Tuesday, February 27, 2018

WebDesign: Floating Elements (W8-P2)


In CSS there are three main ways of positioning content/elements in CSS. You can use floats, in-line blocks and unique positioning.

Let's take a look at floats. And, we'll look at clearing too.



If you liked that visual explanation, you might also see "CSS Float and Clear Explained - How does CSS float and clear work?"


Now with that floating explanation in mind, let's shift over to actually doing some floating of elements, actually messing with some code. Check the following video and use the HTML and CSS code in the video comments and pop that into the web development tool we used last week.  And, then mess around with the code.




If you are curious and want to learn more about floating, I'd recommend "CSS Floats and Clears Explained" from DevTips.



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WebDesign: Intro to Positioning (W8-P1)


One way to learn a new concept is to relate it to something you already know.
One way to learn about positioning in CSS is to relate it to word wrapping in Microsoft Word.

In Microsoft Word (or other word processors), if you have a image in your document, you can have the words wrap around the image.



Similarly, you can have words wrap around a text box.



Word wrapping in Word is similar to the concept of floating in CSS.
We'll look a floating in CSS next, but first, let's make another point about the value of MS Word in Web Design.

If at this point in your website design, you've only sketched out your planned site by hand, you can now start to put the content and the design into a Word document. I'd suggest using a table in Word to continue your design in Word.



Try it. Set up your table. Insert your content (text and images). Do some word wrapping. Start in landscape orientation. Use the table to align and position parts of the page. Use color. At the end of the process, turn off borders of table cells to see what your page will look like.



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ResearchMethods: Validity, Reliability, Etc.: Definitions (Written and Visual) (W8-P3) Sp18


You operationalize your variables in order to measure them.
So, now let's talk about measurement and related concepts.

When measuring your variables you may ask yourself...
Is my measure “on target”?   That is, are my measurements accurate?
Do my measures “cluster together”?  That is, am I getting consistent results?

But what does that mean?

What we are talking about is validity and reliability.

Let's start by thinking about how to measure prejudice in people. How would you do that? A survey? What would the questions be on the survey?  Your measure of prejudice needs to be valid and reliable.  Are you sure they are valid and reliable?   Are you accurately measure the level of prejudice in a person with your survey?  Does your survey get the same results with the same person each time?


Validity: “the extent that scales or questions do measure what they are thought to measure”(Stacks & Hocking).

You can think of validity using a target metaphor.  Is it on target (i.e.,  near the bulls eye)?
Each "shot" on the target represents a measurement.




Or think of a bathroom scale.  What does it meen to say a bathroom scale is valid or not?


2012_May_03_Bathroom Scale_008
Photo by elcamino73. Used under Creative Commons.

If you get on your bathroom scale and it says 3 pounds or 1723 pounds, then your scale is broken. It is not right.  It is not valid.  Not only is your scale broken, the results (3, 1723) are not valid measures of your weight.

------------------

A related concept to validity is reliability.

Before looking at a formal definition of reliability, just think of the everyday use of that word.  If you say your friend is reliable, what does that mean?   It means you can count on your friend. Every time that you call on that friend they are there.  Not sometimes.  All the time.  They are consistent.  The formal definition of reliability is similar.

Reliability: “the extent to which measurement yields numbers (data) are consistent, stable, and dependable.” (Stacks & Hocking).

Again, let's use some metaphors to see the concept.




































What about a bathroom scale and reliability?  What does it mean to say that a bathroom scale is reliable?


2012_May_03_Bathroom Scale_008
Photo by elcamino73. Used under Creative Commons.




Can an instrument can be reliable, but not valid. That is, cluster together, but not be on target?


















If you had a bathroom scale that was reliable, but not valid, what results would you get if you weighted yourself several times?




Example

Let's say we are interested in the topic of communication apprehension.  More specifically, we are interested in the relationship between gender and communication apprehension.  Do men or women have higher levels of communication apprehension?  How would we go about answering that question?

How would we measure communication apprehension in our subjects (the people we are studying)?  We could observe.  What about a survey?  Yeah, let's do a survey.  Something like below.

-------------------------------------
Conversation Apprehension Scale

1. While participating in a conversation with a new acquaintance, I feel very nervous.
Strongly Agree --- Moderately Agree --- Neutral --- Moderately Disagree --- Strongly Disagree

2. I have no fear of speaking up in conversations.
Strongly Agree --- Moderately Agree --- Neutral --- Moderately Disagree --- Strongly Disagree

3. Ordinarily I am very tense and nervous in conversations.
Strongly Agree --- Moderately Agree --- Neutral --- Moderately Disagree --- Strongly Disagree

4. Ordinarily I am very calm and relaxed in conversations.
Strongly Agree --- Moderately Agree --- Neutral --- Moderately Disagree --- Strongly Disagree

------------------------------------


Think of this survey as a measuring instrument, just like a bathroom scale. The bathroom scale measures your weight and this survey would measure your communication apprehension.

Does our instrument (the above survey) have good measurement validity and measurement reliability? How would you determine that?

Measurement validity:
“the extent to which researchers are actually measuring the concepts they intend to measure”(FBFK)
Do the instruments give accurate/true readings?

Measurement reliability:
“the extent to which measurements of a variable are consistent and trustworthy”(FBFK)
Do the instruments continue to give the same readings every time they are used?


What are the procedures for checking an instrument’s reliability?

Similar results every time?
0% = Not reliable to 100% highly reliable

Three Ways to Check Instrument’s Reliability
1. Test and retest it.
2. Test, change wording slightly, retest.
3. Compare 1/2 items to the other 1/2

3 options, Not step-by-step
Which option is best?  Costs and benefits?

--------------


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ResearchMethods: Operationalization: Levels of Measurement (W8-P2) Sp18

As you are determining what your variables are and how you are going to measure them, it is also helpful to have clearly in mind what type of data (or level of measurement) you will be using.  This is especially helpful when you are doing statistical analysis on the data later in the research process.

Recall the earlier discussion of types of variables?  Nominal variable and ordered variables, right?
Now, let's expand that "ordered" type to get a total of four types of variables or levels of measurement.



The above video covers nominal, ordinal and interval.  Note the addition of ratio below.  What's the difference between interval and ration?

Level
Can be
Ranked?
Equal
Distance
Zero-Point
Example Variables
NominalNoN/AN/AGender
OrdinalYesNoN/AList of most preferred TV shows
IntervalYesYes
Arbitrary
Has + & -
Agreement on Likert-Scale
RatioYesYes
Absolute
0 = absence
Amount of time talking


Nominal level:
  • nominal variables are classified into categories (names)
  • They are not arranged in any particular order
  • e.g., frequency counts, percentages.
    • 48% male and 52% female
    • 32% Catholic, 20% Baptist, etc.
Ordinal level:
  • categories are ordered from highest to lowest
  • intervals between categories are not standardized
    • e.g., frequency counts, percentages
Interval level:
  • categories are ranked
  • assumed equal distances between ranks
  • Arbitrary zero-point
    • e.g. temperature - 0 degrees doesn’t mean the absence of temperature. Scale has + & - values.
  • Another example: Likert-Scale
Ratio Level:
  • categories are ranked
  • Equal distances between rank
  • Absolute Zero point.   Zero means the absence of the thing you are measuring and there is no negative value.
  • e.g.,  age, weight, number of words in a sentence, etc.


What is the connection between a horse race and levels of measurement?
Horse race























Photo used under Creative Commons.


How would the MythBusters research (viewed earlier) fit in here?  Did they operationalize their variables?  How? At what level?

Busting Myths: Asking Questions, Finding Answers




Note: The level of measurement (or kind/type of data) you have will determine what statistics you use.  More on this later.


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ResearchMethods: Operationalizing Your Variables (W8-P1) [VID] Sp18


Once your variables have been identified, then they will need to be measured, but how?   And, what does an operational definition have to do with it?

What is an operational definition?  What does it mean to operationalize a variable?

"Operational definition" is "a statement that describes the observable characteristics of a concept being investigated…”(Frey, et. al).  Or, put differently, an operational definition “specifies the procedures [or operations] the researcher uses to observe the variables” (Stacks, et.al).  Notice how the second definition indicates why it is called "operational."

Both I.V.s & D.V.s need O.D.s.   Operational definitions allow you to measure a variable.

What does the following Jeff Foxworthy comedy have to do with operationalization?  What is Foxworthy doing in his jokes?  Is he operationally defining something?




----
Operationalization Examples:

1. Let's say you are going to do some research on prejudice, how would you operationalize prejudice?

  • Start with the conceptual definition or dictionary definition:
    • “the irrational hatred or suspicion of a particular group, race, religion, or sexual orientation”(Jandt).
  • What would the operational definition be?  How would you measure prejudice?

What are the basic “operational procedures” or ways of measuring variables?

Operational procedures:
  1. Self-report 
    1. the researcher asks subjects to report about themselves
  2. Observer’s ratings 
    1. researcher asks subject to observer and rate another
  3. Observe behavior
    1. researcher observes subject
Which method would you trust more?  Which would give a more valid measure?  Why?

How would you use these procedures with prejudice or violence?  Which would "work" better?



2. Let's say you are going to do some research on violence and video games, how would you operationalize violence?

  • Conceptual/dictionary definition of violence: "exertion of physical force so as to injure or abuse" (Merriam-Websters)
  • 2/12/13 NYT news article about recent research on video games and violence
  • See an example of recent video game and violence research:

3. Let's say you are going to do some research on the effects of television on children, what would be the variables you'd study and how would you operationalize them?




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DigPhotog: "Blurry" Background Photos - Bokeh (W8-P2) [VID] Sp18


Now that we've talked about depth of field, let's throw in a related concept.  This concept ties the technical concept of depth of field back to the artistic discussion of photo composition covered earlier.

What is bokeh and what does it have to do with depth of field?

Bokeh is "the aesthetic quality of the blur produced in the out-of-focus parts of an image produced by a lens. Bokeh has been defined as "the way the lens renders out-of-focus points of light" ... Bokeh occurs for parts of the scene that lie outside the depth of field" (Wikipedia).




You can create bokeh simply by paying attention to depth of field and adjusting aperture settings.  However, you can carry the concept further and create shapes in the out of focus parts of a photography.  See video below.  Note that there are smartphone apps for this as well.



"Differences in lens aberrations and aperture shape cause some lens designs to blur the image in a way that is pleasing to the eye, while others produce blurring that is unpleasant or distracting—"good" and "bad" bokeh, respectively" (Wikipedia).

So, how would you judge good or bad bokeh?  Go back to the rules of composition covered earlier.  For example, is the rule of simplicity important here?  Colors important here?  What would be a list of rules of composition that would be relevant to judging bokeh?


If you are curious, check out 40 Beautiful Examples of Bokeh Photography.


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DigPhotog: "Blurry" Background Photos - Depth of Field, etc. (W8-P1) [VID] Sp18


You like those "blurry" background photos?  Would you like to be able to take this type of photo?

The beauty of Depth of Field
Photo by yashh .   Used under Creative Commons.

If so, you'll need to control the depth of field in your photograph and in order to control depth of field, you'll need to better understand aperture.


Depth of field is "the distance between the nearest and farthest objects in a scene that appear acceptably sharp in an image" (Wikipedia).

For a partial introduction to depth of field and some other topics, check out the following video from Jared Polin and his YouTube channel "Fro Knows Photos."





As a follow up to Polin's explanation and visuals, let's see the first part of the following video (0:00 to 1:45 or so).



Stop on the side-view image in the video at about 1:40.  Use the image to get a grasp of the phrases of "narrow depth of field" and "wide depth of field" which you may hear photographers sometimes use.

What do these two phrases mean and what is the difference between the two?  When you are using a wide depth of field, what is in focus in your photograph?


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Sunday, February 25, 2018

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "What Is Truth" by Johnny Cash on the "The Legend" album. Added to my "FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: What Is Truth
By Johnny Cash
From the album The Legend

Added to FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 25, 2018 at 07:07PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr






"Johnny Cash - What Is Truth (Remastered)" (My New Liked Vid on YouTube) [VID]

Johnny Cash - What Is Truth (Remastered)


"© 1979 Colmbia Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use. Under Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported, i am free to 1) Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format 2) Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially. The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the license terms."
Via YouTube https://youtu.be/uPhJHKwwR-s
Liked on February 25, 2018 at 07:16PM






Friday, February 23, 2018

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "The Ballad of Ira Hayes" by Johnny Cash on the "The Legend" album. Added to my "FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: The Ballad of Ira Hayes
By Johnny Cash
From the album The Legend

Added to FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 23, 2018 at 06:04PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr






WebDesign: HTML Tags vs. Elements vs. Attributes (W7-P3)


Before we may have used the terms tags and elements synonymously.

However, we can now make a clear distinction among tags, elements and something called attributes.

We can and should make these distinctions when we are using HTML code like the following.

<p class="para1"> Welcome to the Fish Web Site. Everything you want to know about fish is in this web site. </p>
<img class="imagec" src="barracuda.jpg">

The above comes from some HTML code we played with in a recent post.

Read the following and note the definitions and distinctions among tags, elements and attributes.


After reading the page linked to above, we should be above to identify the elements, the tags and the attributes in the above HTML code.  Some questions: How many elements do we have above?  How many attributes are there in the img element?  Does the img element have a closing tag?

Also, based on the code we worked with recently, what is the purpose of the class attribute?  What does the class attribute have to do with the CSS code?  How are they linked?




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Tuesday, February 20, 2018

WebDesign: The Box Model and Web Design (W7-P2)


box model: a web design concept in which "every element on a page is a rectangular box and may have width, height, padding, borders, and margins... There are several properties that determine the size of that box. Each part of the box model corresponds to a CSS property: width, height, padding, border, and margin."

CSS Tutorial for Beginners - 17 - CSS Box Model Part 1


Next parts of video series on box model



Online HTML, CSS & JavaScript Editor


The CSS Desk site can be used to try out the HTML and CSS code.  The HTML and CSS code is in the comments section of each of the videos.  Copy and paste the code in to the CSS Desk site and play around with the code.  Get a good sense of what each line of code does.


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ResearchMethods: Library Research & APA Style: Citing Sources (W7-P3) Sp18


You are working on some research and you want to mention or cite a book in the research paper you are writing.

How do you cite a book using APA-style?


Two Book Examples:

Jewell, T. E., & Hart, W. B. (1996). Interpersonal communication: Student workbook. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Frey, L. R., Botan, C. H., & Kreps, G. L. (2000). Investigating communication: An introduction to research methods. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn & Bacon.



What about an edited book (APA-style)?

Iyengar, S., & Reeves, R. (Eds.). (1997). Do the media govern? Politicians, voters, and reporters in America. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.




What about a chapter from an edited book (APA-style)?

Rogers, E. M., & Hart, W. B. (1997). A paradigmatic history of agenda-setting research. In S. Iyengar & R. Reeves (Eds.), Do the media govern? Politicians, voters, and reporters in America (pp. 225-236). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.



What about an article in an academic journal (Gangman-style, I mean APA style)?

Hart, W. B., (1999). Interdisciplinary influences in the study of intercultural relations: A citation analysis of the International Journal of Intercultural Relations. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 23, 575-589.

Examples of academic or scholarly journals. Public domain photo.



One of the best online sources for how to cite books, articles, etc. is Purdue University's Research and Citation Resources website.  This site covers APA and other methods.


Note: The above is based on the 6th edition of the APA manual.








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ResearchMethods: Library Research & APA Style: Finding Books & Journals(W7-P2) Sp18


When doing research, one of the first things you do is gather up journal articles and books that have also addressed your research question.  This is known as a literature review.

In terms of journal articles, a media scholar would probably want to check out the following journals published by ICA and AEJMC.


What are some comm journals published by the ICA? What is ICA?
  • Human Communication Research
  • Journal of Communication
  • Communication Theory
What are some journals published by the AEJMC?  What is AEJMC?
The above are examples of a few of the many journals relevant to a communication/media scholar.

Getting Access

To get access to the above journals, you would have to be a member of the above organizations and pay for a subscription to the journals.  Another possibility, is that your university library has subscribed to the journals.

Within the field of communication study, one large database of journal articles is Communication and Mass Media Complete.  Some university libraries subscribe to this large database of communication related journals.

NSU Library Search


Free Online Research Resources

What are some free online sources that may help with gathering background information about your research topic?  How could they be used in research?



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ResearchMethods: Library Research & APA Style: Puzzle Break (W7-P1) Sp18


Our Critical Thinkers Creed
  • We are Open-minded.
    • We seek to understand the other viewpoints.
  • We are Knowledgeable.
    • We offer opinions/claims backed with logic and evidence.
  • We are Mentally Active.
    • We use our intelligence to confront problems.
  • We are Curious.
    • We go beyond superficial explanations. We seek deeper understanding.
  • We are Independent Thinkers.
    • We are not afraid to disagree with the group opinion.
  • We are Creative.
    • We break out of established patterns of thinking and approach situations from innovative directions.
What does the creed mean in research and in our personal lives?
How does it relate to solving puzzles and problems?
To begin with, the critical thinkers creed is a good perspective to have when faced with puzzles and problems.

What would be some other approaches to take when solving puzzles and problems?

Advice for Solving Puzzles and Problems

  • Be confident. Positive attitude.
  • Be creative (“think outside the box”).
  • Try a different approach / Look at it from different viewpoints.
  • Take inventory (write-down) what you know and what you don’t.
  • Never assume.
  • Ask lots of questions.
  • Break big problem into smaller steps.
  • Look for patterns.
Source: Modified from Pat Murphy, et.al. The Brain Explorer (Exploratorium at Home)


Try some puzzles:

Puzzle 1:
"Dr. Arnold Gluck, a psychiatrist in New York, came across the world’s most enthusiastic bookworm during the course for his work. He had been one since infancy. All he ever did was devour books. Yet he never held down a proper job and he didn’t go to the public library. He hadn’t inherited money, in fact he was penniless. So how could he get through all those books?"



Puzzle 2: A Lewis Carroll Puzzle
Lewis Carroll, author (Alice in Wonderland)
a.k.a. Lutwidge Dodgson, mathematician and logician

A STICK I FOUND

"A stick I found that weighed two pound:
I sawed it up one day
In pieces eight of equal weight!
How much did each piece weigh?

(Everybody says ‘a quarter of a pound’, which is wrong.)"






What is the relationship between doing research and solving puzzles?


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DigPhotog: Online Camera Simulators to Help Understand Aperture, Shutter Speed, etc. (W7-P3) Sp18


There are two very useful online camera simulators that I'd recommend to help you get a better understanding of aperture, shutter speed and other aspects of photography.

1. Start with Photonhead's "SimCam - Shutter and Aperture" page. It'll allow you to control a few features of the camera.  What settings would get you those blurry background photos?  Why?   Also, try out the film speed or ISO simulator.  Make changes in the settings and then take the photo (i.e. click on "shoot it").  Before clicking the shoot it button make a guess on what the new photo will look like.  Work with the simulations until your guess match the resulting photo.

2. Also, try CameraSim.com. Once you've gotten comfortable for Photonheads camera simulator, then move on to this more complicated simulator.  You can try the embed below (if it appears for you) or go directly to the site.




In addition to adjusting the shutter, aperture and mode, try adjusting the distance you are to the child and also zoom in or zoom out with the focal length setting.

When you are working with both of these simulators, it is important that after you change some settings and before you press the click button, that you make a guess as to what you think the simulated photograph will look like. Only stop messing with these simulators, once you get all your guesses right.


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DigPhotog: Controlling Light (F-Stops, Shutter Speed, ISO, etc.) (W7-P2) [VID] Sp18


As a photographer, your task is to control lightYou are a master of light.

When you turn that dial from "auto" to "manual", you are taking control of the light coming into your camera.  Two key ways of controlling the amount of light coming into your camera are by setting the f-stop and the shutter speed.

Here now we have two options for coverage of f-stops, shutter speeds and ISO.  Check out at least one of these.

Option 1


Option 2



If you are curious, you might check out "A Picture To Show You Clearly The Effects of Aperture, Shutter Speed and ISO On Images."

Also, if you are curious and want to get a little more techie, you can optionally check out the following video.  Note the exposure triangle.





EXIF Apps and the Exposure Triangle

There are apps that allow you to see the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO settings for your photographs.  If you recall, the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO data and other data (e.g., date, time, GPS location) is what is called EXIF data.  For android devices one EXIF viewer app is Simple Exif Viewer.  For iOS devices an EXIF viewer app is Exif Viewer. A Google search will also show EXIF viewers for laptops and desktops.

Use one of the EXIF viewers and check the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO settings for your photographs. See if the settings or values make sense.  For example, would an ISO setting/value of 800 for an indoor photo make sense?  Why?   Would a shutter speed of 1/2 second for a blurry sports photo make sense?  Why?



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DigPhotog: Basic Tech: How Does a Digital Camera Work? [VID] (W7-P1) Sp18


Now let's take a look at how the camera works on the inside.  Understanding how it works on the inside, helps with the understanding of how and why the settings do what they do.

Let's start with, how does a digital camera work? What are the steps in the process (a list of the steps)?

Along with this, what are the parts of the camera relevant to a discussion of how it works (a list of the parts)?

How DSLR Cameras Work


Let's take a look at the process again, in a slightly different way.




Let's take a look at this process from a different perspective.  Let's look at it in slooooo....mooooootion





If you'd still like to learn more, I'd recommend two additional YouTube videos: (1) the more detailed "How Digital Cameras Really Work" and the longer "How Does a Camera Work?".





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Monday, February 19, 2018

ResearchMethods: Theories & RQs or Where Do RQs Come From? (W6-P4) Sp18


How does our discussion of theory and research question relate? How do RQs fit in the theory building process?

Theories are built. Theory building is a process. It starts with observation and, in a way, ends with observation.  See below.

Related terms:

Deduction: “inference in which the conclusion about particulars follows necessarily from general or universal premises“ (Merriam-Webster).



Induction: “inference of a generalized conclusion from particular instances“ (Merriam-Webster).



So, based on the above, where does research fit into the theory building process?  Are they the same thing?  What do the definitions tell us?


Now let’s try to develop some theory.




A more complete picture of the theory building process.


So, based on the above, where does research fit into the theory building process?  Are they the same thing?


How does our discussion of theory and research question relate? How do RQs fit in the theory building process?




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DigPhotog: Pixels: The Parts of the Picture [VID] (W6-P4) Sp18


Pixel is "short for picture element, pixels are the tiny components that capture the digital image data recorded by your camera" (B&H).





Resolution is "the number of pixels, both horizontally and vertically, used to either capture or display an image. The higher the resolution, the finer the image detail will be" (B&H).

Resolution is typically shown as the number pixel wide by pixel high (e.g. 4200 x 2800).

Note that when you multiply these two numbers you get the total number of pixels in a photograph.


Megapixel (MP) is 1 million (1,000,000) pixels (B&H).

For example...

If you have a camera which is 8 MP, then the photographs you take can contain up to approximately 8,000,000 pixels.   The resolution for those photos would be 3264 x 2468.

If you have a camera which is 12 MP, then the photographs you take can contain up to approximately 12,000,000 pixels.   The resolution for those photos would be 4200 x 2800.






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Friday, February 16, 2018

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "Maggie's Farm" by Bob Dylan on the "Bringing It All Back Home" album. Added to my "FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: Maggie’s Farm
By Bob Dylan
From the album Bringing It All Back Home

Added to FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 16, 2018 at 04:00PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr






Tuesday, February 13, 2018

WebDesign: CSS and Graphic Design (W7-P1)


A well designed web site is not just some CSS code and hexadecimal numbers.

There are some important graphic design principles to keep in mind when designing a web site.

Graphic design: "the art or profession of visual communication that combines images, words, and ideas to convey information to an audience, especially to produce a specific effect"(Dictionary.com).

Watch the video below and make special note on proximity, white space, alignment, contrast and repetition.  The text from the video can be found on this GCF page.

 What do each terms mean and how do they help create a better website?


Beginning Graphic Design: Layout & Composition




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WebDesign: CSS and Colors (W6-P3)


There are four primary ways to represent colors within CSS:
1) keywords, 2) hexadecimal notation, 3) RGB values and 4) HSL values.

For example, the following CSS code would turn the background maroon for the parts of the HTML code using the paragraph selector. In this case the color keyword is used (i.e. maroon).

p {
background: maroon;
}

For example, the following CSS code would turn the background maroon for the parts of the HTML code using the paragraph selector. In this case the hexadecimal number is used (i.e. maroon).

p {
background: #800000;
}

Color is an important part of graphic design and thus is an important part of website design. Watch the video below and make special note of definitions for color theory, primary colors, secondary colors, the color wheel, hue, saturation, value, 4 main color schemes (monochromatic, analogous, complementary and triadic).  The definitions for the above terms are on GCF's page for the instructional video.


Beginning Graphic Design: Color


A color wheel is "an abstract illustrative organization of color hues around a circle that shows relationships between primary colors, secondary colors, tertiary colors etc"(Wikipedia).


Also, if you are interested, here is a link to the Adobe Color/Kuler site mentioned previously. This a good site to get a hands-on feel for color theory, color schemes and color values (RGB and hexadecimal).  Adobe Color works best on a laptop or desktop.




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WebDesign: CSS, Separation and Selectors (W6-P2)

What is the purpose of CSS?  Why we need a HTML file and a CSS file in web design.

"CSS is designed primarily to enable the separation of document content from document presentation, including aspects such as the layout, colors, and fonts. This separation can improve content accessibility, provide more flexibility and control in the specification of presentation characteristics, enable multiple HTML pages to share formatting by specifying the relevant CSS in a separate .css file, and reduce complexity and repetition in the structural content" (Wikipedia).

The CSS file/document that describes the layout of a web document looks like the  code on the right.

The key statement in CSS are selectors. With selectors you are "selecting"/indicating which part of the HTML code you want to change the appearance of.  You then give specific instructions on what those changes are.  You indicate what and then say how.

There are three kinds of selectors in CSS: (1) type selectors, (2) class selectors, and (3) ID selectors.

For example, in the CSS code above, h1 is a type selector. This part of the CSS code tells the web browser how to display the heading 1 content found in the HTML code. The web browser would look through the HTML code for all h1 type selectors and apply the presentational style to the content in h1 element. It, for example, tells the browser to display the heading 1 content with an orange background and white letters.

In this example, the content in the HTML file is separated from the presentational style information which in the CSS file.

Why separate the content from the style? Why have separate documents (one HTML and one CSS)?




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WebDesign: Cascades and CSS (W6-P1)

What is a cascade, anyway?


Casacade: "a small waterfall, typically one of several that fall in stages down a steep rocky slope" (Google).



Or perhaps you've seen one of the water cascades in some business office with sheets of water coming down.












What is CSS and what purpose of CSS?



Cascading Style Sheets (CSS): "a style sheet language used to describe the presentational semantics of a document written in the markup language HTML" (from the above instructional video).

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS): "a style sheet language used for describing the presentation of a document written in a markup language" (Wikipedia).

What is the difference between these two definitions? Which is better?



If you are interested and like the above video, I'd recommend DevTips' CSS Basics playlist.

In the above video clip, they turned of CSS to illustrate what it does.  If you are interested and are using newer version of Microsoft Explorer in Windows 10, see these instructions for how to turn-off CSS on whatever website you visit. Maybe start with Google home page or Apple's site . Instructions for other browsers can usually be found online, if you are interested.




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ResearchMethods: Topics, RQs & H's: Directionality with RQs & Hs (W6-P3) Sp18



What is meant by directionality in RQs?
  • Non-directional wording:
    • e.g., There is a relationship between the IV & DV.
    • No positive or negative relationship between IV and DV stated, just that there is a relationship.
  • Directional wording:
    • e.g., As the IV increases the DV decreases.
    • A positive or negative relationship between IV and DV is given.


Now, let's test some comprehension of directionality and other material covered recently.

Give me an example RQ or H for each of the following four descriptions.

  1. RQ, Ordered IV, Non-directional
  2. H, Nominal IV, Non-directional or “two-tailed”*
  3. RQ, Ordered IV, Directional or "one-tailed"*
  4. H, Nominal IV, Directional

* “One tail, two tail, red tail, blue tail” – Dr. Seuss


Which of the following examples fit the above four descriptions?
  • What is the relationship between age and intercultural sensitivity**?
  • Intercultural Sensitivity is greater for Chinese than U.S. Americans.
  • There is a difference in IC Sensitivity between men and women.
  • Is there a positive relationship between age and intercultural sensitivity?



“Two-tailed” same as non-directional
“One-tailed” same as directional

"I hope they never lose their sense of wonder and discovery." Who said that? What was he talking about? How's that fit with the Critical Thinker's Creed?


Directionality and "tails" will surface again later in discussion of some statistics.



** Think of intercultural sensitivity as the opposite of prejudice. Think of it as a score that somebody would get on a survey that measures intercultural sensitivity.



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ResearchMethods: Topics, RQs & H's: IVs, DVs, CVs & RQs (W6-P2) Sp18


Earlier we defined...
Research question (RQ): "An interrogative statement exploring the relationship between two or more constructs [concepts, variables, etc.]" (Stewart, 2002, p. 173).
More specifically, we could say a RQ is a question that asks about the influence of the independent variable on the dependent variable.

We didn't change anything.  We just added some further detail.  We just named the variables.

So what are independent variables, etc.?

  • Dependent variable (DV): the variable that is being influenced by another variable.
    • The value of the DV is dependent on the value of the IV.
  • Independent variable (IV): the variable that is doing the influencing.
  • Confounding variable: a variable that may also explain what is being studied, but is not a main focus of the study.

Example: Does violence in video games (IV) cause violent behavior in children (DV)?

What would that RQ look like if you diagrammed it?



How does the CV work in here?  Can you think of a CV for the above RQ?




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ResearchMethods: Topics, RQs & H's: Research Questions & Hypotheses (W6-P1) [VID] Sp18


Now we move from the philosophical to the more practical.  How do you do research?  It all starts with the RQ.


Research question (RQ): "An interrogative statement exploring the relationship between two or more constructs [concepts, variables, etc.]" (Stewart, 2002, p. 173).

In short, is there a relationship between one variable and another?

In the past I asked students to offer research questions they had a serious interest in answering.  Do the student examples below fit the definition?  Any problems you spot with the examples?

  • "Does visual stimuli, or auditory stimuli, in advertisements positively affect a consumers buying behavior, meaning will the consumer be inclined to buy if a stimulating message is communicated across one of the two communication channels."
  • "Is there a positive (or a negative) relationship between the amount of violence communicated in cartoons?"
  • "Is there an increase in female orgasms in relationships related to the increase in communication?"


What are the types of variables?
  • A variable is any concept that takes on two or more values.
  • Two types:
    • Nominal: Categories
      • e.g., gender, profession, race, nationality, etc.
    • Ordered: Takes on numerical values
      • e.g., age, IQ, a prejudice score, time in conversation, etc.
What's the difference you spot between nominal and ordered?

Note: We'll add other types later, but this will work for now.




Could you generate some RQs based on the variables listed under nominal and ordered?

More importantly, based on the research topic that you identified earlier, what are some possible RQs you could ask?

When thinking of media-oriented RQs make sure of the following:
  • RQs are questions that can be answered using research methodologies. (Remember: Ways of knowing?)
  • RQs are related to media.  At least one variable/concept should be related to media.



Now, that we've got a grasp on an RQ, what is exactly is an H?  They are related, right?

Hypothesis is a tentative statement about the relationship between two or more variables (the dependent and independent variables).
Null hypothesis is a statement that says there is no relationship between the research variables.

How are RQs and Hs similar?  How are they different?







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DigPhotog: Basic Tech: File Formats in Digital Photography [VID] (W6-P3) Sp18


After comparing benefits of film photography to the benefits of digital photography, one of the next topics to be addressed would be how are digital photographs stored.  With traditional film photography, the photographs are stored on film negatives, but what about digital photographs?

How are photographs are stored digitally.  On your phone, camera memory card, or computer, digital photographs are stored in three possible formats.

The three primary file formats used in digital photography are jpeg, tiff and raw.*
Ever look at a list of photos on a computer and noticed ".jpg" at the end of the file name?  That photo was stored in the jpeg format.

So, what are the formats?  What are the differences?  What are the benefits and drawbacks of each?  Which should you use?*



Now with the basics out of the way, let's take a closer look at the idea of a raw file.  I like Mike Browne's cake metaphor.



If you want to learn more, I'd recommend "File Formats in Photography".


* Note that this discussion mainly applies to digital SLR cameras, since smartphones usually only allow jpeg formats.



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DigPhotog: Basic Tech: Film vs. Digital (W6-P2) Sp18


So, advances in technology have brought us the digital camera.  However, just because it is new tech, does that mean digital photography is better than film photography?

Compared to traditional film photography, what are the benefits of digital photography?

  1. automatic feedback by seeing photo on LCD
  2. digital photography allows for a smaller storage space and 
  3. digital photography allows for easy editing.



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DigPhotog: Photo Composition, One Last Time (W6-P1) Sp18


Itten's Contrasts and Color Composition

Very soon we'll move to the technical side of photography.  However, before leaving the artistic side, specifically photo composition, let's remind ourselves of Itten's contrasts and also look the role of color in photo composition.

Please do revisit Itten's contrasts in the previous notes.

Let's address here, a new topic, the color wheel and color schemes


You are probably aware of the color wheel, but how does it fit into photography?  A color wheel is "an abstract illustrative organization of color hues around a circle that shows relationships between primary colors, secondary colors, tertiary colors etc"(Wikipedia).

This discussion of color fits into our previous discussion of composition.  You can use color to compose good photographs as well as using the rules of composition previously discussed.

Let's get some background on color theory.  Pay special attention to the color rules (color schemes) discussed.



Go to Adobe Color (aka Kuler) and explore the different color rules or color schemes.  Become familiar with the following four schemes/rules: analogous, monochromatic, triad and complementary colors.  Be able to define these four color schemes according to their relative positions on the color wheel.  For example, complementary colors are colors on the opposite side of the color wheel.




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Friday, February 9, 2018

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "Freight train" by Elizabeth Cotten on the "Freight Train and Other North Carolina Folk Songs and Tunes" album. Added to my "FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: Freight train
By Elizabeth Cotten
From the album Freight Train and Other North Carolina Folk Songs and Tunes

Added to FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 9, 2018 at 04:33PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr






Friday, February 2, 2018

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "A Hard Rain's A Gonna Fall" by Joan Baez on the "The First 10 Years" album. Added to my "FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: A Hard Rain’s A Gonna Fall
By Joan Baez
From the album The First 10 Years

Added to FOLK FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 2, 2018 at 05:30PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr