Aaron A. Delwiche
Provides a comprehensive examination of the effects of new, digital media on interpersonal communication, media industries, and media culture. Emphasis on economic, social, political, and aesthetic implications. Provides limited experience with computer-based media. No prior technical computer experience assumed.
Three years ago, the Internet juggernaut seemed unstoppable. Global consumers discovered the convenience of on-line communication, and enthusiasm for on-line ventures propelled the stock market to dizzying heights. Many technology workers woke up one day to discover that they were worth millions of dollars - at least on paper. It was the largest speculative boom of the twentieth century, and it could not last forever.
In March of 2000, the bubble burst. A year later, the world was officially in the midst of a global recession
Despite the current economic slump, our lives are more intertwined with new media than ever before. Emerging communication technologies are becoming faster, more powerful, and thoroughly portable. 86% of US college students have access to the Internet, and one out of five Americans report that the net is the most essential medium in their lives. Electronic commerce continues to rise steadily, chipping away at traditional retail sales.
Though computer literacy no longer guarantees a lucrative job upon graduation, employers are still desperate for technically sophisticated workers. But computer skills are only one aspect of technical literacy. It is also important to cultivate a critically informed stance towards the Internet, personal computers, and other communication technologies.
This course simultaneously examines both the theory and the practice of new media. A significant amount of time is devoted to practical aspects of multimedia design, but we will also investigate sociological, political, and economic dimensions of our changing media landscape.
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