Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Social Networks Help World Cup Spectators Cope With Chance

Given the reduced volume of World Cup related posts in my Twitter and Facebook streams, it appears that soccer fever is abating the in US. The reach of the World Cup has been far this year, thanks in part to the role of social media outlets in encouraging discussion and raising awareness about the sport. For a few weeks, Twitter and Facebook were inundated with World Cup related posts, with Twitter reporting surges well above the general 750 Tweets-per-second (TPS) the normally constitute usage on the site. Marked by soccer ball icons and the flags of participating countries, conversations and comments about the World Cup were highly visible. How did this change the experience for World Cup spectators—particularly for Americans?

Friday, June 25, 2010

A State of Timelessness

I talked about Standard Time from a somewhat political standpoint, but there's a fair bit of history involved in the standardization of Time. And I promised you a little more information, but I've been a bit wary about lecturing. There's a ton of information on this topic (and I'm not even planning to touch daylight savings time—we really couldn't leave well enough alone, could we?) I've decided to give you a fly-by history. If you have any questions, post them in the comments and I'll be glad to try and get you some answers.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Does It Still Take a Village?

Anyone who has taken mass transit knows how intense the experience can be with an unhappy child in close proximity. Loud iPods, sprawling seatmates, dripping umbrellas, body odor, and large packages are minor concerns compared with a wailing child. When confined in a subway car with a child in mid-tantrum, there comes a point when the proverbial village seems to come to life.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Standardized Time and Power Relations

This post was chosen as an Editor's Selection for ResearchBlogging.orgWhose Time do we live in? Time zones have set standards in keeping with longitudinal boundaries so that we share a clock experience that is often managed by an urban center. I am not the first to note, however, that these standards of Time overlook local, social definitions of Time. Though these local definitions persist, they are not generally the norm adhered to when individuals interact both across and within Time. Are local Times accounted for online?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Online Reputation Management on the Rise

It seems the iGeneration is coming of age—and they're addressing the very issues the "old timers" have been railing about far more efficiently and willingly than the group that raised concerns about online privacy and digital reputations. What steps are you taking to manage your online reputation? You may want to take a few pointers from the 18-29 crowd.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Hungry, Homeless, and Traveling—Measurements of Wealth

Last night as I entered the subway at William Street, there was a homeless young man sitting at the bottom of the stairs with a docile, friendly puppy of perhaps the Lab family. (I'm not particularly good with dog breeds on sight.) His cardboard sign read, "Hungry, Homeless & Traveling. Folks please help." As usual, most people streamed on by, but as I descended the stairs I overheard an interesting proposition.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Everyday Reflections of the Digital

As far as subway lines go, the F, M, and L trains have long trundled along their respective tracks innocuously enough. However, the recent reshuffling of the subway system which eliminated some trains and shifted the routes of others as a result of severe budgetary issues has brought an Internet meme to life.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Digital and Social Media in the Classroom

A few weeks ago, I considered whether laptops in the classroom were digital distractions—a topic that appears to have divided the academic community. Since that post, I've learned of a number of different ways that the social web and digital media are being implemented in the classroom. A few colleagues expressed uncertainty about whether these technologies have a place within higher education, and while usage is far from widespread, these examples suggest means of harnessing digital and social media to assist in the classroom.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Time in Passing: Mentions of Time in Fiction

I've managed to sneak in a few fiction reads. (I needed to. The books on my shelves call to me if I leave them alone for too long. Some call louder and more persistently than others.) But it seems that even in fiction, my research interests persist.

There I was, sitting in the sun thinking, "Hah! I'm taking a break from reading about circadian rhythms and death and teamwork and digital media and—ahhh! Okay, I'm taking a break. I'm taking a break." With this protective chant running through my mind, I settled back into my chair, breathed in the smell of freshly mowed grass, and turned the page. And found Time waiting for me. I dismissed it, and picked up another favorite—Time was waiting there too.

In any event, I managed to devour three books from authors who are my pick-me-ups—the ones that I can always go to because we know each other almost by heart. And Time was waiting in all three. Here's a look at what I found.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Are Baseball Announcers Necessary?

As digital and social media infiltrate the world of sports, and make teams, athletes, reporters, and information overall more accessible for fans, there is a greater opportunity for fans to connect to the game. This connection is important to the longevity of the franchises, and has largely been borne on the shoulders of the games' announcers. But why bother turning up the volume on the radio or television when you can follow the progress and emotions of a hashtag community on Twitter? Are announcers still important in this evolving landscape?

Friday, June 4, 2010

One (Facebook) Friend Too Many?

How many Facebook friends do you have? 500? 2500? 5000? Why stop at all? Why not 10,000? Well, actually, Facebook caps the total number of friends you can have at 5000, so it might make for some awkwardness as you explain to friend no. 5001 that while you're connected, you can't acknowledge your deep and meaningful relationship on Facebook. So what would you do? Start a new Facebook profile? (If you do, don't let Facebook know.) A recent article in the New York Times explores our need to connect expansively and discusses the strategies employed by a few to keep their numbers high.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Subway History on Display

As the MTA prepares to roll out a new, user-friendly subway map this month, I thought it might be the right time to take a look at some artifacts from the subway's history.