Archive for the ‘Assignments’ Category

ds106 Reflections

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

I originally signed up for this class as a Gen-Ed requirement. I cannot draw or paint, as I am not very artistically inclined, but I had experience in computer programs like Photoshop and WindowsMediaMaker, so I figured that this would be my best bet. I found that during the first class I was a little concerned as to what I had gotten myself into. The whole introducing yourself via Skype was pretty weird. Now, reflecting on the course, I am glad that this is the course I chose. I think that I  gained something out of the class other than just a grade, which is not what I have expected for other gen-eds. I enjoyed doing a lot of the assignments and I can use these computer skills outside of the class. The most important thing I gained from the course is building an online identity. While I still only think of my blog as a place to hold assignments, I think I accomplished a lot on the blog, and I am glad that I have something to show for a class rather than a stack of graded papers.

I found that  the beginning of the semester was my favorite part of the class. I enjoyed the design and visual assignments, I think I was much better at them than the audio and visual assignments. I think I did my best at the beginning of the semester doing design work. Video was my least favorite part of the course, as while all of digital work can be tedious, I at least enjoyed design and was pleased with the final product. Video work was not really enjoyable for me, and I found that I was not entirely pleased with the end result. I think that we had fewer stars on the design assignments as well, and I could put more effort into one assignment, while with the video assignments I could finish one assignment, and then feel like I still had so much more to do.

As for the title of the course, I am still not entirely sure why it is called a storytelling course. I may be confused still on the idea of this, but throughout the course I did not really feel as though I was telling a story. I feel like we only touched on storytelling at the beginning of the course, and when were wrapping up the course. I understand that the idea of digital storytelling is still under construction, so to speak, but this is not what I imagined. When I signed up for the course, I imagined a type of photo journalism I guess. Taking a story and using pictures or videos to tell it. The syllabus outlines the definiton as “using digital tools so that ordinary people can tell their own real-life stories.” I don’t know that this is what I did. Is making minimalist posters, adding a splash of color, or defamiliarizing something telling a story?  Other assignments, such as “A Day in the Life,” or the “Sound Story” are applicable to the title, while I don’t see the connection in others. I realize that students compose a lot of the assignments, should we have to make it fit more concisely with the storytelling concept. I admit that when I submitted my assignments, I was not thinking of storytelling at all.

These are just my thoughts as I reflect, I’m not staying that the course is not a storytelling course. I’m just pointing out that it’s not what I expected, and I don’t think that the idea of digital storytelling was fully developed as we were doing assignments. In the beginning of the semester we talked about what telling a story is, I think that during the transitions between digital mediums there should be more discussion on how these things do fit into the digital storytelling realm, because I think this fell off in the middle of the semester.

As for the idea of a cyber infrastructure, I still think that the idea of college students creating a sort-of online portfolio is the most compelling part of the argument. I’m not sure that I completely understand that goes into Campbell’s argument or in web storytelling in general, but I agree that having something to show for your work is important. I still like the idea that students can engage online with things such as UMWBlogs and other websites. I am glad that this was a big feature of the class, because many classes, particularly lower level courses are not entirely concerned with anything other than tests. I have found that I have gotten more out of the courses that require online participation and reflection on a blog, rather than lecture notes and tests.



Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

In order to fulfill the participation requirement I have done several things:

1. Inspire Submissions


2. Commenting

I think I have done a fair amount of commenting. I have the links to everyones blog on Google Reader, which is also a widget on my iGoogle homepage, so everyones work shows up everytime I open the internet. If I see a new blog post with an interesting title I usually comment on it. I admit that I commented more in the design and visual assignments, because that was my favorite part of the class.

3. Suggesting Daily Creates

I submitted two Daily Create Suggestions

  • Experiment with your camera. Take a photo using a setting you are unfamiliar with.
  • Record yourself singing the theme song of your favorite childhood TV show.

Week Eleven Recap

Sunday, April 15th, 2012

After a week or two of not doing any Daily Creates, I figured I would give them a try this week. Although, I found that I did not like any of them offered this week, but I did work on my final project. I think I’m doing pretty well so far, and I’m enjoying it.


As for the assignments, I got my 15 stars done. This week was pretty easy compared to other weeks. I liked the idea of remixing assignments, but I guess the system still needs to be perfected. As we have pointed out in class, not all of the assignments make sense, but I’m not exactly sure that there is a way to fix that.

For my 15 Stars I did remixes for:

A Day In The Life

One Archetype, Five Movies, Five Seconds


Word [remixed]

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

I did an assignment that was proposed in class, to take the word and use fonts to visualize it and put it in another language, which created this assignment. I decided to use a word from another language that we don’t have in English. I chose the word “Espirit d’escalier” from the French language. This is the term in French for that moment when you think of a good comeback, a while after you actually needed it (which should have a word in English!).


There weren’t many examples of this assignment, so I just started from scratch. It would be difficult to make this into a visual, so I just played around with some fonts. Quick and easy assignment!

Movie Scenes That Changed My Life

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

My dad and I have always been close, so for this assignment I chose some of the movie scenes from the movies I remember watching with him as a child and some of our favorites.

A Little More About the Movies I Chose:

1. Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith

Of course, we watched all of the Stars Movies, but I chose Episode III: Revenge of The Sith because it has one of my favorite scenes, the scene where Anakin and Obi Wan fight and Anakin becomes Darth Vader.

2. Men of Honor

The “Twelve Steps to Honor” scene is one of my favorite movie scenes ever, and I can remember the first time I watched this movie with my dad. Even now, he will turn it on every time it’s on TV and recite the lines from this scene.

3. SpiderMan

I was about 10 when we went to see this movie in the theater. While I know it’s not the first movie I went to see with my dad in the theater, it’s the first one I can remember right now.


The process was simple, I just used the basic of iMovie to create it, cutting, adding transitions, and titles.


Monday, April 2nd, 2012

For the numbers assignment, I chose to use the number 3 because it is a number that I notice is commonly used. From American culture, the hamburger, fries, and a drink, to political movements, “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity” in The French Revolution, to series, like The Three Musketeers and Star Wars, the number 3 is prominent everywhere. I used a variety of images to show where the number 3 occurs naturally, such as with triplets or clovers, to where man uses the number to achieve its goals. 3 is a simple number and can be remembered easily, so it is found a lot in life.


5 Soldiers In 5 Seconds

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

For the assignment “One Archetype, Five Movies, Five Seconds”, I chose to use a soldier as my archetype, as I do like a good war movie.

The movies I included are:

1. Saving Private Ryan

2. Flags of Our Fathers

3. We Were Soldiers 

4. A Few Good Men

5. Black Hawk Down

YouTube Discussion

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

In class last night, we discussed YouTube and its popularity in this generation. We discussed how YouTube videos travel across the web and why it is so popular. I think YouTube is popular because it’s entertaining with little effort. All you need is the internet and a key term and you can stay entertained for hours. It’s also just a bunch of average people putting their homemade video clips on the web. Unlike movies created in Hollywood, we can relate to these clips or it can make them funnier because they are not staged.

Next, we discusses memes and why they are popular. We were assigned a YouTube clip to analyze. We were assigned “Charlie Bit Me” and we decided it was popular because it had cute kids with accents, it was simple, homemade, and short. We created the “Kids With Accents” Genre.

Video Essay

Sunday, March 25th, 2012

I analyzed the move J.Edgar, directed by Clint Eastwood. There weren’t too many clips on YouTube of the movie, so I chose what I could find. I think I got some important scenes. I wanted to focus on Eastwood’s decision to focus on an aspect of Hoover’s life that most would not choose, because it makes the movie what it is. I used iMovie to create this. I just edited the clips, put them together, and did a voiceover. I think there are a few glitches in it, but I think it came out well for the most part.

A Day In The Life

Sunday, March 25th, 2012

This was my first video assignment using iMove. I recorded some of my average weekday, which normally just includes waking up, going to class, doing homework, and then repeating the next day. It so happened that it was a nice day, so I was able to sit outside and get some work done. It was pretty to do, and  I think it came out well. The camera is a little shaky, but I guess that was inevitable with walking.

To create this video I did several things:

1. Sped Up Video:

I recorded about 15 minutes worth of video, by speeding it up I was able to condense it down to about 3 minutes. In order to do, I double clicked on the clip itself. A menu will come up which has the option of speed. I had to convert the clip, just by clicking convert, I don’t if every video needs to do that. There will be an option ranging from a turtle to a rabbit. For some clips I sped it up as far as it would go, but for most I sped it up to the second to last option.

2. Add Music:

For this, I used Dirpy to convert an instrumental to an MP3. I clicked to music note option on the right hand side and searched for the Mp3 to add it in.

3. Add Transitions:

We learned how to do this in class, but to reiterate: I clicked the hourglass looking icon on the menu on the right hand side. I couldn’t record myself in class, so I just added a transition there.  I played around with some of the texts until I liked it.