Last Reflections on Digital History

Posted in Digital History on April 24th, 2008 by thecobbgoblin

Digital History as a class actually is a great idea. This isn’t just to suck up and pretend that I enjoyed everything, this is actually how I feel. The projects we did were unlike anything else that college has offered me.

That being said, the projects took up the entire semester, and indeed have the look and feel of an entire semesters worth of work. But for the last four weeks, all of the groups were presenting every week the same thing that had been presented the last week with little or minor edits to the project itself. The presentations were great for the beginning of the semester when each week brought something new and exciting. After everything was set up, however, everyone seemed to sink into a repeating cycle of showing small change on the site with talk mostly concerning the back end that wouldn’t actually be displayed.

While my part in my group was almost mainly back end features that would tweak the display, the updates lost their flare and browsing the internet became a release for a slight distraction. Also I personally feel as though the beginning of the course with all the “wonderful tools” that were displayed to us, was giving us just enough information to be dangerous. Before taking a Digital History class, one that has a high risk of touching html code, SOME kind of computer coding course should be taken.

We were not supplied with the best version of the timeline program, and because of that we were limited to what we could do. It was if they gave us a rather large pool and said “Look at this amazing pool we have given you, swim and be happy.” To which we responded “How do you do that?” Then they said “How dare you ask us about such an issue, you start learning how to swim and maybe we’ll get back to you… probably” then pushed us in to watch us drown. So we didn’t really drown, but we weren’t very prepped for the task at hand. Instead we were wowed with the gizmos that Google was so kind to develop and then kept strung along by a list of “I’ll get back to you” emails which did not really help the case.

I guess what I’m saying about the class is, that a crash course in simple coding would be a lot more benifical to the class and students as opposed to learning about the cool things YouTube has on it, or watching random trailers. Yes, the class wouldn’t not have been as crazy fun, but it also would not have been over almost all our heads.

Lastly, my involvement in my group’s project. In the ending weeks of the project, I did feel myself slipping out of the work schedule and into inactivity. I had single handedly figured out the video code that was crucial to the timeline we were going to use. What I had forgotten was that there was still work to be done. It was then that my group members decided to inform in a very subtle manner that there was still work to be done, and I should be helping with it. I lucked out to have a group that was able to accept my appology ( with the condition being that I read more Bullet articles) and I was able to get back on track. The group on whole did have our few arguments, but our site looks great, and we all had a part in it.

Devil Goat Day…. What’s Up with that?

Posted in Digital History on April 15th, 2008 by thecobbgoblin

So while trolling through the Bullet archives most of the articles I found dealt with Devil Goat Day. Or… actually, just the rivalry between the Devils and the Goats throughout the entire year. That seems not to be the case anymore, and I hafta say, that sucks. There seems to be so much more school spirit in the past years. Apparently your Devil or Goat status was more important than your 9:30 class ( but not Digital History). My big question is, why the change? The new Devil/Goat Day is fun and all, but what happened to all the competitions? We like to pride ourselves as a school that loves tradition, I mean, look at our by-laws. They haven’t been changed since the 60’s… when we let guys in the school. If we’re so big on tradition, why can’t we have that Devil Goat fun that used to exist?

I keep on forgetting I have this thing.

Its a Small World After All

Posted in Digital History on March 13th, 2008 by thecobbgoblin

To start, I would like to apologise for lack for not posting sooner, the internet at my house was down so posting becomes quite difficult without it.*  So I went to Disney World this past spring break.  The entire trip itself was amazing, one might even say magical.  Yet during my visit to the Magic Kingdom** I was still able to get something close to work done on the Alumni Project.***  A woman approached me and asked if I went to Mary Washington.**** Just before our brief encounter ended, I was able to ascertain***** her name and email address so we could contact her for the website.******  The rest of my trip I spent with Mickey Mouse and the gang gallivanting around the Wonderful World of Disney.

And now your moment of zen.

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*Impossible from my home location actually

** Ruling leader Mickey Mouse? Mickey Mouse the Forgiving?

*** Believe me, it was purely accidental

**** Austin Cobb, proven once again to be kind of a big deal

***** Awesome word, well said*******

******  Basically I make friends EVERYWHERE

******* Thank you!

A Now Year Older Cobbgoblin Speaks on Digital Tools and Whatnot

Posted in Digital History on January 28th, 2008 by thecobbgoblin

  As the title suggests, yesterday was indeed my birthday.*  I am now 22. That, however, is not the purpose of this post. **  The purpose is for me to speak on the tools used, and how much I’m impressed with them, or how I’ll think they shall be used.  I’ve already started using del.icio.us to bookmark sites for my senior thesis, so I guess that’s started to come in handy.***  What really baffles me is Omeka.  Actually to for me to be fair,**** this class as of now just feels like we’ve been thrown a ton of tools and are now expected to use them.  I’m not sure how everyone else feels, but I kind of get the sense that we’re all just talking like we know what we’re doing.  I have an idea of what my group is going to be doing, but projecting those alumni****** online into a time line without a greater understanding of HTML code******* is a daunting task.

That’s all I have for now.

And now for your moment of zen.

Excelsior!

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* I expect belated birthday wishes in class

** To be fair, it really was.

*** By started, I mean, thought about using it

**** I never really play fair, life to me is a lot like monopoly*****

***** Or as I call it “How Much Can I Cheat and Get Away With It”

****** Yes, the “Close Talker” from Seinfeld is a famous Mary Wash Alum

******* Nerd speak

The Cobbgoblin’s first thoughts on the Adventure into Digital History

Posted in Digital History on January 18th, 2008 by thecobbgoblin

  So I’m going to start off this process with being honest.  I took this class because after speaking with Dr. McClurken* about the class I was informed that the class would not have as much reading as the other seminar classes offered.  Also, Digital History has a base in American History, so that’s like a two-fer for me.   But now after two classes I can honestly say that I am interested in the work we’re going to be doing.  Even if I have no idea how we are going to publish our thoughts, processes, or actual work.  But that’s kind of what makes the entire process exciting and fun.  Either way there’s a good chance I’m going to learn something here, which makes everything alright in my book.**

  So, what I plan on getting out of this class?  Well the answer is a better understanding of Digital History, as well as an even greater ability to use the new “Web 2.0”.***  But the real question I know all of you are asking is, who is this mysterious Cobbgoblin, and why do we want to hear his thoughts on Digital History?  Well, I’m Austin a senior History Major**** at Mary Washington.  I am a part of the swim team, show choir, and fraternity.***** Also I enjoy; the occasional video game, reading a book, and doodling when I’m supposed to be taking notes.  Also, I tend to reference wikipediain most of my history classes, I feel as its my way of making the site a tad more credible.  So I hope y’all have enjoyed getting to know me and my thoughts on this class so far, as I have creating this post.

And now for your moment of zen.******

Excelsior!

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* This picture is in serious need of an update. 

** My book being titled I’m Kind of A Big Deal: Life and Times of Austin Cobb by Austin Cobb, that’s a patent pending by the way folks.

*** Web 2.1 is still in Beta.

**** You kind of hafta be, to be in this class right?

***** Stalkers, fans, and mothers’ daughters take note, because I’m not repeating this again.

****** This is the part of the post where I show you something interesting or funny that I found on my travels on the world-wide-web.

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