Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Course reflection

Take some time to reflect on what you've learned during Winterim. Did the class meet your expectations? What did you like? What did you not like? What's one thing that you learned that you'd like other people to know about?

You can respond in a comment here, or send your responses to me in an e-mail.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


While the plot of Sneakers takes place outside the realm of Web 2.0 communication, it does touch on many of the issues we've been talking about in class, particularly around trust and security.

At the beginning of the movie Martin (Robert Redford) is tricked by two men pretending (quite convincingly) to be from the NSA. It's even easier to pretend to be someone you're not when you're online--how do you decide who to trust online? How can you verify someone's identity when you've never met them in person?

The "black box" that was stolen in the movie was the ultimate code breaker--it could break any code in the world, meaning there would be no more secrets. Given how easy it is to share and find information of all kinds online, is it possible to keep secrets anymore?

Monday, December 14, 2009

War Games

At the beginning of the movie military officials want to move to a completely automated system for the launch of nuclear missiles, in order to remove the possibility of human error, thinking that machines are more dependable and "trustworthy."

Do you think it's a good idea to trust computers completely, or does there need to be a person doing a "reality check"?

Some people predict that computers will one day be smarter than people, or that they will be able to learn. Do you think that will happen? Why or why not?

Thursday, December 10, 2009


Some people think that the Internet is lessening connections between people--individuals go online, find like-minded communities, and stay in their "bubble." There is also an argument that if all of us find a like-minded community to be a part of, there are fewer shared experiences on which to build our culture.

Do you think this is true? Does the existence of Internet memes challenge those assumptions about online communication? Or do certain memes just become popular in certain groups?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Nings are a social network--just like Facebook, MySpace, or (back in the dark ages), Friendster. What do you think makes Nings better than other social networks? What are their weaknesses?

Do you think Nings might be useful in an educational setting? How can you imagine using them in your academic classes?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Do you think students should be allowed to use Wikipedia as part of their research process? Why or why not?
What advice would you give to someone looking up information on Wikipedia?

Monday, December 7, 2009

Collaboration and Copyright

Today we talked about online collaboration and sharing, as well as copyright--both traditional copyright and creative commons copyright.

Why do you think people post their creative works online when they know that people might "steal" them?

Do you think it's right for large companies to be able to pull videos, etc. from the Internet, even though they might fall under fair use (as described in the Disney video we watched)? By pulling these derivative works (even though they may use copyright-protected materials as a base) are these large companies infringing on the new creator's rights?

Thursday, December 3, 2009


As we discussed, RSS makes it easy for information to come to you, rather than you having to go out and look for information. However, often when you go out looking for information you also find other stories/facts. Does having information come to you (instead of going out and looking for it) mean that people are limiting themselves to only certain types of information? Could there be negative consequences to limiting yourself in this way?

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

To wiki or not to wiki?

You've now all had the experience of adding to and/or creating your own wiki site. What did you like/dislike about the experience? Could you see yourself using a wiki again? For what purpose?

Please feel free to comment on what your classmates have written as well. There is also a follow-up question to the blog about Web 2.0 that I would like you to respond to.

Wiki's are very useful

wiki's are mostly used for organization for multiple people. it is a easy way to make a web page, that can be changed and rearranged in a min. wiki's are easier than 011000100110100101101110011000010111001001111001 and html.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Web 2.0--Is it a good thing?

As we discussed today, one of the main things that makes Web 2.0 different is that it's now very easy for anyone to add content to the web. You don't need to know how to write code in order to create a webpage, or a blog, or post pictures and video of your cat doing adorable things.

Do you think this is always a good thing? What are the positives to people being able to easily share information? Are there downsides to everyone being able to so easily share and post information? How would your life be different if you didn't have some of the Web 2.0 tools we use so often?

Please post a response; I encourage you to respond to or expand upon the comments your classmates have made.

First Blog

This is the first blog from the students. This be test

Please try commenting

Hello class. Please add a comment to this post just so you can see how it works.