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Gardening the Mind

I recently spoke to a woman who is one of the few surviving anti-GPS enthusiasts. She stated that she likes to use maps because she prefers them to GPS, she likes to know the area she lives in and not simply be a slave to turn by turn instructions. Her chief concern about the technology was that its stopping people from thinking and developing a lateral thinking mindset. Something which I somewhat contest, I believe that the technology of the future, although it might render certain thought processes obsolete, it may in fact call for new patterns. This is something which I had on my mind while reading Gardeners Five Minds For the Future. The five minds are as followed

The Disciplined mind – a person who has mastered a specific craft
The Synthesising mind – Somebody who is capable to making dense of large amounts of diverse information
The Creating mind – this is a new evolution of ‘mind’ as it combines the previous two. This is the mind that innovates a creative idea from synthesis and then shapes it into a disciplined form which can be consumed.
The Respectful mind – This mind recognises the diversity and complexity which is becoming prevalent in our world, and embraces it.
The Ethical Mind – Ponders the impact of ones work, and how it could render service to the community

Gardener then goes on to discuss the new vs the old attitude to education, and this is where the GPS argument comes in. In the past for example, it was necessary for people to develop a disciplined mind, one had to be to ultimate master of a trade, many things were not automated, thus calling for intense learning about all details of a task such as map reading or type setting. Now, in the digital age however, this is no longer required, as the previously ‘nitty gritty’ information is readily at hand for anybody. Therefore, we can now turn our focus to developing Ethical, Respectful and Creative minds.

Finally, the chapter concludes by explaining the importance of developing rounded mindsets, and the ability of becoming a multi-faceted human being, along with the benefits this will have on the quality of ones life.

Technology Burnt out the Clock

“I just don’t know how to handle the way my life is headed”, is what I said despairingly to my father, I had spent the day doing eleven hours of computer based work, and realized that if I wanted to succeed in media, this would most probably be my future. I have become a slave to the technology which I understand makes my life more efficient. I want to write, use the computer, I want to create, use the computer. It seems that everything productive to me, now involves using a computer. Similarly, this was a central focus of this weeks reading, it explored the paradox of technology and its affect on time. The argument has been that the more we embrace technology, and machines, the more time we will have to spend on other things. Yet it seems that the opposite has happened, we have actually become more stressed, and feel the need to work more. Some people accredit this paradox to technology, and the constant access and network we have around us, however Wajman debunks this theory and discusses a totally new approach to time management in the age of technology. We need to become aware of the time technology gives us and take opportunity of it, rather than making us feel like we have less time, and that we need to spread ourselves too thinly. Another aspect is the idea of slow-zones, or appreciating moments of slow in a fast moving society. For example, growing vegetables locally as a community, or simply recognising and enjoying leisure time, are both examples of how the fastness of the world has allowed us to appreciate the slow.

Mindset is set for Success

All set, with my mindset now. After this weeks reading there was much food for thought about content creation. This has been something playing on my mind of late. It seems that in order to succeed in any endeavor one must wholeheartedly practice and make a time commitment. This is an idea which has been explored at length, for example in the book “Outliers” by Malcom Gladwell. I have been considering this concept in my own life, im trying to make media and become a comedian, how much work do I need to do? This is when I encountered the work of Cal Newport where he says to be “So good they cant ignore you”. He basically outlines two mindsets, the passion mindset and the craft mans mindset, in one where you pursue an art for the love, and in the other where you simply try to get better and better at something. He suggests that they way to approach creation in order to succeed is more in line with the craft mans mindset, and then the passion will follow. So basically, by working on your skill until you hone it completely you will eventually become so good at what you do that people will find it impossible not to aknowledge your work. Once this has been achieved the passion will follow. In order to explore this he interviewed Jordan Tice, a 24 year old guitarist who has has managed to make a professional career out of his task-oriented, skill building mindset.
Hearing this week, really just made me realize that BAM. Thats what I need to do. Put my head down to camera. And lets do this.


Exposure Dollars!



If anybody has ever asked you to make some form of media for them, you are probably going to relate to this comic.

This says a lot about the status of Art and the creative industries in our society. Only recently are they becoming considered seriously as jobs, or worthy professions. However, there is still a lot of question surrounding how we pay for creative goods and services. This is something which has been discussed by Lobato and Thomas in their book The Informal Media Economy. They touched on the conception of sites such as freelancer and elance where people can be paid virtual peanuts to do media work which should be considered highly paid skilled work. Therefore its time to consider how a formalization can be put in place to make the payment and product consistent. Because one of the current issues is that its a global market, this means that work can be outsourced to third world countries where the minimum wage is less. Normalizing however does come with its own set of issues. One of the advantages of having such a low level of payment is that entry level media professionals can provide an average quality of work in order to build their portfolio. However, if a formal process was put in place it would create barriers of entry to the student starting out in the business. Thus perhaps a solution could be that different spaces are created for professionals and students. But then the question is. Would the students get work?



Bowie said it the best when he said:
Chris Lederer and Megan Brownlow also said it, but they took sixteen pages. The face of the media industry is changing, entertainment is reaching more people, and thus audiences are becoming more diverse. Multiple platforms are beginning to emerge, and content creators are being given more tools. This means that in order to remain a successful media producer, one must cater to and understand these changes. Lederer and Brownlow explored this idea with regards to how media is being received, they were able to identify that there was a direct correlation between the percentage of under 35’s in a country and the growth of its Media industry. In other words, it is clear that progress is favouring the media literate, those with an understanding of how to reach content are usually the most engaged. This is where media companies need to learn how to distribute properly, in order to expand their audience.

Another finding was that although the channels of distribution are rapidly changing, the content people want is still most important. Content has remained specific to demographic, location and preference, therefore companies need to be creating the desired content, and distributing it through the right channels.

Basically the findings conclude that there needs to be an overarching sense of coherence in the industry, strong content needs to be managed correctly, in order to ensure the correct distribution and access methods are used, which will enable successful growth in the media and entertainment industry.

Megatrends Coming Up!

Megatrends… The word itself may be too broad, but in the light of Klaus Schwab’s research on the fourth industrial revolution its a term used to describe major directions in which technology is progressing. Schwab starts by breaking down our current technological progress into three categories, the physical, digital and biological. Under each are then subcategories which fully cover our major technological breakthroughs. For example:

  • Automation (Self driving cars, Artificial Intelligence)
  • Advanced Robotics
  • Synthetic biological materials
  • 3D printing

After identifying these elements, Schwab goes on to explain the potential impact they will have on the way in which we live. For example, governments will need to adapt their systems and implement new technologies, for the management of staff, tax collection, and  nationwide communication. Evolving these systems is imperative in order to ensure survival and growth for the future, it is clear that by not moving with the trends, one will be left non-equiped to deal with the future of the world.

A simmilar discussion can be had about the operation of future social spaces. History has proven that one of the most difficult things about technology is integrating it without disregarding tradition, and cultural structures.  However, technology can also be used to empower people within a society and improve their way of life. For example, by bringing information to the less advantaged and giving those in poverty access to cheaper and better nutrition and health.

Thus it is very clear that in order for us to benefit from our technological advances we need to adapt and fully embrace the current changes.

Final Reflection of Sketchy Students

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” Dr. Seuss

“Nobody ever starts their final reflection with a Dr Seuss quote!” – Mark Poole in the Future when he reads this

Looking back at Sketchy Students, everybody will agree that it was a wild ride, there were many ups and downs and everybody learnt something. Throughout the process I was a member of the writing team, and I cant say that i disagree. When I was originally assigned to the writing team I was quite excited, because something I wanted to do was learn about how TV shows are written, so that some day I could write my own.

Firstly, I wanted to know how to lay out a proper script, this I feel I achieved. One Point. However, this was not nearly the largest learning curve, i believe the greatest thing I learnt was the importance of communication. Personally, I spend a lot of time on the internet, however, its mainly in the evenings that I sit down and make any long replies to correspondence This became a challenge during sketchy students, because often we would get feedback during the day, and if we did not reply quickly, we would miss the opportunity to contribute. Therefore I quickly became resigned and detached from the process, as I could not keep up with the pace required. In some ways this taught me detachment from the creative process, and was quite humbling, as I realized i was a cog in a larger machine. But at the same time it taught me how writing teams should operate.

One of my dreams is to work on the set of a sitcom, such as Modern Family, I would love to see how the world class comedy writers operate. One things for sure. They have stellar communication. Coming from a YouTuber background, I am used to writing and producing all my own material, thus I am very familiar with the end result from the onset. This led me to underestimate the workload for Sketchy Students, not that the writing itself was strenuous, but it required constant communication, iteration and improvement. Combined with the learning that face to face communication is the most effective, this meant that we needed as a team to meet as much as possible. However, we did not seem to get the opportunity due to our personal schedules. This lack of communication caused a lot of tension throughout the season, especially when it came time for us to finalize scripts, and we didn’t even have the story outlined properly.

Another thing that happened throughout the process was that the management team had a strong influence over the writing of the show. Admittedly this was partially due to the fact that the writing teams lack of communication led to inconsistency, however, for future projects I would like to see firmer boundaries between teams. I believe that if everybody did their jobs to the best of their ability, crossover roles would not be necessary and the show would still maintain its quality.

If I was to do it all again, I would make the writing team smaller, perhaps a streamlined 3 people. The story could initially be brainstormed, taken to a larger group, but then brought back to the 3 writers. This would make communication simpler as well as insure a more consistent storyline.


Today, Imma Nohere made his acting debut in Sketchy Students. What does that even mean?

Well – Imma Nohere is a character that has been written into the show as the zero attendance student, that one that never shows up but still gets good grades. That is Imma. I was happily cast as Imma for the 3rd and 4th episodes of sketchy students, and today we did his first bit of filming. Due to one of the other projects that I am currently working on, I am going to have a moustache for the next few weeks, and for the sake of consistency I even need to have a moustache as Imma. So Imma Nohere has a moustache – and there is nothing you can do about it.

For the role of Imma, I wanted to have an American accent, because Im trying to work on my American accent, plus I wanted him to stand out as different from the other characters. I believe that this has been done aptly by the moustache and the voice that does not at all match the face. One thing to note however, is that my experience in the character of Imma did not yet feel very consistent, as I have not been him for a very long time, thus this first episode with him will be quite experimental on my part. I look forward to you seeing him next week!


So, it turns out that the revisions to script 4 were not received too well – and I can understand why. Firstly, the final script is quite far removed from the original concept that we had penned in class. Although there is reason for most of the changes, it does seem that group members who had originally had quite a lot of their work in the script, were suddenly left wondering where it all went. Even though we thought we had concluded that we would be passing the script on to each other for edits, I don’t think anybody expected there to be such drastic changes.  Our group was hoping to consult in order to ensure that there would not be such drastic changes, however, because we were receiving feedback at such a fast pace, it made it very difficult for us to keep our groups views all aligned.

In terms of resolution to this issue, I think the best bet is to detach from the outcome and just allow whatever makes the most people happy to go ahead. I come to this conclusion based on the fact that this is the last script, once it is resolved there will be no need to discuss the issue further. That being said I do acknowledge that if this was a multiple season show, there would certainly need to be drastic adjustments made to the collaborative process.

Sketchy BTS.

Today the first Behind the Scenes of Sketchy Students was uploaded to Facebook… and it features me! Very exciting – thats all I wanna say.

Actually no, I also want to mention that today is my Brothers Birthday… Happy Birthday Bro!

However, in the world of serious, this evening I had a meeting with Simone and Dylan from the management team. We were discussing episode 4. It was decided that I would be the one who did the revisions for the 4th episode, so that is what happened this evening.

A lot of concerns were raised in the meeting and we tried to streamline the script to both make the filming manageable, as well as the characters consistent. For example, there was a concern raised that both Sandra and Phoeboe were ethnic characters, both female who never spoke besides using their phones. This was the entire depth of their character and this was still all they did in episode four. Besides the fact that the gag itself was getting lacklustre, it was also necessary to give them more depth. Thus during the meeting we discussed changing that part of the script. These are the kind of things we discussed. Overall it was a fairly efficient meeting.

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