Semester Complete!

Finished my first 9 week semester with an A and an A-, not too shabby! I really enjoyed my first semester at SNHU. The classes were challenging and the professors were fantastic. I entered a photo into their first ever Art Contest which ends in a couple weeks.

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Finally……….

An update. Since I graduated from CPCC in May and the class for which this blog was originally created has ended I have changed the title. I plan to continue the blog however. I am enrolled at SNHU to earn my BA in Graphic & Media Arts with a concentration in Web Design, and a minor in Creative Writing. After much soul searching, I decided to change course from my original plan to work towards a BS in Mobile & Web programming. Why? Mostly because I just didn’t LOVE it, and also because the field is dominated by young men, and I am an older woman. For the next 20+ years I want to do something I love, not just what I have to do to make it/get by.

Classes at SNHU do not begin for about a month, so I will be working on wrapping up some personal projects in the meantime. Sweaters I am knitting/crocheting for my granddaughters, some organization/cleaning out at home, and hopefully painting my living room and bathroom.

Feeling Blue Image and Using Free Content

stockvault-feeling-blue116730

Image license terms:

This photo is free for personal, educational and non-commercial usage.

You may not use it to promote a product or a service.

**************************************************************************************************

That is the license for this particular image. As this is for a class assignment, I believe the use is appropriate. I used it primarily because I found it beautiful and haunting. Further uses could be for other assignments or a personal website or blog. I would not be allowed to use it on a commercial website or on a website or materials that are promoting a product or service.

Wish Trip map

This map is a Wish Trip map. I would love to take this road trip with my daughter in the next year or two. We start at home- the lavendar marker. The gold markers are places I have never been but have wanted to go. The fuschia markers are places I have been but my daughter has not. The teal markers are places I have either lived or have relatives living there now. I could not embed the interactive map without paying, but the link will take you there if you’d like to zoom around.

Map Link

wish-map

This was a pretty cool exercise and I have saved this map for future editing and possible implementation!

Private Universe Theory & the Informal Study of Students

For the most part, the informal study of students in our Moodle forum showed a basic understanding of the concepts and most were fairly correct or close. My own was close, but not quite correct. Having been out of any type of science class for a long time, I am not sure how much the models I saw in school and those teachings were reflected in my answer, but I do recall the elliptical models as pictured in the video. The tilt on the axis however I did remember.

The video was fascinating, especially how they demonstrated even with direct teaching how difficult it was to overcome Heather’s private theories.

What does it mean for education? One thing I can see is a need for accurate and correct modeling even for the youngest ages when teaching these concepts. Heather’s private theories were likely formed throughout her younger years from what she gleaned from the elementary science teachings and what she learned through TV and other media. “Dumbing down”, or representing concepts inaccurately to younger children could affect these private theories.

As for new media, I believe they could shape such “private theories’ to more accuracy by ensuring what they produce and put out there, not only specifically for education, but in all aspects, is accurate and correct in its fundamentals. Too often we see things taken as “fact” when they are only something that some media outlet has put out there as opinion or entertainment. Parents need to be cautious about what they present as “educational” to their children, and what is truly only entertainment.

This article is interesting and explores trying to change misperceptions with factual correction. At one point it asks

If factual correction is ineffective, how can you make people change their misperceptions?

Geotagging Photos on Flickr

Although technically extra credit, I decided to complete this assignment for two reasons: in case I missed something else or didn’t finish another assignment, and because I actually love taking pictures and wanted to explore Flickr’s geotag feature.

homossassas_springs

The above image was taken in Homossassa Springs State Park in Florida, and is one of the photos I added to the map on Flickr.

As for the geotag feature on Flickr, it took a bit of poking around to find the instructions and the actual map, as some of the links were outdated and there was no link on the first page anymore. However, it is found under “organize” on the “more” options, and from that screen you can choose “map”. I actually did several photos per location, all photos were taken by me, with the lone exception of the Iraq photo which was taken by my husband while he was working over there. I did do more than 5 locations, and a total of over 20 photos. All photos have the tag asuweb20 as required. I did a search and my photos came up as well as many others I am guessing from previous classes. I really enjoyed looking through everyone’s pictures. You can view my Flickr here.

This video and topic are incredible. I was blown away by the technology and what can be done with the collective photographs from social networks. This is definitely worth watching. I did a search for Microsoft’s Photosynth and the page is here.

As for EXIF data, I found a great article here. EXIF stands for Exchangeable Image File Format. EXIF data  is comprised of a range of settings such as ISO speed, shutter speed, aperture, white balance, camera model and make, date and time, lens type, focal length and much more.  One drawback however is that the only web-friendly (in terms of size) file format that can handle EXIF is JPEG, which means that you wouldn’t be able to read the data from other image formats such as GIF/PNG or from websites that use Adobe Flash or other similar products. Additionally, many photographers deliberately strip EXIF data from their images to protect their images, while others do it to save website traffic as EXIF adds to the file size of the image. Most modern phones are capable of adding geotags in the EXIF data of a picture, but virtually none do so by default. If your digital camera has built-in GPS it can add geotag information to your EXIF files. Flickr and other online photo sharing sites have methods by which you can map or add geotag information to your photos as another option.

This week in review

Our class boards have gotten quiet, and I hope that more of my fellow WEB214 students will start to participate. I know when deadlines are not hard and fast it is easy to let things slide but this class is actually quite enjoyable and the assignments are not terribly difficult.

As I try to decide on whether to start my Bachelor’s Degree 3 days before graduation here, I am reflecting on my 2.5 years I spent getting this AAS degree. It’s not always convenient to work, but we have control over our own efforts. I truly believe anyone, at any time, can get a degree but what one gets out of the process is a direct result of one’s effort.