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  • ahr's blog | MIT Center for Civic Media
    fair amount of noise laughter and intensity despite the fact that as Scot pointed out tic tac toe is a stupid game He explained that play is more important than it seems and that it says something about the way we engage more thoughtfully or interactively with the world Tic tac toe was one of Scot s many different examples of play which included Google Plus One Tweet Widget Facebook Like Read more about Intro to Civic Media 10 31 Games newsjacking and the great Kony debate The Floods of Change Submitted by ahr on October 10 2012 2 13pm In class last week my group proffered a somewhat poetic vision of social change We called it The Floods of Change Change is natural inevitable ongoing In our model the mountain of society constantly interacts with the river of ideas flowing down it This river shifts over time with some tributaries growing steadily or even spawning new branches Meanwhile other sections are at risk of drying up altogether Some sections can even be forcibly blocked by man made censorship dams Ideas pool in the ocean at the bottom and can later recycle through the ecosystem through evaporation The overall change climate monsoon season drought may also play a significant role All the while the shifting waters reshape the mountain just as the mountain can reroute the waters Google Plus One Tweet Widget Facebook Like Read more about The Floods of Change Successfully wading through the social media onslaught Submitted by ahr on September 30 2012 3 50pm I am a science writer As such I am one of many who claim membership in the scicomm community which has a vibrant internet presence When I first decided to pursue a career in science writing I spent a lot of time seeking out scicomm blogs videos Twitter feeds etc etc etc Suddenly my daily media diet was far too rich It s extremely difficult to keep tabs on what people are talking about especially now that I am a full time graduate student I suspect that I am not the only person who feels this way That s why I would like to develop a discussion strainer tentatively nicknamed Colander The application would work like this You point Colander to a list on Twitter and define time parameters e g the past day or week Colandar develops an internal word frequency list Colander presents 1 a list of the top 10 20 terms 2 a graph showing the changing popularity of those terms over the given time period and 3 any particularly popular comments on the topic Google Plus One Tweet Widget Facebook Like Read more about Successfully wading through the social media onslaught Intro to Civic Media Crisis Digital Inequality Submitted by ahr on September 16 2012 10 16pm This post was co written by Aviva Hope Rutkin and Alexander Ho We gathered together this week to discuss the current struggles of modern media and to explore the concept of digital

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/ahr (2016-04-29)
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  • Intro to Civic Media 10/31: Games, newsjacking, and the great Kony debate | MIT Center for Civic Media
    critique seriously and games they have built since then have mechanics that are more directly tied to social engagement with partner organizations that work in the issue area of the game like violence against women teen relationships and more Another example is the McDonald s Game in which you have to run a successful McDonald s restaurant You have to make different choices about how to run your business reinforcing the idea that an individual s choices affect the system Yet another exampe is Sweatshop a tower defense game based off the assembly line of a sweatshop You are asked to be complicit in the system and think critically about it However these games offer no social reinforcement People tend to them games in isolation No matter how awesome it is only 10 are going to turn around and apply it As a result Scot and his team try to develop all their games with a social component He says we should not only think about games but also the environments around them In MIT FAT Friday After Thanksgiving at the MIT Museum families have to build a Rube Goldberg machine seemingly silly contraptions to accomplish a certain task much like a game Families come together to apply physics concepts to a project Colleen Macklin created the game Re Activism This got lots of people to travel around the city recreating social movement moments like Stonewall However afterwards the gamemakers realized they d made a mistake Because the game was posed as a race players didn t take the time to actually engage with the material It s easy and worthwhile to get people to play together The next step is to actually get at some higher meaning Vanished originally announced as a science game with the Smithsonian Upon launch however there was no game only a video of MIT students claiming that the game they created had been hacked calling upon players to investigate further It only took a few hours for kids to figure out the video contained a hidden message encoded by a rotation cipher It was a message from the future encouraging them to help future scientists figure out what had happened to trigger climate change The point is that in the course of playing the game kids understood they were playing in this fictive space The approach that encouraged kids to play scientist was effective while asking them to just do science may not have elicited the same level of excitement and engagement Sasha suggests a case control using each approach traditional game approach to the same learning material and comparing outcomes would be interesting Games are a subset of hands on activities which makes them useful in education In one study people were divided into four groups hands on activity only read a book only hands on activity formal instruction and book formal instruction People in the first group did the least well People who read a book performed the same regardless of whether

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/ahr/intro-to-civic-media-1031-games-newsjacking-and-the-great-kony-debate (2016-04-29)
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  • 'The Floods of Change' | MIT Center for Civic Media
    is natural inevitable ongoing In our model the mountain of society constantly interacts with the river of ideas flowing down it This river shifts over time with some tributaries growing steadily or even spawning new branches Meanwhile other sections are at risk of drying up altogether Some sections can even be forcibly blocked by man made censorship dams Ideas pool in the ocean at the bottom and can later recycle through the ecosystem through evaporation The overall change climate monsoon season drought may also play a significant role All the while the shifting waters reshape the mountain just as the mountain can reroute the waters Our group didn t start with a defined conversation about media s role in this process but it seems clear that this too is multifaceted Like a map media can take stock of the land as it exists Understanding how the topography exists then invites informed discussion of how it can or should shift This is where the model becomes slightly convoluted the mountain is society including resources particularly human capital So this introduces the visually unusual but physically improbable image of a mountain moving bits of itself around I count myself fortunate that I don t have to bring a 3D version of our model this week Last week I proposed building a data visualization tool as my final project This tool would keep track of the conversations going on in your self curated community In this sense my tool is like that map it is the real time mapping of the mountain as it moves Granted this process is generally viewed from a more zoomed out vantage point I suspect that in real life watching social chance would be like watching grass grow But a clear understanding of what you re working with

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/ahr/the-floods-of-change (2016-04-29)
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  • Successfully wading through the social media onslaught | MIT Center for Civic Media
    30 2012 3 50pm I am a science writer As such I am one of many who claim membership in the scicomm community which has a vibrant internet presence When I first decided to pursue a career in science writing I spent a lot of time seeking out scicomm blogs videos Twitter feeds etc etc etc Suddenly my daily media diet was far too rich It s extremely difficult to keep tabs on what people are talking about especially now that I am a full time graduate student I suspect that I am not the only person who feels this way That s why I would like to develop a discussion strainer tentatively nicknamed Colander The application would work like this You point Colander to a list on Twitter and define time parameters e g the past day or week Colandar develops an internal word frequency list Colander presents 1 a list of the top 10 20 terms 2 a graph showing the changing popularity of those terms over the given time period and 3 any particularly popular comments on the topic I ve seen many free applications to visualize personal data e g Klout Vizify Wolfram Alpha or to map social connections e g TweetStats MentionMap To me these tools are interesting but not especially practical However it would be extremely helpful to use a tool like Colander because it would allow you to quickly see what is going on in a community that you ve curated This saves time and allows you to focus your energy on important subjects rather than getting lost in the noise For now Colander is going to be developed for Twitter only However if it works out well I would love to expand its capabilities to include RSS feeds and or other social

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/ahr/successfully-wading-through-the-social-media-onslaught (2016-04-29)
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  • Intro to Civic Media: Crisis & Digital Inequality | MIT Center for Civic Media
    jobs are now at stake 3 Newspapers respected reputation as objective gatekeepers of information We briefly discussed the concept of objectivity Was it really possible for any journalists to ever be objective How does one navigate the unverified depths of the internet for journalistic truth Is it true that as Harvard researcher David Weinberger puts it transparency is the new objectivity The report concluded that the greater diversity of media today reflecting media before the age of mass media allows consumers to be critical of a variety of viewpoints Next we discussed the concept of digital inequality using two texts The Digital Reproduction of Inequality and Technology and the Geography of Inequality in Los Angeles First and foremost we noted that digital inequality is NOT binary in nature there are many gradations of inequality The technology for everyone to have equal access may exist but the infrastructure definitely does not We also talked about digital inclusion the Bush administration s way of talking around the digital divide In fact access has become more inequal over time due to a number of factors including race geography gender and socioeconomic status While some groups are gaining in access others are not improving as quickly People at the top end of the tier are increasing their skills and use of tools more rapidly This inequality can exacerbate the problem One student commented that the whole situation sounds like the healthcare debate Digital access which has been positively correlated with differnet long term life outcomes can be measured by a Composite Technology Index This index takes many factors into account number of cellphones broadband internet dial up cable etc television cable or satellite personal laptop at home or abroad and so on For our small group exercise we broke up into groups to build theoretical models for universal digital access using any tool to brainstorm Perhaps looking for something very different from the Intertwinkles 10 Point Tool we all opted for the whiteboard a worthy medium as any The List and Arrows group used created a list of the factors that had a role in digital inclusion They drew arrows between interrelated factors and then began to propose solutions to address these factors They came up with the more short term solution of greater funding to non profit organizations involved in media access such as public television and radio public access TV and libraries They also proposed changing policy on digital access as a longer term solution The Tree group used an intuitive model of a tree representing a top down bottom up relationship between the roots the tools necessary for access and the branches encompassing content creation and content consumption Additionally an acorn of democracy could fall and allow for the creation of another access tree and a hammer could also fall from the tree to participate in the regulation of access The Bubble group created a web of issues connected to digital inclusion These included tools and what kinds autonomy of use

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/ahr/intro-to-civic-media-crisis-digital-inequality (2016-04-29)
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  • ahr | MIT Center for Civic Media
    in natural language programming research programmed activities for One Laptop Per Child and interned at Nature Publishing Group Time and Brookhaven National Laboratory w r t Intro to Civic Media she is particularly interested in data journalism and unconventional story narratives realavivahr www avivahoperutkin com Recent blog posts by ahr Hey there Civic Media Submitted by ahr on September 10 2012 9 44pm I have to come clean I don t really know anything about civic media As a graduate student in MIT s science writing program I am permitted to take only one elective each semester and CMS 860 was just one of many classes that got shoehorned into an ambitious course shopping schedule I have experience in journalism cue bio at right but no formal education At the beginning of class on Wednesday my definition of civic media would have been whatever bloggers do By the end of the night I had learned civic media includes Julian Assange QR codes certain programming languages the FCC KONY2012 humanitarianism my iPhone maps The conversation was enlightening So my definition of civic media required some initial research and reflection In the end I like Beth Noveck s approach best Civic media

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/users/ahr?page=1 (2016-04-29)
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  • Mapping the Electorate - Liveblog from #PoliticalAnalytics2016 | MIT Center for Civic Media
    but also lets you filter by income Another reason they like this map is that users picked it up to do other things like see who voted for which mayors in unplowed areas during a snowstorm The Mayoral Primaries an interactive by the New York Times in 2013 She shows how maps reveal patterns What look like electoral patterns now such as a crescent shape of voting patterns across the South are also maps of cotton production 100 years ago and are also maps of where the coast was prior to that so the soil was rich for production of cotton Kirk transitions to Andrei from 538 Andrei oversees graphics at 538 They use that term broadly They have a staff of 8 people who have experience in design data mapping and more He shows an image from 538 The Facebook Primary a project by fivethirtyeight They worked with Facebook to get data from the primaries They started looking for patterns for what people were sharing on Facebook in regards to the elections For example if you turn on Cruz you see that people in Texas support him But they found the most interesting results at the local level If you click into Austin TX you see very granular data at the zip code level Here the point is about the map as an interface to let you drill down into the data Kirk states That s a real shift right When Karl was working you knew the story But in this day and age you don t necessarily know all the stories in your own data You can give people the Choose Your Own Adventure but there is still a story to tell He asks Amanda to describe the Times wind map Amanda describes her role on the map that shows county level change over time as wind She says it works as an impressionistic map of change in political leaning Map at the New York Times 2012 Kirk asks How do you blend mapping and storytelling and where do you see it going particularly on mobile Andrei What is hard is making this work in 3 inches of screen real estate There s a lot of technical work that has to go into it We balance exploration and storytelling by giving people some scenarios and interesting maps that are in the data So you present them with curated stories that come from the data That was something we couldn t replicate on mobile Amanda Some of our mappers are better at this Navigational maps have taught people the basic things about mapping The interesting things are less about how I scale this and more about how we interpret things There is lower hanging fruit I often enjoy the mobile version more because it forces us to be better editors Kirk says he tries to teach students about choropleth and other thematic maps that can try to show more of the nuance and complexity of geographic patterns He asks

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/kanarinka/mapping-the-electorate-liveblog-from-politicalanalytics2016 (2016-04-29)
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  • kanarinka's blog | MIT Center for Civic Media
    Why How When OpenVisConf Keynote by Jeffrey Heer Submitted by kanarinka on April 6 2015 10 22am Google Plus One Tweet Widget Facebook Like Read more about OpenVisConf Keynote by Jeffrey Heer Consequences of Humanizing Systems Liveblog from the Microsoft Social Computing Symposium Submitted by kanarinka on January 14 2015 10 17am This was one of four sessions at the Microsoft Social Computing Symposium 2015 that took place in San Francisco over three days Liveblogging by Catherine D Ignazio and Alexis Hope Session organized by Kati London picklesnumber1 Google Plus One Tweet Widget Facebook Like Read more about Consequences of Humanizing Systems Liveblog from the Microsoft Social Computing Symposium Speculative Civics A Lunch Talk With Carl DiSalvo Submitted by kanarinka on October 30 2014 1 45pm Carl DiSalvo cdisalvo an Associate Professor in the Digital Media Program in the School of Literature Media and Communication at the Georgia Institute of Technology At Georgia Tech he established The Public Design Workshop a design research studio that explores socially engaged design practices and civic media This talk is co sponsored by the Center for Civic Media at MIT and the Engagement Lab at Emerson College on October 30 2014 Liveblog by Catherine D Ignazio Erhardt Graeff and Adrienne Debigare Catherine D Ignazio introduces Carl DiSalvo and his work as uniting art design design research and civic media This talk coincides with the Civic Art Initiative and the question of what speculative thinking and the imagination s role is in civic life Google Plus One Tweet Widget Facebook Like Read more about Speculative Civics A Lunch Talk With Carl DiSalvo Algorithms Data driven Storytelling Panel at the Computation Journalism Symposium at Columbia Submitted by kanarinka on October 24 2014 11 45am I m at the 2014 Computation Journalism symposium at Columbia University Here

    Original URL path: https://civic.mit.edu/blog/kanarinka (2016-04-29)
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