IT & R – JavaScript Tutorial 1

As this is going to be a self-learning experience, I gladly created my plan of action for this project. I decided to learn about programming in JavaScript, based on what I already know in HTML. For similar learners, the information in the quote below  provides an important starting point to tackle JavaScript.

“Hypertext markup language (HTML) is a language used to create Web pages. The HTML language is interpreted by the Web browser, and it delivers the images and text for the user. JavaScript is a more advanced language to make Web pages dynamic. Both these languages have differences, but they are used in unison to present websites.”

The first difference is seen in the head tags.
1. The tags used to begin and end a script are the <SCRIPT> and </SCRIPT> tags. In the title the following JavaScript tag is used for script type.

<script type=”text/javascript”>

Focusing on the dynamic and interactive nature of JavaScript I learnt two important tag elements for this language.  Using the “Try it Yourself” option found at this link  I created buttons, and alert boxes.

2. Unlike HTML webpages JavaScript is dynamic, therefore creating interactive buttons is vital in this programming language.

<button type=”button” onclick=”()”>All About New Media</button>

3. Alert boxes are another interactive and useful feature in JavaScript. To create alert boxes,

In the head tag

function show_alert()
{alert(“Hello! I am an alert box!”);}

In the body tag

<input type=”button” onclick=”show_alert()” value=”JavaScript Tutorial in Progress for ENGL 766″ />

The Language of New Media (Post # 2)

The following quote by the author Lev Manovich encompasses his personal goal through this book,

“It is my hope that the theory of New Media developed here can act not only as an aid to understanding the present, but also as a grid for practical experimentation.”

Production Process 

As our group was trying to tackle the question about the Production Process, I found the above video, which clearly tied in with the research related content in our book. Taking the writing research class last semester, I learned about research methods, methodology, sampling, surveys etc. In this video Manovich talks about his experience as a professor and his research methods. Many scholars can gain and learn from his methods. He demonstrates how he uses advanced technology to analyze games, images, and other visuals. Therefore the depth of his research work clearly comes forth in this video.

 Film and Cinema 

“The Language of New Media” was quite an intensive read, since it heavily relied on film theory. Some of the terminology used by the author was very deeply rooted in film and cinema related studies. I found a map that made connections of all these terms. Lev Manovich talks a lot about how new media has evolved from the old avant-garde art of the early 90’s.

After reading this book, and many positive reviews on it I’m convinced that as a literary and pedagogical text this book has great classroom potential. The term “New Media” is defined, in a very useful manner with much clarity and depth.

Manovich, Lev. The Language of New Media. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2001. Print

Individual Tutorial

JavaScript = Any browser = Many users

For the Individual Tutorial and Reflection project I want to work on JavaScript. Although I’m very tempted to explore Ruby, and HTML5 I’ve heard too much about the usefulness of JavaScript. I took one web design course in a community college, and learnt about HTML4, XHTML, CSS, and was introduced to JavaScript. However, since that was a one semester course, we could never get around to mastering the programming language. I feel I’m at a place where I can experiment with coding in JavaScript, and actually learn some significant skill in this area. Now that I already know a lot about its background, and a little of how it works in webpages, by the end of this course if I’m able to code using JavaScript that’s something that going to go right into my resume. Therefore, JavaScript it is! (But, I’m still going to maintain that Ruby rocks, and HTML5 seems super interesting in terms of the future of programming languages)

Reflection on Blogs

I commented on the following classmates blog posts – Amanda, Cheri, Diane, Eric, Jennifer and Susanne.

It was great to see so many perspectives on just two particular weekly topics. I concentrated on the blogs about the first few chapters in Lingua Fracta, and the ones that dealt with “Do Androids Dream of Electric sheep” by Philip K Dick. I found myself struggling a bit with both these books, but more with the novel. I think others blogs served as a review for these chapters/books. I was excited about the various fun videos/images I would get to see, but suprisingly the content in each blog was far more engaging.  The posts contributed to my learning by giving me a better understanding, and clarity with the five rhetorical canons.

TIP OF THE DAY: To gain a better understanding in complex concepts, go read a PhD students blog.

The Language of New Media (Post # 1)

Lev Manovich’s book,  The Language of New Media does a complete dissection of the term “New Media”. It is undoubtedly a complex work with a highly detailed introduction section, and thoroughly researched chapters. Apart from reading the first two chapters I read some online reviews of the book, read about the author and searched for content online in relation to the book. I found Lev Manovich’s blog which can be a useful resource for anyone interested in New Media related Studies.

Chapter 1 – What is New Media?

I found a short video that had the definitions of the five important principles in Chapter 1. This video is worth a watch for clear definitions and explanations/examples given for each of the five terms.

The latter part of this chapter talks about all the misinformation related to the term “new media”. I agree with the author’s claim that New Media helps users to become authors of someone’s work. For example, in this blog post I am interpreting Lev Manovich’s work, adding further meaning to it, and presenting it. Thus, although the original written work belongs to Lev Manovich, New Media facilitates in bringing together different online resources so I can re-write my own interpretation of his work.

Chapter 2 – The Interface

“As distribution of all forms of culture becomes computer-based, we are increasingly “interfacing” to predominantly cultural data: texts, photographs,films, music, virtual environments. In short, we are no longer interfacing to a computer but to culture encoded in digital form” (80).

Lev Manovich - Representing the Mac culture

Lev Manovich author of "The Language of New Media"

Based off the image above, I have an my own illustrative example. If computers can be considered as cultural texts, I clearly see two emerging cultures, the PC and Mac culture. I have always been a PC user, and find myself at ease in this culture. However, in certain settings I am required to interface with the Mac culture as well. Thus, my illustration clearly shows how distribution of all forms of culture has become extensively technology-based.

Manovich, Lev. The Language of New Media. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2001. 1-111. Print.

LF: Chapters 5-8

Aristotle - The Rhetor

Aristotle on Style – “Authors should compose without being noticed, and should seem to speak not artificially but naturally” (118).

Perspective (Style)

“…it is impossible to account sufficiently for the relationship between the visual and the verbal in a single chapter, particularly when there are entire books on this subject” (114).

The above quote shows how perspective is a complex yet an important concept in terms of the way something is said/portrayed.  Simply put style is the casual versus the formal manner that is adopted when something is verbally said, or visually represented.

Plato - Phaedrus

Plato on Memory – ” If men learn this, it will implant forgetfulness in their souls, they will cease to exercise memory because they rely on that which is written, calling things to remembrance no longer from within themselves, by means of external marks” (145).

Persistence (Memory)
I wrote in my previous blog post about how memory is losing its importance, as more different types of texts, and technologies are being utilized to do the job of storing information. A great example of this is the search engine Google. It receives, regurgitates and provides large amounts of information. It’s just easier on individuals to go back to google, rather than to rack their own brains.

Performance (Delivery)
If you want to do a google image search or YouTube search for the canon of delivery, type ” rhetorical canon of delivery” instead of just “delivery”.

Trimbur’s asserts in terms of delivery and medium that “ may look at first glance to be a traditional genre exercise, but in fact, it involves much more”
This makes me think about the  Conference proposals I’m drafting for two other courses this semester. I’m at my wit’s end trying to say all the right things strictly within the 250-500 word limit. Although it’s a teeny abstract, sometimes what is intended is not rightly delivered, especially in the genre of conference proposals.

Brooke, Collin Gifford. Lingua Fracta: Toward a Rhetoric of New Media. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton, 2009. 113-201. Print