20131203 - just want to get these out


Doctor Who “Tomb of the Cybermen”. Still suspecting I like the older, multi-part storytelling style more than the newer episodes. Certainly I have been appreciating the lengthier formats of the British detective shows I've been watching over the shorter US style, whether that's 90 minute single episode mysteries or 60 minute 2-parters as series standard.

This one I liked the pacing despite the silliness of the costumes and other details. Hampered by various unpleasantnesses like frequent attempts to keep 'the girls' separated and out of danger, or much of the story pivoting on the stoically near-silent black servant one of the otherwise all-white cast had brought along, and his immense strength.

Doctor Who “The Crimson Horror”. And rewatching this quickly reaffirms my opinion that the present incarnation of the show is excessively full of itself and its own coolness. Glad I scarcely paid attention to it this time around.

Ouran High School Host Club S1E13 “Haruhi in Wonderland” ...actually one of the more faithful adaptations of Alice's adventures I remember seeing.

Outcasts S1E06. This show has gotten interesting enough that I can actually pay attention to episodes now, although it is also taking a decidedly mystical tack I don't care for.

Work stuff: forgot to mention previously that last week I got to be in charge of the library for a few hours. Was rostered on the evening shift, got message in the morning that the only permanent staff-member on duty that night was being filled-in for, and that I was specifically the person in charge for the evening. Felt pretty gratifying as this had never explicitly been the case previously. Didn't make any difference as nothing out of the ordinary happened but I still felt pretty good about being entrusted with the responsibility.

A couple of weeks back I had a situation where a patron asked to borrow a USB flash drive. The library has no such thing as a loanable item, and I was not about to let him take home someone else's lost property. The actual problem as claimed was that he and another student had been working on an assignment and were unable to save the document to the library computer they were using and so email it to themselves as an attachment to have at home.

What I did: suggested they use pastebin, then email the URL to themselves.

What I could have done: suggest they just copy the document into the body of an email, and email that to themselves; probably many other things.

What I could have done better: also make a distinction between public and private pastebins, and suggest they create a private one if they don't want whatever they were working on to be searchable. This is something I did not think of until they were already gone.

Notes from class readings:

De Rosa, C., Cantrell, J., Havens, A., Hawk, J. & Jenkins, L. (2007). Sharing privacy and trust in our networked world: A report to the OCLC membership. Dublin, Ohio: OCLC. [ebook] Available http://www.oclc.org/reports/pdfs/sharing.pdf Read the 'Introduction' section, followed by 'Our Digital Lives' (Section 1) and 'Our Social Spaces' (Section 2).

Reading Introduction. Talk of MySpace makes it feel outdated in relation to how fast the internet moves, despite that Facebook and Youtube are still preeminent, and it would seem unlikely the trends described have reversed themselves meanwhile.

Section 1 “Our Digital Lives”: "The rapid adoption of Internet applications and the duration of Internet use by users of all ages suggest that the time may have arrived when it is no longer fruitful to create comparisons between attitudes and habits of individuals born before personal computers were widespread and those born after." Interesting claim.

This section suggesting, in 2007, that the great majority of people have been using the internet for four years or longer. I am not clear if the survey respondants this is drawn from are all internet users already, or- okay, checked back to the introduction (De Rosa, C., Cantrell, J., Havens, A., Hawk, J. & Jenkins, L., 2007, p. 12) and it appears the survey was entirely online, so no one could have responded who does not already make use of the internet. And then at most this is information about people who already make use of the internet rather than the population as a whole. I suppose from this information we can't directly tell if most internet users have these years of experience because uptake has stagnated and there is (or was then) a significant pool of the population refusing or unable to use the internet, or whether this is because there is limited available population left to become new internet users.

Further on that (De Rosa, C. et al, 2007, p. 20):

Exploring Internet tenure by age of respondent provided interesting results, perhaps different than what might be expected. The most tenured group of Internet users surveyed are those age 50+. Nearly a third (30%) of the most senior Internet users have been online for more than a decade.

While a quarter (25%) of the general public respondents ages 22–49 have been online more than a decade, the vast majority of this age group (91%) have been online for four years or more, and nearly two-thirds have seven years or more years of experience.

The youngest respondents surveyed (ages 14/15–21) are logically the least tenured Internet users, yet over 75% have also been online for four years or more. For many in this age category, this equates to living about a quarter of their lives online.

The data reveal the online population has very few novice Internet users; less than 3%, across all age groups and geographies surveyed, have been using the Internet less than a year.

Do I say this is complex? Perhaps not. Of the people over 50 and using the internet in 2007, one might guess many of those to be individuals who had cause to use computers professionally, and who since we are speaking of 10+ year spans of internet use might well have been in the next age bracket down when they started. Mostly I'm wondering if this is related to who was in a position to adopt internet use in the early nineties and to whatever degree then age into that category. Or maybe not - this is just guessing based on those numbers and personal preconceptions.

The overall level of social networking usage among the general public is 28%, with a peak of 37% for the USA (p. 24). I feel sure this would be dramatically higher if this survey were conducted in the present.

Similarity of usage patterns across urban, suburban and rural populations seems important to note - stereotypes would claim otherwise and contrary evidence could be useful in securing or maintaining services.

It is regarded as a basic truth in some (many?) circles that it is much easier and more automatic to turn a critical eye on that which does not align with one's prejudices, and that is perhaps the case here. I find myself suspicious of this report. From page 27:

It is estimated that there are over 22 billion Web pages on the Internet today. And more and more, these Web pages are being built by end users and their primary motives are not commercial, but communication.

To communicate with friends and family (37%) is the top reason among the total general public for creating a Web page. To write a blog and/or diary/journal (28%), to share photos (27%), to promote and sell products (21%) and to publish writing or music (19%) are also key motivations.

Immediately a couple of things come to mind. First of all, this was a survey of web users as individuals. Are individual web users the most likely group to be creating web pages for commercial purposes, or is that companies (alongside which, comes wondering whether respondants would be counting the creation of web pages they were employed to work on - presentation of the results gives an implicit feel that is outside the scope of consideration)? Also wondering what constitutes creating a web page in this context. E.g., if I were to create a Tumblr account or a free Wordpress or Blogger blog, would that count as creating a web page? Or do I need to do something more, like purchase my own URL, hosting, something else? My suspicion is 'not', but I don't find the report clear on this point so far.

My first thinking is that counting signing up for social media sites as website creation may be accounting for this (since for all the ones I know of, this generates a page for the user in which eir activity can be viewed), but then just a bit further down it is made clear these are regarded as separate things:

Respondents are sharing contentusing multiple avenues. Of the total general public surveyed who have used a social networking site (28%), 47% have also created a Web page.

I don't know if any of this is down to different views among respondants as to what counts as creating a web page either, or if that matters.

The section “Cell Phone Usage”, being that it pre-dates the popular use of smartphones in most of the territories surveyed (well, the first iPhone model was released in the year of publication), is perhaps so far out of date as to be useless.


De Rosa, C., Cantrell, J., Havens, A., Hawk, J. & Jenkins, L. (2007). Sharing privacy and trust in our networked world: A report to the OCLC membership. Dublin, Ohio: OCLC.