IoT: Internet of Things

Imagine a utopian word where your food cools itself, your lights turn on and off where ever you please and you can send an email from your fish tank. Now return back to reality and see what technology exist. At this rate, we aren’t that far off. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the connection of all your devices through a shared internet connection. As long as there’s wifi there’s fluidity, synergy and connectivity.

Hypothetically, you could be listening to a tune on your phone, you enter your car and it’s now playing in your car, then when you get home the lights come on and the song is now playing through your house. Your fridge’s display has the name of the song and artist as does your oven and so on. This is the world we live in!

Is this great? Or is this going to be like that one episode of the Simpsons where the house voiced by Pierce Brosnan tries to kill the Simpson’s??

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When a virus attacks: PSN

We usually associate the internet with connectivity, convenience and a generally positive experience. However, there’s always another side to a story, and that side is dark, mysterious and even criminal.

 

Cyber security has never been more convenient as people are intergrating their wallets to their smartphones through the cloud. Having our information on the internet makes it more vulnerable to savvy cyber masterminds to steal our information. Take PlayStation from instance. In 2011, the company face an “outage” caused by one of the largest security breaches in gaming history, as hackers had immediate access to 77 million accounts on the PlayStation Network. This meant gamers details were accessed and stored by the hackers leaving the whole system to shutdown.

 

The worst part part of it all? PS failed to mention the breach to the community until one week after the incident which goes to show that it was more serious and malicious than first thought.

so in summation, be careful what you put online  It might be worse than you thought.

 

 

 

Sharpen Your Fingernails: Twitter and Mob Mentality

I would compare Twitter to an angry lynch mob, eagerly waiting to watch their subjects to hang to their deaths. Okay, maybe that’s a bit too far, but some characteristics are the same.

When the people are together in numbers they are more powerful, and are fuelled by passion. But where they are definitely different is linked to identity.

Instant access to the internet and the easy of use brings on an enslaught of twitter trolls and “keyboard warriors”. Being a “keyboard warrior” means you can have little to no personal attachment to your account. Which means there are little to no consequences for what you say and what you do. As a group, publicly shaming other people’s accounts can be effective and often is, however as a single account it is much harder to break down someone else but it is not impossible. This mob mentality has replaced the old fashioned lynch mob, and replaced it for a more psychological warfare.

 

Reflecting on Public Writing

BCM241: Anther Bachelor of Communications and Media Studies subject with a blog requirement. By now you you think that it would be a straight forward, 100 word post about the weekly lecture..right? Not quite! This subject actually moves the traditional essay structure to a modern platform (WordPress) and changes the game when it comes to what the tasks ask you to elaborate on. No longer are the word counts restricted to 100 but they are around 500 words which gives you a greater chance of creating a blog piece and really explore the idea of public writing.

The concept of public writing before coming to university seemed like second nature because I’m so used to using social media platforms to keep up to date with what is going on. However, when it comes to how I view it now, having undergone this subject, It’s a new approach which focuses on the audience, how you engage with your audience, how do you make the posts relevant, entertaining and to the point. Having said that, the content of the blogs are shifting from a more personal style of writing to a more sophisticated, heavily researched (both primary and secondary) and with more purpose which can be used as a reference on a job application or can be taken serious by someone who stumbles across your research online.

To me, there are three elements of the blog that I have deemed important and worth mentioning to better understand my approach to Audience, Media and Place. These three areas include: Research and Planning, The Content, and The Blog as a whole.

Research and Planning:
This is the area which I underestimated from the get go. The part you can’t just physically make up and sound convincing. The part that you actually need to provide quality stimuli for your subjects to produce quality answers. I tried to use as much qualitative information as possible, which seemed to be the winner in the end because I could get the most meaningful research that I could possibly get, with time being the only real tradeoff. I used the resources provided by Moodle to help with a template of questions to start with and I just adapted each question to the certain scenario.

So at the start of the subject, I really had to pull my head in to get the best results for what I wanted to share with the public. For starters, planning a one-on-one interview on paper seems easy but when you’re thrown into the scenario a lack of preparation will cost you the end product. When I was interviewing Sue and Steve for my first two blog posts, I found that the follow up/off the cuff questions seemed to be the most engaging questions and squeezed the most amount of information out of them as possible. When it comes to research in the field or larger numbers there were a few interesting guidelines that I had to follow in order the achieve the most accurate, partial and thought provoking responses that adhered to somewhat of a moral and ethical code of conduct. Ethics is always an important factor when dealing with large groups in particular because at the end of the day they too are people and want to be treat just the way I want to be treated. I made sure I had the person’s permission before I posted anything whether is was audio, video or just their answers to my questions. I also wanted people to know that all my research is for academic purposes and they can choose to remain anonymous if they wished, and as a result I had to change a few names here and there to make sure I was on top of that.

After I collated all of my research I planned each blog out before I started to write them, so there is a loose structure before I write it out. As the word count is more than 100 words it was important for me to have a clear structure in order to avoid any dead ends and waffle that occurs too often. This also includes finding all media used in posts, analysing and synthesising data, and choosing the right heading.

The Content:

I chose to write the blog with a stream of consciousness tone because that is how I perceive a blog to be. Tone is an important aspect because your blog is a representation of yourself which needs to be believable otherwise the viewer will just think you’re spitting out facts that they can find in an academic journal. Having said that there needs to be a balance between the stream of consciousness and facts that blend in together coherently to make sure the message is still there. The title is another important element because it is the first thing a potential viewer is going to read. The catchier or more niche titles seem to work the best, so I usually spend ten or so minutes making sure it’s the right title for the blog.

The Blog as a Whole:

The blog element was the hardest and still is the hardest part of the task. Making sure that the right blogs from the same subjects are clearly labelled and easy to find goes a long way when you present your finally product. This semester I am doing two subjects with blog posts from the same blog so it is important that the read can distinguish between the two subject matters to find relevant articles.

The experience overall was challenging. However it provided me with a sturdy platform to showcase my own research and my own passions that I could write about. This encouragement helps me in more ways than just to pass this subject, as it assists me with day to day researching activities that I can carry on throughout my career.

Have You Been Paying Attention?

Do you have a goldfish memory? As society would tell you that you’re forgetful and always lapsing in concentration. But did you know that it’s probably a good thing to have a goldfish memory, seeing as a Microsoft study shows that the average span of attention for a human is 8 seconds, where there average span of attention for a goldfish is 9 seconds.

As technology has evolved, our attention has devolved. Our brand/advertising exposure is so  high as well as media consumption, no wonder that we always want to be immersed by new and exciting things all of the time. At first you think that it doesn’t effect you but then when you start to set tests for yourself you can really notice how you want to look/think/move to something else. I believe in the next couple of years, advertisers will be thinking of new ways to capture and keep our attention within 10 seconds.

 

 

Microsoft, 2015, Microsoft Attention Spam Research Report, viewed 16th September 2017, <https://moodle.uowplatform.edu.au/pluginfile.php/649091/mod_resource/content/1/microsoft-attention-spans-research-report.pdf&gt;.

Putting Journalists out of Work

Twitter is becoming a credible news source projecting stories through the web faster than that of traditional news outlets. The impact citizen journalism has for the new media audiences will enable dialogic media – meaning that the audiences can engage with the media content.

With this unfiltered mass of information, there little to no gatekeeping. Gatekeeping (typically used in traditional journalism) ensures the author is reviewed by an editor and/or media owners.

Due to new and advanced technology, the ethos of journalism has drastically morphed from the traditional aspect of media reporting that includes journalists writing articles from primary or secondary  resources to a status updates, tweets and live streams from common citizens – which means no gate keepers .

Disconnecting from the gatekeeping of trad media, the rise of citizen journalism has coined the concept of Gatewatching.  The process of identifying and posting about interesting stories is a core practice of citizen journalism – it’s the ‘open news ‘alternative to the ‘closed news’ practice of gatekeeping.

 

Open vs Closed: Android vs Apple

As long as there have been smart phones there has been the debate whether Android is superior to Apple, whether Apple is easier to use than Android and so on. Fundamentally, they are both smart phones, so they serve the same purpose and strive to deliver these similar features in a basic way. But where they get their vast differences is the customisation and freedom (in Apples case lack of) for third party developers.

Android is an open source, which means it’s easy for users to customise their phones to allow specific features that makes the user’s life a whole lost easier, where with Apple, as its’s a closed source, you get less customisation and more design that is pitched as the ‘ideal’ way to be. Android also encourages third parties to create apps, backgrounds, ringtones etc where as Apple funnels all of their pre approved apps etc through the Apple store, which allows quality assurance.

Both have major pluses and major drawbacks, but they will never be the same, and they never should be.

 

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