Native Apps at HSU

(A little side note but I love how Jason Pontin pretty much took over that entire discussion)

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Oh look a fight! There is an app for that! LOL just kidding. I personally love the topic of this week’s blog but I don’t love how it is our last one :( I am going to be looking at if I a was content developer for KRFH and if the use/development of a native app would be worth while. Initially just going off the monetary aspect, I know KRFH could never afford an actual developer since “a good developer who has CSS, JavaScript, and a bit of Python, you’re looking a pretty good six figures” according to Mr. Pontin. Since KRFH is student run I bet they could find a computer science student and get them to help but that student probably couldn’t create a super complex app with multiple levels of interfaces, most likely just a simple one for the live streaming of KRFH.  Before I would even get into the actual cost of developing an app for KRFH I would want to know if there is even a market and desire for it on our campus.

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(a “frictionless” search on “college radio” in itunes got this)

Going off of the popularity of my favorite app store I see only two school specific college radio apps, a whole bunch of sport apps, and a couple of music ones. Based upon my knowledge of KRFH, it is heavily focused on music seemingly, at least in regards to this search, music is not a desire for college radio station apps but sports is. Sport information is now something that people want to know and know instantly. ESPN’s business cards say “To serve fans, anytime, anywhere” which makes sense for them to use apps because it allows for that instant transactions of game, team, and player information. I would also would want to know how many listeners KRFH gets along and then I would like to conduct a survey to see if thats what the listeners want.

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Overall I would not want to develop a native app for KRFH, I just dont see a reason for it. KRFH does use radioflag, which is an app for radio stations! (They were actually named top radio station last year!) If i were a content developer I would of used something exactly like this but I would also look into ways to implement KRFH into the humboldt.edu main page. I was mainly inspired by the comment made by Ryan Spoon, “Take readability out, because you can read and surface fantastic content on a dot com in e-mail. You can do that anywhere. There are things that are afforded if you can build it cheaply and with the quality you want that you just can’t get elsewhere….There are things you can do in application that are more powerful than Web. We send billions of score alerts every month and that is a hook back into the application world. If I sent e-mails at the velocity, you’d be really upset. If you’re a subscription magazine, or if your business, like ours, has a very significant video advertising component, again, native in some cases trumps.” Basically this means, know your audience there are certain business that could do great with apps and others that you cant’t and should stay web based in HTML5. Also I am excited for the use of apps in TV and found it surprising that “Netflix now has 36.3 million streaming customers, including 29.2 million in the U.S.”. I didn’t realize Netflix was such a US thing.

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Peace out JMC 302!

Culture and Video Games

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This photo pretty much sums up my first love for a video game ever, Sonic Adventure 2 Battle for the Nintendo Gamecube. Oh man did I play this game on hours end over and over again. I ended up playing this Plants vs Zombies game for the first time. I have seen this game a lot over the past couple of months but I never understood the hype around it however now that I have played it I can say it is very fun! I liked the simplicity of it and how it guided me through the first couple of levels instead of just having the player figure it out. I also enjoyed the zombie aspect since I am a big zombie fan. I also enjoyed that it was a little violent (you know in a cute way I guess?) but it wasn’t overly gory or anything.

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I mean look at how cute the plants and zombies are!

The thing I didn’t like about it is the fact that it was a way to waste some time. Playing it reminded me of my time in high school and playing addictinggames.com during computer lab based class to make the time go by faster but I didn’t have to go to a proxy server to load the webpage.  I think people play video games for a few different reasons but the two prominent ones are the social aspect and they find the challenge aspect fun. I remembered how I never was allowed to have any form of online game play during my entire high school career and that was the biggest reason why I never really got into them like my peers. It seemed like everyone was talking about COD or Halo during every class and I desperately wanted to be a part of it. The other reason why I think people enjoy playing video games is because it is a rewarding and fun way to challenge yourself with virtually (I am so punny) endless levels and difficulties.

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How are video games used in culture? hmmm so many possibilities to talk about!! Well I will just stick to the reading…

As discussed in Beams’ “Death From Above” the military already has tons of different ways it uses video games to influence and train soldiers in proper military culture norms and scenarios. It provides a safe, but realistic, way to make mistakes. Also video games like Second Life provide a platform for people to become the person (or creature) that they want to be and interact with thousands of people at any desired level. I do see a potiental for people becoming to heavily reliant on video games (or more or less the internet for socialization and interactions. I believe video games can be used as a way to connect with people who do not know. It is an easy way to start to get to know someone, “hey have you played that new GTA? What did you think?” etc. But their could be some stigma tied to interactions.

they could think of you like this

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PS: My favorite myth was myth 11: “If violent video games cause increases in aggression, violent crime rates in the U.S. would be increasing instead of decreasing.” Like people actually believe that?? Oh my gosh people will believe anything on the internet.

WikiLeaks

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Julian Assange is a very interesting man. I have heard about wikileaks for a while now expect I never knew what it is exactly about. The documentary was actually really interesting (but very one sided) and now I can finally say what wikileaks is! I think Mr. Assange has become so interesting is because he is the face of deviance on the internet. Since he created the website that lets people post, anonymously, the most secret documents that our governments and corporations do not want us to know about. It also, according to the movie, is completely impossible to remove from the internet. Since he is someone that had the capability to create such a genius website its no wonder why he is such a interesting person, plus you know the whole rape case thing.

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Our culture is as information thirsty as ever and the information super highway aka the internet is the main artery. I mean when was the last time you wanted to know something and you didn’t use google as the quick fix? I think it was only a matter of time until a website of this platform was created. We all want to know what our government/corporations are actually doing and not what they are saying they are doing. I am glad people feel comfortable enough to use this website to expose what is the true happenings of these power players in our society. Also this filmed showed how much we trust the internet with out actually knowing anything about it. Manning was given access to virtually everything and Assange was able to create an untraceable source to post the juicy secrets.

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I agreed with most of Assange/Wikileaks public statements except for Assange statement,”yes i would post even if it was going to hurt someone”. I understand why this information should be posted but I would have trouble knowing that I caused harm to another person, unless they deserved it of course.

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Tent City

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So instead of talking about a documentary that I have seen a thousand times (I believe this is pretty much the only thing I watch besides The Walking Dead) I watched a documentary I have been meaning to look at. It is Tent City directed by Steve Cantor and was produced by Stick Figure Productions. It doesn’t seem to be a independent documentary like Roger & Me but it does strike a chord for Bret & Me. Stick Figure Productions does a list of TV documentaries for a variety of different networks and I have no knowledge of Steve Cantor. (Tent City was produced for OWN, Oprah Winfrey Network)

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This documentary starts out by showing the tent city that is near the city center of Nashville, Tennessee. It host about 100 residents that all obliged to a set of rules that they created. Some of these rules are keep your “property” clean, no drugs in the city, no fighting or being drunk in public, and if you are going to drink make sure you are on your property. Basically this tent city provides a society that is built on support and trying to get people off the streets. Every community member has respect for one another and will kick anyone out that violates their rules. They even have medics and security within this city!! Shortly after filming starts there is record breaking flooding that unfortunately wipes out their city. Predictively the city of Nashville doesn’t want the tent city to return. The rest of the film is about what happens during the attempted relocation. During the relocation there was a homeless person placed on the Homeless Committee of Nashville (or something like that), which is huge because it means that this is the first time a homeless person will be able to voice the opinions of other homeless. The homeless community even voted on who this person should be.

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To tie this to the reading…

I feel like the filming of this documentary forced the city to allow a homeless person onto the committee because otherwise they would look super bad. I guess it could be looked at as a gimmick but it does call into question the legitimacy of homeless as actual citizens of our society. Homeless are viewed as deviants since their manner of existence is outside the norms of the rest of society. However without deviance there wouldn’t be a society, it is a completely normal and essential part of our society. (Yay for tying in my Social Deviance Class) I know argue that just because they are deviant doesn’t mean that they are any less of citizens in society. Tent City seems to be a honest news documentary since it does point out this idea throughout the film. While it didn’t “craft the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act of 1963″ (yet) it does at least bring up important issues and aspects of life that homeless have to face, so yes it is productive. “Thumbs up to productivity” il_fullxfull.290000398

Pulp Fiction

Well I have never watched Pulp fiction before and it took me two times of watching it before I could even attempt to write this blog. First off what exactly is happening in this movie? I get it is about the lives of “gangsters” and heroin addicts but is that really what the movie is about? I have hard so much hype about this movie and now I am more confused then ever about why this is such a much watch movie on so many different peoples lists. I mean it was cool and all but I expected a lot more out of it then just a bad ass “guy” film.

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“Similar to medieval literary knights, Tarantino’s hit-men emerge from nowhere, without personal history, into a slightly anachronistic representation of the present.” I take this to men even thought we have little to no knowledge of their history we automatically give these people the authoritarian power to be good people we trust. Throughout the film I never looked down on the two pictured (with duck bills) above, even if they were doing things that were horribly illegal. “Jules and Vincent illustrate the tops of black and white “buddies” that has been enduring part of American popular culture since James Fenimore Cooper and Mark Twain, and like everything else in this film, there is an original twist, since Jules is the one to survive,whereas our expectation, for at least some time, is that Vincent will be redeemed, and most likely by the sacrifice of his partner.” Tarantino then plays into the race, class, and gender norms by exceeding our expectations and shifting the center of power like the anti round table. Another theme that pops up in Pulp Fiction is the fragile female (which is represented by Butch’s girlfriend.) This can be found in medieval times as men being the dominate gender. 

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I can see how Pulp Fiction has become such a large culturally impact. For instance I would bet money that the group in the video above got their name from Pulp Fiction along with the group Zeds Dead (a famous EDM group). Also I can now remember countless references to quotes in that movie from my friends and various clothing. Personally I didn’t enjoy the movie to much but thats because of how confused I am after watching it twice. To me I see this movie as a visual representation of how our decision can effect many people even though we may not think it will. I am going to watch this movie again to see if I can finally make sense of it but I need someone to explain to me what this movie is about so I don’t come out of it confused as all hell again. More or less this movie is very entertaining since I cannot get it but also frustrating.  

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Blacking out (at) the bar

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“We celebrate the “Queen of Couponing,” award strange addictions with a giveaway contest, and, hail pop-culture sensation Honey Boo Boo and her go-go juice. The channel wasn’t always riddled in reality shows. Before the pint-size pageant divas, and even the room renovations, “The Learning Channel” was just that … about learning.”

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Well according to the two clips I watch of Honey Boo Boo, TLC is about Americans who claim themselves as “white trash” and are okay with committing a long suicide. Whoa hold up! yes I said it suicide. The reason why they are okay with it is because of how socially acceptable obesity is in our country. We have literally blacked out the bar of what is healthy and what is acceptable. I believe this is because we are afraid to offend anyone and America is so prone to lawsuits.

Personally this Southpark episode was hilarious. It points out a very touchy issue of obesity in our society along with calling out Honey Boo Boo and its popularity. Southpark plays off having a heart attack as if it was just an everyday thing (more or less because they are socially acceptable).

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Shows like Honey Boo Boo and Sister Wives on T(he)L(earning)C(hannel) seems to prove that learning is sacrificed to money. This can be seen in the cancelation of PaleoWorld (which aired in 1994). It wasn’t making enough money so shows like Honey Boo Boo took over. Since reality shows gross way more money then education it just makes more sense for reality shows to be playing on the learning channel (right?).

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I think the big reason why there has been such a turn in our TV (and specifically TLC) is because Americans are obsessed with bettering themselves. They can turn to TV and look at shows such as Honey Boo Boo and say they are so much better off then the people in the show. However on the other side they idealize them since most Americans desire to be on TV and have a show about them. I do realize that there are a lot of people who do not want a TV show based on them or have any desire to be on TV let alone watch TV (like myself) but this group is so small when looking at our entire nation. Most Americans are willing to go to the extreme to become rich and famous and are willing to sacrifice themselves and their loved ones. I mean it is the American dream to be rich and famous am I correct? Even if this notion of rich and famous is destroying their bodies and setting society norms that are hurtful in the long run.

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Fake News

(If you havent watched this video yet please do, its amazing)

My experience with parody news it pretty much summed up above. I don’t watch any parody news but I do get a lot of what is funny or dramatic on my Facebook “news feed” (I laugh at this because I get all my news from my “news feed”, sad but true). Actually my first time watching any parody news has been assigned through this class but I think once I have cable again I may watch Colbert Report. The only thing close to parody news I watch is actually Southpark. I know Southpark stays on top of hot political topics. If you question the accuracy of Southpark please look at this picture.

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Soto does a great job of describing Fake News. “It’s really, lastingly funny because it engages free thought and imagination. In this respect, we might say that satire is best understood as a playful way of addressing reality, one which necessarily assumes that there’s more than one plausible way to interpret things.” We can tie this point back to what we talked about with cartoons and how beneficial they can be to learning and/or understanding a topic. Fake news is a great way for americans to get their news, I believe, since it calls into question the actions of the government in a comedic way. This fake news is even “a legitimate news authority”. “The result is not only biting parody but often political wisdom in the form of an elegant literary vignette.” Fake News has become more trusted because we as a society have called into question our “trusted” news sources. “Today, there’s widespread con­cern that our news organizations are failing to serve their institutional function. Recent deregulation has permitted great centralization of media power: currently six mega-corporations — Disney, Viacom, Time Warner, News Corp, Bertelsmann, and General Electric — own more than 90 percent of the newspaper, magazine, internet, film, radio, tele­vision, and cable media.”

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Fake News has become even more popular since not only questions our daily news but it actually “covers the daily news.” Fake news has been calling into question the “truthiness” of the news today. As Colbert says,” It used to be, everyone was entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts. But that’s not the case anymore. Facts matter not at all. Perception is everything…. Truthiness is “What I say is right, and [nothing) anyone else says could possibly be true.” It’s not only that I feel it to be true, but that / feel it to be true. There’s not only an emotional quality, but there’s a selfish quality.” He basically says selfishness is the underlying principal of topics so someone needs to point this out. Soto closes out her debate on fake news by stating, “The fake news is not only — in its own way — more true to the facts, it’s closer to the cutting edge of new possibilities for political participation. We might say that the fake news keeps faith with the Founders, reminding us that as citizens we have power.”

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The two parts I love most of these videos was when Colbert tip-toed through the muddy section and when he kept on stealing the corn from the person behind him in the production line. The framing behind Colbert saying it was his “fallback” job even calls into question how we look at the job as a farm worker as a low end job, which is caused by the people who usually work those jobs. He originally says he was “hoping for the job of a mexican wrestler” to play on how the people who work farm jobs were mexicans. He calls into to thought of the openness of these jobs to the suppressed classes but in a comedic way. His working on the farms also lets Americans look at what it takes to work those jobs but he makes it so its not some sad documentary. He captivates his viewers while being able to talk about serious issues. This ability to convey serious messages in a comedic way (much like cartoons hehe) has helped to make him, and other parody news sources, so popular. Another reason why he is so popular is because he calls on the truthfulness of what we see. He depicts what it would take as a production worker to being driven to work faster and faster to fill crates but an image like that wouldn’t be shown in the same light in a big media source. It would be viewed as “look how efficient this company works” by any other news source.

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Personally I think that Parody (Fake) News can be very useful for people to understand what exactly is happening in our society today (much like cartoons). They bring up important issues but spread the light on what exactly is happening in a way that is funny but still brings to light the important facts of what is happening. Parody news talks about the dirty details in the cleanest way possible and our real “news sources” should learn from what is being discussed in them.

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