Cloud Computing

When I hear the term cloud computing what comes to my immediate mind is a cloud of information which is only a piece of what is it actually means. With Web 2.0 coming into the play the need for something like this has become important. Think of your phone service. We use our phones everyday and they do a variety of things. We generally dont live without them yet ask anyone if they understand how actually talking through a phone works or a better analogy would be a power grid where we rely and use electricity without exactly knowing how each and every part works as a collective to achieve this. The analogy could be drawn with machines in that they have intricate systems that make the whole and that relates to the term as seen through business today. The whole concept can be a bit confusing because as its evolved today through the internet its become larger and more inclusive.

Think of google and yahoo which have a central server s that use software and storage services. Its not exactly necessary for us to know the physical location and configuration of the system that delivers the services but we use it anyway. The whole point is that information is processing in a cloud where date is constantly being sent back and forth across the virtual line. It took me a while to grasp the concept but knowing what the future holds in this regard is important. Applications are important and are in constant design for their need. As web developers this opens an opportunity for us to step up and create applications that could become part of the so called cloud. Designing a web-based service that could work centrally from a remote locational server that would allow users to hosts all the programs the user would need for his or her job would be invaluable so I think of it all and how much it means to me. There is a giant corporate world out there and the economy has been in constant flux so the whole idea can be exciting and scary at the same time. With the design of such programs the need for manpower shifts.We strive to have our work noticed but at what cost? Is it worth the cost? I guess only time will tell.

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When I first heard about podcasting many things came to mind. I had heard the term but after spending some time listening to few I got the big picture. Here you are with a concept where so much information can be shared. Podcast  as the name implies is basically broadcasting through an i pod. The beautiful thing is similar to rss feeds the information can be automatically sent.You can be going to school,working, or be in bed and receive whatever it is you may choose to subscribe to. Not only that but a major thing that can be done is having the ability to broadcast yourself over the world for little cost. I could go on and on about its benefits but the best thing is to go and listen to few or better yet watch a few. Yea Apple really hit a home run with this one. Being able to see what you like or listening while working on something can make it worth it in itself. The good thing as well is you dont actually need an i pod to create a podcast. The only thing necessary is a computer and the proper software.

It’s interesting how it all ties together after looking through the weeks of research . Ever since Apple created the i pod people have really taken to it so its become an essential piece to the way we as designer should plan. There are a need and demand for applications that modify these devices. There is a saying “there is a ap for everything”. The demand for us to be flexible for what we design to us coming to the forefront. There are a lot of things a designer can do with his or her career but being ready to adapt and try new applications is what makes it all so great.

I spent some time reading what I could about podcasts and finding new podcasts to listen to. It was exciting to know how much interesting content I had I could find to listen to.  I took my ipod and uploaded all my music recently so I have everything I could want. Who would have thought some years ago we could put so much music in one place. That’s right folks. Instead of carrying a cd case you can have your music in your pocket for the size of a phone for those of you that might not know. Its been wonderful listening to the recent activities going on in the world. Being honest its actually really helped keep me up to date with everything around me and the cool thing is almost anything Ive wanted from whats been going in Libya recently to the new gaming insights Ive been able to collect.

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Mobile Web

So what comes to mind when thinking of Mobile web? What is exactly does it entail? And why is it so important? Well the term refers to the use of Internet-connected applications, or browser-based access to the Internet from a mobile device – such as a smart phone or tablet pc- connected to a wireless network.  In the early days of the web we would only use desktops to connect and as time went forward eventually laptops cold connect wireless. The use of such technology has been a big leap and will continue to be so with the addition of web 2.0 and the users who surf the internet today. Many companies have already designed for the future.  I read a recent article referencing Google and its android application launched in 2008. During the super bowl there were huge spikes in mobile queries around commercials at the end of the Super Bowl.  These are people who are on the couch and in the room with the computer right there, and for a marketer you would have to be psyched about this because through the growth of mobile applications a person can visit web sites while seeing the ads running in front of them.  I phones have become quite big and their use is phenomenal because you are essentially carrying a small pc with the ability to access to the web whether it be for personal use, business, or research. Having access to be able to do so at any given time from wherever you may be makes the whole idea valuable in itself.

In my personal life the use of mobile web technology has become particularly invaluable. I use it to access my emails, play games, and maintain my accounts up to date online. In particular its become a valuable resource in searching for information and research when I need it on the fly. As time continues mobile devices will continue to grow and develop through people like us who encourage it. I’m not a big i tunes fan but having the ability to download a particular song quickly has had its use. Many devices are constantly changing which allows for growth and improvement as they continue to come out for public use. The mobile web has allowed me to become much more connected in my personal learning enviroments through increased social action and interaction.

Devices such as the kindle,  i phone,  smart phones, web-enabled tablets, GPS systems, video games and wireless home appliances has helped  grow the mobile web exponentially — and we’re still just at the beginning of this cycle. In the field of web design this is huge because as the mobile web continues to grow the demand for applications and web sites that are compatible will continue. Early on a lot of websites were designed only for certain browsers, operating systems or certain devices. But with the advancement of Web 2.0 its becomes critical to ensure that any website designed work with most mobile devices. The use of such devices continues to grow everyday and its important that as designers we don’t ground ourselves to what we know and continue to keep an open mind that will constantly change and evolve as more devices come to the forefront and the need for the mobile web continues its growth. Its important looking forward to it and being prepared to adapt to the next wave.  As such we as designers can remain in a constant flux of information that will only allow us to advance in whatever design project or website we may be designing.

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Collective Intelligence

Whats the first thing that comes to mind when I think Collective Intelligence? Well for me the thought brought thoughts of something from a science fiction story.  Collective Intelligence is this post refers to a collection of resources and how me use it to socially move our ideas. In the field of web design since the introduction of what is now known as web 2.0 it has become a major part of where certain resources come from. Consider the wikis for example. They provide a a collection of information, ideas, and resources that would otherwise have to be hunted or sought out. Places like twitter sometimes become invaluable because of the resources they provide especially since web design is in a constant flux where changes are all too often inevitable and welcomed. In the case of wikis you take a collection of individuals who have come together to make to make what could be considered a valuable source of information depending on how you look at it or use it.  Moreover,  the success of social networking systems for consumers such as face book and similarly for micro blogging tools, as well as the success of Twitter as a consumer tool has motivated and moved the web toward the next push in web development through the interactions and information shared that can be obtained in one place or their root sources

As a part of my everyday life its become an essential means of resource that has allowed me to stay in touch with whatever I choose. I was a really big fan of heroes early on before some of the changes which eventually led to its cancellation. There was a wiki that had been created by a collection of individuals who were also fans and so I could get on my pc and check any updates that may have been going on with the show. Likewise there is a wiki for another I show greatly enjoy called Doctor who. (For those of you who haven’t seen its a must) The point is that through the use of these different individuals I was able to find information I otherwise wouldn’t have known and it was nice even though sometimes I find more than I bargained for.

Being a web designer and understanding how collective intelligence works go hand in hand as its become an important part of creating communication among the web as well. Internet search engines prioritize web pages so it can sometimes become difficult to locate what information you may be looking for. Having one place that has those resources of information collected can be real nice especially when something in your web design isn’t clear or you need a better understanding. As well as research it can allow for you to reach out and become part of something bigger through that networking and the constant need to produce information in media.  Because of web 2.0 we have the ability to locate that information and choose what we do and don’t want for ourselves as well what we may choose to collect for others in a team role or just as a single contribution for others who may looking for information themselves. As the web continues to develop understanding collective intelligence is essential in staying up to date and maintaining web standards as they constantly change.

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Communities of Practice

When someone brings up the topic of Communities of practice it brings many things to mind but what is exactly is it and how does it relate?Well communities of practice are formed by people who engaging in a process of collective learning in a shared domain of a particular interest. For example if you were to have an interest in cars and were wanting to gain knowledge in the field to better yourself. Simply reaching out to other people involved within the same circles, sharing ideas, and concerns with one another would be considered a general community of practice.  It allows for a collective of information through interaction as well as being able to find other resources which could help in the development of a particular project for a client.  The resources that could be provided help spread the knowledge as well as creating a social interaction from which both parties learn and grow.

Communities of practice affect my life everyday within my circles. My wife and I recently started a Mary Kay consultant business. She does the talking and selling but I help with the general networking. We started with Family and then eventually onto coworkers where it branched into people they knew. Starting off I couldn’t tell you  I knew a whole lot about makeup and though my wife had worn makeup her whole life we’ve still been able to learn a great deal through those interactions and building relationships from which to learn from.  Using the knowledge gained as we continue forward and continue to meet people we’ve built a community of practice from which we’ve both benefited as well as the others receiving our service.

In the field of web design communities of practice  essential element in being successful because of the changes and constant evolving of the web itself. Through the use of a personal learning environment and surrounding yourself with those sharing your ideas, and thoughts, the possibility of receiving that information particularly in the field of web design allows us designers to maintain ourselves updated within the constant changes and evolution of the web. Every so often there are changes. We all know general scripting techniques evolve and being part of a community of practice allows for a person to stay updated which is why web standards are important.  Making sure through the use of an updated personal learning environment we can take advantage of the wealth of knowledge available and seize the opportunity to share whats been gained with others who in turn share their information with you.  In the field of web development being in touch with the world can be a big part of being successful so its important to build those relationships and collect those resources that could be provided so we continue to be successful and learn throughout our interactions with others.

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Week 3 RSS feeds (Why we need them)

The question is what exactly is an RSS?  RSS  is a family of web feed formats, specified in XML and used for Web syndication. Which makes it basically a super email. It allows you to be able to subscribe to those important columns you would like to read and to provide other subscribers who might interested in your information to have information delivered straight to those recipient’s desktop. It has many benefits including being free as well as also increasing traffic for the site owner, and allowing for the subscriber to access all their information in one place creating a personal learning environment for convenient access. Providing a good headline will allow for increase traffic because real-time syndication provides a way for that information to be sent directly the subscriber where he or she can then read the article, provide comments, and respond accordingly.

The creation of RSS feeds has been wonderful and honestly i couldn’t imagine a world without them. They allow for so much content and resources to be gathered in one place through the use of creating a personal learning environment or allowing me to subscribe to those sites or blogs I really want to read. I can’t say how many times it has given me information I’ve been wanting to know whether its been something for personal entertainment, or research. Imagine being able to see all the sites and read all the information you de like without having to go the trouble to visit each and every one of those places. Well through the use of RSS and aggregators in general that’s become a reality. For some such as myself I couldn’t see how you couldn’t use it as it also provides a way for you to further develop the type of learning environment you seek to create for yourself and as being able to share that information with others who may in turn use it for their own personal learning environment tool. ….and through users sharing this information with one another it just keeps going. Being able to put together some awesome resources as a collection tool for my personal learning environment has further enhanced my knowledge in particular with information in relation to HTML. Keeping up to date with what is going on in the world of web design has been a lot easier since the use of RSS feeds as its allowed for proper web standards to be included in the projects. I’ve found recently that its extremely important to make connections out there in the digital world.  Commenting and responding can sometimes be useful in building these relationships all while further enhancing knowledge and satisfying the curiosity of the mind. All in all RSS feeds are great so you got use them or you’ll never know what you may have interest in knowing.

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Week 1 What is Web 2.0/History of the Web

After doing some research it was quite interesting so see the many responses and sources for what is defined as web 2.o. It can come off unclear and cause some confusion, but basically it means and is defined by what is new within the mainstream and present day. In the beginning you had companies such as Netscape and Lotus which defined the way the internet ran in its infancy along with a host of other companies during that period when the internet was begining to take off.  In modern day you have companies such as Google and Amazon which have adapted and act as middleman for users on the web by using the space between much like a phone call, which happens not just on the phones at either end of the call, but on the network in between. What is represented in Web 2.0 is a new revolution and the next generation in browsing the web and going to sites which have adapted and moved on using the latest software and technology while maintaining a widespread approach to ease use for the user.

The important thing to understand that Web 2.0 defines what is the medium and how the web should be.  John Allsopp makes a good point thorough his explanation of Daoism and how it relates to how the web is constantly changing, evolving, and adapting compared to how it used to be and the direction we think things may go. Over time as change has taken place new companies have shown themselves through their use of technology and how they maintain their servers. Companies such as Amazon have come to the forefront of what is actually considered Web 2.0 and how to run the web . Understanding where the web has come from, to where it is going, and what is present helps us as designers and users in our interaction within the web and its constant evolution.

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