not engaged in school.) Then the genders diverge again in adulthood, with men typically reporting that they get bored more easily than women. No one is sure why, but regardless of age or gender, the tendency to get bored easily is related to all kinds of other miseries.

There are exceptions, as always. The list of successful people who were bored in school—and thrived as adults--is long. Legendary New Yorker cartoonist Al Frueh doodled in shorthand class, turning the symbols into faces of his fellow students. Jonah Hill wrote his own Simpsons scripts to entertain himself in middle school, hiding his drafts in his textbooks. Steve Jobs deployed less constructive tactics, unleashing snakes and exploding bombs in third grade (or so he told Playboy in 1985). We can only imagine what would have happened had he gotten hold of a Twitter account in high school.

The good news is that kids seem to have more control over boredom than they might think. In the 2010 Nett study, most of 976 German teenagers surveyed fell into one of two main groups: the “evaders” were the kids who tended to avoid feeling bored by distracting themselves or talking to someone else, the kind who might be quick to Tweet or text at the first sign of monotony. Then there were the “reappraisers”—the kids who coped with boredom by basically talking themselves out of it. They tried to remind themselves of the value of what they were doing and reframe the situation in their heads.

All of the students used multiple coping devices, with varying degrees of success. But the evaders, it turns out, got the worst results. They did more poorly in school and experienced more boredom overall. It’s impossible to say which came first—the evasion or the problems—but it was clear which kids you’d rather your child be. The reappraisers experienced boredom far less often and did the best in school."
boredom  education  schools  teens  adolescence  2013  highschool  learning  twitter  instagram  vine 
december 2013 by robertogreco
I'm 13 and None of My Friends Use Facebook
"I’m a teen living in New York. All of my friends have social networks — Instagram, Vine, Snapchat, etc. Facebook used to be all I could talk about when I was younger. “Mom, I want a Facebook!” and other whining only a mother could put up with.

But now, at 13, I’ve been noticing something different. Facebook is losing teens lately, and I think I know why.

Part of the reason Facebook is losing my generation's attention is the fact that there are other networks now. When I was 10, I wasn’t old enough to have a Facebook. But a magical thing called Instagram had just come out ... and our parents had no idea there was an age limit. Rapidly, all my friends got Instagrams.

Now, when we are old enough to get Facebook, we don’t want it. By the time we could have Facebooks, we were already obsessed with Instagram. Facebook was just this thing all our parents seemed to have.

This leads me into my next point: Although I do have a Facebook, none of my other friends do."



"All of our parents and parents' friends have Facebooks. It’s not just the fact that I occasionally get wall posts like, “Hello sweetie pie!” But my friends post photos that get me in trouble with those parents."



"In the end, Facebook has been trying too hard. Teens hate it when people try too hard; it pushes them away. It’s like if my mom told me not to do something — I immediately need to do it. When she forces something on me, I really don’t want to do it.

Teens just like to join in on their own. If you’re all up in their faces about the new features on Facebook, they’ll get annoyed and find a new social media."
facebook  2013  trends  teens  rubykarp  socialmedia  creepytreehouse  parenting  parents  instagram  vine  snapchat 
august 2013 by robertogreco

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