Tag Archives: Tech 1708

Reaction Paper Ten: Apollo Robbins The Art of Misdirection

1. The title, speaker, and link (URL) to the TED video that you have chosen.

The video I chose to watch for this week was a TED Talk by Apollo Robbins called The Art of Misdirection.

2. Why did you choose that particular TED video?

I chose this video because Apollo Robbins discusses controlling an individual’s attention. As a future Game Designer, manipulating where a player’s attention is will be key. Maybe one day I could create a game like what Robbins did in his talk, I could create a game that makes a player rely on things that maybe aren’t so obvious.

3. What did you learn from watching this TED video?

I learned how easy it is to manipulate a person’s attention and how. If you simply keep them focused on something right in front of them, everything around them is pretty much lost. He demonstrates this with the poker chip and lastly with his outfit change. While everyone focuses on what he has to say, nearly the entire crowd misses his outfit change.

4. What are your reactions?

I was amazed and I had to watch the video at least four times over. Even when I was watching for his tricks, I still missed each one at least twice. Even now, after watching it as many times as I did, I still have no clue how he pulled off some of those things, especially his outfit change.


Reaction Paper Eight: Fir, Gideon, and Jake

This week’s lecture was by my classmates, Woodbury University’s interns from Singapore, Gideon, Fir, and Jake. Jake is a current major in programming, Gideon an animation student hoping to get into the game field, and lastly Fir is an animation student with a goal of getting into the film industry. Their lecture this week was about the experiences they had at GDC which is short for Game Developers Conference. I am genuinely interested in attending the monumental event however, listening to their talk, it all seemed too daunting, at least for me. The thought of even creating a portfolio is scary. How am I going to make a portfolio or even answer programming questions when I can’t even remember simple code? I remember them saying that it’s okay to say “I don’t know.” But I highly doubt that they meant I could be clueless for every single question sent my way. As for the art stuff, I don’t feel that I’ve learned enough to be considered. Besides all of this, I’m both excited and worried about the things they showed that were at GDC. The new game technology, the new ways of creating… I worry about the way of life changing. All it does is make me think of the Pixar film “Wall-E” and the characters that are too fat to even take a step. They simple exist behind screens and shoving their faces full of food. I worry that human existence will trickle down to a life behind a screen, or even a world that is simple plugged into our heads, much like what we’ve all seen in “The Matrix.” On a smaller scale, the devices we use to play our games our expensive enough, however, creators seem to be making the technology bigger and bigger and with more power. This translates to extremely expensive materials, making the product cost an arm and a leg… and possibly my first born child. This also makes me think of possible environmental issues. Going beyond the obvious issue of non-renewable resources that are often found in today’s technology, what about the power these things absolutely need to be used? I know that our technology is slowly making its way toward being too powerful for the processing capabilities we currently have. I also know that our most common forms of energy is not exactly unlimited or eco-friendly. What will happen to us if we continue the way we are going?

Reaction Paper Six: TED talk Cameron Russell

1. The title, speaker, and link (URL) to the TED video that you have chosen.

The title of the TED video I watched was “Cameron Russell: Looks aren’t everything. Believe me, I’m a model.” The speaker, Cameron Russell, is a well-known underwear model who has been in the fashion industry for over ten years. She has modeled for many companies, Victoria’s Secret is one of them.


2. Why did you choose that particular TED video?

I chose this particular video because it was influential when I first saw it. I wish I had been told most of this stuff when I was thirteen or fourteen. I feel like most girls need to know that modeling or simply being beautiful is not a “career path” like Cameron Russell said is her talk. I think even a few adults need to understand the concept of white privilege and what kind of benefits they earn simply from having a specific type color of skin.

3. What did you learn from watching this TED video?

In this video I learned that modeling is an occupation created entirely by society. What society deems as beautiful decides who will be hired and when. I had no idea that despite us boasting about today’s level of equality, there were so little non-white models hired in 2013. We’re in the 21st century and we still have white slender woman who fit the stereotype dominating an industry entirely dedicated beauty. If you were to take apart that simple sentence, what does that say to non-white, non-slender, non-stereotypical woman out there? Is it to say that everyone who doesn’t fit these characteristics is not beautiful, pretty or even simply a good person? I also learned about the huge problem that is racial profiling. “I live in New York and last year of the 140,000 teenagers that were stopped and frisked, 86% of them were black and latino and most of them were young men. And there are only 177,000 young black and latino men in New York so for them it’s not a question of ‘Will I get stopped?’ but ‘How many times will I get stopped? When will I get stopped?’ When I was researching this talk I found out that of the 13 year old girls in the United States, 53% don’t like their bodies and that number goes to 78% by the time they are 17.” Most of this section I found completely unacceptable about it but some part of it rung with the thirteen year old girl I used to be, the girl who felt that she needed makeup and straight hair for people to like her.

4. What are your reactions?

After this video, as a Filipino-Puerto-Rican-American, who sits at a nice 5’5”, feel extremely better about the choices I’ve made in life. After I first saw this video, I felt better knowing that instead of spending money on things like makeup products I was spending it on things I love doing. I bought books, video games and soon found that I am right where I need to be.

Reaction Paper Four: Gary Smith

I really enjoyed Gary Smith’s lecture this week: “Hardware and Software Development in the Modern Age.” Some of the products of the future he showed us seemed a little farfetched but I wouldn’t put it past today’s inventors to create such innovative products. I completely agree that technology has crossed a huge amount of boundaries and has invaded the worlds of many disciplines and truly, that’s one of the things I love about technology today.

When he discussed the materials that go into creating the technology we use on a daily basis, it truly peaked my interest. I’ve always had a slight interest in making products that were healthier for the earth as well as more efficient and healthy power supplies. His lecture gave me a much better understanding of what truly goes into making these products and it worries me that we use such rare minerals in stuff we throw away every two years or less. Our upgrading society is living an extremely unsustainable lifestyle. Which leads me to these questions; 1) What happens when we run out of the fuel to power the huge processing strength our technology has today? 2) What will happen when we run out of the minerals to even create these products? As much as I enjoy having a better understanding of the continuously wasteful practices of the world’s industry, it makes me extremely uncomfortable thinking about the health of our world decades from now. Just driving today, I could see the nasty yellow smog looming in the sky. After this lecture I feel a little overwhelmed because “saving the Earth” goes so much further than recycling a few bottles here and there. I don’t know where to focus. I already knew about the emissions from factories and vehicles. I already knew about the chemicals we’re releasing into a world that can’t use it and now I know about the minerals we are continuously taking from an emptying source.

I would love to hear more about the minerals that go into our products and what today’s creators are doing to minimize the rare materials we have to use. I’ve heard about “graphing” where they use graphite to power low powered technology but what about a larger scale? Is there something akin to windmills and solar power when it comes to the TV’s and cell phones we’re constantly buying as a society?

That’s another issue too that I have a huge problem with: a continuously upgrading society. For example, I just upgraded my cell phone at my two year contract mark and have done so since I first got a cell phone. I couldn’t tell you where all of my old ones have gone but I can tell you they probably weren’t recycled or disposed of properly. Now, phone companies have just introduced no contract – upgrade whenever you want plans to the public and who’s to say that the average lifespan of an everyday smart phone won’t shrink to one year or even a few months if you have the money? I think the general public should have a better understanding of their products lest they continue adding to the waste of the world.

Reaction Paper Three: Dr. Robert A. Schultz

Most of what Dr. Schultz said I already knew of. I myself worry that the choices we make as a species risks the existence of our descendants. When he spoke about Tobacco companies in particular, this subject hits me hard. My parents themselves are long time smokers. I know that they are bad for a person and are extremely dangerous to one’s lifespan. He spoke about how these huge tobacco corporations paid money to convince their customers that their tobacco products have nothing to do with cancer. However, from my occasional research, I have found that tobacco products can not only be a direct cause to diseases like Lung Cancer, Throat Cancer and Oral Cancer but it can also raise a person’s risk to any type of cancer. Now I love my parents, and I’m sure anyone who is related to a smoker loves their relatives too. I’ve told my parents this and have tried to get them to quit but in order to be successful, not only do I have to defeat the addiction that comes with lots of these products but I must reverse all of the beliefs produced by the Tobacco campaigns.
He also mentioned the new ordinance in Los Angeles that banned plastic bags from being distributed at grocery stores. This was due to the 500 mile object in the ocean created out of shredded plastic from these shopping bags. Another thing he mentioned was the chemical Chlorine and the damage it’s doing on our Ozone. It reminded me of a piece called “The Creation of Waste” by Paul Hawken. It discusses the disastrous consequences of wasteful nations. One part in particular though discusses Chlorine more in depth. Schultz discusses the damage we’re doing to ourselves and this is a wonderful example of that. Chlorine does damage on an individual level as well. Chlorine is a man-made chemical that cannot be recycled and instead combines with other chemicals to create poisons that can lead to tumors in animals that exist in the wild. In a similar fashion, we absorb this chemical much like the wild animals but instead we show no symptoms until it is too late. This then has led to people being sterile/infertile but can also lead to more serious problems like babies having serious health issues. This makes me particularly angry because even though I’m only twenty and have no plans to have children in the near future, I’d like to be able to have kids, and healthy ones for that matter. To add fuel to the flames, big corporations feed off of these fears by releasing things like electric cars or eco-friendly items, at a higher charge of course because they know they and their affiliates are losing money on the back end if their customers are saving money. While this gets rid of consumers creating as much waste, these companies still create massive amounts of waste with their machinery and chemicals even though they are making these “eco-friendly” products.
When he spoke of ancient civilizations, it also brought to mind the chapter “Waste Equals Food” in Cradle to Cradle by William McDonoungh. Schultz mentioned how ancient civilization’s tools are very different from today’s. Easy enough to understand but when you truly think about it, the things they made were very different and reacted in a more positive way toward our ecosystem. Those objects were bio-degradable but often than not, our man-made products create true waste. Our ecosystem cannot reuse this waste and instead this waste takes up space in our environment. We are simultaneously growing as a population while we consistently shrink our environment. I found Schultz lecture extremely relevant and I hope to hear more about it and ways to improve these issues.