Hello – I’m going to talk with you today about New Media and how we might use it for interpretation.I’m coming to you from a couple of different backgrounds. My undergraduate work was in Interpretation and for the past 25 years I’ve been involved with interpretation and interpretive planning through our business, BUCY Associates.
I also teach courses about educational technologies at Western Oregon University in the College of Education and coordinate a master’s degree program in educational technology.Teaching courses such as Info Design, Emerging Tech, Web 2.0 Tools has allowed me to keep up with the newest technologies and their applications in informal and formal learning environment. So, I have a background in informal education andformal education, and the educational technologies that support both of them.
My goal today isn’t to teach lots of things – which would be hard, since we can’t be online. In fact, this will be a bit challenging since most of the New Media we’ll be discussing lives online. But we’ll do our best.I’d like to give you a feel for what’s available, and take some time to talk about the possibilities. I’m hoping when you leave today you’ll have lots of ideas.
So, what is New Media?Definitions are rather elusive . . . But It’s not just about a bunch of new devices.People use the term to mean many things, but one way I like to think about it is that it’s an idea about the way we communicate.on-demand access to content any timeAnywhereon any digital deviceas well as interactive user feedbackcreative participationcommunity formation around the media content
It’s an idea that says we should be able to be in direct communication – two way communication – with anyone and everyone. It’s an idea about sharing and interacting. It’s an idea about many-to-many communications, rather than the top down one-to-many model we’ve been used to. It’s an idea about sharing across and amongst many groups.
New media, then, is about the idea of sharing and the media that allows this to happen.
Another term we often hear is Social Media or Social Networking.This is the idea of people socializing and communicating through a variety of media. This is the current reality. Young people today – and more and more even older people (like me) are communicating – often almost exclusively, though social media of one kind or another.They post status updates and links on Facebook. They share links and catch up on news on Twitter. They post pictures on Flickr and videos on YouTube. They write blogs and websites. And they share, share, share – They share links to interesting information.They share videosThey share ideasThey teach one anotherIdeas spread like wildfire – one person posts, ten friends pass it on, their 10 friends pass it on again. It’s like the old pyramid scheme, only this time it works – that’s why videos can go viral and end up with more than a million hits in the first week after they are posted. If they are interesting, it spreads throughout this vast network at lightning speed.And more and more – people are accessing this network through mobile devices – connected to this vast network of information anywhere, anytime.
So what has changed to make all of this possible?It’s not just a change in the equipment we are using – Although that is definitely a part of it. But it’s a much bigger change that is changing our culture altogether.I think of it as three major changes (though there are more things playing into this.)
The first is the idea of cloud computing.Cloud computing is a natural result of improvements in our data speeds and faster microprocessors. As speed becomes faster and faster, and as we are able to process more and more data – it has become possible to actually do our computing with applications that are not installed on our own computers.And this is just the beginning.
Nicholas Carr (who wrote “Is Google making us Stupid?”) explains it in a way that makes it really easy to understand this revolution that is going on.In the early days of electricity, every business had to generate its own electricity. And every business had at least one technician charged with keeping the generator running. If the generator broke down, the business was sunk.But then advances in the design of electrical transmission and electrical motors made it possible to deliver electricity from a central location. And because they could deliver to many locations from one central utility. And that meant they could capitalize on economies of scale. It became so inexpensive to purchase electricity from these utilities that no one had to be in the business of generating their own electricity any more – they could just plug into the grid. Today we simply take this for granted. If we want electricity, we plug into an outlet.A similar change is happening in computing. With increased power of microprocessors – and increased data storage capacities – companies are beginning to offer computing over a grid – the Internet.In fact, Google is building a giant data warehouse in The Dalles, Oregon, not far from my own home. From there, they will be able to store massive amounts of data and deliver it quickly, on demand, all over the world. And this is happening all over – at speeds that allow us to do our actual computing work online instead of on our computers.
We just plug into the grid – the cloud – where everything is stored on computers around the world and we can access all sorts of information and programs that are stored on thousands of computers around the world.And it’s just beginning – it’s getting so cheap and so fast, that soon we won’t need computers to run our programs or store our data – we’ll just need an interface. Something to connect us with the cloud. The little netbooks we’re seeing are the beginnings.
Another change is in the technology that allows us to interact online.Our new Web no longer limits us to simply posting information online. It now allows us to interact with both the content and with other people. We now communicate through the Web – it has become a conduit.There are thousands of Web 2.0 Tools available online now –You’re familiar with many of them: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter. And in addition, many are essentially full applications similar to those we used to buy and install on our computers. These tools have made it possible for everyone and anyone to not only consume information online – but to contribute. It opens up the doorways to two-way communication with our visitors. It makes it possible for people to share, to compose, to teach and more online.
And finally – a huge change that has just begun to take hold is a different way of dealing with copyright. It’s a part of the New Media ideas of sharing, collaborating, and interacting.As you know, we can’t just grab any photo or piece of music and publish it as our own.Any creative work is automatically copyrighted when it is created. With this copyright protection, it is not legal for us to use anything without written permission. Finding pictures and music through a Google search will bring back all sorts of pictures and music that we cannot use legally.Recently, there has been a new movement taking place called Creative Commons. Some people call it “copyleft.”Many artists and musicians have recognized that they want to share their work, and they don’t want to have to deal with written permissions, so they have attached Creative Commons licenses to their work that release some of their rights.You can recognize work with a Creative Commons license when you see some of the symbols here. This license says, essentially, that you can use the work without asking – under specific conditions.
There are different levels of permission – different Creative Commons licenses.Some allow you to share and remix the work but only for non-commercial purposes. Others make no requirements on how you use them.Most, however, ask for attribution and ask that you provide the same Creative Commons license on your derivative work. (called Share Alike)NOTE: make your own work CC licensed. Make it open – easy to reuse. Gives you visibility. Gets your stories outMillenials – social networkers – looking for cool, interesting things to link, share, build upon. See on twitter, post to Facebook (auto-upload on Twitter.) Someone sees it, posts on their blog.
So all of these things are working together The idea of sharing, collaborating, and interacting onlineThe technology that allows us to do thisAnd the reality that millions of people are already online networkingAnd this provides us with all sorts of new possibilities in the ways we can (and should) communicate – an environment and the tools make this possible.
So, what does this mean to us as interpreters?We have all sorts of new ways to communicate with our visitors, but should we?Do we need to invest in all sorts of new equipment and software?Do we have to spend time and money on training?Well – maybe, sometimes.
But, although there are a variety of high-tech tools available that are quite expensive and require a good deal of technical know-how to use, there are also a huge number of free tools now available.Our focus today will be on these free tools. The selection is enormous . . . There are thousands of tools now available that are very easy to use. These tools are being used heavily in education today, but I have not found as many examples in informal settings.The potential is enormous. You can be creating your interpretive stories within minutes – using tools that are completely free.We’re going to take a look at some scenarios today where New Media might just be a solution.
We’re going to look at tools in two categoriesSome of what we’ll look at is software that you can download onto your computer at no chargeThis software can range from very easy to use, to quite complicatedSome of it can only run on a Mac, and some only on a PCAnd some canrun on both platforms To find more tools: http://download.cnet.com
I also want to show you some Web 2.0 ToolsAs I mentioned before,Web 2.0 is sometimes called the Read/Write Web. The idea is that we no longer have static pages that we simply search and read--Now we have dynamic, interactive pages that allow us to communicate, create, and contribute. There are thousands of Web 2.0 tools available online and many of them work beautifully for telling interpretive stories in a variety of ways.I’ll show you a few, and then point you to some resources where you can find exactly the tool you need.
New media presentation_1
withNew MediaMary BucyBUCY AssociatesWestern Oregon University
Goals Explore the current communication environment Introduce a variety of new technologies and how they can support interpretation Show you where to find tools and media Send you off with ideas