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Final project idea

I plan on making my final project about augmented reality and how it changes both human interaction and understanding of the physical world. I want to address the pros and cons of devices such as Google’s Project Glass ( and consider how weaving virtual images into our vision will change the way we see the world. It occurs to me that items such as glasses with displays could make life easier but could also make life more complicated. The amount of distractions we encounter in the physical plane is already growing as advertising become more and more acceptable in all facets of American life, and to have access to a visual stimulation at all times seems like it could be both dangerous and unpredictable in the early stages.

I also want to discuss augmented reality games. Because these games make the real world into the playing field it may become difficult to separate one from other. Where should the line be drawn because an augmented reality Grand Theft Auto would be the ultimate defense in court of “the game made me do it”.

As we blend virtual reality and physical reality we lose the majesty that is our world. Being somewhere and visiting a place on Google earth will gradually become the same thing and eventually the need for a real physical world will diminish.

            I will use iMovie to create my video and plan on using footage from the web and footage I take myself. I will be narrating the video myself. I have already read a few articles about Google’s project glass and I intend to purchase a few augmented reality iphone games to play, figure out, and potentially film myself playing. The games I intend to use are Firefighter 360, TagDis, and AR Soccer ( I also would like to include the app Type n Walk ( in my video.

            My audience is intended to be busy people that use a lot of technology and find it hard to exist without it. My final lesson is meant to give credit to the real world and ask people to look around and appreciate the world for what it is and not try to turn it into something else.

posthumanism and blade runner

            I found the final scene between Deckard and Roy to be incredibly provocative for a number of reasons. The first was Roy’s decent into madness and irrationality. I understand that it was Roy’s final moments and perhaps his functionality was effected by his programming shutting him down but I don’t know why that trigger him to behave so strangely. It seemed like he was conflicted about killing Deckard the entire time despite an established hatred for him spurred by Deckard’s “retirement” of all of Roy’s fellow replicants. He gives Deckard time to escape and even physically lets him go after only breaking a few fingers. In terms of posthumanism is concerned I thought this was some sort of message that potentially robots can feel empathy and that was particularly noticeable when Roy saves Deckard’s life. I feel that one of the greatest fears people have about robots is that they will not have that sense of remorse about killing and could potentially try and take over the world (the matrix, Irobot, and the terminator series are some culprits for this stereotype) and this is the total reverse of that.

            I also really liked Roy’s line about how living in fear is the equivalent of slavery. It brought to mind the idea of human rights and I was really shocked by the thought that robots have no rights established for them. It seems like people are constantly debating human and animal rights and I have to wonder what will happen when robots get advanced enough that people want to give them rights. Even more thought provoking would be if robots starting demanding rights themselves.

Robots and children

I am very interested in the relationship between children and robots. The concept of robots as toys has been part of human culture for almost a decade and I want to take a look at why automated toys fascinate children and how their existence has changed society. I would also like to incorporate movies that children with robotic companions such as Iron Giant and Hugo, and take a look at how the media portrays child robot interaction. I really want to analyze the personification of toys and how automation effects play. Why is it that is so much better than a toy that doesn’t move or transform? Does the concept of transformation in toys make growing up easier?

            I plan to use the authors Hayles, Haraway, and Hanson for my conversation and although I need to refresh on all three I think it will definitely be an interesting experiment.


gender and gaming

I found the commentary on race in video games to be fairly accurate but I think it also missed a few key points particularly about MMO’s such as World of Warcraft. For one, I do agree that women are often disrespected in online video games communities and I believe that the worst occurrences happen over verbal mediums such as Xbox live (probably because it require no traceable text and thus is hard to prove and thus ban offenders). I also believe that many female and minority group members choose to make avatars that closer to Caucasian males in an attempt to blend in.

However, the Caucasian aspect really doesn’t apply to games where characters are non-human such as the horde side of WoW. Composed or trolls, orcs, and the living dead, there is no real race to be had, and I believe that is a major factor in why the Horde faction in more popular than the more human feeling Alliance faction. Also, as an ex-player on the alliance side I never saw any discrimination based on in game race. In fact, on my server many of the top players and even guild leaders had black human characters.

On a side note, the article doesn’t mention men playing as female characters, and that is also a contributor as to why players often disregard the possibility that another player is female in reality. I think it really goes both ways and that sometimes people choose to play as another gender because they are curious or perhaps if they plan on spending endless hours looking at a character (usually the back side in MMO’s) they would prefer it to be the other gender.

Emotional Robots

I found David Hanson’s TED Talk to be incredibly surprising and amazing. I had no idea anyone was in the process of working on emotional and sympathetic robots, and the fact that he has already made a number of robots that are capable of such displays is shocking.

One moment that was particularly interesting to me was when he stated with confidence that robots could and will be smarter than humans eventually. It leads down a path of thinking that one day with all the pollution and civil conflict in the world humans may not be able to inhabit the earth whereas non-biological life forms could. I would be very interested in seeing how these sympathetic robots react to other robots and what kind of culture they would develop.

Also, I found his mass marketed toy android interesting mostly because it can keep learning. I have to wonder if you subjected it to certain stimuli if you could make it believe or act with certain bias. EX: growing up I always wanted to teach my Furby to swear but it never would. Could I convince this android to use obscenities and if so what is the limit of training?

My video

The overall purpose of my video is to create a humorous music video involving a popular cartoon character. Also, I think it can make people consider how manipulating context and audio of innocent things can sexualize them. It should make people laugh and also make them realize the importance of context and how through editing almost anything can be twisted to relay a message the editor chooses.

The major audience for this video will be fans of the television show Adventure Time. Also, Lumpy Space Princess, the floating female purple character, is one of the more popular characters in the show. Because of this, videos that are collections of her catch phrases, dialogue, antics, etc. are frequently viewed on YouTube.

If I were able to get my video to appear on the suggested video list that appears on the right side of youtube videos, particularly on the side of the popular LSP videos, I’m sure I would get many more views. I would also consider posting my video on a fan forum site, or even

The genre of my video is user created music videos. I also wanted to incorporated elements of the dub or lip reading genre. I have taken the dub genre, a genre that puts different audio or words for the movement of peoples mouths such as Rick Perry , and taken it one step further by having the subject sing a popular song.

In terms of fair use, I believe my video falls into an acceptable realm because it is a non-profitable derivative work. I used less than 30 seconds (although that is not an absolute figure) of a song and rearranged it and used a series of short television clips that are from a myriad of episodes. Therefore, the video has a “different purpose than that of the original”, and will not “cause excessive economic harm to the copyright owner” (Code of Best Practices in fair Use for online Video). I do believe there may be a risk of it being taken down because I used the chorus of the song but other than that I think it is fine.

Creating this video really made me realize how easy it is to download video content off the internet and adjust it for my own means. Also, every YouTube video can be saved and stored on a computer quickly and easily, and that mean that even if one were to take down a video they created it could be on any number of computers. That makes posted videos essentially permanent or forever retrievable, and that really goes to show that once you publish something on YouTube you can never be sure that it is 100% erased if you decide to take it down.

In terms of adjusting my video after receiving comments on my video I tried to go back and alter it but Imovie could not find my audio files. I spent an exorbitant amount of time trying to line up the sound and video the first time and did not have time to re-do the entire video in order to fix a few minor details. According to mac forums Imovie is notorious for this and that would explain why it happened with my video for Vertov as well. I plan on using a different video editing software for my future projects to avoid this annoying bug.