Sunday, December 6, 2009

Jonesin Some Intros

So how should I introduce these fine pieces of work that I have so masterfully crafted over the course of this semester?

I think a great collective idea, that could definitely work for all of these projects, is for each intro to take on the approach of "Everybody's an idiot except for me." It encompasses me being an asshole and me being a know it all, which was what I was going for in my basketball blog to being with. Little did I know that all 4 projects could be done with the same mindset.

Enthusiast Blog -- How could any of you think you know a damn thing about this sport?
Wikitravel -- Do you people REALLY want to know what's going on in this town, instead of listening to some moron?
Web Redesign -- Look at how stupid these Surf Club people are! Their website absolutely sucks! THIS is how it's done...!
Ning Cause Site -- You morons have got to stop getting screwed by these scams. Let me step in and teach you a few things.

I could roll with that for the whole portfolio. Easily. I get cocky when I write (if you haven't noticed). The problem could come about during my presentation -- I don't know how to exactly ACT like this asshole persona because I'm not totally like that. I mean I could, but I don't think I want to. I'd attract such hatred from the crowd. Plus the presentation is on my birthday, and it's hard to be pissed off on your birthday. AND it's my last final! How am I supposed to be anything but a bubbly, charming young man up there?! Ah, such decisions to make in this final week.

Good thing I don't have much work to do in my other classes. Yes, that was a joke.


Looking at all my process blog posts, I realized something. Well, I re-realized it because my mother brings this up all the time, but... anyway... I'm a big time hater. I hate on innocent things, guilty things, normal things, you name it. I enjoy insulting the authors of some of the articles we're supposed to read. I also like to make fun of whatever subject our project is on (ex./ social networking ewwwww).

Basically, this whole process blog makes me come off like a real asshole. I say some really mean things in some really mean ways. Tada, there's an idea. Why don't I base my entire portfolio around me being an asshole! Brilliant!

1.) An angry, in your face person. How can I translate this into an actual THEME? Well, I'd probably try to emulate the types of themes that many stand-up comics use. Guys like Chris Rock, Lewis Black, Denis Leary... these are entertainers that have made careers off "no holds barred, telling it like it is, vulgar, controversial" rhetoric. I feel like I have much the same thing going in my blogs. Somehow, I'd like to center my aesthetic and reflective intros around that.

2.) A lighter take on the whole 'mean guy' thing -- how bout a seemingly angelic, innocent boy (yes, that's me), who unassumingly has the most rotten, foul-mouthed things to say? Sort of like a Stewie Griffin. Or like Cartman when he's faking nice. For example, writing my reflective intros with a gentle tone, only to throw in an F-bomb and a vulgar reference here and there, so as to keep the reader on their toes. How would this translate visually? Beats me, I'd have to play around with that.

3.) Sort of relating to my enthusiast blog would be that of a physical basketball player. I could use a theme much like my 'Broken Ankles' blog, and write everything with an intense tone and tie everything together with basketball. Problem with that would be that it could be a stretch for ALL of the projects (esp. site redesign and the SNS) to be relating to basketball. Oh well...

Ideally I'd like to take things from #2 and combine them with #1 to make my theme. The only problem I feel like I'd run into would be design aesthetics. Nothing is coming to mind for color schemes, fonts, etc. Like I said, I guess I'll just have to play around some.

Friday, December 4, 2009

What I'm Gonna Change

Well, after much consideration (good joke, it was easy), I've decided which two of my projects that I'm going to tear into and revise for the final portfolio.

My Enthusiast Blog
First of all this was my favorite project, and I think I might continue to expand it even after this semester. It has the most potential for improvement, simply because it has the most content. A lot of my posts were real lengthy and sometimes incoherent early on. I feel like in my later posts I really honed in on the type of style that I originally intended to evoke. I think if I take what I've learned from repetition and apply it to those earlier posts, then the blog as a whole will be more complete. Also, as my lovely professor suggested, the blog definitely has room for some more diverse media (aka YouTube videos!). I tried to embed a video into a post the other day, but couldn't really figure it out. I think with a little more focus and time I could throw some good shit in there, though. When it's all said and done, the blog will be the one piece that really MAKES my portfolio.

Wikitravel Site
I'm also going to revise the Wikitravel entry I handed in for my hometown of Rockaway, NJ. I felt rushed on this project -- maybe I didn't give it its due focus, I don't know. Either way, it could use some visual imagery, and the markup isn't exactly correct as it stands. Plus there's tons more content that I've thought to add since the project was due. So I think this would stand to be significantly improved upon.

So those are my choices. What are the similarities between the two? They're MINE, all mine! No pesky group members' messes to clean up. On a serious note, I wouldn't feel right tweaking what other people have done, because that's their product and I wouldn't feel like I had the right to touch it. So I'm focusing on me and what I've been responsible for. Hopefully it all comes together well so that I don't have to take this course all over again...!

Kimball Slice

Soooooo this article was about what makes up a GOOD web portfolio. Apparently this Kimball character is some kinda expert on the subject. I wonder what his credentials for advisement are. Do you think he went to school for that? Ah, I'm just being a prick. He's probably very well-qualified. Anyway, let's take a brief look on what this herb said...

-- Collection... in that it shows the author's body of work
-- Reflective... in that it explains the context of each piece and the process of it all
-- Purposeful... in that all the pieces encompass one goal; they're in there for a reason
-- Audience... in that the author has a specific audience in mind

A couple of more interesting points I stumbled upon...
-- Portfolios are good because they give you the freedom to emphasize your talents and the skills you've picked up as an author. As opposed to that of an exam, where you're only allowed to show what the question dictates to you.
-- A good advantage to creating a portfolio on the web is that you have a REAL audience... anybody can see it.
-- Subtlety, clarity, and consistency -- the keys to the design aesthetic of a web portfolio
-- The author's self-assessment of his/her work is paramount to a revealing and engaging portfolio.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Discussion Forum Topics

1.) Personal Experiences from Real Scam Victims
2.) Anybody Know a Person Who's Been Behind a Scam or Identity Theft Program?
3.) Examples of Scams in the Movies, TV, or Other Media

3 Potential Blog Post Topics

1.) Hints to Help Identify Scams Before You Get Trapped in Them
2.) Common Types of Online Scams
3.) How Identity Theft Has Increased in Recent Years

Monday, November 16, 2009

Compare + Contrast

The gist of Danah Boyd's article:
Social networking sites cause attention whores to be hypocrites. Everyone is in their own little world where they are all-knowing and all-powerful and it is complete BS. Women put up slutty poses and then talk about their deep concern for the environment -- how can they be taken seriously?

The gist of Lance Bennett's article:
Social networking is the new form of being a dutiful citizen. While some may say that us younger civilians are not as involved in these causes and less likely to join activist groups, they are merely ignoring the new medium for doing such things -- the Internet. Its time for these old bastards to wake up to this changing phenomeonon, take the reins off and let the young'ns go nuts because they are capable of great things.

The winner of this argument? Danah Boyd. I really believe that the main purpose of SNSs is for people to create their own ideal identity. These Facebook causes don't actually make any difference in the world -- they are simply a way for its users to say 'Hey, look at me... I care!' I think Mr. Bennett came off as overly optimistic on this one, while Boyd got at the larger truth.