Thursday, January 29, 2009

Reflections #8-Subject Closure

It seems like lessons had only just begun not long ago, too soon to end. But here I am now blogging my last reflections for EIR.

I guess I have really learnt a lot in this 15 days journey. It's not easy picking out one particular lesson that I find the most important, because really, everything I learnt was important one way or another.

However I guess the one lesson that will really come in useful in future is the one which thought me how to carry out my research effectively using Boolean operators and by maximising the use of search engines' features to my advantage. I really saw the difference in results when using and not using Boolean operators. It is especially drastic because my chosen research topic is so specific. This will really come in useful when I am carrying out research in the future, no matter what the topic is.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Reflections #7-My Dream Holiday

We were told to pick a dream holiday destination, so here's mine!

It's Oia, in Santorini, Greece:

The place is well-known for the most beautiful sunsets,

and interesting architecture and charming shophouses.

Oia by night.

I first knew about the place when it was featured in a novel I read, called Since I don't Have You by Louise Candlish. It's about a mother who lost her child and went to Oia to find herself back, and later set up a shop of her own selling old photographs of Oia, which the picture above reminds me of.

Novel aside, I feel that this place is really fun and charming with its friendly locals and relaxed town pace. There might not be as much to do in Oia as places like Paris or Japan, but it still seems to me like a really good place to go for a short vacation. I could visit the beautiful shophouses in the day and watch the sunset in the evening, and revive myself a little before heading back here to face the bustle of the city.

I got all these pictures from Evaluating this website, I find that it is well presented and the arrangement is easy to understand. It has a clean layout with little graphics, which tends to make websites distracting. It provides good, comprehensive coverage as well. There is a lot of first hand tourist information and reviews from many tourists, and it covers everything from hotels, to trip planner, to travel deals.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Reflections #6

Day 07 of lessons

Today we were showed 2 videos, where Singaporean celebs like Hossan Leong and Dick Lee sang songs about Singapore. And then we were told to go to Our class then split up into groups and each group had to take on a role and reflect our reactions to the website based on our new perpectives.

My group took on the role of Singapore's Prime Minister and we thought the PM might really be insulted if he were to go through the content of the website. However, it should also be understandable that the website is meant for pure fun. This is a good way for allowing Singaporeans to vent out their frustrations and get a good laugh out of it.

I think the role play was an interesting way for analysing this site, as we were given a chance to think through the purposes and effects of the website thoroughly. Thinking about how the PM and a foreigner will respond to the website has given everyone food for thought. We also had fun seeing the many jokes made about general issues in Singapore.

We were then taught how to review the website according to criteria to evaluate the sustainability of the website. And judging on its currency, this website is probably a popular hit because of its frequent updates. It never fails to make Singaporeans laugh on a daily basis.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Reflections #5

Day 06 of lessons

Today was Class Test 1. I scored only 14/20. But I guess it was quite alright since some of the questions really were quite tricky.

Anyway, we continued with our lesson and today's topic was on the invisible web. We tried out a few like TP's Digital Library Portal site and Research Gateaway.

The invisible web is also known as the "deep web" or "dark matter", and is a collection of information stored in a from of data. The data is not acecssible by general search engines, thus the invisble web is a very useful tool for additional resources. It makes searches more effective because it locates information that a search engine cannot retrieve.

This is something I had been aware of but have not used it often enough for my projects I feel. I shall try to make full use of it in future to enhance the effectiveness of my research in future projects.

Reflections #4

Day 05 of lessons

Today was supposedly the submission date for our Portfolio Part 1. However, the deadline is postponed to Monday. I did not complete my work too but I had more than half done already. Ms Faridah went through my work as she did with the others to comment on it and I'm glad that I'm on the right track.

Doing the portfolio made me observe and analyse the differnt search facilities in detail. Before these lectures and typing up the report, I was unaware of these search features available on the net. Doing the report made me see all these and learn how to use them effectively. I feels almost like a whole new world is opened to me.

When using different search facilities, I get varying types of results which I can apply to my research in different ways. A larger range of results appear, and I can carry out my search more efficiently with all the features of the search facilities, be it the "I'm feeling lucky" function from Google or the function of searching across a range of search engines at one go with a meta search engine. The ease of finding more relevant articles is obvious as compared to using just one search facility.

Before the class ended, we were told to add RSS site feeds to our blogs. Initially we thought they were just typical web links, but it turned out that these links, instead of bringing us to another webpage, should bring us to a full text document of the website. We had to edit the html of the layout to get the site feeds up and it took us all awhile to manage to get it correct, but I guess it was all worth it and I felt that this is something new I've learnt today. Site feeds are really convenient and actually quite easy to use, and we are able to read updates without being distracted by the layouts of the webpage. I shall try using this soon for my own personal blog soon.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Technology in (fashion)design #2

We won't get to see all these without the technology in design:


Diesel Show: Underwater Magic
(a video of the show is also available)

Diesel’s Spring/Summer 08 catwalk show, staged at the Pitti Immagine Uomo fair in Florence, was nothing short of stunning. While regular human models paced up and down the runway, a host of polyp-like CGI characters appeared in mid-air to interact with them within an underwater landscape. And in a unique twist, these animated holograms were entirely viewable from both sides of the stage. But this was no Paul Daniels Magic Show trickery – more a perfect blend of cutting edge digital art and performance.
Diesel’s Creative Team (under the direction of Wilbert Das) based the show on an aquatic theme entitled “Liquid Space” and brought together Barcelona animation studio Dvein – who worked on the CGI visual effects and 3D animations – and Danish multi-media production agency, Vizoo, who provided the innovative technology for the show, which they had created themselves. Neither studio, say Diesel, had previously worked on anything like this before.

Virtual Shoes
Have fun looking at the following shoes. Click for bigger images. For more head to

Applying technology in (graphic)design #1

Adrian Knopik
(click for bigger images)