Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Two Tutorials and a High-Concept Piece

On Thursday, 8/30, we'll watch this Bloglines tutorial in class: How to Organize and Track Favorite Blogs at YouTube
We may watch this Blogger Tutorial: Blogger Tutorial on YouTube
A nicely produced video about the concept of Web 2.0, also on YouTube, is: The Machine Is Us/ing Us

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

3 Things We Like

In class today (Tuesday 8/28) each pod was asked to discuss, list and present the 3 main things that they liked or looked forward to as they considered the syllabus/course plan, and 3 things they had questions or concerns about. Here's what students thought:
You liked:
  • No quizzes, tests, or exams--this was by far the most popular feature of the class
  • Can miss three classes
  • Participation a big part of grade
  • Whole semester to write the big paper
  • Structured plan
  • Resources such as the Writing Center and tutors
  • Utilizing blogs and the Internet productively
  • Blogs
  • Writing online
  • Will get better at reading and learn more about it
  • Opportunities for group work and interaction with peers
  • Not always a lecture
  • Me! I seem nice, apparently
You had questions about:
  • Amount of reading and writing--this is the most common concern. (Answer: Yes, there is a lot. Look at the calendar and decide whether this is best Thinking and Writing course for you. However, bear in mind that you do not have to memorize the readings, and that most of the blog writing is informal, not requiring multiple revisions.)
  • What will we blog about? (Answer: the assigned readings, mostly)
  • What is the semester writing research project about and how long is it? (Answer: 15-20 pages on a area of interest to you within this topic: How social computing empowers (or fails to empower) women or another marginalized group. Social computing can include blogs, instant messaging, online communities such as Facebook and MySpace, wikis, text messaging, and more. You will learn more about this through the assigned readings.)
  • Where is the Writing Center? (Answer: Blake House[Correction: 81 Blake St. 8/17/07 TM].)
  • Why so many books for an Internet class? (Answer: Because.)
  • Will we use Devil's Highway? (No. There will be an extra-credit opportunity but it is not an integral part of the course plan.)
  • What is a blog? (Short for web log. An online diary or journal, often personal, but often political, academic, or business-oriented.)
  • Semester project topic--too broad? too specific? (Again, if you can't imagine being excited about any aspect of the topic, that's fine, but this might not be the best Thinking and Writing course for you. Consider one more in line with your interests.)
  • How are women and minorities discriminated against online, anyway? (We'll keep talking about the complex question of power, privilege, and access, and the ways in which the virtual world may extend and reinforce social inequities, or may alleviate inequity. Ultimately, this is the question that you will take a stand on and defend in your semester-long writing project.)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Podcasting with Gabcast

Clink on the link to listen to: A Blog of One's Own #1 - Podcasting with Gabcast,
which explains how to create a short audio recording with Gabcast for ITW 101.

Friday, August 3, 2007


Here's a short audio recording I made about podcasting. It may be a little bit hard to decipher the speech at the very end, so I'll put the text of it here.
Introduction to Podcasting
...Finally, Audacity allows me to create additional tracks that will play at the same time as my recording. That means that if I think my voice alone sounds a little boring, I can splice in that cool mp3 of the great blues artist Robert Johnson that I got from the Internet Archive Open Source audio collection...and Robert Johnson keeps me company singing "Phonograph Blues."
This short introduction to podcasting was recorded on Friday, August 3rd, 2007, in Swanzey, New Hampshire.
You can learn more about the Gabcast service at
Audacity can be downloaded at
Robert Johson recorded "Phonograph Blues" in 1936 in San Antonio, Texas. The MP3 version of his recording can be downloaded from the Audio collection at

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Course Description

From the Keene State College course catalog about "A Blog of One's Own: Women and Authorship in the Digital Revolution:
This course examines the ways in which information technology is reshaping the relationship between reader, writer, and text, and the role of women’s voices in the digital revolution. Readings to illuminate the meeting place between politics and pop culture will include: Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own, Klein and Burstein’s Blog! How the Newest Media Revolution is Changing Politics, Business and Culture, and Riverbend’s Baghdad Burning. A semester-long research project will challenge you to explore and respond to a chosen topic related to social computing as a means of empowerment for women and other marginalized groups. Participation in group discussions and contribution to online weblogs and podcasts will aid in your development as self-aware participants in public discourse. No advanced computer skills are necessary to enter the course.