Pass the Nugget!

Knowledge is power and so it tends to be
hoarded. Experts in any field rarely want
people to understand what they do, and
generally enjoy putting people down.
Thus if we say that the use of computers
is dominated by a priesthood, people who
spatter you with unintelligible answers and
seem unwilling to give you straight ones, it
is not that they are different in this respect
from any other profession.
For those of you who have come to know me, my project, and what I am advocating with it, it should come as no surprise to you that this paragraph stood out to me.  As a knowledge-seeker and supporter of fellow knowledge-seekers, I want to believe that this statement is false. Or at least no longer valid in the fourty-something years since it’s been written. And I think I can support that it is an outdated idea, although the author does make some good points.  I do believe that right now anyone motivated enough can find the knowledge they seek with the help of computers.  However, as the author is quick to point out, this knowledge can be encoded in a secret language known only to the experts. In fact, the author states that his main motivation is to create a meaningful and not entirely boring piece of work for the sake of the laymen who can not break this code.  That is something I appreciate.  Let’s tie this back into me and my project (not because I am terribly self absorbed, but because I am fulfilling project requirements!)  I think this so strongly relates back to what inspires me about Wikipedia, linksurfing, and the pursuit of knowledge.  This priesthood that the author speaks of has disbanded and their power has gone to the atheists! Knowledge seekers can now get a crash-course in virtually any topic they could imagine, and some they can’t just by surfing the web.  Experts (and admittedly plenty of NOT experts) share their knowledge with the world just for the sake of educating.  This is such an exciting fact when you stop to think about it and I hope people take proper advantage of the opportunity.
EDIT:
It’s interesting how different two nuggets can be that come from the same original source, and how these different nuggets can lead to such different thoughts and topics of conversation.  This difference became very apparent after reading Helena’s blog post which discusses the humanity or lack thereof in robots.  This line of inquiry started from the exact same place mine did, but because our research topics are so different we were both drawn to different portions of the reading.

This totally doesn’t relate to me or my nugget, but I am amused by this all the same.  Contrary to my previous paragraph about how interesting I found it to diverge from one source, the next two blogs I read were basically the exact same posts! So I can now make the exact opposite post!  Jeremy Watts and JawadBlog chose the exact same nugget, discussed it in similar terms, but have fairly dissimilar research topics.  One is looking into technology and human consciousness, and the other about how social media has affected music, yet they both brought up similar points about the nugget in connection to their own topics.  Does anyone else find this interesting? Because I find this fascinating.

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Connecting the Dots

It appears to me that a lot of people are taking the same approach to this this assignment — pick one of your favorite well known websites — and asking similar questions regarding this website — Why do people like it? Are we getting addicted? Is it making us stupider/sadder?

I find this terribly interesting because it seems like people almost want to sabotage their relationship with said favorite website.  Is this Neo breaking out of his cocoon and seeing the Matrix for what it really is? I am very curious to know what inspired all of these questions, and even more curious to find out if the answers will alter their use in the researcher’s lives.

For instance, in Blues Cruise   the author questions the reason behind Facebook’s popularity, as well as its ongoing presence in our lives. I will be interested to see the research on this as well as what the author concludes.  As for how this relates to my project, I suppose I am more focused on the opening portion of the post about the barking cats.  Well not those cats in particular, but the benefit of internet distractions.

I am really intrigued by Imelda Jurasova’s   entire blog and way of interacting with the nuggets.  Imelda is able to link back research from Diigo to last week’s nugget in a small but insightful way, and is able to connect this research even further by describing it like a mosaic.  While our research topics are quite different I enjoy the methodical layout and clear direction in which it is going.

Author of the blog Elisey   views Diigo as a sort of road map to research and compares this adventure to a hike in Belle Isle.  As a huge fan of exploration and Belle Isle, I appreciate this analogy if only because it warms me to the idea of the research.  I will try and use Diigo more as the author suggests, by following trails made by other people and not just trying to hack my own.

In general, it seems that other people are finding much more use in camaraderie in Diigo than I have so far and I am determined to change this for myself.  I would like to be able to, for lack of a better term, piggy back off of other research and see in what directions other people are heading. If only for the sake of my curiosity, since my whole project is inspired by curiosity.  Unfortunately unfiltered curiosity and academic pursuits don’t seem to have as much presence together on the web as I would have thought.  In order to better apply my own research to others I am going to explore the tags other students are using and try to be more consistent with them so we can more easily share.

to tie this back into my nugget, I am focusing on the idea that we are all born with a set of tools to deal with the world. We are all born with an innate curiosity that can manifest in many ways.  Although the world around us changes and feels unpredictable we are able to adapt and make those changes beneficial to us because of this strong mix of curiosity and…maybe selfishness? Or just self preservation or satisfaction? We just want to better our lives and will work to do that, which is why technology is constantly being improved.

 

 

 

 

Obligatory Title

Okay, guys, work with me here.   I am on what is hopefully the tail end of a 72 hour headache, got off of work an hour and a half ago, and have been since working on my Diigo project.  Basically what I am trying to say is that I soooooo do not have it in me to complete the Panning for Nuggets assignment today. Lucky for me, it’s not due today! Unfortunately for me, I am going to hate myself later for not doing it yet.  Anyways, this is my obligatory blog post for the day since Dr. Coats says a daily post is expected.  In order to make this kosher in regards to the class, I am going to recap the directions I feel my project could take post-Diigo exploration.

Original/still favorite concept:  Wikipedia and other parts of the internet encourage research and the pursuit of knowledge for the sake of knowledge.   Articles that back this up? Not many.  Most articles I see just bash technology for rotting people’s brains.  However I would like to tie this in to the Existentialist Google article, or perhaps link to a few of Jamie’s articles about the Deep Web

 

Other topics I could probably more easily but less enthusiastically pursue:  activism through Wikipedia (I’ve seen a lot of articles on activism through social media)
Switch to anonymity on the web and incorporate Wikipedia’s anonymous editing. 
I could toy with a few more ideas but I am really set on encouraging knowledge. There just doesn’t seem to be a lot of resources supporting this concept of mine.  If anyone has any suggestions I am super eager to hear them!

Anyways, Mariah out.  I need a nap. Or some advil.  Or to be knocked out for the next 3 weeks until this headache thing rides over.

Dreamers (re)Unite!

So I realized that I did my last two out of order and I was worried that no one would scroll down and think I didn’t do this portion of the project so I’m just gonna repost it..

Alright, folks, time to get down to the nitty-gritty.  (can I just take a moment though to appreciate my computer’s spell check suggestions? Which do y’all prefer: “bitty-gritty”, “titty-gritty”, or “ditty-gritty”? all of which are apparently more valid than nitty.)

 

Anyways, back to work. It looks like my study is pushing towards the direction of discussing the validity or lack thereof in Wikipedia. Or possibly Wikipedia as a platform of research, which I have discussed at length in past posts. I would like to open this topic up to you by starting with a TEDTalk about how Wikipedia started, what its mission statement is, and how it actually works.  The founder discusses the apparent flaws of the site and how to be mindful of them, as well as how they are countered.

Now, why should you join me on this roller coaster of an adventure? Well, first of all it’d probably make your project a lot easier. As Dr. Coats said, share the load.  But why should you share with ME?  Because nearly every single one of you has cited Wikipedia in your preliminary research for your project.  Doubt me? Check out some of your fellow class mate’s Concept Experiences.  Students RELY on Wikipedia for primary research and, like it or not, it’s here to stay.  So, what I propose is we as students band together to explore what Wikipedia really can do for us in this digital age and bring this to the professors of the world.  That way we can come to them with research and a consensus on its validity (or lack thereof, as said before. I recognize that Wikipedia is not a creditable source in the citation of a research paper) in our lives.

How do I propose to do this? Well likely through the normal sort of research and persuasive essay.  If you ask how I’d LIKE to do this.. Well I was toying with the idea of turning my blog into a sort of open experience like Wikipedia.  What I mean for this is, I would open my blog up to the public, allow people to create and edit my posts while I moderate.  If I were to do this I would hope that my fellow students would respect the idea and keep vandalism to a minimum and instead try to create and interact with each other in a positive way.  However, I don’t expect this idea to come to fruition simply because I don’t trust you guys to be interested enough to participate. I mean let’s me honest, it’s hard enough to make us all post on our own blogs, I can hardly expect you guys to take time out of your day to participate in mine.  But if anyone thinks this might be an interesting experiment or beneficial to their own project I would love to hear from you and discuss how this might become realized. 
Otherwise, on a more simple note: Join me in my research because I think most of you could easily link your research to mine.  I mean there is almost guaranteed to be a Wikipedia entry on your topic.  So why not! Join me!

 

Extending My Dream

Well it looks like I’m not the only one confused about this part so I’m just gonna roll with it and I’ll edit this once I get some clarification from Dr. Coats.

Can Wikipedia lead to #valid_research?

Is #Wikipedia a #valid_source?

Can #open_editing be used for good?

Will #anonymous_editing lead to trouble?

Can Wikipedia bring #universal_knowledge?

Is Wikipedia a #platform_of_research?

How can Wikipedia lead #students to #answers?

 

Dreamers Unite!

Alright, folks, time to get down to the nitty-gritty.  (can I just take a moment though to appreciate my computer’s spell check suggestions? Which do y’all prefer: “bitty-gritty”, “titty-gritty”, or “ditty-gritty”? all of which are apparently more valid than nitty.)

 

Anyways, back to work. It looks like my study is pushing towards the direction of discussing the validity or lack thereof in Wikipedia. Or possibly Wikipedia as a platform of research, which I have discussed at length in past posts. I would like to open this topic up to you by starting with a TEDTalk about how Wikipedia started, what its mission statement is, and how it actually works.  The founder discusses the apparent flaws of the site and how to be mindful of them, as well as how they are countered.

Now, why should you join me on this roller coaster of an adventure? Well, first of all it’d probably make your project a lot easier. As Dr. Coats said, share the load.  But why should you share with ME?  Because nearly every single one of you has cited Wikipedia in your preliminary research for your project.  Doubt me? Check out some of your fellow class mate’s Concept Experiences.  Students RELY on Wikipedia for primary research and, like it or not, it’s here to stay.  So, what I propose is we as students band together to explore what Wikipedia really can do for us in this digital age and bring this to the professors of the world.  That way we can come to them with research and a consensus on its validity (or lack thereof, as said before. I recognize that Wikipedia is not a creditable source in the citation of a research paper) in our lives.

How do I propose to do this? Well likely through the normal sort of research and persuasive essay.  If you ask how I’d LIKE to do this.. Well I was toying with the idea of turning my blog into a sort of open experience like Wikipedia.  What I mean for this is, I would open my blog up to the public, allow people to create and edit my posts while I moderate.  If I were to do this I would hope that my fellow students would respect the idea and keep vandalism to a minimum and instead try to create and interact with each other in a positive way.  However, I don’t expect this idea to come to fruition simply because I don’t trust you guys to be interested enough to participate. I mean let’s me honest, it’s hard enough to make us all post on our own blogs, I can hardly expect you guys to take time out of your day to participate in mine.  But if anyone thinks this might be an interesting experiment or beneficial to their own project I would love to hear from you and discuss how this might become realized. 
Otherwise, on a more simple note: Join me in my research because I think most of you could easily link your research to mine.  I mean there is almost guaranteed to be a Wikipedia entry on your topic.  So why not! Join me!

 

A Comparison of Experiences

I think we all interpreted this assignment a little differently because I’m finding more contrast than compare in these experiences.  Nevertheless, let’s take a look!

I always enjoy reading Jamie’s writing and often find myself connected or enthralled by it. This post was no exception as she walked me through Western and Non-Western views towards suicide.  However, (and I think she realizes this now) it was totally off base to what I thought this assignment was. I think she took a concept from the week’s Nugget and dug into that, which I find very fascinating. Frankly I’m a little envious of her ability to dig so deep into a post and pull something out that genuinely interests you.  It is clear she expanded her research scope far, pulling examples from both Disney and Japanese films. 

 

In Just An Average Guy’s post he starts with the fascinating and relevant topic of Hackers, particularly the group Anonymous, and ends up in a Wikipedia post for deregulation. I enjoyed this experience mainly for two reasons: One, because there was a really good, sensible, but non-obvious flow from one topic to another. Two, because the entire stream happened through Wikipedia! People are playing this game I talk about without even realizing it! Commenters of the post even mentioned how amusing and interesting it was to have gotten from the start topic to end.  I just find it astounding how effective but unobserved this method of research is.  Just a little bit of probing can take you far.

 

The concept experience on Elephant Flower was very interesting to me but I think quite different from my own experience. I think the topic was a very intelligent decision because it is specific enough (unlike mine, oops) to get some real answers, but still interesting and far-fetched enough to not get immediately tiresome.  I would have liked to see a sort of stream of consciousness on the research so I could really understand the thought process though.