Published on March 1, 2014
Evaluation: Question Four
How did you use new media technologies in the construction, research and planning and evaluation stages?
Technologies used in the research and planning...
The objectives for my research and planning... The objectives for the research and planning of my product were to gain as much research on the forms and conventions of documentaries, double page spreads in tv listings magazines and on radio adverts as possible to have a better understanding of the making of those products in the real media business.
Using Blogger in my research and planning... Blogger is ultimately the base technology for the whole project. Blogger allows me to post text, image, videos, links etc onto one website page which you can scroll through. Having all of my work on one blog has helped me to keep a steady flow of work and helped me to spread out the workload so there is something new on the blog at least once a week (even if it is just an update on progress). Blogger is a programme which I'm familiar with through the use of it in last years AS media project; last year I had to learn how to use the blog to its full potential and I feel that through a years experience (and through my own personal blogging in the past year) I now have a full understanding of Blogger and I am completely comfortable in using this programme.
Using Google in my research and planning... I feel that Google was another technology which provided as a base for my project. Google is a very popular search engine; I used it mostly to gain all of my research on forms and conventions and the history of media products. Google is useful because it filters through a vast amount of information on the internet and then comes out with a selection of information which is specific to your search. However, I feel that I could have used other research materials such as my local library or emailing experts on the specified products that work or have worked within the media business to gain a fuller understanding.
Using my Apple Ipod Touch in my research and planning... Another technology that I used regularly in the research and planning stages of my project was my 4th generation Apple Ipod Touch. I used my Ipod Touch to take pictures of my research and planning mind maps which can be seen on my blog. I found this useful because it was very simple to take a couple of pictures, use a USB cord to connect my Ipod to the computer and upload the pictures straight onto the blog. However, I feel that I could have used a better quality camera to gain a clearer picture. I'm familiar with this product as I've owned and used it for over a year now; I'm also familiar with the generation before the 4th. The apple Ipod touch is easy and simple to use so I had no troubles working this technology.
Using Microsoft Publisher in my research and planning... Another technology I used in the research of my project was Microsoft Publisher. I used this programme to create a deconstruction on a double page spread of a TV listings magazine about Doctor Who. I found this programme useful because I could easily draw lines and circles to indicate what I'm deconstructing. However, I could have used another programme such as Fireworks because it's more professional and requires more advanced IT skills. I have also had a lot of experience using Fireworks before but I will go into a lot more detail about that particular programme later. I have used Microsoft for most of my schooling and so I'm familiar with how their programmes work. However, I have never used Publisher to a major extent, so this was the most I had ever used this particular programme. Fortunately, I found it very self explanatory and easy to work with.
Using YouTube in my research and planning... Another heavily featured technology that I used throughout this project was YouTube. YouTube allows me to see an array of videos that people across the world have published. I used YouTube to view professional documentaries such as ‘Man on Wire’ and a couple of Louis Theroux's most popular documentaries such as ‘African Hunting Holiday’ or ‘Louis and the Brothel’. I also used YouTube to watch other students work (such as SIX which is mentioned in question two), it was easy accessible and I was even able to comment on their videos asking questions about their projects to gain advice on my project ahead. I also used YouTube for the production of my documentary and evaluation questions. Youtube has been available for the public to use since 2005 and I'm positive I've used it for a least 6 years of the 10 years it's been an internet sensation. YouTube is easy to use as well as catering for many different types of people across the world. I first started using YouTube to gain access to my favourite artists new singles, but now I use YouTube to watch my favourite YouTubers and the odd funny animal video. I can safely say that YouTube is a programme I am in full understanding of.
Using Survey Monkey in my research and planning... I also used Survey Monkey as a way to gather a form of primary research. Survey Monkey allowed me to create my own questionnaire; I chose the amount of questions I needed, chose whether they were a 'tick box' question or whether they required a written opinion from the person taking the questionnaire. Survey Monkey also gave me a link on which my questionnaire would be available for people to take; I then shared this on my school email to a variety of people (students, teachers and parents). Survey Monkey also processed all of the feedback for me in the form of numbers, percentages etc. This made it very easy for me to view the results of my questionnaire. However, if I had done the questionnaire on a word document, given it out to people and collected it in, I would have had to process the information myself and maybe that would have given me more of an opportunity to look at all of the results separately in detail. This was the first time I used Survey Monkey; I had seen surveys from school shared on our email accounts via Survey Monkey, so I knew what the programme was and what its use was. However, I had no idea how to go about creating a questionnaire. This was one of the many new skills that I have gained through this project.
Using Google Drive in my research and planning... I also used the document application in Google Drive to create all of my time schedules. This was useful because I can access Google Drive anywhere with an internet connection and so I could look at it whenever I wanted to check if I was on task and on time. However, this has it's pros and cons; I obviously couldn't access this without the internet. Google Drive was a programme that I was introduced to only a while ago, I have since been using it for all of my A level work and I now have a good understanding of how to use it.
Using Urban Fonts in my research and planning... Urban Fonts is another technology form that I used to plan my products. I used Urban Fonts to search for an array of different fonts that I could use throughout the creation of all of my products. I also used it to get an idea of what kind of elements that a certain font could connote or denote. Urban Fonts was useful because I could search through a large variety of fonts based on the look I had in mind, I was also able to see how the name of my product (THE GENERATION) would look in that particular font. However, I was unable to download the fonts I wanted and so had to print screen and create a single image of the title on Fireworks. I first came across Urban Fonts whilst in GCSE media and have used it for a variety of projects ever since (not just in my media classes either). Therefore, I am confident in the use of this program.
Using Adobe Fireworks in my research and planning... Fireworks is always a large part of my media projects. I use Fireworks in my research and planning to crop things such as fonts, images, questionnaire results, schedules etc and export them as images I can use on my blog. I find Fireworks easy to use; I used it for my GCSE productions and for my AS project last year so my skills on Fireworks are quite developed. I have, however, developed my skills on Fireworks over the 4/5 years of using the programme and I now feel that I can use it in a confident and professional way.
Using Prezi in my research and planning... I also used an online program called Prezi to plan out my documentary in a storyboard presentation format. I have previously used Prezi before for school work and so I was comfortable in how to use it effectively. However, I still had to learn how to add and edit paths as I needed more slides than what my template had provided me with. Prezi allowed me to make a presentation in a non-traditional 'Microsoft Power Point' way; it has a variety of templates and transitions that make presentations more interesting. I liked using Prezi as it provides a fun and creative way of presenting information.
Technologies used in the creation of my Double Page Spread...
The objectives for the creation of my double page spread... The creation of my double page spread was the first piece of production work I had done since my last media project and so I was pleased to be creatively putting together all of the research and planning I had done to create something I was proud to call my own professional creation.
Using my Nikon Coolpix S3000 in the creation of my double page spread... I used my Nikon Coolpix S3300 to take the pictures that I needed for my double page spread. I wanted to take as many different pictures of different students as possible so I had lots to work with and trial around with the planned layout. This was my own camera and I have been using it for the past three years, so I'm very familiar with how it works. It's easy to use and automatically focuses on the subject being photographed. It also has different 'smart' settings depending on what you want to use it for; for these particular photos I used a setting called 'smart portrait' which is designed to help you take professional looking photos of people (portraits). Most importantly, I learnt more about the 'smart' settings on my camera through this project.
Using Ipiccy in the creation of my double page spread... Ipiccy is another internet based programme which I used a lot during the production of my project. Ipiccy is an online photo editor which is easy and simple to use. I came across a lot of problems with professional programmes such as Photoshop as I had no idea how to use them; I attempted to edit a couple of images on Photoshop but I felt that they looked better when I had edited them on Ipiccy. I also found Photoshop very hard to use as I did not feel I had enough time to learn how to use it; however, I would very much like to learn how to use Photoshop in the near future. Ipiccy has an array of options and effects that you can apply to your photos and the outcome always looks very professional. Usually, I would edit the colour, brightness and contrast of the image to make it look like a better quality of camera had taken it (the type of camera used in the production of real magazines). I had learnt this technique in the creation of my music magazine last year.
Using Fireworks in the creation of my double page spread... Fireworks (as mentioned earlier) is a programme which I have been using for several years. I decided to start off by making draft layouts on Fireworks and went from there. Fireworks is essentially a bitmap and vector graphics editor and it allows you to create and publish images and documents. Through development of different looks for my double page spread I ended up with three possible aesthetics. I find Fireworks useful because it's more advanced than publisher and it gives my work (I feel) a professional overall look. I learn a great deal more about how to use Fireworks in this years creation of my products; I learnt about applying effects to solid colours and images in a lot more detail than I did before. I hope to continue my development of these skills.
Technologies used in the creation of my radio advert...
Objectives for the creation of my radio advert.. Through the production of my radio advert I wanted to gather all of the information I had researched and create something professional and slick. I had never made a radio advert before (where as I had had experience in creating magazine products) and this was something I had to overcome. However, I have had work experience in a radio station and so I know how radio needs to grab the listener’s attention just by sound as radio is not visual.
Using my Ipod Touch in the creation of my radio advert... First, I had to write a script for my radio advert, I did this on blogger and then published it as a blog post. I then had to figure out a way of recording what I'd written. I have no professional recording equipment myself and so I decided to use the next best thing: my 4th Generation Ipod Touch. The Ipod Touch has many applications available and a voice recording application is never difficult to access. I also felt that the recordings made by my Ipod were that of a better quality which I'd made on my HP Pavilion g series laptop (which had a lot of background noise from the laptop) where as the Ipod recordings were clear and had no unnecessary background noise involved. Using my Ipod was easy to use and uploading the sound recordings were equally as simple. However, I feel that if I were in possession of better/professional recording equipment then my radio advert would have an overall more professional sound.
Using Audacity in the creation of my radio advert... Audacity was a programme that I was in fact very familiar with; Dance A level and GCSE required/requires me to cut and edit my own music and sound clips so I knew exactly how to use the programme. It was clear to me that I would piece together and edit my radio advert on Audacity as it was a programme I already had access to and that confidently knew how to use. I learnt a great deal about layering sound clips and layering music together (I had never done that before) to create one sound for my radio advert. I found Audacity simple to use and I feel that it helped me finish off my radio advert in a professional way.
Using YouTube and Itunes in the creation of my radio advert... Youtube was again another technology I used. I used Youtube to gain access to tracks that could accompany my sound clips in the background of my radio advert. It was easy to search for instrumental versions of tracks that I wanted to use (as I did not want to have lyrics to distract my listeners away from the content of the advert) and easy to find that said version on Itunes to purchase it legally. I learnt that it is easy to find any kind of music you want on both Youtube and Itunes.
Technologies used in the creation of my documentary...
Objectives for the creation of my documentary... Through the production of my documentary, I wanted to take all of the research I had done on forms and conventions and the observation of other products to make an individual and exciting product.
Using my Nikon Coolpix S3000 in the creation of my documentary... I first had to gather some footage to edit, so naturally I used my own camera (as mentioned before) my Nikon Coolpix S3000. Although I am familiar with using the photography side of this camera I was not as familiar with filming; however this was not a problem as one of the 'smart' settings is in fact for filming. I am now confident in using my own camera for filming and I even used it in three out of four of my evaluation questions.
Using Movie Maker and Vimeo in the creation of my documentary... After gathering some footage I decided that the most experience I'd had on a video editing programme was Vimeo and Movie Maker. I started off by trying to piece together my footage on Vimeo, however I had had limited experience on that programme and so I decided to trial Movie Maker. I found Movie Maker a lot easier to use. But that doesn't mean I haven't learnt anything. It's been a couple of years since I've had to use Movie Maker, and although most updated versions are similar to their predecessor, I had to learn how to use the program again. I have found that now I can confidently edit video clips, sound, music and pictures together. Splitting videos and sound/music was something I wasn't too familiar with in the beginning of this process, but now my finished product (I feel) is professionally edited together. What I like about Movie Maker is that it allows me to easily create a piece of film that is both simple and professional looking.
Using YouTube and Itunes in the creation of my documentary... I have previously gone into detail about the use of Youtube and Itunes, but this paragraph is just to serve as a recognition that I used these programs in the creation of my documentary. I was able to search for the desired track on Youtube (as before in the creation of my radio advert) and then purchase it legally on Itunes.
Technologies used in the creation of my evaluation...
Objectives for the creation of my evaluation... In the creation of my evaluation I knew I had to be creative; so I decided that using a mix of visual and audio formats would be the best way to present my answers. I also wanted to be as informative as possible.
Using Movie Maker in the creation of my evaluation... For question one I decided to make a vlog addressing all the ways my media product used, challenged and developed forms and conventions of real media products. I made this vlog on Movie Maker which (as mentioned previously) I have used before. Additionally, I have had all the experience of making my actual documentary so I now have all the skills I need to make a sharp and professionally edited video log. Movie Maker is easy for me to use now, however, there is one problem that I have with Movie Maker where if I edit the length of one video clip then all of the sound or music clips will be pushed along and not remain with the original video clip that they are put with. I also know that by using a more professional program such as Adobe Premiere Pro then I would not have as much trouble with this editing element. However, I have had no experience with Premiere Pro before and had not been taught how to use it either. I personally didn't think I had enough time to self teach although I would like to to learn how to use the program in the future. I also used the speed changer tool in Movie Maker which I had only used a couple of times before (once in the title sequence of my documentary) and so I had to experiment with different effects to see what would create the aesthetic I desired. I enjoyed using the speed changer tool as it can create a humourous or impactful moment in the footage. I did not have any problems with this tool and through this process I learnt how make a more professional looking vlog.
YouTubeinMP4.com in the creation of my evaluation... As well as the use of my own videos that I filmed using my Nikon Coolpix S3300, I also ripped videos from Youtube to use in my vlog such as the clip from Psycho, Titanic and a short montage of Zoella clips. I ripped these from YouTube by using the website YouTube in MP4 which converts YouTube videos into MP4 video files which I was able to then put in my vlog. I had never used this website before and so this was a learning curve which I had to overcome; however I was not difficult to learn how to use and I am now fully confident in practising the use of YouTube in MP4.
Using print screens and narration in the creation of my evaluation... I also used print screens for all of Zoe Sugg’s different internet sites and social networking sites to show the size of her fandom and success; I did this by print screening the pages I wanted, pasting it onto a word document and saving each print screen as an image. I then placed the image into Movie Maker and layered it with narration. Using print screens is something I’m very familiar with as it’s a basic computer skill that I learnt in my ICT lessons at the start of high school. It is useful because the audience can see exactly what I’m narrating about. That brings me onto narration; I used the narration tool on Movie Maker during the production of my documentary but even more so in the production of my evaluation. The narration tool was new to me and I had to learn how to fit it to the footage being shown exactly and how to split and cut out sections that I didn’t want. I had no problems using either of these technologies.
Using Slideshare in the creation of my evaluation. I was completely new to the use of Slideshare before the decision to answer my last evaluation question using a PowerPoint as all of the rest of my questions were made in a video format. I knew about SlideShare because some of my peers had used it in previous years of media projects. It’s an easy way of sharing PowerPoints. I found that using this program was simple and effective, with minimal effort required. I was able to write this PowerPoint on my Google Drive and then upload it to my laptop, I then uploaded it onto SlideShare and then embedded it onto a blog post to put onto my blog.
To conclude... I have used a variety of technologies during the creation of my media product, through research and planning, the creation of my main products and the creation of my evaluation questions. I have learnt a great deal about the technologies I have used through this project; it is amazing to think of how many technologies are available to anyone and everyone and it's incredible to think of the small amount of technologies that we as individuals actually use on a day to day basis. We, as society, really do take technologies for granted.
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