Challenge 5: Filter Bubbles

On Tuesday we watched three videos. One of the videos by Eli Pariser was about the influence of googles various filters on the search results they provide. I personally think that it is an important issue, especially as the internet is evolving and Search engines are along with it, where nowadays you can see your results being filtered to show you more personal results every day.

For example, in the earlier days of Google, searching for something would give the exact same results as another person, where as nowadays the person sat next to you could get different results. This offers the question, what is being hidden from us without our knowledge?

I think this is a serious issue, and I think is very dissappointing for something like this to be happening to us without our free choice. In todays times how do we know who we can trust? Especially with large, rich companies like Google controlling what everyday people see and read, are we choosing our opinions or is Google? Personally this worries me, though I continue to use Google as a search engine.

They can get away with this  because they have the majority of the world using their search engine every second of every day, which is something worth thinking about.

A better Google would be a more customizable one, where you can control what different variables do to effect what you see, and there should be more universal search results rather than localized and personalized ones.


Update: Week 27

On Tuesday we watched three videos. One of the videos by Eli Pariser was about the influence of googles various filters on the search results they provide.

On Wednesday we had a talk from Gabriella Kent from Teeside University to talk to us about her line of work, and her experiences in the gaming industry.

On Thursday we continued work on our assignments.

Challenge 2: Internet Memes

Memes are essentially an idea which is developed over the internet, generally used for humour. Is usually is based on an image, but can be created using text, sound, video  or image or a combination of each. Memes may be changed by individuals and also have different meanings over time.  It is only recently they have started to come into general usage, but still memes are usually only known about by someone who is a regular internet user.

For this challenge, I was set to either create a meme or make an image which contains various other memes. I thought I’d choose the latter, as creating a meme goes against the entire idea of memes, which is that they cant be forced, but a shared entity which many people over the internet find humorous or strange. I used Photoshop CS5 to create this image, which is a step away from what I normally use, which is a free open-source program PaintDotNet.

I simply thought of the memes I had heard about, and limited it to 5 memes, and put them on a creative background I had created.

Click the image to view fullsize.

#1 – Pedobear: This is one of the most well-known memes, of which its origins are unknown. There are rumors it was originally a pokemon which was dropped, but I find this unlikely. The character is supposedly a pedophile bear, and it is often photo-shopped into comics or situations which can cause humorous effect.

#2 – “FFUUUU” Guy: This is not generally known by regular internet users, but stems from a internet comic various people have created. This character features in many comics as the idea of the meme is that people can use it for them selfs, to create funny comics.

#3 – “Y U NO” Guy: Similar to the above, this is another character used in comics for comedic effect.

#4 – Mudkipz: Mudkip is a character which has origins in the Cartoon/Game series, Pokemon. For no apparent reason, it became a meme and is used as a random saying to shout out “I liek mudkipz” on forums and on instant messaging. It could be considered an example of internet slang, and avideo clip of it is also used on YouTube for an irritating effect.

#5 – Over 9000:  Originating in Dragon Ball Z, this meme began when a YouTube user in 2006 uploaded a clip of the animated series where character Vegeta states that Goku’s level is “over 9000″ in a loud and exaggerated manner. As Mudkipz grew, so did this meme, and it is used in situations on forums where something could be exaggerated.

I think Internet memes can be funny and interesting, but you do have to think that they really arent of any substance or value to human knowledge.

Challenge 1: Writing a Tutorial

For this challenge, we were told to create a tutorial which was image-based, which explained how to do a task. I orignally had planned to do mine on something I knew lots about, which was Website Design. I did begin to do this, but then i realised there wouldnt really be an elegant looking solution and it would also take lots of time for someone to follow it.

Instead, I decided to do it on something simple, and back to basics. My tutorial was on Making Toast, and I think visually it came out well.

 Click Image to Enlarge

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Update: Week 26

On Tuesday we talked about the work we had done over the easter holidays and talked about the news in the computer industry and associated topics like gaming, etc. One of the main points was the breach of security on Sony’s Playstation Network service which has been down for 5 days and counting.

On Wednesday we were looking at a program called Autodesk SoftImage. This is one of the products which Autodesk bought out and one which i think is a very awkward program to use, especially the interface which is very confusing and does look very outdated.

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Challenge 3: Create an Infographic

Task 1: Pre-Production

For the “Create an Infographic” Challenge, I decided to make a basic infographic based on the Toyota Motor Corporation. I did think for a while about what I should base my infographic on, it had to be something I am interested in, but also something with some facts and figures for me to use on it.

I did think about using the online gaming service, “Steam” and its related games as i enjoy these, but instead I thought i’d base it on the giant of a company, Toyota. I chose Toyota as I am a fan of their older vehicles and also admire the massive giant of a company they have become. I appreciate high quality and so choosing Toyota to base my infographic on was a safe bet.

Task 2: Implementation

Below is the results, click the image to enlarge to full size.

Task 3: Evaluation

On hindsight, I could have used a better colour scheme, but I wanted to keep the facts visible as those were what were meant to have the biggest impact on the reader. I think the info graphic is dull looking, and could have been more colorful, but the fact of the matter is that the subject is more of a corporate and fact – and – figure like, so I did think that the infographic should stay that style too.

Update: Week 24

On Tuesday we were set a task to take some photos of some very tiny characters in different situations, which is to test our photography and editing skills. We also were shown “Games with a Purpose”, which is a website which mixes together online multiplayer games with bettering the internet, by generating games which involve answering questions which the intention is to help search engines think like humans do, by filling them with what humans have answered questions as, and using the data in real life searches.

Overall I think we could have done the task alot better, as the end result was pretty boring and not very imaginitive. We should have changed this by taking various different ideas and using them all.

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