Documentation of audio project(Krom)

Link to site

Our audio project is a very simple idea aimed at depicting a day in the life of an NYU Shanghai student. From the morning waking up, all the way to going back to bed. The journey of making this project was actually interesting as we had to really think about ALL the sounds we are used to listening to every day but don’t really pay attention to.

We started off by gathering our bits of audio. We acquired our samples of sounds like snoring, brushing, and walking online. We used two other ways to gather sounds where 1)we recorded sounds in the podcast room to give us spoken sounds that were clear and without ambients sounds and 2) using a Tascam to record exterior sounds throughout our AB that we would use. We mixed all the voices together using the audacity software where we experimented for quite a while by editing the pitch and frequencies of sounds and adding different effects to get our final version.

We did not feel our project needed any interactive aspects to it and so designed our site using the source code that we acquired through an IMA workshop and where we added a play button and volume up and down buttons. The shape of the circular ring thins and gets bigger as you toggle with the volume up/down buttons

Post-Mortem

We were quite satisfied with our audio project and how we blended our sounds together to create a story(or journey) of the life of a student and it felt very real as if you close your eyes and listen to the audio then it feels as though you are actually in the shoes of the student.

We had initially recorded way more sounds than what we have put in our original project and I felt one thing which I would want to improve next time is the transition in between two sounds and how to seamlessly merge them together without there being a noticeable break. Apart from that, we felt we achieved our initial target.

Week7: Response to “Danger of a single story”(Krom)

This Ted talk by Chimamanda Ngozi is something that I have viewed many times through my high school and now into college life as well. This is a very inspiring and meaningful talk that makes you think not about just the speaker and her encounters, but also about those that YOU yourself have come up against and how hearing a single story made you make assumptions before getting the full story.

As humans, we are very instinctive and are bound to take things at face value or try to make deductions(which may be wrong) at the first look(or single story) and we do this because we feel good about ourselves knowing something rather than nothing and feeling superior by making deductions. These first Single stories are not necessarily a bad thing but the reason why the speaker says they are is due to what we end up doing with these stories. “A single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete.” This creation of stereotypes tends to brand a certain individual based on some aspect of him and it ignores all the other qualities or traits of him. The speaker was subject to a lot of these situations where her acquaintances ‘assumed’ she would behave/act a certain way because she was from a certain place or that she may not have the ability to do things because of who she is. These ill-informed views strip some individuals of the potential that they may have if they are viewed in a demeaning manner by more powerful authorities(workforce discrimination).

The reason why I really enjoyed this talk is because I can absolutely relate to the speaker and understand her situation yet also sympathise with her. There have been many occasions where you are misinterpreted a single way due to an action you may commit and there are also times where you paint up an incomplete image of someone that you don’t know completely about. I felt this picture really helped in visually displaying the message of this talk as it shows that there is ‘no wrong’, it is just a matter of perception. You need to see both sides of the coin before you truly commit to a story.

Week6: response to ‘Cant Stop, Wont Stop'(Krom)

Music is an art form that can be heard at anytime, be it while relaxing, working out, eating, dancing, the list is endless. It is a way for the mind to just relax and forget about the other things. Who would think that music would be a way for musicians to voice their political views? And at the same time be successful! This revealing article talks about the history of Reggae music and how the emergence of the style dub ‘accidentally’ came into existence.

Bob Marley, The Wailers; the words we would associate with these are usually charismatic, upbeat, fun and lively. We tend to enjoy them at face value but don’t take into consideration the origin and hardship that these people have gone through to be where they were. In a politically and economically unstable jamaica during the 1970’s, Bob Marley and the Wailers managed to transform the voices of the people to the government and make them take notice of the struggles that the everyday man is going through.  This article gave us a grave insight into how the musical platform was used to convey messages and how powerful of a platform it was.

Jeff Chang has written a very strong article that doesn’t shy away from talking about the more controversial episodes in the life of Bob Marley such as the assassination attempt on him. Nor does he compromise factual accuracy for the sake of simplicity or entertainment. This gives for an interesting read and at the same time, make us ponder over how strong the medium of music is than the message itself and the global reach that this form of entertainment has. Can other forms of media like theatre, radio or TV have the same impact on political situations as music has had? and if not, why do we relate to music on such a high emotional scale than with other forms of media?

 

Week6: Response to “Theft and Artistry” (Krom)

In the article “Theft and Artistry: Coldplay, Beyonce in India Spark Discussion on Appropriation”, the author is trying to discuss the Cultural Appropriation that is very evident in today’s music industry.  Music producers feel that employing aspects of foreign culture into their music video’s will give their viewers a fresh outlook on their music.

The author has used 2 very popular examples of Coldplay and Justin Bieber and there are much more examples of this. I am personally a huge fan of Coldplay and have been profoundly following their music for a while now. I am an Indian and after viewing the music video for “Hymn for the Weekend”, my first impression was like,”that’s not India!” Cultural appropriation is harmful not because it is using other cultures as a background for work, but because of how they wrongly portray them. Situations such as poverty or war may be stylized for them to appear ‘fun’ or ‘beautiful’ which isn’t the case in reality.

Cultural appropriation brings about the case of stereotyping as viewers would know only some basic knowledge of a foreign culture(which may be wrong or out of context) and use this to make up stereotypes for different cultures. Nitasha T Sharma’s view about cultural appropriation sums up everything, where it doesn’t matter WHY someone is controversial or not, what matters is the social implications that can arise from these appropriations that they have used.

Week3: HTML site with CSS(Krom)

click to view

I decided to design a website about our University’s sports teams. the styling used on the site used is mainly to reflect the university’s colors by employing black, white and purple with supplementary colors. It was a relatively straightforward task to design the website but the only problem I encountered was when I had to place the page title and the NYU logo side-by-side at the top. I had made a div for them and was doing the styling in the div headers, however, I had put some styling in the original class (like in img and h1) and this caused some styles to not get recognized. I managed to solve this problem after pondering over it for a bit.

 

Week5: Response to the ‘Ecstasy of Influence’ (Krom)

This was a rather long and thought-provoking passage that I am not sure about but will try to analyze it as best as possible.

What is plagiarism? by definition, “Plagiarism is the ‘wrongful appropriation’ and ‘stealing and publication’ of another author’s ‘language, thoughts, ideas, or expressions’ and the representation of them as one’s own original work.”(Wikipedia).

This article reminded me of something that I knew about, but was unfamiliar with its term, ‘Cryptomnesia’. Many times you may be watching something or reading a book, and some elements of them strike out as you may have witnessed them somewhere else. Has the author or director consciously copied this content from someone else or did he genuinely feel this idea was of his own(self-made)?

Jonathan Lethem ventured upon the copyright laws and how they came into existence as a way of promoting originality and encouraging new ideas but have eventually lead to the discouragement of new ideas. A girls scout has to pay royalties to a band for singing their song during their group meetings, is this why copyright laws were implemented?

The author of this text was very critical of Disney, who established themselves by extracting ideas from different cultures and using it for their ‘now renowned’ movies(Sleeping Beauty, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs etc.) yet at the same time, would sue individuals who tried to use their images(such as Mickey Mouse) for their own personal projects. This bias has been tolerated as it has mainly been large organizations going up against individuals who did not stand a chance when it came to legal affairs. This made me think about Kirby Ferguson’s “Everything is a remix”, where he spoke about Steve Jobs openly confessing to stealing ideas from their company but later on, when the same thing was done with them(Samsung vs Apple), Steve Jobs had the audacity to call the rest as “Thieves”. There is a certain irony to both Disney and Apple’s situations.

Overall I agree with the concept of plagiarism and the protection of one’s personal rights over his/her ideas, however, in today’s world, the rise of digital technology makes it harder for us to distinguish whether something is plagiarised content or not.

Week5: Response “On the Rights of Molotov Man” (Krom)

“In seeking the truth, you have to get both sides of a story”-Walter Cronkite. This is a very good example of that. Upon reading the first few paragraphs and taking the painters view on the ‘Molotov man’, it seemed like he was hard done by the original owner of the image. I got the impression that Susan Meiselas may just have seen the success of the Painting by Joy Garnett and assumed it would be ‘easy money’ to demand a licensing fee for the use of the image. But upon further reading and obtaining the view from Susan’s standpoint, my initial impression was subdued.

In today’s day and age, information is so easily accessible through the internet that people don’t ponder much over the source of the information as long as they feel it is correct and relevant to them. Joy’s idea of going for aesthetics over narratives resulted in him doing the same thing of just obtaining an image without finding the source.

In this scenario, the debate is not whether Joy plagiarised Susan’s image, but of how much an original piece can be decontextualized. I feel there is no wrong party in this as it was just a case of misinformation and that there was a deeper meaning to the image than meets the eye. For a painter, he just wanted to do his part by creating a unique piece of art that he could charm audiences with. Same goes for Susan, she only wanted to protect the historic significance image that she had taken during a stiff period that was emblematic for the freedom fighters. This the risk and uncertainty of the internet, it is much harder to claim something due to its intangible nature.

Week5: Documentation of Comic Project (Krom)

Partner: Sarah Tahir

Link: http://192.168.50.184/~sat454/cbw/

Process: We came up with quite a few ideas for what could be a plot for our comic and we decided to do one about 3 children who are in there pre-school, imagine that they have to save a fictitious princess that is trapped in a castle. We started off by writing down a simple storyline and the dialogues that were to be put in. We then proceeded to make the images that were to be used in the comic. Using Photoshop, the pictures were compiled from stock images of things such as a teacher, children, a room etc. Dialogues were then added to the images. Our comic employed the use of CSS more than JS. We then coded the website and our interactive aspect of the site was the horizontal scroll that we implemented to give it a scene-to-scene transition as well as 2 perspective slides at the end that show the different views of the toddler’s and the caretaker’s.

Postmortem: This was a very basic approach to making an interactive and as we were doing it for the first time, we are satisfied. Upon viewing other projects, I would like to be honest and say that I would’ve liked to employ more interactive aspects to our comic. One thing which we could not do was to put a scroller on 2 merged images that would better show one image while hiding the other and vice versa. We also didn’t venture upon the idea of using audio to enhance our interactive experience and I would like to try that next time.

Week5: Response to “Embrace the Remix” (Krom)

‘Nothing is original, Everything is a remix’, This is the main point that speaker Kirby Ferguson is trying to put across in his talk. He starts off by defining the 3 main components of a remix which is: copy, transform and combine. He talks about the music industry and the famous Bob Dylan in particular and how he has ‘borrowed’ most of his content from other producers. It may sound similar but ‘stealing’ is not the right word to use in this context. If you think about originality, the borrowing of ideas doesn’t just revert to the music industry but to any industry in today’s day and age.

Kirby Ferguson gave the thoughts of one of the pioneer of cars, Henry Ford, and how he admitted he hadn’t created anything new with his cars and indeed this is true. Before the launch of the Ford Model T, there already existed seats and wheels for carriages, engines for machinery equipment. Ford merely managed to combine these components together to build another product.

“Good artists copy, great artists steal”, Steve Jobs mentioned this during an interview in 1996 on how their products are nothing original but instead how they take an existing idea and try to better it. This was at a time when Apple was performing really well until their clash with android products that had similar attributes to that of Apple products. Apple decided to sue major corporations over them ‘stealing’ their ideas. This raised a very ethical issue in the business industry on where to draw the line between what is considered ‘innovation’ and what is considered ‘stealing’.

Kirby Ferguson aptly concludes his talk with, “our creativity comes from without and not within, our creativity is not self-made and is dependant on each other”. I agree with this idea as for us to start or produce anything, we need to have a source from where we compose this idea and even if we feel it is completely original and new, it is through our experience of other things that we manage to combine and create something ‘new’.

 

Week 4-JS exercise(Krom)

JS exercise link

For our exercise I applied 4 of the following actions that manipulated the site:

  1. Using a button that you can click on, I was able to change the first paragraph of the page to something that I put in.
  2. Using another button I was able to enlarge the title of the site and adjust the css styles through a js command rather than through css.
  3. I employed a mouse-on and mouse-over command to the first image that would reduce its size when you have the cursor on the image, then bring it back to its original size once you move the cursor of it.
  4. Again on the first image, using an on-click command, I was able to put in a alert new window option that once clicked, would open a new tab that would display a message in the form of an alert.