Hello, my name is Eli Jones. I am from Tulsa so I commute to TU. I am a freshman working toward a computer science degree. This degree program is what brought me to digital humanities so I can get a deeper understanding. My interests and motivation come from curiosity on how things work and how they are made. Learning how things work motivates me so I can know how to fix things should they break down. Also when you know how things work there is a desire to make it work better than it did before. I am also a competitive person which makes me want to create things efficiently and better than anyone else can. This is what motivates me the most.
The following post is part of my final project assessment in my Digital Humanities course; it explains my reasoning for creating this blog in the first place.
For my final project in Intro to Digital Humanities I created a blog through WordPress dedicated to my major, archaeology. I chose to create a blog because I thought it would be interesting to discover whether blogging could be found beneficial within my field. Also my field has the reputation for being conventional, mostly consisting of book work, boring, and out dated. My ambition with this project is to dispute those claims and increase interest into archaeology again. As human beings I think it is essential that we are aware of our heritage and strive to preserve the achievements humanity has accomplished, not only to remember where we have been, but to learn from ourselves and better humanity in the future.
“If you would understand anything, observe its beginning and its development.”
In my blog I focused mainly on incorporating the use of technology, various forms of digital media, and several other topics discussed in class. Furthermore I wrote about my current research, archaeological topics that interested me, excavations and archaeological surveys I am involved in, and several other projects I am working on. To my surprise I found blogging to be beneficial. Before hand I did not regard blogging in an academic sense.
However I found the most innovative features that blogging possessed were receiving/sending feedback and gaining mass exposure. It was flattering to receive feedback and “likes” from fellow archaeologists, professors, researchers, and other individuals from across the globe. Not only was it flattering, but the mass scale of exposure was astonishing. To further increase my blog exposure I posted links and attention grabbing prompts within the Archaeology Page on FaceBook. It was intriguing to witness how instantaneously I received responses. Even more surprisingly once I really got into blogging I had accumulated 93 homepage views in a single day, a current amount of 14 Word Press subscribers, 1,625 FaceBook subscribers, and an unexpected total of 737 total homepage views within only two months. After viewing these statistics it was clear to me blogging can most definitely be used academically and benefit any individual in any major.
I found the responses to be additionally useful and encouraging. I was offered guidance, given encouragement, suggested solutions to my questions, provided other people’s opinions and I found it rather entertaining to tee off controversial debates. Blogging made it possible to further expose my mind to new thoughts and ideas that I otherwise wouldn’t have come across. I think it is important that individuals in all fields of study take advantage of technology and what it can offer. Technology such as blogging encourages interaction and compels an individual to acquire knowledge through additional means and further expand one’s thought process.
Blog Posts (beginning from oldest to most recent)
Multimedia and Archaeology
What’s Your Archive?
Mapping & Social Network Analysis in Archaeology
New Manners of Thinking
Digitalization of Text
Reading & Textuality in Archaeology
Archaeological Survey in Hominy, Oklahoma
Archaeological Time Machine?? Think POSSIBLE
Thanks for reading and THANK YOU to all of my followers and those of you who responded to my posts! You all made this a very positive experience and I look forward to bettering my blogging potentiality. 🙂
How do you see the relationships between video games and some of the other media we’ve looked at this semester?
Video games and any other media requires an interface, a console and some form of code for the machine to run. Although media is very diverse and is used in many different ways it is created in the same process. Like YouTube for example, YouTube is a site to watch music videos, you may not be playing a game or controlling the scenes produced on the screen but it is made in the same manner, with graphics and sound and you must have some sort of interface or console to watch it on. So despite of the differences on how we use different media all of it is similiar based on how we design these things.
As far as the types of media, I think alot of the digital poems related to Video games pretty well because you actually got to interact with the screen with the mouse or keyboard. For example, Today I Die was a video game wrapped in a poem and you had to figure out the clues to know how to make it through the entire poem and set the girl free. I think using Video games and graphic design is going to change alot of how we learn teach and express ourselves. In this class I have learned alot about many different programs and sites I never knew existed and there are many more out there waiting to be discovered.
I was particularly interested in the website, Dreaming Methods. The Digital Fiction Projects were impressive and innovative in presenting text in a nontraditional way. I first viewed the project called, The Diary. It is a fictional diary based on an eight year old girl named Anne Sykes. I found the presentation to be rather depressing in nature. The media attached along to the text contributed to the perception of depression. I found the images to be rather dark and creepy; the music full of rage, anger, and suspense. Unlike a physical book the text is presented in an extremely alternative manner. The text is out of order, is presented to the reader at various different paces, and the reader can interact with the various objects within the project. Moreover I found it rather difficult to follow along with the story line, I was distracted by the music and various interactions, and was not able to read all of the text because it simply vanished before I could. However I think that this text presentation technique can be useful and ultimately bring alive a literary work in an effective way. After further analysis of The Diary I came to the confusion that it was the author’s intention to present this text in such a contradictory manner. The contradictions I had with the lab created feelings of confusion, annoyance, and so on. These emotions put the reader in the place of the character by causing one to feel a taste of the emotions that the character does. Along with the obvious interactions the metaphysical ones are the most effective and bring the literary work to new potential.
This weeks reading was really cool, some of the stuff people generated was amazing. The works I looked at were not the typical scence of vision I expected to see when thinking of poetry in fact I never read anything.
Andromeda was surprising. I expected a children’s book to be read to me and the screen to present it to me and 3-d. It was somewhat in that manner I guess a woman was holding a pop up book and slowly turning the pages and as you went through, small phrases describing the book would be said in her voice. Except it wasn’t clear it was repetitive and kind of creepy.
Against the screen mother f******, was probably my favorite. Through the whole thing I was expecting the soldier to finally freak out and shoot the screen but it never happened. I hope to one day get the chance to play in one those caves its amazing how far technology has come in such a short time.
The last one I really spent some time in was “Today I die” I didn’t really get the point of this poem but it was capturing I probably set there and killed the jellyfish for about twenty minutes. Finally I gave up, it’s like a never ending game.
Although these works are not alot like the traditional verse we think of as poetry, I think they are just as powerful and artistic as any other form of art.
What is hypertext and hypermedia?
According to Ted Nelson who coined both the terms in the 1960’s:
“Hypertext” has become generally accepted for branching and responding text, but the corresponding word “hypermedia”, meaning complexes of branching and responding graphics, movies and sound – as well as text – is much less used.— Nelson, Literary Machines, 1992
How can hypertext and hypermedia be incorporated into my discipline of anthropology and archaeology?
Subject matter in the field of anthropology is profoundly vast. Therefore any sort of technology that simplifies the effort of research would be most appreciated by those who are researching. Rather than lugging around a profuse amount of publications, hypertext and hypermedia enable a researcher access to even more information at their convenience and at their immediate demand. Not only does this benefit researchers of anthropology, but any field for that matter.
My focus in anthropology is in prehistory, near/middle-eastern archaeology. All of the cultures during prehistory did not possess a writing system; therefore there is no written record that exists to inform one on the culture’s way of life. Archaeologists have to act as if they were detectives at a crime scene and piece together the information to reconstruct what took place in the past. Hypertext and hypermedia could be very useful in my study. They allow me to search through an almost infinite amount of information as well as save time that it would have taken to find the same information in a library. This saved time can now be used to further work on my research and speed up the date in which the results are to be published. Also by using hypertext and hypermedia I can interact with others who are working on similar subjects. I can receive instant feedback, opinions, and advice from other researchers. This is something a physical book cannot provide, well at least to this extent and speed.
There are contradictions however. According to the article, Ancient History, Archaeology and Hypertext Publishing:
The first problem is one which you may well have already overcome. Reading papers on the internet is a very bad idea, unless you actively seek out a migraine. A slightly more spurious argument against internet publishing is that you cannot read electronic papers in the bath. This is both wrong (if you own a PDA) and irrelevant. The costs of printed journals are astronomical…The cynic will point out that any web page can be printed. The best argument for not doing so from the browser is that it often looks awful.
Additionally problems exist in the accuracy of the hypertext and hypermedia. Often times on accident, information is inaccurately recorded and this can severely hinder the intended interpretation and meaning of the information. Another problem with inaccuracy is that anyone can instantly publish information onto the internet and a researcher may come across the information believing the claims are true. This can be easily exemplified within the website of Wikipedia.
Despite the contradictions I have mentioned I think hypertext and hypermedia can help those in my field and virtually any other. But when using these technologies one should be aware of these contradictions and take them into account when researching.