Not Signed-In
Which clippings match 'Social Networking Tools' keyword pg.1 of 1
04 OCTOBER 2013

Meredith Davis: A Call to Action for Design Educators

"I believe that design education, at the most fundamental level, views complexity as a problem to be overcome through reductivist artifacts, not as an inevitable and pervasive attribute of life in the post–industrial community. So if the future is about an ever–expanding web of connectedness, how are we preparing students for meaningful work in this complex world? I'd like to suggest that we're not. Despite the obvious emotional impact of Glaser's poster, he belongs to a generation in which the goal of design was to make things simple. Negroponte, on the other hand, is a technologist for whom the design goal is to render the complex manageable and to make complicated things meaningful.

Almost everything about today's graphic design education is matched to Glaser's worldview. We structure both curricula and projects in craft–based progressions from simple to complex, from the abstract to the contextualized. In typography classes, for example, we begin with the letter, and then advance to the word, sentence, paragraph, and page. Sequences of typography courses are built on this simple to complex progression, when opening InDesign demands that students address the formal and interpretive issues of publication design simultaneously; how do you defer a discussion of leading, of column width, of the modernist preconceptions of software, of language? The only option is default, and what kind of typographic lesson is that?

The reality is that our strategy for teaching typography is residue from how students could comp type in predigital times; by drawing. It is the organizational structure for every type book since James Craig's 1970 Designing with Type, but it holds less relevance for what students need to know about communication in a digital world. Typography today is a complex relational system that depends on the interplay of formal, technological, linguistic, and cultural variables. Yet we persist in teaching this progression of scale, isolating such variables within their own distinct conceptual frameworks and rules.

The same strategy exists for how students progress in other studies of form. Foundation lessons begin with abstraction: point, line, and plane; color wheels; and paper–folding exercises. We defer discussions of meaning and context until later levels of the curriculum and beginning students learn these abstraction principles only through patterns in what makes their teachers smile. Nothing about these studies resembles what students know about in the real world, and as a colleague recently suggested, what the clients of design see in our work. So what if we begin with the familiar and complex?"

(Meredith Davis, 4 April 2008, AIGA Boston Presentation)

Presentation made at W/Here: Contesting Knowledge in the 21st Century, Emily Carr University of Art+Design, Vancouver, Canada, 7–9 December 2011.


Simon Perkins
30 JUNE 2012

Pedagogical affordances of syndication, aggregation, and mash-up of content on the Web

"As Internet and online learning become more and more incorporated into our courses, syllabi, and teaching materials, it becomes increasingly important that the impact the Web is having on changing perceptions of literacy carries over to the way we practice teaching and learning. Here we will focus on which collaborative online tools can most appropriately be applied in online and blended courses to foster reading and writing. Specifically, we will discuss some of the freely available social networking platforms and tools, their common features, and how these can help language learners find, aggregate and harvest learning objects while connecting to other people on the Web at large. We will also introduce two web publishing projects, and Writingmatrix, and explain how they function to facilitate this process and encourage connections."

(Barbara Dieu and Vance Stevens, 2007)

Fig.1 Michael Wesch, "The Machine is Us/ing Us (Final Version)" []

2). Barbara Dieu and Vance Stevens (June 2007). TESL–EJ: "Pedagogical Affordances of Syndication, Aggregation, and Mash–up of Content on the Web". TESL–EJ, Volume 11, Number 1. Available online:http://tesl–


2007academic journal • aggregate and harvest • aggregation • blended courses • blended learning • changing perceptions • collaborative online tools • common features • connecting to other peoplecontent on the webcourses • • encourage connections • English as a second language • freely available • impact of the Web • Internetlanguage learnerslearning objectsliteracymash-upMichael Weschonline learning • pedagogical affordances • reading and writing • social networking platforms • social networking tools • syllabi • syllabussyndicationteaching and learningteaching materialsteaching practicewebweb publishing • Writingmatrix


Simon Perkins
14 DECEMBER 2011

Electronic Hybridity: The Persistent Processes of the Vernacular Web

"While mass–mediated communication technologies have empowered the institutional, participatory media offer powerful new channels through which the vernacular can express its alterity. However, alternate voices do not emerge from these technologies untouched by their means of production. Instead, these communications are amalgamations of institutional and vernacular expression. In this situation, any human expressive behavior that deploys communication technologies suggests a necessary complicity. Insofar as individuals hope to participate in today's electronically mediated communities, they must deploy the communication technologies that have made those communities possible. In so doing, they participate in creating a telectronic world where mass culture may dominate, but an increasing prevalence of participatory media extends into growing webs of network–based folk culture. "

(Robert Glenn Howard, 2008)

1). Robert Glenn Howard (2008). "Electronic Hybridity: The Persistent Processes of the Vernacular Web" Journal of American Folklore, Volume 121, Number 480, Spring 2008, pp. 192–218. DOI: 10.1353/jaf.0.0012


1990sacademic journalagency • alternate voices • communication technologiesconsumer culturedigital revolution • electronic hybridity • electronic mediation • electronic technologiesexpressionfolklorefolksonomy • human expressive behaviour • hybrid formhybridity • image reproduction • instantaneousInternet • John Dorst • Journal of American Folklore • mass culture • mass distribution • mass media • mass-mediated communication technologies • medium is the messagemodes of communication • network-based folk culture • new communication technologies • new mediaparticipatory Internet mediaparticipatory mediaremediationsocial networking tools • technologies of cultural reproduction • telectronic age • telectronic world • vernacular • vernacular expression • vernacular production • vernacular web • webwiki


Simon Perkins

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