Archive for the ‘Questions’ Category

The article “Archivists Struggle to Preserve Crucial Records as Paper Gives Way to Pixels” in The Chronicle of Higher Education, by Florence Olsen, addresses the concerns over maintaining records of online information. The article focuses on important university documentation.

Several questions came to mind regarding the article:

1) If the information discussed is so crucial, why wasn’t it’s archival discussed before it was only documented online-only? (more…)


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The document “Mobile Web Best Practices 1.0” by W3C provides basic guidelines for improving mobile Web site usability. This is a useful reference document for mobile site creators. From an academic perspective, the paper provides useful insights as to why certain features are or are not acceptable on the mobile platform.


For example, W3C’s regulatory suggestions include limiting the content on WAP pages and keeping externally linked resources to a minimum. The paper makes it clear that the overarching problem on mobile sites is that they are improperly designed for mobile use, and not properly transferred from PC formats.  “Many Web sites and pages make for a poor user experience when they are viewed on a mobile device” and “Many Web pages are laid out for presentation on desktop size displays, and exploit capabilities of desktop browsing software.”


Several questions came to mind, and the answers would provide a relevant context for digesting the “Mobile Web Best Practices 1.0” document:


1.       How much of a problem is created due to developers failing to follow these best practices? It seems as though the only loss or detriment is to the developer himself – in having an unusable site.

2.       As version 1.0, was there not a previous document of this type? Were former developers simply expected to filter through numerous other documents (such as Web Content Accessibility Guidelines and Device Independent Working Group concepts) to obtain this information? It is surprising that this agregated paper was just released in July 2008.

3.       Similarly, is W3C the only organization of its type? Meaning, are these Best Practices supported by the rest of the industry and streamlined/agreed upon by all factions of the mobile industry?




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According to the About.com posting, “Jamster Slammed for Mobile Selling Practices,” by Stephen Lawson, the ringtone company Jamster/VeriSign was in a business of ill-repute in 2005.

Some questions come to mind while reading Lawson’s article:

1) Did Cingular acquire AT&T or vice versa?  Lawson states “Cingular, which now owns AT&T Wireless…”

2) Analyst Eddie Hold metions “confused subscribers” and says, “There’s no such thing as an easy-to-read wireless bill.”  Why do you think this is the case? Is confuse-a-consumer an intentional tactic employeed by the carriers? (more…)

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I enjoyed reading the Technologies of the Third Mediamorphosis chapter of Roger Fidler’s 1997 book, “Mediamorphosis Understanding New Media.”One of his main points is that despite common perception, the catalytic events for today’s digital media presence occurred before World War II. The chapter made me question which of these generally comes first: the need for new technology (as Fidler argues) or the emergence of disruptive technology that is dismissed as unnecessary until widely adopted. I have read articles that support each side. Several questions came to mind as I read:


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Based on the article “As We May Think”:

1. What kind of civilian-physicist response was there post-war that encouraged Vannevar Bush to publish this article? (ex: were the physicists themselves really THAT impacted? They most likely had physicist-type jobs before the war led them to war-time physics; what prevented them from returning to that type of pre-war work?)

2. What parallels can be drawn between the article and present-day human experience?

This line from 1945 seems to have some relevance today: “The summation of human experience is being expanded at prodigious rate.”

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The recent article on the stock market news Web site Seeking Alpha, “The Wireless Application Marketplace: Apple, Google, Microsoft and RIMM” by Option Dragon, offers a look at the emergence of wireless application marketplaces.


With the huge success of Apple’s iPhone App Store, other industry leaders are rushing to get a share of the market. Google, T-Mobile, Microsoft and RIMM (Blackberry) are debuting their own versions of application marketplaces. The significance of these new marketplaces is that they support the notion of open software development for cell phones. (more…)

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Questions for Collective Action speaker:


  1. Do you see collective action as more of a pro or con for society?
    (Any pre- and post-digital age examples?)
  2. Can a rise in collective action be seen in parallel with the rise of the digital age?
  3. What do you expect the reaction to future collective action to be?
    (Embraced vs. feared?)

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