What can you do with $5?

By Abbey Daniel-Green

Check out who can make a music video with $5.

Earlier this year the experimental progressive rock band from Boston, Art Decade released a new album entitled Western Sunrise.  Art Decade’s single from the album also entitled Western Sunrise, made technology nerds and animators everywhere cheer.

Why? The recently debuted music video for Western Sunrise was almost completed created using a $5 Ipad application. Hired by the band animator and director, Alexander Whitney used the app Procreate to make a unique moving painting as the video for Western Sunrise.

In an interview with mashable.com Whitney offered some recommendations for other animators, “I really recommend it to anyone who does storyboards, concept art and animators, filmmakers, producers, whatever- this is the future.” (Alexander Whitney) It took Whitney four months to create this beautiful moving painting, using the Ipad2.

Aside from using Procreate the most amazing $5 app ever, one might say, Whitney also stated that he used a little help from other design programs, “I used After Effects to compose all of the elements, and also to create elements like the water, mist, clouds, as well as the final paint filter called Video GoghMocha was used to track the position of the character.” Whitney also revealed that he used a iMac keyboard when creating this master piece. With four months of basically finger painting on an Ipad, Whitney had to invest in special orthopedic gloves to protect his fingers from the long days of pounding on the keys.

With all this hard work, Whitney definitely pleased Art Decade. Lead singer Ben Talmi said “Whitney actually ended up surpassing what I thought was even possible.” With life like paintings moving simultaneously to the next Art Decade without a doubt have to give it up to Whitney for creating an animation marvel.

Want to see how he did it?


Text and Its “Emotions”

ROTFL = a quiet smirk

By Zachary Gray

At lunch the other day, a group of friends sitting behind me were discussing interpretations of text messages. The debate was over the meaning of a girl sending “hey,” but with multiple “y”s. It may seem far-fetched to determine a person’s motives or emotions via text, but in a day and age where asking someone on a date via text message is common, it may not be that crazy.

My personal experiences with conversation via text start back in 7th grade, when I created my AOL Instant Messenger account. This was a time before I had a cellphone, so AIM was the place to keep in touch with a majority of my friends in school. I had to decipher the lol’s, omg’s, and lmfao’s and translate them to real-life human emotions. The longer the lmaooooooooo or the capitalization of HAHAHAHH, the stronger the emotion.

I would come to the realization that the hours spent on AIM would simply be a waste. “Friends” I’d talk to online or via SMS text message in the following years lacked the desire to speak in person. It was as if they were a completely different person online as opposed to the real world. In some cases, they were just bored at home and felt like wasting time typing on a keyboard.

After several years of meaningless conversation, I’ve come to the conclusion that trying to interpet text is simply illogal. The younger generations have lost their ability to communicate in person like normal human beings. Even when a person types “lol,” he or she is typically staring emotionless at the screen. They’re incapable of communicating in person and lack personality via text.

So the next time you or some friends are debating what “heyyyyyyy” means chick’s message, she probably really enjoys the letter Y.

Facebook Buys Instagram for $1 Billion


markzBy Meghan Crozier

The heavy baller, Facebook made a public offering today, April 9, for its first big purchase. The popular photo-sharing application, Instagram has been causing a commotion on the social media scene and of course Mark Zuckerberg was not far behind.

On Monday, both companies expressed their official commitment to run Instagram as an independent service, while Zuckerberg explained that Instagram would continue to work with rival social networks, allowing users to post on other services, enabling them to opt out of sharing on Facebook.

This is a good policy, due to the initial fan base of the brand which may want to leave out their Instagram photo’s on Facebook. The question lies, whether or not this was an intelligent decision on Facebook’s end due to the fact they have yet to go public. However, Mr. Zuckerberg feels strongly about the decision, because they’ve been focusing on building the best experience for sharing photos, and with Instagram, “Now, we’ll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests,” which he posted earlier on Facebook himself. Facebooks initial public launch, is expected to take place next month, causing a lot of investors and buyers to make a name for themselves.

From the Instagram side of things, chief executive, Kevin Systrom, reiterated plans the preserve the service’s functionality and is looking forward to taking the most out of their new parent company’s resources. There were also a lot of other investors in the market for the fast growing photo-sharing application.

Last week, Instagram had a financial round worth of more than $50 million, with names such as Sequoia Capital, and early backer of Google, Greylock Capital, and early investor of LinkedIn, and Thrive Capital, the firm run by Joshua Kushner, all being in the running for the large purchase.

This is the news release from Facebook:

“Facebook announced today that it has reached an agreement to acquire Instagram, a fun, popular photo-sharing app for mobile devices.

“The total consideration for San Francisco-based Instagram is approximately $1 billion in a combination of cash and shares of Facebook. The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to close later this quarter.”

And from Mark Zuckerberg’s statement:

“We’re looking forward to working with the Instagram team and to all of the great new experiences we’re going to be able to build together.”


Steve Buttry’s Case for Digital Journalism

By Zachary Gray

For over forty years, Steve Buttry has been in the news business as a journalist, writer, editor, and reporter. Buttry learned the old-school techniques and styles of journalism, but makes a case for digital journalism in a recent post on The Buttry Diary. Titled “Dear Newsroom Curmudgeon,” Buttry lists seven reasons for why journalist resist digital journalism. With each reason, Buttry breaks down the flaws in every excuse to not leap into the digital world.

The seven reasons journalists resist are: quality, you love writing, confidence, you don’t have the time, you don’t like Twitter, ethics, and age. Buttry explains that the old-school journalists believe print journalism is of high quality, and digital journalism has flaws. But history has shown that not all print journalism is perfect.

Many journalists resist digital journalism because they love to write, feel they don’t have the time, or even feel as if they are too old. Buttry’s response is to simply suck it up. The Director of Community Engagement & Social Media for Digital First Media and Journal Register Co. explains that digital journalism has improved his editing skills, in essence made him a better writer. Time wise, it’s exactly the same; there’s no difference from taking notes at an event to live blogging. As for age, Buttry’s response is simple: “bullshit.” At 57-years-old, Buttry says using digital journalism actually energizes him.

Buttry’s letter, in my opinion, is spot on. Too many “old-school” journalists complain about digital journalism and its “flaws.” yet many of them have yet to use digital journalism. The fact is simple: digital journalism is the future. The experience in standard journalism is highly valued and will always be, but adaptation a necessity.

World’s Most Photogenic Guy, in a 10k Race

By Alyssa Lajoie

A simple picture of Zeddie Little Running a 10k race in Charleston, S.C. has given his life a complete 360.  Little is pictured in the middle of the race, running, surrounded by other runners, looking very tired and sweaty; Little, however, not so much.  His hair seems to be styled perfectly, not a drop of sweat on his face, and his pearly whites shining brightly as he runs along with the others.

This picture was found when a South Carolina native, Will King, was looking through photos from the Cooper River Bridge 10k race and he happened upon this picture of Little.  He immediately uploaded to his Flickr account because of how much Little stood out in the picture and the fame came instantly.

A friend of King’s dubbed Little “Mr. Ridiculously Photogenic.”  In an article on Yahoo! News by Chris Chase he said, “photoshop him out of that shot and put him in a family photo at Disney World and Little doesn’t look any more ‘ridiculously photogenic’ than anyone else.”

So if this is all true, why is this picture along with Little himself getting so much fame from all of this?   It all leads back to how much power Social Media has over our society.  The minute an unknown face gets a little bit of attention it becomes worldwide “news.”

He’s popping up everywhere from Facebook to Twitter and even as the face of many new Memes.  There’s even a Tumblr page where people can post their adaptions of their memes where Little’s face is in the background surrounded by sarcastic and witty remarks.  Little is getting so much attention but in reality, this man is just like anyone else out in the world, but he’s famous for running a marathon, looking good, and being captured doing both.  Surely anyone could do that if they just tried a little!

Project Glass

This week, Google released the vision of their most recent project, Project Glass. In short, Project Glass is like bringing your smartphone to your direct field of vision. It can also be explained as a virtual reality. It is controlled by the sound of your voice much like Siri on the iPhone.

Project Glass will be a pair of glasses that will have special technology to not only bring data reception to them, but have the technology to view what you would be able to see on a phone screen, on the lens right in front of your eyes.

By Amanda Tyler

Features of this project will include voice-to-text messaging, a camera, GPS location and mapping, a calendar, reminders, and much much more. The team behind this project wants a technology that can be reached at your fingertips, whenever you want it, but also something that can be hidden, when you don’t. Babak Parviz, Steve Lee, and Sebastian Thrun, three employees from Google, working on this project wrote, “We think technology should work for you — to be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don’t. We’re sharing this information now because we want to start a conversation and learn from your valuable input.”

Although Google has a long way to go with this Project, they wanted to release their ideas to get consumer feedback on how to make this product even better than planned. To see the vision that Google has so far, view this video to understand how you could use Project Glass in your everyday life.

What are your thoughts? Do you think this is something that people could use on a day to day basis? How could Google make this idea better? Feel free to share your thoughts.

Are college student “ADDICTED” to social media?

By Kelsey Correia

A new study shows that college students describe their need for social media like a drug addicted talks about their need for drugs.  Some of the descriptions are withdrawals, cravings, anxiety, antsy, jittery and crazy if they are away from social media tools for too long.  The study conducted by University of Maryland researchers proves that students are reluctant to be without social media.  One student says “I clearly am addicted and the dependency is sickening,”

How was their study conducted?  Two hundred students at the University of Maryland College Park campus were asked to remove social media from their lives for 24 hours.  After this time elapsed, the students were asked to privately blog about their experience with no social media.  In the blog they were asked to mention where their strengths and weakness were.

Susan D. Moeller, a professor at the University, stated that “We were surprised by how many student admitted that they were ‘incredibly addicted’ to media,”  She also added “But we noticed that what they wrote at length about was how they hated losing their personal connections.  Going without media meant, in their world, going without their friends and family.”  After looking through all the blogs posted by these students, she concluded that students were not addicted to the social media but they were addicted to the connection that they had through these social sites.

One student said “Texting and IM-ing my friends gives me a constant feeling of comfort,” also adding “When I did not have those two luxuries, I felt quite alone and secluded from my life. Although I go to a school with thousands of students, the fact that I was not able to communicate with anyone via technology was almost unbearable.”

A very low number of students reported that they watch the new on television or read about the new in a local or national newspaper on a regular basis.  A Ph.D student and a former writer at The Washington Post, Raymond McCaffrey, said that students mentioned that they felt an enormous amount of anxiety when unable to be connected to social media.  McCaffrey concluded that students who use social media care about being updated with their friends and family but they also care about world new in general.  But in a larger picture they cared more about how fast they received information and the instant gratification they had from receiving the information.

Are you addicted to social media?  When your phone dies do you get anxiety that you are missing out on what your friends or family are doing?