The Mac Lab

2010: Odyssey Two (Week 15)

by on Jan.04, 2010, under Blog

philip_b_mac_lab_sm…Reason number five to thank you. The Blog and your pre-class speeches. Ooooooh the Blog. The 3 minutes of reading every day before every class for the second semester. What a stupid idea I thought every day. Reading about someone I don’t care about or about one of your memories or about some stupid movie. Whatever big whoop. No. I know that’s what I thought in the beginning but I refuse to remember that that’s how it was. The Blog HELPS. Tell your new students who think it’s stupid that the kid who made those three cars on the Wall of Fame said that. Because it really is a resource that EVERYONE should grasp onto. It’s an important part of my day now Skocko, every day. And your speeches which always seemed like an eternity but were only 5 minutes. I apologize for all the times you had to mark me down for not paying attention. But I was so eager to work in all honesty. I really do take in every word you say and It always means a lot to me. You have taught me so much…
Alex S. June 5, 2009 (former student)

You teach best what you most need to learn. (RB)

If you read the prior post — and you’re required to read the prior post — you’ll see that the 2010: Odyssey Two title had been decided upon long before this happened. Why is that important? Watch this video. Update: Christopher F just reminded me that 2061 was the 3rd book. The one I mention was the 4th. Good catch, Chris!

Okay, now what? What are these big changes?

One year ago, the fate of 250 students pivoted on a moment of inspiration (second paragraph). That inspired moment has impacted another 250 students this year. (That’s you, this year’s Mac Lab contingent, so you might as well read that second paragraph.) Why, you might ask, would I alter the class so drastically? Why change?

Are you kidding? Have you already forgotten this? (That was back in the Week 1 post.) If we don’t change and adapt we’ll be left in the dust. Technology is changing the way in which we work and interact with one another. If we don’t keep up…

So, I’ve got this crazy idea. The goal, if I may be so rude as to spoil the surprise, is to tip a few more of you into finding and following your bliss in the Mac Lab; to encourage you to partake in the production of high-quality, student-driven, creative projects (Philip B); to get you excited about dipping into the 5 Stages of the Creative Process; and most of all, to better prepare you for the world in which you’ll find yourselves in a few short years.

Oh yeah, and to reach into the void in an attempt to breath life into a flatliner or two.

I know, I know… Some of you are still thinking: Why force us to read the blog every day? Why not just let us work (or loaf)? Watch this video.

The unconscious, though one cannot force it, will not produce new ideas unless it has been painstakingly stuffed full of facts, impressions, concepts, and an endless series of conscious ruminations and attempted solutions. On this we have the testimony of many creative people.
Morton Hunt / The Universe Within

Just in case you forgot… read the prior post. And follow the links. (Some are blocked at school.) When you finish all that, whip up a new portfolio using your existing work. (For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about… read the prior post!)

Oh, and tomorrow is iTunes Tuesday. As we discussed before break (and in class today), bring your 100 favorite songs (in mp3 or other file format that’s iTunes-friendly). Don’t say I didn’t remind you!

0105: iTunes Tuesday! Instructions on board. More details in class. While your music loads, finish the assigned reading (above and here).

Tomorrow is Web 2.0 Wednesday. I’ve just begun a Web 2.0 support page (you may also click the 2.0 link at the top of the page). Needless to say, it will grow on the days and weeks to come. If you missed it, here’s the Top 100 Cities to visits the Mac Lab Blog from 2009. Pretty cool stats!

Prezi Tutorials: They’re hosted on YouTube and blocked at school. You can find them right here on the 2.0 page.

0106: Web 2.0 Wednesday. Today we continue to explore free and open source alternatives to industry-standard apps. I’ve begun to expand the 2.0 Resource Page. It will continue to grow so check back periodically. If you have other suggestions, please feel free to share them. I’ll give you more specific details in class. For now, have fun exploring!

Because Some Will Ask: No, you may not continue to load, edit, or otherwise fiddle with iTunes during class. You may NOT visit the iTunes store in class. You may click the play button and enjoy your music while you work. All other modifications to your iTunes library must happen outside of class. Got it?

0107: Thoughtful Thursday. The semester’s end is quickly approaching. Look at your work for the year. What do you think? Yeah, it could use a little polish, right? Revisit your old projects and fix the problems. Create some new projects and show what you know. Play around with that new 2.0 version of your portfolio. Make it fun! The day is yours.

0108: Face it Friday. Does the picture by your comments look like this? There’s an easy way to change that. Go here. Then read, think, and act. If the video is blocked here at school, I’ll link to another version. Optional today. Required next week. (You don’t even have to create something new. A cropped version of your self portrait would make a terrific avatar!)

Reminder: Mac Lab Saturday School™ happens tomorrow from 7 to noon. (The next and last MLSS™ of the semester is on the 23rd.) I get here around 6:15 so arrive early if you want to claim your own computer for the day. As always, first come, first served.

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