week 9 – monday (15 August 2011)

Digital Divide: the gap between those who have access to or who can benefit from technology and those who do not/cannot


  • Points sheet updated : does not include revisions to Diigo or resource/reading posts for this week
  • Reminder: I will be evaluating your blogs – make sure you have all posts categorized, a readable design, and something on your “about” page (several of you still have this page published with the default WordPress “this is a sample page” text)
  • For those of you writing a book review or paper – these are due by 5 pm this Friday. Book reviews should be published on your blog as a blog POST; research papers should be published on your blog as a PAGE and should be accompanied by a short blog post that “announces” the paper and links to the page.

Lecture/Discussion – Digital Divide + Personal Branding (ppt)

Final Assignment

  • A comment on THIS BLOG POST about the course — what will you take-away to other classes or post-UW? What was your biggest surprise? What should be dropped in future classes? What needs more time?
  • Worth 7 extra-credit points (it’s a comment, after all); due end of day Wednesday (extended to noon on Thursday).


About Kathy E. Gill (@kegill)

Digital evangelist, writer, teacher. Webmaster at King County Elections; educator at UW. Transplanted Southerner; teach newbies to ride motorcycles! @kegill, gplus.to/kegill, http://wiredpen.com

Posted on August 15, 2011, in Class Notes. Bookmark the permalink. 25 Comments.

  1. Anneka, Holly, Parisa

    Question 1:

    We made a list of priorities of things we would invest in.

    1. Clean water – health reasons, agriculture, food/cooking
    2. Reliable electricity – Cooking, heat, tools, etc…
    3. Good roads – transportation of goods, accessibility to villages/places
    4. Internet access – communication, if used as a positive tool it can include education and learning from the internet
    5. Education – growth of knowledge, prosperity

  2. group: nathan, tim, tammy, and danny
    I think we should start with clean water and then reliable electricity, and then internet access, then education, then good roads. We think its most important to live first, so clean water is essential. If the water is dirty, people can get sick and die. Reliable electricity is more than just internet but can be used for stoves and lights and such. Internet and education are very connected. With the internet education becomes more available and more standardized. Teachers would be able to use the internet to standardize curriculum and bring access to more students. Good roads come last because cars are a luxury that is not really necessary. Getting from point A to point B on a good road is not too different than using a bad road…

  3. Gary Woolsey, Chieh-Hsin (Jessie) Lin
    1) Clean water 2) electricity 3) internet 4) education 5) Good roads . We would choose clean water over everything else because water is the basic human need that’s essential to the survival of human kind. People need electricity because they need light to be able to do things at night. We think internet is more important than education because nowadays more people do self-taught through the internet that going to school and get someone to give you lecture may not be necessary. Lastly, we don’t see good roads as important .Although in 19 century good roads contributed to the western civilization , internet , an invisible road that connects people , wasn’t an option at the time therefore an “visible” road was essential for people’s communication.

  4. Sean McGuire, Cecilia ting, Colleen Glodowski and Jake Mudd (question 1)
    1. clean Water 2. Education 3.Roads 4. Electricity 5. Internet
    We would first require clean running water. We can not establish a functioning healthy country without the most basic nutrient of clean water. After that we want to make sure the body and mind are healthy, so a good education will only allow the next best step to having a functional country. Once we are healthy and educated, we will build roads to connect and tie together our community. the next steps will be electricty and internet will remain last, but prominantly important to have!

  5. The most important thing I took out of this course is managing my digital profile. I think I have a better understanding of networks and how we use computers to communicate. I have also learned how to be skeptical. I cannot trust everything i read of the internet, and should be better at checking my sources. I think this will help me both at UW and in the future.
    Overall I think this course was very good, The one thing i would focus one is more communication theory. Not just learning how we use the internet to communicate, but why is a valuable tool.

  6. Grace, Xiaoxi

    We would invest most resources to education because education is very important in a way that it would help future of developed country to grow bigger. Resources can help students to have good environment, good teachers, classes, books, and etc. Then clean water is important to keep the citizens healthy so healthy people can recieve education and work for a country. We believe they are called ‘developed country’ because they already developed reliable electricity, good roads, and internet access to give people comfort, ways to communicate, and ways to connect with peers on the road. They are all essential resources we need in order to live and keep a advanced country.

  7. The most important thing I took out of this course is know how the digital media and the Internet influence our life, and how they improve recently as well as lots of kinds of online social network which are very useful in specific ways. I will use the some of the online tools that I learn in this class such as Diigo, in the future. Overall I really like this course which provides lots of information for me. The aim of every readings and topics are clearly. My biggest surprise is that there are lots of useful tools there online that can help my study which I did not know!! I would say that it is good to remain everything in this class and add some more opportunities for students to work on the online tools that they like.

  8. What I will take-away to my other classes would be my expanded knowledge on digital communication. I learned a lot on how new media is heavily used by everyone today, so by networking, my chances at achieving a goal is closer. My biggest surprise would be that there are so many forms of networking. There’s your everyday well known ones and ones that I didn’t even know existed! I enjoyed this class as a whole because it was interested, but I have to say that the gradesheet is such a hassle to follow because it isn’t as organized as the traditional UW grading system. So, that needs to be either dropped or more efficiently used.

  9. This was actually the first class digital media course i’ve ever taken. To begin with, I was very unfamiliar with it and only knew very little. Through this class, I learn so much about mass media and how it influences life itself. It’s used for so many things and it’s one of our survival necessities. The only thing I knew was social networking, because it was something that I do everyday. This class really stretched my knowledge and widened my eyes. I learned a lot from learning new terms to how-to and what different website were used for (i.e. Diigo/Wordpress). Not only that, it was also a period of time to decide what career path I would like to go, and this class helped confirm my decision. One thing I did have trouble with was the grade-sheet. It was challenging to keep up with all the assignments that I did and trying to figure out if they were all on the gradesheet or not. I had trouble really on technology with my grade! hahah Other than that, I think it was a great learning period for me.

  10. Although I knew this class was focused upon New Media concepts, I had no idea I was getting involved with a hands on class that would really challenge my internet capabilities, and expand the way I think about social networks, online news, tools and resources, and the future in education and politics. In the beginning of the course I felt disoriented. It took me awhile to understand how wordpress worked, and how I was supposed to correctly submit assignments. However, after getting used to the programs (Diigo included) I felt like I was able to navigate more comfortably. That alone showed me the progress I had made just in 10 weeks! I really love the material you taught us. It was basically a “how to” class for me, which was something I realize after taking this class that I was in dire need of. I have been inspired to continue down the digital communications field because of this class. I enjoy seeing the world’s contributions to the world wide web, the social media and tools that have expanded our forms of communication to where they are today. Hopefully in the near future, I can continue taking more Media and Communication classes! The only thing I would change is dedicating more time to learning how to navigate a website/tool before we had to submit an assignment; that way, it would eliminate confusion and stress for both parties. Otherwise, I had a fantastic time in this class and learned a lot! Perfect summer class to expand my views and learn about tools that will help my life become a tad easier, and move with the evolution of the web and its gadgets! :)

  11. I will take a few things away from this class that I will be able to apply to other classes as well as life. I didn’t really know much about blogging or Twitter before taking this class and now I realize the importance of both. When news breaks over Twitter before traditional media outlets, that is when it becomes more than just another social media site. I didn’t know how easy it was to have a free blog online and now if I want to have my own space on the web, I know how to make a cool blog. Diigo is also a tool I will use in the future, for my own personal bookmarking as well as finding information. I didn’t realize how much I was really being overloaded with information before taking this class and I now think I can effectively manage it. The only problem I had with the class were the expectations early on in the quarter. I wasn’t very clear with how assignments were to be submitted, and I was generally confused. I picked it up as the quarter went on, but I missed one of the first assignments that I couldn’t make up. I noticed that several other students missed the same assignment so I figure it wasn’t just me who was unclear. I really enjoyed this class however and really liked the discussions.

  12. I really enjoyed this class. From this class I learned new ways of getting information quickly. I enjoy using diigo, I actually had a lot of my own private diigo bookmark now even I never heard of it before. This class gave a new view of the now day’s media. I think maybe we can spend more time on Technology in Childhood part, personally I enjoyed that part most. I like the DL in class. It is a new experience for me, I have never done it before, it help me learned a lot while I am teaching the stuff to my group mates. Thank you Kathy for the wonderful quarter, you are very helpful and once again, I enjoyed this class.

  13. I learned and will take away a couple of very important things after taking this course. One of them is managing my digital profile. I have already started up my google + profile and am being much more careful with what I put on it and how I post things and to whom. I want to keep a professional clean look but at the same time show people a little bit about who I am as an individual without getting too casual.

    I am also now much more aware of what I search for and what I get as a return to those queries. I noticed just yesterday the advertisements in my hotmail inbox were exactly what I was searching for 10 minutes earlier. I am going to pay much more attention to those kinds of things and clear out my history on my browsers.

    I will also try to use another browser besides IE more often since IE’s standards are much lower than the other browsers! :)

    One thing I found difficult in the class was getting a response to an email sent. Something to look at and work on for the next go-around! But, overall I loved the class! It was fun!

  14. I loved this class. I enjoy that it didn’t jump into current technology as if everyone was all in the same page. I actually feel like I was able to grasp the basic concepts of the internet and the functionality of how it works. This alone was tremendous for me! I think it led the way to introduce the concepts related to the weekly topics.
    I think part of the biggest surprise was how large the internet world truly is. Between RSS, Facebook, My space, Twitter, Google and the tools that people use everyday was put into perspective. I have always talked about the businesses on facebook, but never quite linked the reasons to why and the extent they serve. I also appreciated the class surrounds the personal and class blog- great concept! I don’t know if anything really should be dropped. The topics were relevant, the course work was valid and the class was worth while!

  15. I will certainly take a lot out of this class to the rest of my UW career and beyond: I honestly did not care much about how the rest of the world interacted with the Internet and media before taking this course. Now I realize just how much my own life is intertwined with those of others due to my extensive connections through social networking and e-commerce. I’ve really had to think about how the things I do could affect others, whether it be what I buy online or what I say in a tiny comment on an article post. I was greatly surprised that I would have so much to say on the topic of technology. (Don’t laugh, I still consider myself a late adopter, so I would think that I would not be enthusiastic about new technology discussions.) Perhaps in the future, the course instructor could consider being more specific about what assignments need to be submitted and under what label. I think the course was terrific other than that and enough time was devoted to each topic so as to digest information thoroughly. Thanks for providing such a great experience, Kathy!

  16. What I would take away from this class is the spirit to embrace new technologies as they come along. Before taking this class, I tend to ignore new things and be too lazy to get out of my comfort zone to give them a shot. To me, every class session is like a 2 hour complete package that teaches you about what’s going on in the cyber worlds nowadays. Websites such as wordpress, digg.com and type with me that I have never heard about have become my new favoriates and made me realize how convenient and sufficient open sources could benefit with your life and work, which is also my biggest surprise just by thinking about how much I have missed.
    I really like the organization and time management of this class . Both the lecture and group discussion time help me and my peers communicate and exchange our own experiences. Because I enjoin group discussion so much, I personally hope that future students of this class should be given more discussion time and topics to engage more in the class.
    Thank you for the wonderful quarter!

  17. Before I take this class, I was not interested in new technology and digital media. I thought it is none of my business. However, I learned lots of information from this class and became a tech lover. When you introduced new websites that I never heard, I felt like I’m such an old-fashioned person and it was like I have been living another world that I never experienced.I mainly learned and was surprised how digital media is deeply rooted in my life and how it changes society. Also I was surprised there are so many websites such as Diigo, Slideshare, and WordPress that are really helpful for my other class and my future life. Blogging and bookmarking on the web made me realize how technology is easy and convenient. Also this class gave me a chance for new experience. I could experience to lead a discussion in small group. Overall, I really enjoyed this class and I think I learned something new a lot during the summer. Thank you so much Kathy for giving a great experience!!

  18. I will take a lot away from this class. Not only did I learn about the history of the Internet, but also how to use it efficiently as well as learn tips and tricks of various websites to make the most out of using the Internet. Also, I became more aware of how much I use new media and how big of an effect it has on our lives. With this new knowledge I will be able to do online research more efficiently for my other classes and be able to communicate through social networks more effectively. I will also take with me knowledge I learned from the lectures and class discussions. I think the biggest surprise was when we read about the Memex. My mind was blown how accurate the predictions were (as well as the predictions for Epic 2015). I don’t think anything was extraneous or should be dropped from the class. I enjoyed the online aspect of the class because I am not the most tech savvy so I enjoyed learning how to blog and interact with my classmates through their blogs. I think it would be nice to talk about online journalism/media a little more and how to filter through the good from the bad sources (but I was happy with the amount of time spent). I really enjoyed this class and learned a lot of cool new info. Thanks Kathy!

  19. Deborah, Amy, Chia-Ho (Question #1)
    1. Education 2. Reliable electricity 3. Internet Access 4. Clean water
    First off, we think that in developing country, more people need to be educated and therefore they can bring up the civil level of their society and improve their countries. Also, In order to complete the other three goals, the education is the essential. Without the education, they won’t be able to build reliable electricity, and without electricity, no internet access can be successfully built. Despite the importance of the internet, which breaks the isolated situation, helps people get more information and connects with the rest of the world, clean water is also very important, which increases the citizen’s health level.

  20. I was very excited about the course topic-new media. The biggest surprise I found after I took this class was that it helped me become aware of the digital world I live in; I didn’t realize that I rely so much on my iPhone before, I took a lot of technologies/social network sites for granted, not knowing that they are constantly updating and gradually become a part of me. Also, I think this course is very helpful and practical because I have already started to use some of the tools being introduced in class, such as Diigo and Dropbox, I found them very useful and simple to operate. Personally I like the DL part of this class most, I have learned a lot both from my DL research experience and other DL discussion as well. I think it really provides a variety of topics/information since everyone has a different interest and concentration. And I’m glad we can get a chance to hear so many different opinions in such an interesting way. One thing I would suggest is that, in the future, be more specific about each assignment, and let us know beforehand (perhaps sending emails each time before it’s due) and the students can have more time to prepare for it :)
    Thank you so much Kathy! I enjoyed your lectures and I really appreciate for the tools you introduced to us!

  21. There were many surprises I received from this course and I gained more knowledge of digital media and its technology in today’s society. I didn’t know I would enjoy this class this much. Each topic was fascinated and excited me to do the reading assignments. Diigo assignment was also very interesting. I have never done that study before and it caught my eyes of so many interesting news, research, and study. Also, creating blog was my first time and it was great. I’m fan of visiting other people’s blog and wanted to create one and it opened my skill to manage the blog. I will take my knowledge of digital media that I learned from this class to post UW and other classes. I didn’t expect I would learn this large amount of information in this class. How everyday life is affecting by the media and how humans are changing habits and behaviors by media. We are all affecting by the media every second and that is how today is in 2011. My biggest surprise was discussion leader. I always presented to big group and presenting to small group was my first time. I was very nervous at the time but the lessons I learned made me to take a step forward to be a leader. Every topic was good and presentation Kathy made was good enough to catch our eyes. I loved everything in this class!! I want to thank you Kathy for opening my knowledge to the media!! I wish I can take another class with you in the future!!

  22. I believe the biggest lesson I learned was on how important it is to build up PLNs. Before this class I had been using Google Reader to pull some information to myself, but this class really brought life back to that effort. Following and pulling information from blogs and websites had not really occurred to me. My ability to pull in news has definitely been improved.

    While I was mostly just reluctant to admit Twitter’s existence prior to this class, I must admit, begrudgingly, that Twitter is indeed a powerful tool. This does not change my opinion towards personal usage – I still decline to use the service. Rather, I find and I believe Google+ to a viable, and perhaps better, means for me to increase my awareness of the world.

    For future classes, better usage of Diigo is necessary, if it is used at all. The project seemed to have potential but not only did the site have issues but we seemed to not give it full attention. While sample size is important it became a bit overdone having to go out and find 10+ bookmarks at a time for a single topic. The tagging system seemed to be a bit of a disaster, along with the late game addition of a desire for date in the information tags.

  23. This class completely surprised me in how much I learned and how applicable it is going to be not only in my major but in my daily life and career. I took this class just to gain more communication credits and thinking it would be a lecture class about past media all the way up through today’s media (similar to com 201). Com 300 has turned out to be my favorite communications class yet because all the topics we discussed are so relevant to today’s media and the direction our society is going with technology.
    The skills I learned in this class about the importance of social networking, being able to sort through information overload, and knowing how to search for the information I want on the internet will be valuable to me not only through the rest of my courses here at UW but all throughout the rest of my life. Many of the skills we discussed in this class are ones that older generations and even many of my peers don’t have because they have not cared to investigate at such a deep level. These skills will be valuable and make me unique in the rest of my student career as well as in the workplace. The most valuable part of this class that I am going to walk away with is the notion that you gave us to never stop learning. I remember you saying in class one day that it is all about “learning and relearning” and I think that is one of the most valuable things a person can learn in life to take with them where ever they go!
    I really enjoyed this class and loved having you as a teacher! My biggest surprise was how much this class was based on discussion and how valuable that aspect of the class was. It really gave us as students a chance to build peer relationships and to bounce ideas off of one another. I love how you gave us the opportunity to do that. I wouldn’t really change anything about the class except maybe making the assignment and point system a little bit more clear so that there is less confusion. Other than that I really did enjoy this class and feel like I’ve grown as a person as a result of it. I hope to take another one of your classes Kathy, I think you are an amazing professor and you can really tell that you care about your students and want them to walk away from this class having learned something valuable.

  24. I was looking forward to learning about various communication-media topics, part of a reason as to why I took the class in the first place. I enjoyed learning more in depth about topics I thought I knew about (i.e. Twitter, Facebook, etc.) I will definitely be taking away the information I learned from this class and not only using it towards other communication-media focused classes but all in my real life. I think my biggest surprise was how much I was actually interested in the information taught in class. Although I enjoyed being able to “pick and choose” which assignments I would do for a portion of my grade, it was difficult not to push it off and forget about it until last minute. From early on I should have mapped out how many points I would need to do a week so that I would not be rushed the last couple weeks, hoping to make the 125-credit cut. I liked the discussions in the discussion leader groups, however, sometimes it would be difficult to start conversation because not many people knew much more information other than what was said in the DL powerpoint. Overall I enjoyed the class, the material taught, and the environment both the students and teacher created.

  25. The insight provided in this class by both Kathy and other students was wonderful. It’s rare to find an outlet to discuss new media, even amongst peers who use it incessantly. I’ve been surprised throughout the quarter at the sheer number of people who use many of the services which I perceived as smaller, more targeted platforms such as RSS and Google+.

    Our discussion surrounding online politics will be carried with me into future communications classes and beyond. The changes new media has made to commerce and news are obvious to many, but I believe political discussion and action are still untapped by the medium. This class has made me more analytical of the subtle variations in opinion that lead to larger manifestations.

    There’s little that I’d change about the class as it stands, though I’d like to see more focus on the future of new media and the larger social implications as they stand today. I was surprised that there wasn’t more discussion about the Arab Spring and feel this should have been a key example of technology shaping society. Further, I feel like a required exam/paper would enhance concentration in the class. I noticed many (including myself) becoming easily distracted by the computers before us. Then again, it *was* a new media class rich in discussion about information overload.

    Overall the pace and content of the class was fantastic. I’d recommend it to all.

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