Lessons Learned


    • How well did the project allow you to practice the theories of new media we discussed this semester? What does a project like this offer that is beneficial to a student of new media? In what ways is a project like this limiting for a student of new media?
      • My project allotted various ways to practice theories of new media discussed this semester. In Intro to Media Studies, many aspects of media were studied over the entire course. In the end when final projects started to arrive, the variety allowed for me to pick an aspect of the class I enjoyed learning about and wanted to further study. I, personally, liked ideas talked about in Holmes and Murray’s articles and I based my project over them. So, the variety of topics and authors talked about in class was beneficial in order to pick certain ideas that were enjoyable to further study. Additionally, the ideas discussed not only had great variety but one could use them just for the basis of their project and apply their own ideas to further develop it. However, there was a limiting aspect in this project. Having a limited background in media studies, it was hard to pick an idea on how to present my project. Many other peers used videos and online tools to create games and present their project where as I did not know how to use those tools so I used something I was already familiar with: Prezi.


    • How has your experience of researching and implementing your project (regarding design, implementation, participant behavior if applicable, group dynamics, etc.) helped you to understand how new media influence our daily lives?
      • The basis of my project was to see how applications like Netflix have shifted our society to be more interested in culling than surrender (two terms defined by Holmes). The initial idea and design were just to survey people to see if this is true; however, it turned out to be more prevalent than I imagined. Doing the research for this project opened my eyes to how common it is for society to use easy applications like Netflix. The idea that a click of a button and one can watch their favorite tv shows and movies is ingrained in majority of modern society. It just baffles me to think of how the idea is no longer a thought process but rather just habit. Just like Ong argued that we find it difficult to consider writing to be a technology as we commonly assume printing and the computer to be; we find it hard to believe that applications are slowly shifting our conscious too. The human conscious changed to accommodate writing in everyday life just as the human conscious is changing to accept easy, accessible media like applications of modern technological advancements. Humans see and take notice of what they like, spending thought in it, and what you like as a human you in turn replicate. Humans enjoy the easy and accessible characteristics of the way new media is becoming and there is no cease in this new fascination. This project made me truly realize that as new media changes, so does society.


    • How have the course readings illuminated, clarified, or complicated your understanding of that experience? Which authors’ work do you find most relevant to your project? (Be sure to address (and cite) at least two course authors, though they need not be any of the course authors your group used in constructing your project itself.)
      • My central argument was that applications (apps) have made easy, accessible media like Netflix popular in society due to their affordances: participatory, procedural, spatial, and encyclopedic. Due to their popularity, they have shifted society to be far more interested in culling than surrender. The basis of this argument was off of two articles we read in class. Murray wrote an article about affordances of media and Holmes wrote about the idea of culling and surrender. Although these two authors were the basis of my project, I found that Gleick  and Ong were other authors that clarified it as well. Specifically, I only originally assumed that new media and it’s affordances has an influence on the shifting of culling and surrender in society. However, after completing my survey I realized how there is so much more influencing this shift. The ideas Ong and Gleick talked about further improved my studying on this subject. Ong refers to the human concious and how it shifted to not even consider writing as a technology due to it being so ingrained in the human mind. This sparked ideas in my head as to how this idea relates to applications like Netflix and that is where Gleick comes in. Humans are constantly in thought. Therefore thought, just like any other part of the human gene system, evolves, adapts and moves in new directions over time. Humans see and take notice of what they like, spending thought in it, and what you like as a human you in turn replicate. In this case, humans are replicating easy and accessible media due to being fascinated over it’s affordances. This, in turn, goes back to build on Ong’s idea of the human conscious. Humans have shifted to be more interested in culling than surrender due to taking interest in easy, accessible things and therefore are trying to replicate them with new media. Therefore, new media’s affordances appeal to the masses and no longer seem that abstract over time because the human race is slowly changing it’s conscious to adapt. Applications like Netflix are just the ‘norm’ for society.
    • What does your personal experience with this project suggest for the future of new media? That is, given what you have learned during this project (and the entire class, if you find it relevant), how will society change in the coming years? How will it stay the same?
      • After studying applications, there was a trend I noticed that society is trying to make everything easier and more accessible. With ‘apps’ everything about their fundamental structure is easy and accessible. However, applications have not been around for a long time but they are not the first thing to be invented to be easier and more accessible. Society, has a trend for making the next media easier. From hands to voice to pen and paper to mass printing to telephone to telegraph to radio to ethernet to wifi to cellular, society keeps inventing to make things easier and more accessible. So after studying an application like Netflix and seeing an abundant amount of interest in it, I believe that society will only grow to invent more easy and accessible things like it. I mean applications are everywhere, on phones, computers, and even televisions now. I believe society will change to grow more dependent on technology due to inventing easier and more accessible things. However, it is in human genes to do this so is it really a change?

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