Jenn's Digital Blog

April 27, 2010

Looking Back

Filed under: dh2010 — b4ssm4st3r @ 18:16

3 Things I liked

  1. Working with Dr. Hanna’s map class and as a group- Normally I am not the type to enjoy working with other people, but someday I will get a job and need to do this. Since we worked in a group we were able to collectively organize our ideas and appoint tasks to complete a comprehensive site. By including Dr. Hanna’s map making class we were able to see what it is like asking other people to contribute for you.
  2. The Blogging- I like the blogging because it gave us a chance to talk about the progress that we have made and also let us look at what the other groups have been doing, so we didn’t become a completely divided class.
  3. The Freedom- Basically we were able to organize our site however we wanted, there was no micromanaging. This was great because in the future here won’t be any professors to micromanage for us!

3 Changes

  1. I think it would be useful to spend a little more time on citing sources online. I know it is an area that is still a little fuzzy but just a broader understanding would be nice.
  2. I also think that this course does have merit in becoming Speaking intensive- however if we did focus on that aspect more it might take away from the point of the course.
  3. I can’t think of a 3rd!!! I liked the class, I enjoyed it and I really am sad that it is over.

Projects in the Future

  1. After talking to my group we thought it would be cool to see something about the history of the campus buildings and their names. For example, not many people know that Lee hall was named for Ann Carter Lee so having something about why the building was named for her and how it became de-feminized over the years. You could do that for each of the buildings, or split it up to academic and dorms. I am sure the dorms are interesting enough on their own.
  2. I think it would be interesting to look through the old cemeteries in Fredericksburg. Because I have found many through my explorations. Where did they come from and who is buried there, what is the history behind it?

Advice?

PLAN! Really that is the best you can do, I think why our project went so smoothly was because our contract was so detailed on what we wanted and how we were going to accomplish it. Also don’t be afraid to use non-professional tools for communication. We found that Facebook was the best way to keep each other updated because we were all on Facebook. We even used it to reach the student population for our survey. If its there and its what you need, use it.

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April 21, 2010

What happened????

Filed under: dh2010 — b4ssm4st3r @ 20:02

Looking back onto the beginning of this semester I feel like time has flown by since that first day when we received our topic and assignment. The Mary Ball Washington group did not actually receive specific guidelines as to how the site would be structured. We were just told to create and online museum of her life, include a map, possibly a timeline and then handed a sheet of paper with a list of about 20 sources. Oh and Dr. McClurken wishing us good luck. Very important.
Well we took all that we had and began asking each other questions and getting to know each other, one of the first things we realized was that none of us really knew that much about Mary Washington. This gave us the idea to actually survey the student body to figure out how much they know. From that we decided that this website will cater towards the UMW community and also Fredericksburg. From there we had to come up with a website that will want to draw the viewer in, one of the ideas for this was to include a video. The reason being that a video will hold a student’s attention more that reading through a complete biography of her life (which is also available!). By the time we had to write out our contract we had a pretty clear idea of what we wanted with the site, which was great because from that moment we were all on the same page. There weren’t any group problems about it later, we knew what we wanted and had to do to get it done.
For the most part we were on top of the contract. The only thing that we missed was the deadline for completing research. The reason why this happened was because the sources we had used at that point conflicted with each other. We each found about 4 different accounts of how Augustine and Mary met! So to compensate for this we decided that we would post what we know for fact on the site and then just continue updating it as the semester continues. The other part of the contract we didn’t complete was making the map interactive. When we had talked to with the Map group we were under the impression that they wanted to make it interactive. However, by the time we saw the final product we realized that making it interactive would just make it cluttered. The reason is because there are places where she lived that are also part of her legacy. To work around that we thought that it would be cool to include the map in our video, that way users can actually get a sense of what the area looks like while watching the video.
To conclude, I am very happy with how the website turned out. We even launched it early! At the beginning we wouldn’t have thought that. Apparently there is the possibility that the school would like to use our website to educate incoming students, which I think would be pretty sweet. If that does happen we would have to clean it up a bit, because right now it is a little cheesy, but that would be really cool to see. And show to future employers! 😉

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April 15, 2010

It’s Launched!

Filed under: dh2010 — b4ssm4st3r @ 13:35

And here is our URL- Feel free to check it out!

http://maryballwash.umwblogs.org/

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April 14, 2010

Lesson Learned… again

Filed under: dh2010 — b4ssm4st3r @ 23:28

Remember that thing that computers do to you to screw your life? Yeah that happened to me. Here I was happily editing my video and I was about halfway done, after 2 hours of work, when my world crashed. Windows movie maker froze on me. I thought, no biggie, I had saved my work. Right? Wrong. Somehow it got erased when the program decided to shut down. So all that work just disappeared into the vast sinkhole that technology created to make our lives miserable. Well after about 15 minutes of having a complete meltdown, I did what I had to do. Get back to work. This time, I saved my work in not 1, not 2, but 3 different places! I wasn’t taking any chances. Well the video is finished! And now I am just waiting for it to upload onto YouTube, so I can embed it into the site.
That is another glorious moment, my first video ever uploaded onto YouTube! And YouTube sent me congratulatory email. Makes me feel a little bit better for being up this late. 🙂 Anyway we plan on launching our site tomorrow (or today) after class, after we go over everything one last time. We think that it will be good to get it launched early because our goal is to get some feedback from visitors about our site. Then by Tuesday we can fine tune some things. We do have flyers ready to start posting everywhere on campus tomorrow and we found another use for that Facebook group we created. Advertising. We figured we could message all the members letting them know the site is up. They can then look over it and if they have suggestions or comments just post them on the group wall.
The only thing is that our timeline is still not complete and our Survey has once again disappeared from the site. Hopefully these can be fixed soon. Wish us luck! I hope that everyone else is as excited about their projects as we are about ours! 😀

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April 7, 2010

Semi- Related

Filed under: dh2010 — b4ssm4st3r @ 13:32

So since we were talking about technology in the classroom I figured I can put this up. It’s rather entertaining.

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