Lev Manovich’s new book

November 26, 2008

softbook-covera-icon1Software takes command. This is the title of Lev Manovich’s new book, published both in pdf and .doc format and for free downloading from the researcher’s own website. The first version has been released on November, 20, 2008. The .doc document includes footnotes not available in pdf format. No one of them include illustrations, nor a definitive cover. People is asked to submit their proposals. The publication has been done unde Creative Commons non commercial-no derivative works 3.0 license”,

“One of the advantages of online distribution which I can control is that I don’t have to permanently fix the book’s contents. Like contemporary software and web services, the book can change as often as I like, with new “features” and “big fixes” added periodically. I plan to take advantage of these possibilities. From time to time, I will be adding new material and making changes and corrections to the text”, explains the author.

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Robert K. Logan talks about New Media

November 5, 2008

loganrobertRobert K. Logan, Emeritus Professor at Toronto University (Canada) talked on November 4, 2008, at the e-week of the University of Vic (Spain), and show his point of view on new media. Refreshing Marshall McLuhan’s ideas (especially those contained in Understanding Media), using his methodology, Logan explained the 14 characteristics of new media: to McLuhan’s classic ones, Logan adds portability (and time flexibility), convergence of media, interoperatibility, aggregation of content, convergence of producers and consumers, social collectivity and collaboration, remix culture, and transition from products to service.

In Logan’s opinion, the involvement with others increases with new media. Decentralisation of media systems contributes as well. Considered as extensions of mind, there is another difference between the press and the new media: printed press -said Logan- created nations and nationalism; Internet, on the other hand, creates world communities.

Asked whether new devices like e-book readers are changing our approach to information, Professor Logan answered that devices need to add readibility, searchability, the possibility of writing on the margins, and share contents with other readers.

Robert K. Logan is the author of many books and articles, including The Sixth Language: Learning a Living in the Internet Age and Understanding New Media.


First International Congress on Cyberjournalism

November 3, 2008

The First International Congress on Cyberjournalism will be held in Porto (Portugal) next December. Organised by the Observatory of Cyberjournalism, Center of Technology and Communication Science Studies,  the Congress has a its main subject “Journalism 3G”. More especifically, speakers and papers s will try to explain convergence and multitextuality, backpack journalis, journalism and blogging, and citizen journalism.

Six professors will take part as speakers in the Congress. They will be Joao Canavilhas and Helder Bastos (authors of two recent doctoral thesis) from Portugal; Ramón Salaverría from Spain; Beth Saad from Brazil; and Rosental Calmon Alves, from the United States. Eric Krangel and Mark Deuze will talk to the audience virtually using videoconference. As an advance, Mark Deuze has written a post in his blog.

25 papers will be presented during the Congress. These papers are written in Portuguese, Spanish, Galician or English.

The Congress will take place on December 11 and 12, 2008, at the University of Porto.


“And I also read newspapers…”

November 3, 2008

Tim Berners-Lee, creator of the World Wide Web, was in Barcelona last week, receiving a honoris causa doctorship in the Open University of Catalonia (UOC). He spoke with some journalists, one of the Ismael Nafría, director of digital contents of Godó Group, publisher of one of the most important Spanish newspapers, La Vanguardia. Nafira publishes in his blog Berners-Lee’s answers to his questions, one of them how he access information.

First of all, answered Tim Berners-Lee, he listens to radio everyday early in the morning, while he drives his car going to his job. Secondly, he search for information on the Web. Thirdly, he also reads newspapers.

(Please read more on Ismael Nafria’s blog: La Crónica de Internet).

By the way: La Vanguardia, 127 years old newspaper, one of the oldest in Europe, has recently opened to free access his historic archive, with great success.


Terrorisme strikes University (and cannot silence it)

November 3, 2008

The Basque terrorist group ETA attempted last week against the University of Navarre (Spain), and injured 30 people. Fortunately, all of them are recovered and well.

Some of my colleagues (and friends) teach and research in the University of Navarre. This is how the bomb affected one of them, Ramon Salaverria’s office. Ramón Salaverria is one of the most reputed European researchers on cyberjournalism, and now is the director of the department of Journalistic Projects of the University of Navarre.

There is some good news, anyway: the terrorists have not silenced the power of word. Of course, they will never do.


Article on Storytelling, by Bryan Alexander and Alan Levine

November 3, 2008

“Stories are now open-ended, branching, hyperlinked, cross-media, participatory, exploratory, and unpredictable”. This is the definition of Web 2.0 storytelling offered by Bryan Alexander, Director of Research at the National Institute for Technology and Liberal Education (NITLE), USA; and Alan Levine, Chief Technology Officer for the New Media Consortium (NMC) in their article “Web 2.0 Storytelling: The emergence of a new genre“, published in the Educase Review, November-December 2008 issue.

Microcontent and social media are the two main features of Web 2.0 storytelling, say Alexander and Levine. Every small chunk of content gives a primary idea or concept. Social media means that information is organised around people, and not around hierarquies of directory trees. As a matter of fact, they propose “that the new tools and forms of online creation represent a new genre of storytelling and creative expression”, especially for higher education.

The authors has opened a wiki to invite to discussion around some questions: What is Web 2.0 storytelling? Is there really such a thing? How does Web 2.0 storytelling work within teaching and learning? What are the implications for pedagogy, curriculum, and campus life?

(Meanwhile, some other scholars are talking about Web 3.0 and its influence on online news. This is a recent text by Colin Meek published in Journalism.co.uk website).


New book: The Penetration of Online News, by An Nguyen

November 3, 2008

An Nguyen, lecturer in Journalism Studies, University of Stirling (Scotland), has just published a new book on cyberjournalism: The Penetration of Online News. Past, Present and Future.

Dr. Nguyen comes from the University of Queensland, Australia, where he completed his PhD in Media and Communication Studies. He was also a journalism practitioner in Vietnam. Currently he is teaching at Stirling. Interested in online journalism and its audience, he has published articles on online journalism from 2003 onwards. Some of them can be accessed from his own website.

An Nguyen wonders in his book whether “online news gradually displace and then replace older news forms”, as well as whether “the rise of blogs, forums and other ‘Web 2.0’ platforms spell a slow death of journalism”. From an interdisciplinary and international perspective, he explains the the socio-technical dynamics of the diffusion of this new form of making news and deals on the take up of news technologies in the newsrooms.

Another book on cyberjournalism has been published in Germany this year, about Austrian online media: Österreichische Online-Medien, by Dieter Marek and Moritz Omasits (Facultas Universitätsverlag, 2008).

Complete book reference: Nguyen, An. The Penetration of Online News: Past, Present and Future. Saarbrücken: VDM Publishing, 2008.