Technology, sooo amazing. Just the other day, I found out from a friend that on my mac, I can have a voice read my notes out to me. I have always wanted this! To begin, you choose the voice you want to do this. I chose Alex because he had to most clear voice out of all of them. You then highlight what you want to be read, and voila! So this past weekend, I spent even more time with my mac then usual. But hey, at least I can say that I was being productive and studying! I literally used it to help me study for my exam this past Tuesday (and I think it helped). I had Alex (the voice) read my notes to me over and over. This sort of relates to the Siri concept I wrote about, but instead of answering you, it reads aloud what you tell it to. This takes technology to the next level! We don’t even have to physically read anymore, we can have a laptop read it to us! Maybe next the mac will be able to write your essays for you…
This week we talked about the Twitter revolution, I am not really a user of twitter, but this discussion brought me to think about an article I had recently read. A friend actually posted the link to the article through Twitter, and it was then posted to my Facebook newsfeed. My friend posts all kinds of neat articles through his Twitter, which he has made connected so that it also posts to his Facebook. This article in particular is about something related to all these online crazes and devices. The author of this article’s twitter page is actually at the top of the article, so you can follow him and read more of his cool posts. The article is called 20 life-tracking tools for better health, wealth and productivity. It is about what the title states, devices that allow you to track your life, and make your life easier. There are devices that allow you to track your nutrition and exercise, time management, even apps like “LifeCycle” that tracks your sleep patterns (quality, level etc)…. There are financial trackers, mood trackers, online tracker (to see where you spend your time online the most). Some of these caught me off guard. Like “23andme”, the one about DNA, “Send 23andMe a swab of the inside of your mouth and receive DNA results, and you’ll get updates as more is discovered about genetics.” No thanks!! DNA is something that you do not want to be sending to some website, where who knows who can access it, that is so private, it’s like your true self being revealed. It’s just not something that should be thrown around. Another one was a “sextracker” that, yep you guessed it, tracks your sex life. “You tell the site when it happened, how long it lasted and with whom you did it. If you really want to get into it, the iPhone app Passion uses the phone’s accelerometer to give you a score each time you do the deed.” WOW, okay now that’s pushing it, a score?! Participating in sexual activity or romance is beyond private for most (sane) people. Some of these devices and apps are cool I have to say, but I think some of them are just pushing it….
The link to the article, take a look!
SPREADING LIKE WILDFIRE….
As discussed in class, a viral video is one that becomes extremely popular through Internet sharing. This is usually done through YouTube, social media websites such as Facebook etc. Viral videos can be humorous, but they can be all types of anything at this day in age. Many videos are being shot by amateurs on these devices, which makes it very inexpensive (or often times free). These videos are often taken randomly by someone with no intentions to sell it or make any type of profit off of it, and sometimes they don’t even expect it to spread on the Internet like wildfire, hitting 1 million views in a few weeks. Many videos that are online that have become ended up going viral, were originally intended for the viewing of friends and family. I’m sure many people when they just happened to catch something on video with their cell phone spontaneously, did not think it would end up having thousands of views and comments, and come even being discovered by Ellen. Currently, a rather known two little girls are an example a video going viral. The video of the girls singing Nicki Minaj songs like her hit ‘Super Bass’, was posted and within a few weeks the girls were practically famous, showing up on Ellen, and even being able to meet Nikki Minaj in person (how lucky!) I even feel like I was apart (a very very small part, but still) of this video going viral, because I took my own video on my phone while the girls were on Ellen and shared with friends. I wont babble too much about this video, because most people know about it already (since it spread like wildfire, and has millions of views). But I will say that I wish when I was a child to have gotten to experience what these girls got to, meeting a famous celebrity and going on a shopping spree at toys R us! I’m jealous of these girls, and they’re only 8! I wonder whats going to happen from here… and if they will make more videos, or hold off until they are older. hmm… maybe they will be famous one day too.
The Newest Addition to Apple - The IPhone 4S
Hundreds of people lining up for hours, even camping out, to be one of the first to get the new IPhone 4s in their palm and try it out. You have to be living under a rock to not know about this release. More than 1 million people pre-ordered the iPhone 4S within 24 hours of the pre-sale. One of the major (and amazing) selling points of the latest iPhone is SIRI, which is a voice recognition assistant, which lets you tell Siri to do a bunch of thing like text someone you are going to be late, ask it your physics homework question, check your e-mail for you and whatever else you tell it to do. It answers you back, and does what you tell it to do. It’s like your best friend. I’m not going to lie and say I think this is stupid, because it’s unreal and I wouldn’t mind having one (I have the original IPhone 4 now). Not only will it do tasks you ask it to do, it can literally have a conversation… If you say “Siri, I love you” it will respond with an answer like “you are the wind beneath my wings” or “I hope you don’t say that to any other mobile phones!” If you say “I’m very tired today” It will respond “you haven’t slept a wink?” I think this is hilarious. The only thing about this, is the thought that we can have a talking relationship with a PHONE. Technology is becoming SO advanced, and we are becoming more and more dependent on it in our everyday lives. It only makes me wonder what the future will be like. (For those of you that already have an IPhone and want something like this feature but don’t want to pay for the new one, there is an app that does similar to what Siri does… and it’s free. It’s called Dragon)
On a second note, I saw the commercial for ford for the first time the other day about the car parallel parking itself. This is crazy! (and useful, because I despise parallel parking). Soon cars will drive themselves, steer themselves, park themselves and we will just be the passenger getting to where we are going by just sitting there. We won’t even have to DRIVE them anymore. Going to get your drivers license will be like “Okay, now get in the car and simply tell the car where you want to go. Great, you pass! Here is your license” Okay maybe not, just me thinking aloud, but who knows what the future holds!
Example videos of Siri doing tasks: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MKRwV3DTVLo
A little Facebook post I came across a while ago:
“Welcome to Facebook; the place where people add you as a friend and walk past you on the street. Where relationships are perfect, affairs are started, and liars believe they are telling the truth. Your enemies visit your profile the most, yet your friends and family block you, and even though you write what you’re really thinking, someone always takes it the wrong way, and people think your status is about them.”
Oh, Facebook. Such a love-hate relationship with the thing. What would we do without it? What alternative is there? I mean I’m sure another social network chapter will come about in our lives eventually, but for now, everyone’s mother, grandma, neighbour and dog has Facebook. So this is a hard thing to just, change. So what I have found out is not only am I sharing my information with the 800 some odd Facebook friends I have, but to the rest of the world as well. Facebook is making our information public, as it says in the article (http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/05/facebook-rogue) your name, your picture, where you live in, the names of your friends and what have you are all made public, by default. In turn, when you show up to certain websites, while logged onto Facebook, the sites will “personalize” your experience using your information. Now hold on a minute there Facebook! This is ridiculous! It’s like they own us, giving the world our information. Similarly, an article that’s made reference to (http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2009/05/facebooks-e-mail-censorship-is-legally-dubious-experts-say/) in the above article states “Facebook declined to answer questions about whether it similarly searched private messages for references to illegal drugs, underage drinking or shoplifting”. I knew that Facebook didn’t have very good privacy terms and conditions, but I think I need to start being more careful, even my private, personal messages might not be guaranteed private anymore? I’m not going to delete my Facebook account, obviously (I’m addicted, who isn’t) so what is there to do? Cut down the amount of time I spend on it? Delete some of my information? I feel it is already too late for that….
I don’t doubt that almost the entire class has seen Rebecca Black’s “Friday” video, but here it is if you want to laugh once more.
Rebecca Black became an overnight sensation over something hillarious. This 13-year-old girl was made famous (or whatever you want to call her) by means of communication over excessive amounts of mass ridicule. I remember hearing about this video, everyone was making fun of her and claiming it was absolutely dreadfully the worst thing on the Internet. I remember thinking jeeze people cut her some slack, she’s probably not THAT bad. BUT she is, she’s worse than bad, she deserves not the slightest bit of slack. As catchy as her songs might be, they make my ears bleed. However, while we’re watching her video and laughing, she’s laughing all the way to the bank. Her video got millions of views, which means a lot of dollars. She is actually a genius… making a ridiculous song and video, and then releasing it knowing everyone is going to download it because they HAVE to hear it after all the hype it is causing. It seems almost anyone that knows their days of the week can become famous. You don’t even have to be able to sing, as we have seen in Rebecca black’s “Friday” song. Through means of new media, it seems to be proven quite easy to be able to become famous through things such as Youtube. Even Justin Bieber, being discovered as a young child on YouTube (although he can actually sing and people actually like him). Funny enough, Rebecca Black apparently tweeted Justin Bieber asking to do a collaboration, and he replied “I think I’ll pass”, Rebecca then said “well never say never!” I guess we shouldn’t say never, because through many types of new media such as the Internet and YouTube, it seems anything is possible.