Kids Stuff

August 14th, 2010

Kids Stuff was a Children’s music radio station on Sirius Satellite Radio channel 116 and Dish Network channel 6116. On November 12, 2008, Kids Stuff was eliminated from the Sirius lineup and replaced with Kids Place Live (formerly XM Kids) as part of a restructuring by Sirius XM Radio.  The channel plays music for kids, coming from artists such as ScribbleMonster, Laurie Berkner, Debi Derryberry, They Might Be Giants, etc.  From 11 pm EST to Midnight EST (one hour), a bock called Big Kids Stuff plays music from old television shows and artists (i.e. Schoolhouse Rock!, The Muppets, “Weird Al” Yankovic, old Hanna-Barbera shows, etc.)  From Midnight EST to 4 am EST, a block of music called Sleepy Time plays lullabies. The show usually starts off with Rockabye Baby! covers, by artists such as The Smashing Pumpkins and The Cure.

Kids’ Multimedia

August 14th, 2010

In Education, multimedia is used to produce computer-based training  courses (popularly called CBTs) and reference books like encyclopedia and almanacs. A CBT lets the user go through a series of presentations, text about a particular topic, and associated illustrations in various information formats. Edutainment is an informal term used to describe combining education with entertainment, especially multimedia entertainment.

Learning theory in the past decade has expanded dramatically because of the introduction of multimedia. Several lines of research have evolved (e.g. Cognitive load, Multimedia learning, and the list goes on). The possibilities for learning and instruction are nearly endless.

The idea of media convergence is also becoming a major factor in education, particularly higher education. Defined as separate technologies such as voice (and telephony features), data (and productivity applications) and video that now share resources and interact with each other, synergistically creating new efficiencies, media convergence is rapidly changing the curriculum in universities all over the world. Likewise, it is changing the availability, or lack thereof, of jobs requiring this savvy technological skill.

Kids’ Digital illustration

August 14th, 2010

Computer illustration or digital illustration is the use of digital tools to produce images under the direct manipulation of the artist, usually through a pointing device such as a tablet or a mouse. It is distinguished from computer-generated  art, which is produced by a computer using mathematical models created by the artist. It is also distinct from digital manipulation of photographs, in that it is an original construction “from scratch”. (Photographic elements may be incorporated into such works, but they are not the primary basis or source for them.)  Mice are not very precise for drawing, so a graphics tablet is often preferred. A hybrid graphics tablet/screen would be optimal, since it gives the ability to see more accurately where the strokes are laid out in the image.

There are two main types of tools used for digital illustration: bitmapped and vector. With bitmapped tools, the content is stored digitally in fixed rows, columns, and layers, containing information about each pixel’s hue, luminance, and sometimes filter settings. With vector-based tools, the content is stored digitally as resolution-independent mathematical formulae describing lines, shapes, and color gradients. Digital illustrations may include both raster and vector graphics in the same work.

Kids’ Painting

August 14th, 2010

Digital painting is an emerging art form in which traditional painting techniques such as watercolor, oils, impasto, etc. are applied using digital tools by means of a computer, a digitizing tablet and stylus, and software. Traditional painting is painting with a physical medium as opposed to a more modern style like digital. Digital painting differs from other forms of digital art, particularly computer-generated art, in that it does not involve the computer rendering from a model. The artist uses painting techniques to create the digital painting directly on the computer. All digital painting programs try to mimic the use of physical media through various brushes and paint effects. Included in many programs are brushes that are digitally styled to represent the traditional style like oils, acrylics, pastels, charcoal, pen and even media such as airbrushing. There are also certain effects unique to each type of digital paint which portraying the realistic effects of say watercolor on a digital ‘watercolor’ painting.[1]  In most digital painting programs, the user can create their own brush style using a combination of texture and shape. This ability is very important in bridging the gap between traditional and digital painting.

Digital painting thrives mostly in production art. It is most widely used in conceptual design for film, television and video games. Digital painting software such as Corel Painter, Adobe Photoshop, ArtRage, GIMP, and openCanvas give artists a similar environment to a physical painter: a canvas, painting tools, mixing palettes, and a multitude of color options. There are various types of digital painting, including impressionism, realism, and watercolor. There are both benefits and drawbacks of digital painting. While digital painting allows the artist the ease of working in an organized, mess-free environment, some argue there will always be more control for an artist holding a physical brush in their hand. Some artists believe there is something missing from digital painting, such as the character that is unique to every physically made object. Many artist post blogs and comment on the various differences between digitally created work and traditionally created artwork

Hypertext poetry

August 14th, 2010

Hypertext poetry is a form of digital poetry that uses links using hypertext mark-up. It is a very visual form, and is related to hypertext fiction  and visual arts. The links mean that a hypertext poem has no set order, the poem moving or being generated in response to the links that the reader/user chooses. It can either involve set words, phrases, lines, etc. that are presented in variable order but sit on the page much as traditional poetry does, or it can contain parts of the poem that move and / or mutate. It is usually found online, though CD-ROM and diskette versions exist. The earliest examples date to no later than the mid 1980s.

Kids’ Digital poetry

August 14th, 2010

Digital poetry is a form of electronic literature, displaying a wide range of approaches to poetry, with a prominent and crucial use of computers. Digital poetry can be available in form of CD ROM, DVD, as installations in art galleries, in certain cases also recorded as digital video or films, as digital holograms and on the World Wide Web or Internet.

A significant portion of current publications of poetry are available either only online or via some combination of online and offline publication. There are many types of ‘digital poetry’ such as hypertext, kinetic poetry, computer generated animation, digital visual poetry, interactive poetry, code poetry, holographic poetry (holopoetry), experimental video poetry, and poetries that take advantage of the programmable nature of the computer to create works that are interactive, or use generative or combinatorial approach to create text (or one of its states), or involve sound poetry, or take advantage of things like listservs, blogs, and other forms of network communication to create communities of collaborative writing and publication (as in poetical wikis).

Digital computers allow the creation of art that spans different media: text, images, sounds, and interactivity via programming. Contemporary poetries have, therefore, taken advantage of this toward the creation of works that synthesize both arts and media. Whether a work is poetry or visual art or music or programming is sometimes not clear, but we expect an intense engagement with language in poetical works.

Digital Audio Format

August 14th, 2010

Types of formats

It is important to distinguish between a file format and a codec. A codec performs the encoding and decoding of the raw audio data while the data itself is stored in a file with a specific audio file format. Most of the publicly documented audio file formats can be created with one of two or more encoders or codecs. Although most audio file formats support only one type of audio data (created with an audio coder), a multimedia container format (as MKV or AVI) may support multiple types of audio and video data.

There are three major groups of audio file formats:

* Uncompressed audio formats, such as WAV, AIFF, AU or raw header-less PCM;
* formats with lossless compression, such as FLAC, Monkey’s Audio (filename extension APE), WavPack (filename extension WV), Shorten, TTA, ATRAC Advanced Lossless, Apple Lossless, MPEG-4 SLS, MPEG-4 ALS, MPEG-4 DST, Windows Media Audio Lossless (WMA Lossless).
* formats with lossy compression, such as MP3, Vorbis, Musepack, AAC, ATRAC and lossy Windows Media Audio (WMA).

Uncompressed audio formats

There is one major uncompressed audio format, PCM, which is usually stored as a .wav on Windows or as .aiff on Mac OS. WAV and AIFF are flexible file formats designed to store more or less any combination of sampling rates or bitrates. This makes them suitable file formats for storing and archiving an original recording. There is another uncompressed audio format which is .cda (Audio CD Track) .cda is from a music CD and is 0% compressed.

The AIFF format is based on the IFF format. The WAV format is based on the RIFF file format, which is similar to the IFF format.

BWF (Broadcast Wave Format) is a standard audio format created by the European Broadcasting Union as a successor to WAV. BWF allows metadata to be stored in the file. See European Broadcasting Union: Specification of the Broadcast Wave Format (EBU Technical document 3285, July 1997). This is the primary recording format used in many professional audio workstations in the television and film industry. BWF files include a standardized Timestamp reference which allows for easy synchronization with a separate picture element. Stand-alone, file based, multi-track recorders from Sound Devices, Zaxcom, HHB USA, Fostex, and Aaton all use BWF as their preferred format.
Lossless compressed audio formats

A lossless compressed format requires much more processing time than an uncompressed format but is more efficient in space usage.

Uncompressed audio formats encode both sound and silence with the same number of bits per unit of time. Encoding an uncompressed minute of absolute silence produces a file of the same size as encoding an uncompressed minute of symphonic orchestra music. In a lossless compressed format, however, the music would occupy a marginally smaller file and the silence take up almost no space at all.

Lossless compression formats (such as the most widespread[5] FLAC, WavPack, Monkey’s Audio, ALAC/Apple Lossless) provide a compression ratio of about 2:1. Development in lossless compression formats aims to reduce processing time while maintaining a good compression ratio.
Free and open file formats

* wav – standard audio file container format used mainly in Windows PCs. Commonly used for storing uncompressed (PCM), CD-quality sound files, which means that they can be large in size—around 10 MB per minute. Wave files can also contain data encoded with a variety of (lossy) codecs to reduce the file size (for example the GSM or mp3 codecs). Wav files use a RIFF structure.
* ogg – a free, open source container format supporting a variety of codecs, the most popular of which is the audio codec Vorbis. Vorbis offers compression similar to MP3 but is less popular.
* mpc – Musepack or MPC (formerly known as MPEGplus, MPEG+ or MP+) is an open source lossy audio codec, specifically optimized for transparent compression of stereo audio at bitrates of 160–180 kbit/s.
* flac – Free Lossless Audio Codec, a lossless compression codec.
* aiff – the standard audio file format used by Apple. It is like a wav file for the Mac.
* raw – a raw file can contain audio in any codec but is usually used with PCM audio data. It is rarely used except for technical tests.
* au – the standard audio file format used by Sun, Unix and Java. The audio in au files can be PCM or compressed with the μ-law, a-law or G729 codecs.

Open file formats

* gsm – designed for telephony use in Europe, gsm is a very practical format for telephone quality voice. It makes a good compromise between file size and quality. Note that wav files can also be encoded with the gsm codec.
* dct – A variable codec format designed for dictation. It has dictation header information and can be encrypted (often required by medical confidentiality laws).
* vox – the vox format most commonly uses the Dialogic ADPCM (Adaptive Differential Pulse Code Modulation) codec. Similar to other ADPCM formats, it compresses to 4-bits. Vox format files are similar to wave files except that the vox files contain no information about the file itself so the codec sample rate and number of channels must first be specified in order to play a vox file.
* aac – the Advanced Audio Coding format is based on the MPEG2 and MPEG4 standards. aac files are usually ADTS or ADIF containers.
* mp4/m4a – MPEG-4 audio most often AAC but sometimes MP2/MP3, MPEG-4 SLS, CELP, HVXC and other audio object types defined in MPEG-4 Audio
* mmf – a Samsung audio format that is used in ringtones.

Proprietary formats

* mp3 – MPEG Layer-3 format is the most popular format for downloading and storing music. By eliminating portions of the audio file that are less audible, mp3 files are compressed to roughly one-tenth the size of an equivalent PCM file sacrificing quality.
* wma – the popular Windows Media Audio format owned by Microsoft. Designed with Digital Rights Management (DRM) abilities for copy protection.
* atrac (.wav) – the older style Sony ATRAC format. It always has a .wav file extension. To open these files simply install the ATRAC3 drivers.
* ra – a Real Audio format designed for streaming audio over the Internet. The .ra format allows files to be stored in a self-contained fashion on a computer, with all of the audio data contained inside the file itself.
* ram – a text file that contains a link to the Internet address where the Real Audio file is stored. The .ram file contains no audio data itself.
* dss – Digital Speech Standard files are an Olympus proprietary format. It is a fairly old and poor codec. Gsm or mp3 are generally preferred where the recorder allows. It allows additional data to be held in the file header.
* msv – a Sony proprietary format for Memory Stick compressed voice files.
* dvf – a Sony proprietary format for compressed voice files; commonly used by Sony dictation recorders.
* IVS – A proprietary version with Digital Rights Management developed by 3D Solar UK Ltd for use in music downloaded from their Tronme Music Store and interactive music and video player.
* m4p – A proprietary version of AAC in MP4 with Digital Rights Management developed by Apple for use in music downloaded from their iTunes Music Store.
* iklax – An iKlax Media proprietary format, the iKlax format is a multi-track digital audio format allowing various actions on musical data, for instance on mixing and volumes arrangements.
* mxp4 – a Musinaut proprietary format allowing play of different versions (or skins) of the same song. It allows various interactivity scenarios between the artist and the end user.
* 3gp – multimedia container format can contain proprietary formats as AMR, AMR-WB or AMR-WB+, but also some open formats

Digital Education

August 14th, 2010

Not everyone agrees with the language and underlying connotations of the digital native. It suggests a familiarity with technology that not all children and young adults who would be considered digital natives have, though some instead have an awkwardness with technology that not all digital immigrants have. It entirely ignores the fact that the digital universe was conceived of, pioneered, and created by the digital immigrants. In its application, the concept of the digital native preferences those who grow up with technology as having a special status, ignoring the significant difference between familiarity and creative application.

Crucially, there is debate over whether there is any adequate evidence for claims made about digital natives and their implications for education. Bennett, Maton & Kervin (2008), for example, critically review the research evidence and describe some accounts of digital natives having an academic form of a moral panic. Using such a terminology is rather a sign of unfamiliarity and exoticism in relation to digital culture. Of course, nobody is “born digital”; as with any cultural technology, such as reading and writing, it is matter of access to education.

It considers that all youths are digital natives in the modern age. However, this is not the case. It is primarily based on cultural differences and not by age. According to Henry Jenkins (2007), “Part of the challenge of this research is to understand the dynamics of who exactly is, and who is not, a digital native, and what that means.” There are underlying conflicts on the definition of the term “digital natives” and it is wrong to say that all modern age youths are placed in that particular category or that all older adults can be described as digital immigrants.

Digital Immigrants

August 14th, 2010

Marc Prensky coined the term digital native in his work Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants published in 2001. In his seminal article, he assigns it to a new group of students enrolling in educational establishments.[1] The term draws an analogy to a country’s natives, for whom the local religion, language, and folkways are natural and indigenous, compared with immigrants to a country who often are expected to adapt and begin to adopt the region’s customs. Prensky refers to accents  employed by digital immigrants, such as printing documents rather than commenting on screen or printing out emails to save as a hard copy. Digital immigrants are said to have a “thick accent” when operating in the digital world in distinctly pre-digital ways, for instance, calling someone on aa telephone to ask if they have receive a sent e-mail. A digital native might refer to their new “camera”; but a digital immigrant might refer to their new “digital camera”.

The analogy of the digital native was also used by Josh Spear and Aaron Dignan (Spear’s business partner in the Manhattan-based agency Undercurrent) who talked about people who were “born digital”, first appearing in a series of presentations given by Josh Spear in 2007. First, at Google’s Zeitgeist Europe Conference in May 2007. A different version of this presentation was delivered again in December 2007 at the United Kingdom at the Internet Advertising Bureau Engage 2007 Conference. A Digital Native research project is being run jointly by the Berkman Centre for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School and the Research Center for Information Law at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland.

Gartner presented on the term at their May, 2007 IT Expo (Emerging Trends) Symposium in Barcelona and,  more recently, Gartner referenced Prensky’s work, specifically the 18 areas of change comprising the Work Style of Digital Natives, in their “IT-Based Collaboration and Social Networks Accelerate R&D” research paper published on January 22, 2008.

What is digital native

August 14th, 2010

The new kids in the digital age.

A digital native is a person who was born after the general implementation of digital technology, and, as a result, has a familiarity with digital technology such as computers, the Internet, mobile phones and MP3s over their whole lives. A digital immigrant  is an individual who was born before the existence of digital technology and adopted it to some extent later. Alternatively, this term can describe people born in the latter 1970s or later, as the Digital Age began at that time; but in most cases the term focuses on people who grew up with 21st Century technology. This term has been used in several different contexts, such as education.

Not all digital immigrants are technologically inept, as they fall fall into a number of categories; Avoiders, Reluctant Adopters and Eager Adopters. Avoiders may only have a minimal amount of technology involved in their lives and households (Ex. A landline phone and a television). Reluctant Adopters often see ways that technology might be needed in their lives, but they try to avoid it when possible. Eager Adopters have enthusiasm or a talent for technology that makes them very similar to Digital Natives. Similarly, not all digital natives are comfortable with technology.