American Victory

Today, I finished a book titled “American Victory”.  I’m guessing not many of you have heard of it, it’s the story of Henry Cejudo, the 2008 Olympic gold medalist for the USA in wrestling.  It may have taken me about a year or so to finish it, but it’s done.  I would have finished it in the beginning, but I put it down and lost track of it until recently, so now that it is finished.  The amount of time elapsed for me to finish the book is my first point of the post.  There are so many other outlets today, aside from actual plans, work, school, etc. where you can be entertained, that books have been placed at the end of the entertainment ladder, (for me) right next to board games actually, again this is specifically for me.  I don’t want to offend anyone who is a hardcore monopoly fan or someone who reads a lot because I would love to be a part of both of those pastimes and am slightly disappointed in myself that I haven’t really taken either of them up consistently.

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With the immediacy of the computer, television, video games, there is no thinking or creative process involved or necessary to picture about what is happening.  The only image which is being created is what the game developer, or producer is trying to get across to you.  I feel like because of all of these options which require much less thinking, I opt for them as opposed to the book (I am sure I am not alone) because of the easiness of having someone think for you.  Really making myself sound lazy right now, but back to the book.  Henry Cejudo had an amazing story to go along with his Olympic medal.  I am sure if he was in a more revenue-generating sport like basketball, as opposed to wrestling, there would easily be a movie made after him.  Maybe we will be a lucky and a producer will reach out and use his story, keep your eyes peeled for the movie “American Victory” in the future.  If it is half as good as the book then it will be a pretty solid movie.

All the alternatives I have been picking instead of books

All the alternatives I have been picking instead of books

 

Anyway, the book starts off with Henry Cejudo making weight for the Olympics.  He had to lose ten pounds in an hour to make weight and then wrestle hours later, an amazing feat in and of itself, but he also won a medal along the way.  The book flashes back to Henry’s childhood where he moves from shack to shack with his proud Mother and six or so brothers and sisters from California to Phoenix and many places in between.  He finally takes up wrestling in high school after he was being paid to beat up other kid in the park my some crazy men, just to afford ice cream.  His early mentor Tracy takes Cejudo to wresting practice with his older brother Angel, and the two rotate on who wears the wrestling shoes from practice to practice.  Henry challenges the best kids at any tournament he may go to, and always stays for double sessions at practices.  He goes right from high school in Arizona to training at the Olympic Training Center at Colorado Springs.  In 2007, Cejudo placed last in his weight at the World Championships.  In 2008 he wasn’t even favored to win the Trials but he did.  He then won every match from behind en route to his gold medal, aside from his finals match.  Cejudo gives back to the community now as a motivational/ public speaker.

Henry Cejudo.  Gold Medalist.

Henry Cejudo. Gold Medalist.

 

Now this is just an overview of the story, but I think anyone would find it enjoyable, wrestler or non-wrestler.  I think this is one of the problems about media and advertising though.  If anyone wins a gold medal, they get lots of publicity right after the games.  After that, in sports like wrestling, or others which are not as mainstream, you are on your own.  Just because you get more publicity doesn’t make your gold medal any better.  Our society is so narrowly focussed on mainstream sports that others which I believe deserve some publicity at least every four years in the Olympics get none.  The television networks need to show the most popular sports at the best times so that they will get better ratings, and make their advertisers happy.  If we put wrestling on primetime, who are we going to advertise to?  Valid point, but shouldn’t the Olympics be more about the athletes than about the money?  Cejudo receives a stipend of $20,000 a year and had some lump some less than $250,000 for winning the gold.  This is not much for an athlete who has reached the pinnacle of his sport.  It is very similar actually to how the NCAA takes advantage of college athletes, not being able to make anything off of their playing.  Granted Cejudo does make money, but the television networks are making so much more it is like exploitation.  Corporate America is so greedy that they cannot afford to take one step back every four years and give coverage to the sports where it is due.

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Podcast Reflection

When we were first assigned the podcast assignment, I was kind of worried because I had never listened to one before.  Then Professor Bielecki asked how many of us had listened to one and realized I was not the only one.  Before that, I always thought podcasts were the things you could download for free from the iTunes store, and I assumed with that came a lot of ads.  After being introduced to the podcast examples, I had gained more insight on the whole idea of using only audio to portray your entire idea.  Then, since I flew solo on the first project, I decided on working with a group.  With this, we had the advantage of having interaction with our group mates as opposed to being stuck to monologues, having to bring in outside help to have dialogue.  Another advantage I felt is I wouldn’t put the whole project on myself, not to mention having to go through listening to my own voice for ten plus minutes.

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Overall, I believe doing the project with my group was the right call.  We were able to come up with a somewhat controversial topic- media bias.  Then, we had all three of us weigh in on our opinions.  When the idea first came up I thought it sounded a little bit bland, but once we came up with a few examples to support evidence of media bias, it not only became more factual, but also more interesting.  The examples we chose to portray media bias were the Trayvon Martin case, and politics.  You guys will just have to listen in to the podcast to hear the rest on media bias.  Coming up with the topic was actually easier with a group I felt too.  Mostly because we were all very open-minded as to which topic but also because we were able to collaborate, I believe our topic was right on point with what the professor ordered, having to do with digital technology, and it was something controversial which we could all draw our own opinions from.

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Finally, actually doing the project was pretty entertaining.  I told my group that working with audacity and wearing the headphones kind of made me feel like I was in a beat laboratory.  Our group discussed the Trayvon Martin case quite extensively, trying to cover how media bias affected it on all points.  When we were discussing that, I felt like sometimes it would have been a good idea to start recording so then we could throw in a natural discussion into our podcast.  We ended up doing just that, but after discussing the same thing for about three or four days it began to get a little bland.  As a result, the arguments we may have brought up early on in our discussions may have been lost so we wouldn’t repeat the same argument.  Playing around with sound effects, music, and our voices was quite a novelty for me.  I did record audio for my video essay, but it was no where near as extensive as it was for the podcast project.  Throughout the project, we had to stay cognoscente that the audio was our only tool to express ourselves, and we ran into a few issues where we really would have liked to have a picture, but hey we can leave the picturing up to you the listener!

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Chipotle: Rise of an Empire

Call me a nerd, but I was flipping through the channels on T.V. and I saw a business station which was covering the story of Chipotle and I had to tune in.  Before I get into the business aspect of Chipotle, or business success of the franchise, I want to discuss how much I like Chipotle.  They use fresh, organic ingredients and put everything together so fast, its like healthy fast-food, what else more could you ask for?  Also, I really like the condensed menu (if you remember one of my other posts I said I was very indecisive- if not I am very indecisive).  You choose between a burrito, bowl, taco, I think you can even get quesadillas now too.  This may not seem like many options but there are endless possibilities between salsas, vegetables, meats, etc.  Wow thinking this deeply about Chipotle really makes me hungry.  Their chips are even freshly made and are awesome!  Their bathrooms are really cool too!

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Alright, enough of torturing myself (and maybe you guys too?) thinking about Chipotle. The business special on Chipotle was really eye-opening on how far good food goes to advertise your product.  Roughly, from what I remember, Chipotle spends over 60% on their ingredients.  The rest is on advertising.  In many fast-food chains which Chipotle is in competition with, the reverse percentages are true or there is even less spent on ingredients and more on advertising.  I guess this is what puts Chipotle ahead in my book, they bring people back through good, fresh product not ingraining the thought of Chipotle in your head through constantly pestering us with advertisements.  The video did say that the advertising which Chipotle does do is much different than your typical fast-food ad.  They showed a concert Chipotle sponsored where they had live music and speakers who spoke about using all organic food, and against over-farming.  These are two campaigns Chipotle vigorously supports.  Then, Chipotle serves free food at the event.

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Chipotle has been both old-school and modern in their systematic approach to delicious cuisine.  The old-school part is the assembly-line nature of ordering your food.  Each employee is assigned to a specific task for your burrito to be cranked out at ultra-fast speeds.  The assembly line was invented a long time ago, but it has withstood the test of time and is just as useful today as it was back then.  In fact, the Chipotle special showed how the restaurant is experimenting with using the Chipotle “system” with other types of food.  Chipotle keeps up-to-date by taking in online orders to be ready for pick-up, so you don’t have to wait in that already rapidly moving line.

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Many of you may not know this (as I learned when I watched this show) but Chipotle started off in Colorado twenty years ago.  Chipotle became popular largely through word-of-mouth, and today this includes social media.  When CEO Steve Ells saw all of the processed, frozen, and caged food restaurants were serving, he decided not only to go for fresh food in his restaurant but for “food with integrity”.Because they pay a larger dollar for the naturally raised, hormone free, free grazing food, they don’t have as much money to kill on advertising.

I believe Chipotle is a solid definition of today’s up-and-coming fast and fresh food market.  The idea of fast, fresh, and affordable was obviously very popular for them so I foresee many other restaurants coming out with similar ideologies to match what our fast-paced, health-conscious Americans are looking for.  Something else which I found very interesting from the business special on Chipotle is the t-shirts they have for sale on their website.  Customers are so in to Chipotle that they make t-shirt designs, and Chipotle has put some of them on their website.  Again, this is the driving force behind Chipotle’s success>fresh, high-quality ingredients>good food fast>very happy customers>food speaks for itself in advertising>customers are very passionate about Chipotle.

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Finally, I forgot to mention one advertising campaign Chipotle was in the process of making when I watched this show.  They were in the process of making a sitcom based upon representing Chipotle’s food in a comical manner.  The show is supposed to be all online.  Just another innovative way Chipotle is getting their name out there.

The Web: A Plethora of Inspiration :)

Everybody Needs InspirationFor my Final Blog project, I am doing it on personal growth and living an inspired life. What’s amazing about the Internet is that it has numerous inspiration boards, web pages that address how to get through something, personal growth videos, and much more. I have found more empowering, inspiring content on the Web than I did on TV (not that television does not have inspiring content), but I have been introduced to new concepts on the Web. Using them in my own life, I finally understand what the content is about and what it is like to embody an inspired life. All of the advice and the videos that I have watched have helped me get through some tough times. When I felt I had no one to help me out of my mess, I gravitated toward these sites. I was in my room, my nice private environment, with my laptop, looking at these sites. When I was taking in what I was reading or watching, it felt so personable. It was as if the author or speaker was talking to me. I do not know how I would have been without these empowering messages .

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It feels so great when a blog or a site can put my concerns into the right words. It hits a nerve, and I feel relieved. Once my problems are worded out, I feel the weight on my shoulders come right off. Then, I know for sure that I can get out of any problem stronger and smarter. Their methods to make progress in a certain area is unlike anything I have ever read, seen, or heard. It feels so refreshing to learn about actual ways to make progress that actually work. I do not have to hear the same cliche tips that I hear all the time. For example, one thing I learned from the Internet is to feel your feelings and not push them way, regardless of what emotion it is. In general, we have been taught by society to not feel certain emotions such as sadness or angry and always, always be positive. This is not healthy for us at all. Has anyone heard of the famous phrase “If you resist, it will persist.”.  The key is to feel your feelings without getting into a mental drama of what it means. I learned that from a YouTube video when I felt like I hit rock bottom. This one advice pulled me out of the huge emotional tornado that I was in at the time. Wow! I am so grateful for all the messages I have acquired in order for me to create positive, lasting change in my life. If any of you guys ever feel down in the dumps, you can look into some of the things that I was talking about, but that is if you want to. I am not out here to tell you guys how to live your lives, but from my experience inspiration on the Web has helped me so much. But what bout you? What would life be like for you if you decided to look for inspiring, empowering mediums on the Web and incorporate some creative ideas into your life? Hmmmm…..I wonder.

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Editing Programs Are The New Pen and Paper

While doing this podcast project, I have really realized how important it is to be able to navigate these tools of expression that are usable through technology.  At first, it seemed almost silly to me that we are learning how to blog and how to use these mediums.  In a way, I felt like I was conforming to society by jumping on the “blog bandwagon” and learning how to create one.  But it has dawned on me, through this process of posting blogs, creating videos, and using Audacity, that it is actually kind of important to know how to do these things.  Things are changing because of technology, and I have realized that it is sort of important to keep up with these changes.  Videos, podcasts, etc. are part of the new vernacular of modern day society, and we should be able to speak the language so that we can stay in the game.  Otherwise, our ideas might fade into the background and our voices might not be heard.  Is this fair?  No, of course not.  I do not think people should necessarily have to turn into human-robot hybrid creatures.  However, it is the reality of the situation.   It is good to know how to create a video or a podcast so that I can share it with a lot of people, as well as be well-received by others.  In a way, I feel sort of enlightened, knowing what kind of work goes into making one of these projects.

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In high school, I took film class all four years, and it was probably my favorite thing about high school.  We used a program called Adobe Premiere Pro, and by the time I was a senior, I was very fluent in the language of this program.  I knew how to use it, and I knew how to use it well.  As a matter of fact, I won a few awards in high school for my work.  I planned on and hoped to continue studying film in college.  Unfortunately, I never got to fulfill this plan to continue working with film in school, but I do plan on returning to it eventually.  That is why working with iMovie as well as Audacity have been such exciting processes for me.  It brought me back to the fun I had in high school working with a movie editing program.  Being able to navigate these tools is actually really exciting and makes you feel sort of powerful.  I cannot even imagine what sorts of programs we will be using in the future to create these types of projects.  I wonder if they will be even more difficult to use or if they will be much easier.  I feel this can go either way.

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Honestly, I found Adobe Premiere Pro, the program I used in high school, to actually be easier for me to use than iMovie, even though it is an older program.  With Adobe, I had to initially learn how to use the program thoroughly before creating any projects, but once I learned how to use the program, it seemed extremely easy for me to understand.  There was also a lot of creative freedom on Adobe.  I could edit a frame in a movie to look pretty much exactly how I wanted to, granted that I knew how to use all the different buttons and tools.  With iMovie, there are less options.  For instance, when putting in an opening title on the mini-project we did just to get acquainted with the program, I found that I had no choice as to where I positioned the title.  It was already programed in a default spot in the middle of the frame that I could not adjust.  This was frustrating to me, since I am so used to the freedom that Adobe allows for.

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I found Audacity to be sort of difficult to work with, as well.  I feel that the program needs a few updates or adjustments to make it a little more navigable and user-friendly.  I felt sort of flustered and overwhelmed at times using it, but maybe I just need to learn more about the program in order to use it more efficiently.  Either way, I am glad to have had the experience working with the program, and hopefully I will become better at using it in the future.

…It Really Doesn’t Matter How You Read it

This is a response post to “Feelings of Reading A Book”

I agree with you 110%. Nothing beats an actual, physical book. One of my favorite smells is the smell of a brand new book, weird I know, but it’s a smell that i’ve known for the majority of my life. I could spend my entire life in a bookstore. I personally believe that e-readers are a great technical development, but similar to most technology, they have their flaws. When one switches from a book to an e-reader, there is a small but highly frustrating adjustment period, however once you become familiar with an e-reader, the only thing that is different is the smell of freshly printed paper versus hard metal.

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When I first received my Kindle as a Christmas present, I cringed . I could not fathom abandoning my beloved books with worn bindings and dog-earred pages for an electronic library, however the more I used the Kindle, the more it grew on me.  Now all electronic devices are cooperative with the Kindle app, which provides 24/7 access to my library and the bookstore; this is how my obsession started. When he comes to e-reading, I have come to prefer reading a book on my laptop since it possesses a bigger screen Also, just like with the actual Kindle, in the app you can adjust the page color, font size, and font type. By finding the option that is most pleasing and easy going on your eyes results in faster, more sufficient e-reading.  The only con that is associated with e-reading is the abscence of the sensual connection one makes when reading a physical books. The feeling of rough, thin paper against your fingers, and the smell of brand new ink is gone. However, I do not that the lack of physically flipping a page lessens the suspense of a book’s plot. Regardless of whether you are turning a page or swiping a finger, you still have to turn the page one way or another. My computer jus capable of flipping a page quicker than I can, so as a result, I get to the juicy stuff sooner. When it comes to reading my reactions and experiences do not depend on which medium I chose to read it on, it solely depends on  the actually story that I read.

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Even though I have developed a fondness for e-readers and e-books, books still hold the majority of my heart, and a bookstore continues to be my safe-haven. The only deciding factor that learns my favoritism more towards e-books are the prices. I read over 100 books each year; if It was not for e-books that statement would not be possible, because I simply could not be able to afford it. If I had chosen to buy hard copies of all the books I have read this year alone, the total price would probably closely resemble the price of my tuition this semester. I do tend to crave hard copies every once in a while, and to not completely destroy my pathetic bank account, I usually purchase used copies through http://www.Half.com, the only issue I have with this website though is that media mail takes too long to put the book in my greedy, impatient fingers.     E-readers are just highly convenient. You can take your entire library with you wherever you go, and the battery life on them is highly impressive. As long as you charge it regularly at night, you will never have to worry about the device shutting down just when you are about to find out who the murderer was. Another advantage of not having to lug around multiple hard copies is the weight that comes with them. Amazon, my back thanks you for providing it a few more years before arthritis kicks in.

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The last advantage of e-books and e-readers is the new found trend of self-publishing. The majority of my favorite authors are or started by self-publishing. As a result of this new capability, there is always a new release just waiting for me to download, due to the fact that self-publishing is mainly popular through e-books.

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There are both pros and cons to the digital and print aspects of the publishing industry, but the cons of either format are not capable of destroying one’s love for reading. I believe that if you truly love the written word, it does not really matter how you read it, the only thing that matters is that you are reading it. Just because the story is not printed on paper should not alter your reaction to the story, or the emotions it evokes in you while reading it. It’s the same story whether you are reading it on paper or on a LED screen.

Facing the Facts: Your Phone or Your Life?

Texting and driving is an insane issue in the United States. When cell phones first came out it was not as much as a problem, but now with more people being glued to their phones police are starting to crack down.  For a first offence in New Jersey you can now expect a ticket ranging from $200 -$400. A second offence can range from $400- $600, and a third offence from $600- $800. That is a lot of money for doing something that can wait a few minutes until you reach your destination. And if your text is that important you can pull over and answer it and then get back on the road. I also find it crazy how not every state has outlawed texting and driving yet- it is an insane issue and it causes so many accidents every year. I believe that within the next few years every state will ban texting and driving and make penalties even stiffer. I mean, it is a really good way for states to make quick money on tickets.

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One thing that is very shocking to me is that they do not have many inventions to prevent people from texting and driving. A couple of weeks ago I was watching the show “Shark Tank” on ABC. It is a show where someone goes in with an invention or business and gets one of the 5 entrepreneurial “sharks” to invest in them. There was a group of high school kids who invented a steering wheel cover to try and prevent texting and driving and this is how it worked. There are certain hand positions which would trigger the steering wheel cover to buzz and transmit a signal to the parents via phone or email. But if you take one hand off the wheel that triggers it, if both hands are at the top of the wheel it trigger it and if both hands are at the bottom of the wheel it triggers it. Interesting right? So what happens if you are like me and you drive with one hand most of the time? What happens if you take your hands off the wheel or move them at a red light? This invention was clearly not thought through enough. Especially since a driver can just take it off every time they drive and their parents will not be able to do much about it. Needless to say the sharks shot down their ideas and obvious flaws.

The Inventioneers and their safety steering wheel cover

The Inventioneers and their safety steering wheel cover

Another invention that exists is the “Key2SafeDriving” program. It is software that connects from the engine key to the driver’s cellular device. When the key is turned and the engine is turned on a signal is sent from the key to the cell phone via Bluetooth. When this happens it makes the cell phone unable to make or receive texts and calls. All incoming calls go straight to voicemail and a message is sent to them that tells them the person is driving. Also, a stop sign is displayed on the screen of the cell phone. I think this is a very innovative invention. It is really a choice of whether or not you want to eliminate the possible distraction of texting and driving, there is no consequence- it will not send a message to our parents, it simply blocks call and text from coming in or out which I think is really good. But at the same time what happens if there is an emergency? Does the user need to pull over and turn their car off to use their phone? Or if you dial 911 will it still go through? This is really the only potential problem I see with this device. Also if you are using your phone navigation to get somewhere it probably would not work which is another feature I think they would have to work on.

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Obviously no invention is perfect, especially when it comes to inventions for texting and driving. Inventors need to go over every possible aspect and think of all the possible issues that the device could be faced with. But in the future I hope there are inventions to prevent texting and driving because I think it is something that is an issue for people all over the world. Maybe in the future there will be some sort of anti-texting and driving device installed into every car but as for now the future of this issue is very unclear.

Breaking Up With Twitter

Response to Kingofpins25’s post “Twitterless is Bliss?”

I don’t know about you but I love Twitter. I go through my phases of using it religiously and checking up on it from time to time. But lately I’ve been glued. I try to figure out a pattern of why I get so obsessed but I just can’t seem to figure it out. Is it when I have more time to myself? Is it when I feel bored or alone? For a distraction? Or just for the hell of it? I’m starting to think that I just go on for the hell of it. Even than I still don’t even know why.  Essentially twitter is a place for people to share what is going on in 180 characters or less. But as I scroll through my timeline it seems like a place where people try to be funnier than everyone else, a place where people can complain about life forever (do they really have that bad of a life? Are their parents THAT horrible?) Twitter is also a place where people can stalk others- especially celebrities. So how do I use twitter? I use twitter to share moments with the virtual world- even though 99.9% of them could care less with what’s going on in my life. I scroll through my feed for entertainment, even though half of the time it isn’t that entertaining and I spend some time reading peoples complaints or looking at funny things people post.

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One thing I noticed is how much drama twitter creates. A virtual place creates so much drama EVERYWHERE. Last year on my floor there was so much drama with “OMG she totally subtweeted me!” like really? If someone is trash talking you via social media and not tagging you in it, why do you care? They are clearly irrelevant and you should probably not let a 180 character sentence influence your life. Even with celebrities- on the Real Housewives of New Jersey they are always bringing up twitter. “Well she tweeted this, she tweeted that, she said I rent my Chanel bag!” Really she accused you of renting a Chanel bag? What a tragedy- you should probably call the twitter police while you’re at it. I just don’t get why people across the world let social media influence them so much- unless they are bullying you you should let it slide off your shoulders. They are clearly too much of a coward to say it to your face anyway. I think it is very sad that people nationwide let social media influence them so much. It also does not help that celebrities are always advertising their twitters and constantly tweeting. Sure, it lets your fans feel closer to you but they still aren’t close to you. I know a lot of people who have had a tweet favorite by a celebrity and they seriously come too close to having a heart attack over it.

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Twitter is like an infectious disease to me, it is extremely distracting and I can’t get rid of it- even when I try. Sad I know. I feel like twitter is like this for a lot of other people too. You delete the app but you still go on the website. Than you get SO fed up that you delete your account! Only to go back and make a new account and realize how sad you are that you lost thousands of tweets and hundreds of followers and now you need to start all over again. When you type a witty tweet you keep refreshing your feed to see how many favorites or retweets you get. Some people even create fake accounts to tweet rom it just so they can see how many followers they can get and how “twitter famous” they can become. The fact that the word “tweet” is actually in the dictionary says a lot. I think I need to work on my relationship with Twitter and become less reliant on it for entertainment.

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Wrapping it up

So I just finished my podcast. It may be not the best but I know I put in my full effort. I don’t think I’ve put in this much effort into a project. Part of it is because I enjoyed learning how to use Audacity. It was not easy learning how to use it but eventually I caught on. You learn to control what you want on your project and I think it is pretty cool.

Another reason to why I put in so much effort was because I enjoyed my topic a lot. I find the people I chose to introduce in my podcast very admirable and inspirational. In my podcast, I explained that fractured tailbone and lost motivation in life. I had no idea what was going on with my life and where it was heading. But thankfully, I watched this people’s interviews and realized they also hit a lot of roadblocks but they never gave up.

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Now that I am done with the podcast, it is time to start on the Final Blog Project, which I am excited to work on. I already started on it and have one page so far. Now I need to continue making some more pages and start posting.

I would say, out of all the classes I took that are not my major class this is one class where I felt like I learned most. I felt like I was actually doing something. I made a lot of mistakes in this class but I had the chance to always edit and try to make things better. Also, this class taught things that I thought were extremely useful. And because of this class, I am planning to taking Intro to Creative Writing in the Fall Semester.

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ERROR: Technology

I guess people are supposed to learn from their mistakes, but luckily, my inability to caused me to think of another blog post that I could write. Picture this: Its about 10am, and I’m really moving through my blog post. At this rate I could have it posted by maybe 10:30. I’m writing about music, and my recent obsession with recording songs, and man, its just a really enjoyable write. I finished up, and I go to add some media to my post… you know… the final touches, when this happens:

Screen Shot 2013-08-09 at 10.47.09 AMI’m sorry, excuse me. What? You can’t add my image? WHY NOT? Here I am frustrated. The internet shouldn’t have flaws. After trying to upload a few different pictures I tell myself, oh well, no media for you, you stupid post, and I click publish when I get:

“Are you sure you want to do this?”

…..

Yes, WordPress. I sat here for the past 45 minutes typing so I’m going to go ahead and confidently say that yes, I am sure. Naturally I click, “yes.” When I get:

“TRY AGAIN”

Try again?…. TRY AGAIN? I was cruising at a comfortable steady 678 words. YOU TRY AGAIN. I click again… nothing… and by nothing I mean 0 words.

WORDPRESS STOLE MY POST, and I let it… again.

Has anyone else ever stayed up to write a paper only to forget to click ‘save’ and find themselves starting at square one? The first time this happened to me my brother gave me an unsympathetic, “Learn to use word and save your work.” Did I learn that? Nope. No sir, I did not. I found it significantly more convenient to just type right into the WordPress format and hit publish. The funny part is… HERE I AM DOING IT AGAIN. Its almost as if I am asking for technology to subtlety remind me that its not perfect.

Perhaps it was designed as something that would add convenience to our lives, but does it always? When was the last time you took a pen to a paper and an hour later lost all of your work? Wait, repeat that? Never? Exactly! In Another Look Back, and a Look Ahead, Edward Tenner calls this “revenge effects.” Tenner’s principle concern is the way that human beings interact with the products of technological innovation. As he puts it, “A small change to solve a minor problem may create a larger one.” He also notes that the risk of technology’s revenge effects has only been intensified by the ubiquity of computer software in modern life. Yes, we as a society make a steady attempt and effort to cease these revenge effects and solve these problems, but “human culture, not some inherent will of the machine, has created most revenge effects,” and for this reason we can not lose sight of our capacity to change and adapt.

Autocorrect. A design that was simply created to help a person with the Iphone type a little faster. A little clearer. Perhaps with a little less error. It absolutely has its perks! I love not having to backspace when I type with my ipod knowing that autocorrect will pick up my slack. I also have a macbook, so if I’m rushing through a paragraph and stumble across a word that I don’t know how to spell, I think to myself ehh, just get semi close to the correct spelling. The computer will recognize the word. HOW LAZY IS THAT? My own knowledge is spited because I am too lazy to look up a word and spell it autocorrect_fail_g6_width_600xcorrectly. I before E except after C ? WHO CARES? I HAVE AUTOCORRECT. It’s truly a shame isn’t it? Of course slithering along to make it worse, autocorrect doesn’t always choose the right word as you will see in some examples below… and things can become a little awkward or tense if it messes up bad enough. I also can’t stand that “omg” automatically corrects to “OMG”. Disclaimer: I’m usually not that excited about what you’re having to say… sorry.

I would definitely say, as I am proven time and time again, DO NOT put your faith in technology. Use it as an aid to make your life easier, yes, but don’t let it rule your life. Don’t fall into the wheel of convenience. Trust me, in you do, you’ll have a lot of texts to explain, a lot of papers to write, and that will only be the beginning.

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