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#DIGC202 Case: The internet of things: from networked objects to ubiquitous computing

This week we take a look at the Internet of things. The origins for the term of the Internet of Things (iot) coined in 1999at the MIT Media Lab. The internet of things is simple, physical objects that are connected to the internet. An open iot, Android Open Accessory Development Kit allows people to build their own iot objects and use their Android phone as a controller. What is Internet to us? Why is Internet so important in our lives today?

Internet is the core of every device we use today. Imagine our world today without the Internet, is like having a computer but not being to search for anything. Once we are connected to the Internet, objects will be able to store and process that information and as well as independently initiate actions through cloud storage and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Even phones now needs Internet to gain accesses to social networks. Most of the app we use on iPhone and Android uses Internet connection.

Internet is used every day by everyone to search information, news, entertainment, music and to communicate. Without the Internet our world would be stuck in the past. Internet also allows us to communicate with our mobile devices. For instance, the iPhone 4S uses internet connection to communicate with Siri. Without the Internet connection we are not able to communicate with Siri. Internet connection is also needed to use Maps for iPhone and Android.

Image URL: http://www.mensxp.com/technology/phones/5847-so-what-exactly-is-siri.html

Therefore, the Internet plays an important part in our daily life and we should appreciate with what we have and use it wisely and not take it for granted.

 

Referencing

Mitew, T, 2012, DIGC202 the Internet of Things, Prezi, assessed  7/11/2012, http://prezi.com/1lgxfron1kj0/digc202-the-internet-of-things/

 

 

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#DIGC202 Case: Apple vs Android, or the two futures of the mobile net

Image URL: http://blog.paymentsystemscorp.com/blog/bid/147386/It-s-Apple-vs-Google-vs-Everyone-In-The-Mobile-Payments-War

This week’s reading is based on, “Google’s Open Source Android OS Will Free the Wireless Web” by Daniel Roth. Nothing is more intense today, than the battle between Apple and Google. What is all the hype about Apple vs Google? We all know that Apple is famous for making the iPod, iPhone and iPad, but why is Apple picking a fight with Google, when Google is specializing on internet search engine. Let me enlighten your curiosity, Apple is a company that cannot lose to its competitor, especially when it comes to telecommunication. When Apple heard that Google bought over Android, Steve Jobs mentioned “I think Android hurts them more than it helps them. It’s just going to divide them and people who want to be their partners”.

Google founded by Andy Rubin and Larry Page. So why all of a sudden Google decided to purchased Android and wanted to get involved in mobile? According to Rubin, (n.d.) “Phones were the way people wanted to connect with each other and with everything else”. Google was afraid that phones are going to take over PCs as the main gateway to the Internet.  Therefore, Google wanted to incorporate its search engine in a mobile phone, but it failed and that’s when Page had an idea that Google would buy Android and all their problems are solved.

Well which would you choose Apple or Android? Let’s take a look at the differences between these two operating systems. Apple’s device philosophy is closed devices, which means Apple decides the limit of functionality of the device. The users of Apple devices have no accesses to the codes. In additional, Apple has a walled garden of apps available in the Apple App Store and only Apple developers can work on OS. Apple Inc. has complete control over the operation platform, the content of the device and the user. Every app that is created needs permission from Apple Inc. to be sold in iTunes and only certain apps are allowed to be in iTunes.

Google announced the Open Headset Alliance and Android’s device philosophy is an open and free platform based on Linux kernel. Android has an open garden of apps develop by the Official Android Market, plus other numbers or unofficial app markets are allowed to create millions of independent OS. Android has no control over the platform device, the content in the device and the user.

Image URL: http://www.thehray.com/admin/epic-iphone-5-vs-android-music-videos

Based on the image above, Apple Inc. depends on huge profit margin on each sale, whereas, Android depends on small profit margin relying on long tail.

If I were to make a choice, I’d choose Apple’s iPhone. Even though, Apple has many restrictions on the platform, content and the user, I still find Apple’s iPhone is more convenient for me to use and there are some apps that are not available on the Android. I’m sure that everyone has their own opinion on which to choose.

Referencing

Roth, D, 2008 ‘Google’s Open Source Android OS Will Free the Wireless Web’. Wired, June 23. [URL: http://www.wired.com/techbiz/media/magazine/16-07/ff_android]

Mitew, T, 2012, DIGC202 Apple vs Google, Prezi, assessed 3/11/1012, http://prezi.com/nbpulyal3pvo/digc202-apple-vs-google/

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#DIGC202 Case: #mena #arabspring and the social network revolutions

This week’s reading is based on, “Facebook and Twitter are just places revolutionaries go” by  Evgeny Morozov. Facebook and Twitter is one of the largest social media used by millions of users every day. The new tools of social media such as Facebook and Twitter have reinvented social activism. Now with social media platforms of Facebook and Twitter, the traditional relationship between political authority will has been upended and making it easier for the powerless to collaborate, coordinate, and give voice to their concerns. As mention by Gladwell, (n.d.) “The internet can be an effective tool for political change when used by grassroots organisations”.

Image URL: http://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Article/085242-2011-03-07-insider-descriptions-of-how-the-revolution-in-egypt-took-place.htm

According to Morozov, (2011) ”Perhaps the outsize revolutionary claims for social media now circulating throughout the west are only a manifestation of western guilt for wasting so much time on social media: after all, if it helps to spread democracy in the Middle East”.

Facebook and Twitter is reported as one of the main social media in playing an essential role in helping to organize protests and spread news in Egypt before the government shut down Internet access.  Egyptian and Tunisian activists used social media, Facebook to brainstormed ideas on how to use technology to evade surveillance, commiserated about torture and trade tips on how to stand up to rubber bullets and organize barricade. “Internet access was (largely) free and unfettered in the nations of the Arab Spring; the Communist government’s control over its citizens’ internet activity was enough to quell coordinated protest” (Lewis 2012). Facebook and Twitter acts as a site of protest that gave these revolutions a focal point.

Even though Facebook and Twitter is used as revolution tool now, but as time passes, Facebook and Twitter may no longer be as important as it used to be, as some online audience may migrate to other new services.

Referencing

Gladwell, M, 2010, Small Change: Why the Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted, assessed 26/10/2012,   http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/10/04/101004fa_fact_gladwell?currentPage=all

Kirkpatrick, DD & Sanger, DE, 2011, A Tunisian-Egyptian Link That Shook Arab History, assessed 26/10/2012,    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/14/world/middleeast/14egypt-tunisia-protests.html?pagewanted=1&_r=0

Lewis, G, 2012, Why public spaces matter in the Twitter revolution, and how they are under threat, assessed 26/10/2012,    http://internationalpoliticalforum.com/why-public-spaces-matter-in-the-twitter-revolution-and-how-they-are-under-threat/

Morozov, E, 2011 ‘ Facebook and Twitter are just places revolutionaries go’ The Guardian, 7 March,   http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/mar/07/facebook-twitter-revolutionaries-cyber-utopians]

Think Big Editors, 2011, Facebook + Twitter = Revolution, assessed 27/10/2012,    http://bigthink.com/think-tank/facebook-twitter-revolution

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#DIGC202 Counter-networks: online activism, whistleblowers, and the dark side of the net

This week’s reading is based on, “No Secrets: Julian Assange’s Mission for Total Transparency”, by Raffi Khatchadourian. For those of you who do not know who Julian Assange is, well he is the founder of WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks was founded in late 2006 and is a non-profitable online media organization that has been publishing hundreds of critical and exposed documents, including more than 6500 Congressional Research Service reports, government documents and etc. Assange isn’t working alone to keep WikiLeaks alive, he has hundreds of volunteers from all around the world to help him maintain WikiLeaks’ complicated infrastructure and between three to five people that are dedicated full time into providing information to WikiLeaks. Wikileaks is established to uncover the truth behind what’s happening all around the world and what the government is hiding from the public. WikiLeaks is about showing the potential and limits of Internet Freedom.

Image URL: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2010-12-09/julian-assange-and-the-slow-stupefaction-of-the/2367912

WikiLeaks is one of the most powerful, preventing the suppression of information that everyone agreed on and deserved to be aired in public. Information should be free and not controlled by anyone. I don’t think Assange’s actions were wrong trying to expose the truth to the public. Assange dares to speak his mind and report the truth when no one else dares. Assange (n.d.) mentioned that, “WikiLeaks is scientific journalism. We work with other media outlets to bring people the news, but also to prove it is true. Scientific journalism allows you to read a news story, then to click online to see the original document it is based on.”

I strongly feel that we, as the public have every right to know the truth that is happening all around the world and important information should not be kept from us.

Referencing

Holmes, J, 2010, Julian Assange and the slow stupefaction of the state, accessed 17/10/2012,  http://www.abc.net.au/news/2010-12-09/julian-assange-and-the-slow-stupefaction-of-the/2367912

Khatchadourian, R, 2010 ‘No Secrets: Julian Assange’s mission for total transparency’ The New Yorker, June 7, [URL: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/06/07/100607fa_fact_khatchadourian]

Sifry, ML, 2011, WikiLeaks and the Age of Transparency, accessed 17/10/2012,  http://books.google.com.my/books?hl=en&lr=&id=qGMHADuyIQUC&oi=fnd&pg=PA7&dq=wikileaks+&ots=FlIPLP5hxn&sig=JpZ47xJkDtypwxbXUtYoWPa7M-c#v=onepage&q=WikiLeaks&f=false

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#DIGC202-Bridges made of pebbles: social media and the rise of gatewatchers

This week’s reading, we take a look at the reading “How Twitter Will Change the Way We Live”, by Steven Johnson. I think by now everyone knows what Twitter is all about and how it functions. For those who are still a little left behind in the social media world, Twitter is a social media platform which enables friends, family and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages of 140 characters or less and are known as ‘Tweets’. These messages/updates are posted on your profile timeline, sent to your ‘followers’ and are searchable on Twitter search.

In addition to the 140 characters, users can search for specific news or information using the hashtag symbol, (#). Users can share their thoughts and discuss a specific topic using the hashtag symbol.   Although 140 characters may seem like there is nothing much you can ‘tweet’ or update about, Twitter serves as a more simple and direct social media platform to share news, information and updates. Unlike Facebook which is clutter with spams of photos, video and insignificant news, Twitter is simpler with the choice of people you can ‘follow’. If you have a specific account or person you follow, only his or her ‘tweets’ will appear on your timeline. And is not that Twitter can’t share photos and video but, with the limitation of 140 characters, users can share photos and video by adding the URL link of the photo or video they wish to share. As mentioned by Johnson, (2009) “Sharing links to longer articles, discussions, posts, videos — anything that lives behind a URL”.

As the years passed, Twitter is rapidly growing as one of the hottest social media platform alongside Facebook and the amount of users are fast increasing. Twitter has become one the most used social media platform for politicians, business companies and celebrities. Politicians create Twitter account in the aim to reach out to the public in a more direct manner and where by the public can express their opinion, thoughts and get a direct answer from the politician. Twitter acts an advertising media platform for business companies to advertise their product or advertise their company. Celebrities uses Twitter to connect to their fans and to promote their tour dates, new videos and new songs. Fans can communicate with celebrities and each other by using the @ symbol. Celebrities are one of the main reasons why there are increasing users in Twitter. Take me for instance, the reason why I have a Twitter account is because, I want to be updated with the news from my favourite celebrities and to see what my friends are up to. Celebrities such as, Lady Gaga, hit a milestone as she is the first celebrity user to reach 30 Million followers in Twitter.

Sure everyone enjoys tweeting about what they just had for breakfast but Twitter is not just for tweeting about breakfast, as I mentioned in my previous paragraph, Twitter is more of a direct social media platform to share news, information and updates.

Image URL: http://www.rackafracka.com/collections/animal-cartoons/

E! Online uses Twitter account to share celebrities’ gossips and entertainment news to their followers. Twitter is not only accessible through the web but also available for Blackberry, Android, iPad and iPhone which users can tweet anytime and anywhere and stay connected with friends and family.

 Image URL: https://twitter.com/eonline

Twitter has changed what social media is all about with only 140 characters and despite the word limitation, we can find some users becoming addicted to Twitter, tweeting every day, every hour and every second. This shows how Twitter has made an impact in our lives and made it one of the most important social media platforms today.

References

Johnson, S. (2009). How Twitter Will Change The Way We Live. Time [URL: http://www.time.com/time/business/article/0,8599,1902604,00.html]

Bennett, S (2012), Another Milestone For Twitter As @LadyGaga Becomes First User To Reach 30 Million Followers, assessed 5/10/2012,  http://www.mediabistro.com/alltwitter/twitter-lady-gaga-30-million_b29430

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#DIGC202-Into the cloud: the long tail and the attention economy

This week we take a look at the readings, Weblogs by Clay Shirky. How many of us know what a weblogs is? Weblogs comes from Blog and Web page. Basically, Blog is a chronological term of publication for personal thoughts. A blog is often a mixture of what is happening in a person’s life and what is happening on the Web and a kind of alternative diary or guide site that is published on a Web page or also known as a Weblog. 

Image URL: http://joitskehulsebosch.blogspot.com/2008/03/how-can-blogs-support-communities-of.html

Weblogs are also a personal Web site that provides updates headlines and news articles of other sites that are of interest to the user, also includes journal entries, commentaries and recommendations compiled by the user; also written as web log. Weblogs have become one of the most famous and important media used today. According to Shirky, (2002) “We want a world where global publishing is effortless. We want a world where you don’t have to ask for help or permission to write out loud”. To put in simpler words, weblogs allows people to have their own freedom of speech and they can post their thoughts on anything via their weblogs without having the consent of anyone. Weblogs do not cost money as, it need not a publisher. Weblogs also helps the readers to get to know the writer in a more personal way. 

Can weblogs actually help us earn an income? The answer is YES. Some people blog about their personal life and entertainment news. But weblogs are more than just for personal use, some people use weblogs to sell or either promote their product for them to sell online or we called it online business. ButTons Je is one of the examples of online business using a weblog to promote their products. Most of their products are handmade accessories and are sold online. 

Image URL: http://buttonsje.blogspot.com/p/bracelets_24.html

Customers can order their products online via their weblog and pay through bank transfer. Besides selling products on weblogs, another way that webloggers can earn money is through advertising and sponsorship and that over time advertising dollars will migrate to the Weblog as a low-cost alternative. Sponsorship such as, The Amazon have already been providing income for several weblogs like Gizmodo and andrewsullivan.com. Another method of generating income is to ask for donation via, the Amazon and Paypal. Users become personal sponsor by donating money to webloggers to encourage them to keep publishing for everyone.

Weblogs may be a slow source of income, but this is what people enjoy doing and it is convenient for customers and readers all around the world.

References

Shirky, C. (2002). Weblogs and the Mass Amateurization of Publishing. http://shirky.com/writings/weblogs_publishing.html%5D

Fehr, HR, 2005, Weblogs-A Definition and Classification, accessed 23/9/2012, http://dl.hfehr.de/uni/blogs_term_paper_hannes_fehr_reformatted.pdf

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#DIGC202-Transglobal entertainment and media convergence

In this week’s topic we learned how the evolution from analogue data to digital data. From analogue data to digital data it is easier to move from different content (newspaper, radio, cinema, television and the internet) and platform (camera, smart phones, map, and GPS). How media convergence came about?. This week’s reading is on The Cultural Logic of Media Convergence, International Journal of Cultural Studies’ by Henry Jenkins. Thanks to the various kinds of content and platform, we are entering an era where media will be everywhere and use all kinds of media in relation to each other.

Image URL: http://www.cmswire.com/cms/web-engagement/enterprise-content-management-for-converging-media-channels-007804.php

The image above shows the various kinds of content and platform that we have today. We can deliver any message or information through any devices.

“By convergence I mean the flow of content across multiple media platforms, the cooperation between multiple media industries, and the migratory behaviour of media audiences”.

-Henry Jenkins (2004)

Media convergence is more than a simply technological shift and convergence technologies are more than some of their parts. Convergence is the alteration of relationship between existing technologies, industries, markets, genre and audience. Long before the invention of cell phones, the only device we use to communicate was through the pagers. Then the evolution from pagers to cell phone, that allows us to not only call but text and those were the two main functions of a cell phone. Now we have the smartphone that allows us to call, text, listen to music, play games, check the internet and use the GPS, and all those function all in one device.

Image URL: http://www.coloradotech.edu/Infographics/Tools-For-School

The image above shows how old media converge into new media over the years and in the future. Personally, I am a fan of media convergence. How Steve Jobs changed the iPod Nano to an iPod touch, to the iPhone and now the iPad. iPod Nano was only used to listen to music, then Steve Jobs upgraded it and added a touch screen effect which eventually became the iPod touch. Steve Jobs wanted to make something different by combining the iPod touch and a mobile phone all in one. The idea of being able to listen to music, surfing the internet, reading e-mails, and making a phone call all in one device is just simply brilliant. It makes our lives so much easier rather than to carry our MP3, our mobile phones and laptop. As you can see today, media convergence happens in class, students use their iPad and laptop to type down or read their notes rather than to use the conventional way, which is writing down notes or reading the notes from papers.

We all hate to admit it but, this is an inevitable fact and we can’t help but to embrace how media convergence has changed our lives and the way we communicate.

References

Jenkins, H. (2004) The Cultural Logic of Media Convergence, International Journal of Cultural Studies, vol.7, no.1, pp 33-43.