Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Instant Gratification

In society today everyone is running around with a high number of activities to finish by the end of the day. Life in today’s world consists of the need of instant gratification. You have college students and parents running around trying to get everything done with the demand for instantaneous responses. In the world of text messaging, instant messages, voicemail on email, photo sharing, social networking sites people have the need to be connected constantly. With all of these things tugging on people’s minds television shows and movies are not at the top of society’s list to see and watch when they are initially released.
This created the world of illegal downloads, getting the things when you want to see them, and not necessarily in real time. After all, most people could reach someone through Myspace, Facebook, cell phone, home phone, text message, email, or instant message. Heaven forbid a hand written letter appear in a mailbox.

Thanks Apple, they have done it again. Forget the time spent syncing up the VCR with the channel and audio level to record the show you miss while waiting in line to pick up the new phone. ITV is Apple’s new addition to their proud collections of user-friendly advancements and iTunes accessories. This product can wirelessly sync up with your iTunes on your PC or Mac and can relay whatever you have stored in your iTunes to your television screen. There are those people that already know how to put your computer screen onto the television. S-video cable has been amazing.
The iTV will go for only $299 according to Apple’s website.
This means if you download a new movie, television show, or songs you can play them on your iTV. Goodbye cable and satellite.
So no worries everyone, you can keep up the continuous connection to everyone in England while watching your show you downloaded in iTunes later that week. We have increased our need for connection and instant gratification. The companies are competing and feeding off of that need. No wonder as a society most do not have any attention span.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Podcasting- a Generation Communicates
Kristina Proctor
Staff Writer- Lenoir-Rhynean
The term ‘podcasting’ is derived from the Apple product iPod and the word broadcasting. This allows audio files to be downloaded for people’s listening pleasure anytime they desire. A common misconception is that you have to own an iPod to download a podcast, or a netcast, to listen.
This is not the case! Podcasts and netcasts do not even require an mp3 player. You can enjoy these broadcasts through your desktop’s regular player.
A popular question among college students is always in regards to price. Is it free? You can get a majority of news podcasts for free; the iTunes music stores as well as websites have many of them posted just like their recent blogs. They are similar to blogs. A blog is the text form of what consists of a podcast usually.
Many broadcasting outlets are using them as another means of communication of their messages. For instance, the New York Times has a brief podcast regarding what is on the front page, even Illinois Senator Barack Obama has a podcast in which he talks about his recent endeavors and his work with the Network Neutrality bills.
There are ways that podcasting has been integrated for educational purposes. Some Supreme Court cases actually are on podcast form now and can be downloaded online at www.oyez.org where the arguments can be heard from past decisions. According to www.learningcircuits.org podcasting can be a way to assist non-native speakers; this would allow the repetitive audio for review later in case there was confusion.
Public Radio has been able to podcast their topics so they now can reach a world-wide audience. This is just one more example as to how people can hear news in other areas, allowing a different point of view.
As a college student I have thought that podcasting was a wonderful feat for more freedom of information on the Internet, allowing people to broadcast their views and provide information to the public, if people do not want to hear it then they can refrain from downloading it.
This also allows me to be in my car or cleaning my room while I listen to a lecture a political candidate gave last week that I missed due to class or work.
One con that has been brought up is that this is something that compares to TiVo. People in the broadcast industry have feared that this would take away from their live broadcast channels.
Unfortunately, change happens and if something is going to last it will. Industries come and go; there will never be a period of blissful glee for media outlets, which for the better will continue to keep them working for our attention. Until then, we will continue to be immediately gratified.

This article was published in the November 17, 2006 issue of the student newpaper Lenoir-Rhynean of Lenoir-Rhyne College www.lrc.edu