Symposium notes



One week of classes left…



Alrighty, so again didn’t go to the symposium this week. Why? Because, I have other things to do. And thanks to those that did go and then blogged about it I can read your notes.

It seems like there was a bit of discussion around databases and how they are not just for the internet. There are loads of other types of databases listed here.

Wikipedia says that databases are: created to operate large quantities of information by inputting, storing, retrieving and managing that information. Databases are set up so that one set of software programs provides all users with access to all the data.

The information stored in Databases is non-sequential and therefore not linear and cannot form a narrative #nobeginningmiddleend #hyperlinks #yourlifeisnotastory #iveheardthisbefore #hashtagswithnopurpose

Blog reviews

Alex discusses databases and how there is no beginning middle or end. Jamie also blogged about databases and how they are not limited to the internet. And finally thanks to Kenton who always puts an interesting pic to go with his words and yes, he too is discussing databases by re-capping the symposium.


OK this week’s reading was long with no subheadings so it was easy for me to lose interest. In a nutshell it was about computer protocols and how they are needed for regulation. Galloway argues that the internet is not an unpredictable mass of data lacking central organization. Points made on computer protocol:

1. Standards governing the implementation of specific technologies
2. Govern how specific technologies are agreed to
3. Technique for achieving voluntary regulation (encoding packets of info)
4. Formal
5. Encapsulate info inside a technically defined wrapper
6. Distributed management system

Does this make sense? Most likely not. Do I care if it makes sense? Definitely not.


Peer blogs (+ small rant + countdown)

OK this doesn’t count as a tick on my blog sheet but I want to say I am sick of reading about George Clooney’s wedding- over it. Also Emma Watson and her speech. OK I think that’s it.

Now to reviewing my peers…

Love Stefan’s pic of himself drinking wine, my question is where is mine? I’m so glad Gihan decided to help a friend with their joint assignment- great team work I say and very important. And I learnt a new acronym from Kenton, but not just that. He does also talk about how vague the term ‘network’ has become, so true

And finally… 3 weeks of uni to go people. 3 weeks.



The first one I did not attend this semester. So I have taken some points off Adrian’s Blog and linked to it.

‘We are stuck in a hit driven mindset – we think that if something isn’t a hit, it won’t make money and so won’t return the cost of its production’. ‘…“misses” usually make money, too. And because there are so many more of them, that money can add up quickly to a huge new market.’

This is business. Obviously small cost items don’t bring in a great return but they do if you have volume. It reminds me of ‘loss leaders’. Cheaper items on sale out the front of a shop wont make the company much money but they attract people and lure them in for the stuff that costs the big bucks.

Manovich quote

‘Cinema already exists right in the intersection between database and narrative’ Manovich

Because the production schedule dictates what is being filmed at what time it is never filmed in a linear fashion. So we can think of the footage going into a database and it is up to the editor to take from this and construct a narrative from this database.

The second reading = more on databases, but this guy (Seaman) authored a ‘complex virtual world generator… users can construct and navigate virtual worlds in real time…’. I don’t really have an interest in this but all I’ll say is it sounds cool.


Ah yes, the end is nigh. Little bits of excitement creep up every now and then that this blogging experience is nearly over. Don’t get me wrong it’s not that I have hated blogging but it is annoying having to do the same thing every week to tick boxes it takes the enjoyment out of it- for me anyway. So who will it be this week?

Amy is first up because like Amy, I  too thought the example of Cowbird was interesting. I had never heard of this website before and I think the concept is quite different to anything else I’ve seen. Amy links it to cultural memory, this is her remembering information from elsewhere and linking it in, nice work.

Stefan shares the Oracle of Kevin Bacon, which until yesterday this was another website I had never heard of.

And finally, Neeve has a great summary of yesterday’s symposium. Recapping something learned from each tutor.

Upon reflection…

Reflecting upon yesterday’s symposium I found some good points came out of it, in particular the discussions around this week’s reading. Expanding on the idea of the hub, Adrian explained that particular blog posts become hubs but you never know which ones will become the hubs. This is something that is not pre-determined, they simply emerge. So what makes people decide that they want to link to a particular blog? What makes that one popular? Is it trust, authority, enjoyment, relevance, the fact they disagree with what has been discussed? Maybe it’s some or a bit of all of these things. Then we could look at websites, this may be graded differently by people depending on the nature of particular websites. As Adrian mentioned educational websites will most likely be held in higher regard than others. 

Hubs and Networks

This week’s reading discusses the 80/20 rule, an example being that 80% of links on the web point to only 15% of webpages, thus creating hubs that dominate the inflow of the links. Searching ‘hub’ on the internet brought up an article regarding ‘The Hub and Spoke Model’ for communication. Here, Armano discusses taking the traditional hub and spoke model and turning into something that looks more like a network which I found interesting. That aside I did think back to when we were discussing hypertext and how it only links one way- which is a problem with hub and spoke. If hubs are created with 80% of links pointing to a smaller number of websites, what happens if these websites are taken down? The information doesn’t feed backwards through the link to notify the source that the link that it is no longer available.