Monday, February 15, 2010

Blogs Vs. Wikis

Blogs and wikis are both websites. However, the easiest way to differentiate between them is to first define each of them.

A blog (short for 'web blog') is a website where entries are made in journal-like style and displayed in reverse chronological order.


A wiki is a website that allows users to add, remove, edit, and change content. It allows for linking among any number of pages.

There are various advantages the wiki offers over the blog. On a wiki, knowledge comes from community of dozens or even thousands of topic experts. Anybody can make an account in a wiki and edit information on it. However, information stored on the wiki should be factual and the administrator should always check on it for it to be reliable. On Blogs, on the other hand, knowledge limited by single person because the writer of a blog is typically one author, one personality; therefore expressing one's opinion.

The content in wikis grow rapidly at all hours of the day. Because anybody can add information or work on pages at the same time, articles constantly change and are continuously updated. Blogs grow slowly, where the author can put one post at a time. And because they are usually arranged by date, each post becomes stale over time.

As for setup, wikis are more difficult to set up than blogs. Setting up a wiki ranges from easy to setup to very difficult, depending on chosen program. Publishing is easy, yet html knowledge is needed on some platforms. Spam are policed by the community. On the other hand, setting up a blog is easy because you can edit posts/ pages even without knowledge about html. Spam are policed by the blogger.

Old Media vs. New Media

Today, people get information in new ways. The internet is now the global source of information. From news to research to videos, information is not only limited to text in the internet. Media consumption habits have changed. Anything that has been transformed is now what we call Old Media. A sample listing of Old Media transformed into New Media is as follows:

The telephone now evolved into cellphones. Not only are they portable devices but they are also capable of sending messages via texting. In contrary to times when the telephone can only be used at home, we can bring cellphones everywhere and we can be reached anytime where there is service from telephone service providers. We can now also access the internet using our cellphones. And now for cheaper rates for calls and text messaging, the Voice Over Internet Protocol service is now available. It means you can call and text as long as you are connected to the internet.

Every morning, hard copies of newspapers are delivered to our home. However, besides watching the television, news can now be obtained from various websites. And not only they are exact articles written on the physical newspaper, articles posted on the website are updated every hour so we could get live important news that the public needs to know.

Physical holdings of books are traditionally what students follow. But now, e-books (the digital version of the physical book) are available for downloads from publishers' websites at costs lower than the hard copies. E-book readers are now the devices used to read electronic books. They are portable and convenient because you can access the specific chapters of the book you need to read instead of bringing the whole book with all the chapters.

Social Networking Sites: A threat to online security and privacy

As more people use Social Networking Sites to communicate, interact and expand social relations with other people, there are also growing concerns about users giving too much personal information. Purchasing of virtual gifts and clicking on the ads from these sites also involve risks to users in having their computers affected by viruses and unwanted spywares. Social networking sites are becoming the new way of targeting people online and gaining personal information for other people's selfish intentions. In this research, I will discuss about the dangers associated with Social Networking Sites and the importance of understanding the risks involved. Some of the questions that this research paper should be able to answer are as follows:
  • What are the risks involved in joining a social networking site?
  • By citing examples, what damages have been caused by exposing too much information through these sites?
  • What are the safety precautions a user must take to protect private information?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Principles of New Media Course at Baruch College

Technological advances has evolved nowadays. From typewriters to computers, we can now browse the internet so easily. New media are no longer paper-based but rather computer-based. There are several new media technologies from the internet that are now available for use by the public. Examples of new media are Facebook, Twitter and blogging. So the easiest way to define New Media are these three words.

This course is about getting acquainted with the different new media. And that's why I am currently taking this course. This is an opportunity for me to learn more and be literate on using these technologies; and maybe use them someday for a purpose.

What is New Media?

The easiest way to define New Media is Facebook, Twitter and Blogs.

However, New Media encompasses a simple list of technologies such as:

  • HTML
  • Streaming Media (Music and Videos),
  • Web Applications,
  • Social Networking Sites such as Facebook, Myspace and Friendster,
  • blogs and wikis
  • online chatting
  • Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
  • Media Sharing
  • Internet Searching Tools
  • Podcasting
  • E-Commerce and Online Shopping
The development of the internet paved way to the evolution of New Media. If the internet were still nonexistent, we would never experience the global advantages of using New Media. If we realize from the above examples of New Media, most of them, if not all, use the internet to function. Because of the internet, it does not matter wherever you are located in the world. You can chat with your relatives online even if they are right in the other side of the world; you can even listen to internet radios and share media. The Internet remains a space of opportunity to everybody through the use of New Media.

What we call now as Old Media was also once new. But as developments occur, so does the transformation of New Media from Old Media. New Media is the improved and digitized version of Old Media. How did they transform? Here are some examples of Old Media and their respective equivalents in New Media today:

  • From Books, we now have e-books, online encyclopedias and wikis.
  • From Journals, online blogs are now available for writers and those love writing
  • Nowadays, we use texting and Voice Over Internet Protocols replacing our telephones
  • We can now listen to music of our preference through podcasts. They now replace our radio stations
  • Instead of televisions, we can now watch episodes on the internet through Video Sharing and Video Streaming sites.
An article from the New York Times entitled "Who Needs a TV? I’m Watching on a Laptop," discusses about one of the trend that people do nowadays, watching shows on a laptop instead of the television. It cites some sites that offers free online viewing of shows. It's amazing how we are able to save more time watching the shows that we only want to see rather than flipping through channels to see what's on.