Final Project: Graffiti

Hip- hop has been around for nearly four decades (“PBS”). It rose from the youth party scene of the South Bronx and turned to a billion dollar global sensation that combines politics, style, and technology. Hip-Hop is more than music; it is a youth movement, a culture, and a way of life. Hip-Hop is the culture and rap is a form of music that comes out of the Hip-Hop culture (Pough 3). Thinking about hip-hop as a culture, allows one to understand the key elements of hip-hop including breakdancing, the MC, the Deejay, and graffiti, which is the visual element. Also, the musical element of hip-hop is not just limited to rap music. There is rock/rap and hip-hop soul. There is also hip-hop literature and poetry. Hip-hop culture has also expanded to mainstream pop culture. Now hip-hop beats and rapping can be heard in various commercials on television.

The South Bronx has been named “the home of the hip-hop culture” (Rose 200). In the 1970s, a renewal project involved a great deal of black and Hispanic people from all different areas of New York to move to the South Bronx. Between the 1930s and 1940s, Robert Moses, a powerful city planner carried out various public work projects, including highways, parks, and housing projects that changed the way New York was shaped (Rose 200). In 1959, city, state, and federal authorities began to put into action his plan called the Cross-Bronx Expressway. The Expressway was created to link New Jersey and Long Island communities. He decided to carry out a plan that involved destroying hundreds of homes and commercial buildings. Also throughout the 1960s and 1970s, 60,000 homes were demolished (Rose 201). Robert Moses called these areas “slums”. His Title I Slum Clearance Program forced 170,000 people to move to different locations. These areas he called “slums” were populated with working and lower-middle class Jews, but also included Italians, Germans, Irish and black neighborhoods. Although the neighborhoods that were being demolished had a high number of Jewish populations, the black and Hispanic population was extremely affected. In the late 1960s and mid 1970s, the lack of residents in the South Bronx area was mortifying. Landlords began to sell their properties quickly to slumlords, which caused white tenants to move to northern sections of the Bronx and Westchester (Rose 201). Shop and business owners were afraid and sold their shops and moved to another location. City administration believed that Moses’ plan was a complete success and ignored the tragedies that occurred in these areas. The black and Hispanic residents that moved to the South Bronx were left with few resources and broken leadership. The media did not notice the effects of these devastating policies until 1977, when a power outage blacked out New York, and several stores were vandalized and robbed. The South Bronx was now a symbol of ruin and isolation. There was no life and energy in the images of black and Hispanic neighborhoods. In spite of these images of devastation and no energy, the youth of the South Bronx were finding ways to remain hopeful and build a creative place for them to be expressive and find identity. These ethnic groups made the South Bronx their home, but faced social isolation and a loss of social service organizations. Instead, they created their own networks. Jamaicans, Puerto Ricans, Northern American blacks, and other Caribbean people reshaped their community. Although city leaders and the media had shut out the South Bronx and its residents, the youth had their own message and decided to speak out.

After the destruction of their community, the youth of the South Bronx created a new identity and social status, and thus the hip-hop culture emerged. This new identity included fashion, language, street names, and creating neighborhood crews. Hip-hop’s identity is rooted in the identity of status of a local group. The postindustrial city provided the framework for the creative development of the hip-hop’s early inventors, by shaping their access to space, materials, and education (Rose 208). One of hip-hop’s key elements and technologies, I will analyze is graffiti. The advances in spray paint technology heavily supported graffiti artists’ work, and they used the subway system as their canvas. Graffiti is known as a social movement that first emerged in New York in the late 1960’s, but it wasn’t until ten years later that it began to establish complex styles and recognition (Rose 209). In addition to this it was not until the 1980s that graffiti was showcased in art galleries. Young people were key players in the graffiti movement. One of graffiti’s first modern artist’s was named Cornbread. He was a high school student from Philadelphia who would tag walls to try to get the attention of a girl (“The History of American Graffiti”). Even though the majority of graffiti artists were black and Hispanic, one of the artists responsible for inspiring the movement, Taki 183 was a young Greek boy named Demetrius, from Manhattan (Rose 210). He was working as a messenger and would write his name on the subway cars and stations. A New York Times writer published a story about the movement, and when Demetrius’ peers saw this they were inspired and developed a sense of pride in their work. They realized that their work could potentially reach and be recognized beyond their own block.

Furthermore, in the mid-1970s, the advancement and focus of graffiti had expanded. Now it did not just involve tagging, or writing the artists’ name on a wall, but included skillful techniques, styles, and formats. The purpose of these new techniques and styles were to gain individual identity and status, but to also gain more exposure. The new themes included hip- hop slang, rap lyrics, and hip- hop fashion. The artists also used various logos and images from television, comic books, and cartoons. The use of more colors and patterns were also growing. These developments in style, technique, and themes were possible through the advances in marker and spray paint technology. The advances included better spray nozzles, marking fibers, paint adhesion, and texture enhanced the range of expression in graffiti writing. Creating a piece takes an extensive amount of time, work, and risk. The artists drew out designs and patterns, an0331_WildStyled tried new spray-paints and colors before creating a piece. Gaining access to a subway car for long hours involved knowing the train schedule, and breaking into the areas where out of service trains were located. Graffiti artists walked along the board that covers the electrified rail, climbed walls, and went through holes in fences. Train murals are an important element for graffiti style. First, graffiti murals depend on the size and color for visual impact. Subway trains are so important to graffiti because the trains pass through diverse neighborhoods, which allowed communication between black and Hispanic communities throughout the five boroughs and the greater New York area (Rose 211). Second, there was a negative reputation for graffiti artists, and it was even considered criminal to buy spray paint, permanent markers, and the other supplies needed to create a piece.

In Marshall McLuhan’s, The Medium is the Message; he gives us his definition of medium. McLuhan defines a medium as any extension of some human faculty physical or psychic (26). He explains that a book is an extension of the eye, and the wheel extends our legs and feet. These mediums enable us to do more than our bodies ever could on their own. Graffiti is a great example of this definition McLuhan gives us. For example, Cornbread used graffiti and specifically spray paint to convey or get a message across to a certain girl by tagging city walls. So he used graffiti as an extension of his voice, giving him the ability to speak or be recognized by a girl, which he may not have had the courage to do on his own. Graffiti was also an extension for the youth of the South Bronx to allow communication throughout the five boroughs and the greater New York area, because their pieces were created upon several subway trains that passed throughout theses areas. This technology gave them a voice in and throughout their communities since they did not have many resources due to the destruction of their community. Graffiti also was a message itself to the city authority and administration. The youth used graffiti again as a voice to let the city administration know that they are here, and that their community is important. It was also a way to respond to the violence and crimes taking place in their community, but to also visually reflect what was going on it.

Today, many people may not think that graffiti is still around or important, but that is not the case at all. Recent research done by Joe Austin indicates that graffiti artists continue to create pieces. Joe Austin explains these artists create murals, videotape and photograph them, and share the videos and photos through graffiti fan magazines all over the world (Rose 213). Additionally, communities in New York such as Harlem, Brooklyn, and the Bronx continue to use many graffiti artists to create logos. We also see graffiti art in music video sets, different rap artists clothing, and tee shirts. Most recently we have seen graffiti used in the 2008 Presidential campaign. Los Angeles based street artist Shepard Fairey created the iconic image of President Obama, which was seen on stickers, posters, and tee shirts. This piece became “a pop culture phenomenon and an important symbol in the political landscape of 2008 and beyond” (Arnon).

Out of the relocation of new places, and the destroying of their community, the youth of the South Bronx created their own identity and because of this we have the birth of the hip-hop culture. Out of the hip-hop culture emerged the technology and one of hip-hop’s key elements, graffiti. Although many viewed graffiti as a juvenile delinquent act, it had a message behind the pieces and murals that were created. Graffiti was a way for the youth of the South Bronx to communicate, to show their creativity and talents in such a hopeless community. This community was isolated and abandoned by the city. This community had no resources, no power and no voice, but they used this specific technology to be their voice to tell their stories and what was going on in their communities.

1) Arnon, Ben. “How the Obama “Hope” Poster Reached a Tipping Point and Became a Cultural Phenomenon: An Interview With the Artist Shepard Fairey.” The Huffington Post., n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2015.

2) McLuhan, Marshall. “The Medium is the Massage”

 3) PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2015.

4) Pough, Gwendolyn D. Check It While I Wreck It: Black Womanhood, Hip-hop Culture, and the Public Sphere. Boston: Northeastern UP, 2004. Print.

5)  Rose, Tricia. “All aboard the Night Train: Flow, Layering, and Rupture in Postindustrial New York.” Signifyin(g), Sanctifyin’ & Slam Dunking: A Reader in African American Expressive Culture. Amherst: U of Massachusetts, 1999. N. pag. Print.

6) ‘The History of American Graffiti:’ From Subway Car to Gallery.” PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2015.

image also from: ‘The History of American Graffiti:’ From Subway Car to Gallery.” PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2015.

Class Archive

When I first decided to take this class, I had no idea what to expect. Looking at the description of the course I knew we would be talking about science and technology, but I thought we would only discuss topics such as cell phones, computers, and social media sites. But that was not the case at all. It was interesting to see that we could pick the topics we wanted to discuss for our class, such as online dating, race, and the technology of our food.

Looking and reflecting back on the different blog posts we have done throughout this semester, I am happy to know that we have created our own archive to look back on. With each blog post that has been written you can see the passion each student has for each of his or her topics. It was also amazing to see the different topics that each student chose. I also enjoyed reading and learning something new from each blog post.

One of the blog post topic’s that was interesting to me was the blog about neuroprosthetics. When I think of prosthetics, I would always think about someone with a wooden leg. But it seems like the research and advancement of this technology is expanding. This technology can definitely help those who are in need of it, and can give them the ability to do things they never thought they would be able to do. There is a performance artist named Viktoria Modesta, who is an amputee and has a prosthetic leg. She is also a model and DJ. In her music video Protype, she has a scene where she is dancing on a spike prosthetic. Through this music video, she wants to change people’s perspective on what it is to live with a disability. One thing I found interesting about the testing out of neuroprosthetics is that they are still testing out how ways to sense weight and temperature. When I go to grab something, I never really think about how much it weighs; it just comes naturally to me. Another thing I found interesting in this blog was that the science community maybe onto finding a potential way of communicating by sending someone’s thought signal through neurons. It’s amazing and but a kind of scary advancement to think about.

Another topic on the blog that caught my eye was the one about bees. I did not know that the population of bees was declining. For me personally, I do not like bees and did not really see the significance of them besides making honey until reading this post. It was interesting to see that bees are a very important aspect to us because they help pollinate many of our plants to give us fruits and vegetables.

One thing I liked about the class is that we are able to choose a technology that was are interesting. I also noticed that our class does not just choose topics that are commonly known with technology, such as the Internet. Many of the topics really make you think and expand your view on the topic of technology. I would have never thought about bees or Egyptian mummification as a medium of technology.

Personal Research Reflection

For my final project, I am researching about the history of hip-hop, the evolution of the different technologies used throughout the history, and the message it sends out to the world. Growing up my mom would listen to various hip-hop artists from her time period, and my father being from Jamaica would listen to a lot of reggae music. So hip-hop has been apart of my life for a long time. A reason why I have chosen to research hip-hop has to do with one of the classes I am taking this semester at Ohio State. I needed to take this class to fulfill a GEC for visual and performing arts, not knowing that it was about hip-hop and feminism. From this class, I have learned so much about the history of hip-hop, including the origin of hip-hop, the different elements of hip-hop, and the influences of hip-hop. It has also been interesting to learn about the different artists that have contributed and made hip-hop what it is today. It has opened my eyes to the messages and images it sometimes portrays, such as violent lyrics, and degrading women, but hip-hop is also a story telling genre. Growing up, I believed hip-hop to be a male dominant genre, but through this class I have learned that the female hip-hop artists have made a huge contribution as well.


As I mentioned before, my father is Jamaican. So growing up in a multi-cultural home, I was exposed to all different types of music. I remember listening to reggae legends, Bob Marley, Desmond Dekker, Peter Tosh, and Buju Banton. My mom is from Cleveland, Ohio so she listened to a lot of Slick Rick, Dana Dane, Whodini, Doug E. Fresh, and many more artists from the 1970s and 1980s. As I grew up and developed my own taste in music, I always had an interest in hip-hop music and the history of it. I was so surprised and excited to learn that my class was going to cover the history of hip-hop. Another interesting part of the class is we learned that reggae had a huge impact and influence of hip-hop. This was a very interesting topic for me to learn about with my background of being half-Jamaican. I learned that through hip-hop music and dancehall music, the people of inner city America and Jamaica were able to be heard and tell their stories. Hip-hop and dancehall lyrics are often about the violence and struggles that the artists have gone through or seen in their communities. The dancing of dancehall music also influenced one of the elements of hip-hop, breakdancing. Both are competitive type of dance styles. Break-dancers battled each other by locking and popping using their arms, legs, and torso in robotic movements. In dancehall, however, the flexibility of your body is key in competition. In early hip-hop, street parties also used and were influenced by the technology being used in Jamaica such as amplifiers, turntables, and mixers. When hip-hop was first created, no one thought that it would last but hip-hop has been around for more than forty years now. Learning about the history of hip-hop has given me a new appreciation for the music. With new artists and technologies emerging, I believe hip-hop will continue to expand.

Hip Hop Technology Key Terms

A few key analytic terms in the hip-hop culture, that I will be using in my paper and need clarification are turntablism, the three categories of women in hip-hop, Queen Mother, Fly Girl, and Sista with Attitude.

1.The first term I will define is turntablism. The turntable has been used a musical instrument since the 1940s and 1950s. The DJ’s of that time created a new sound, a certain skill, and culture. The DJ’s began to experiment by sampling, and creating new music using the turntables. But it wasn’t until the 1990s, that the term “turntablism” was created. The role of the DJ was primarily to play music on the turntable and mix the track after the next track. The DJ’s were becoming more skilled, and they were now being called “turntablists”. These turntablists were artists that moved the records and played on the turntable to create new sounds. Along with being the forefathers of hip-hop, DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, and Afrika Bambaataa are also the forefathers of turntablism. These three men practiced and mastered the turntables. They established an art of hand eye coordination, and the skill to find certain points in a song by dropping the needle on a record. DJ Kool Herc is known for creating the break beat technique. This technique involves extending the break, the climax of the song. The method he uses is playing two copies of the same record on the turntable, the mixer then switches between them, and it creates a rhythmic beat by looping the breaks (“Feature”). This technique blew the audience away because it was something never done before. The break was often the audience’s favorite part of the song. Afrika Bambaataa was inspired by DJ Kool Herc and brought the break beat technique to street parties.

2. The next terms, I will define are three categories of women in hip-hip: Queen Mother, Fly Girl, and a Sista with Attitude.

The first term is Queen Mother this woman is an African- centered icon. She calls herself a “Nubian queen” or an “intelligent black women” in her lyrics. Female artists in this category usually wear royal or Kente cloth strips, braided styles, and gold jewelry. Their lyrics emphasize female empowerment, and identify themselves as an African queen and warrior. Examples of these female artists would be Queen Latifah and Yo-Yo. (Keyes)

The second term is Fly Girl. This artist is known for her chic clothing, hairstyles, jewelry, and make up. The female hip-hop group “Salt-N-Pepa” is the well-known fly girls of the 1980s. Salt-N-Pepa was known for their ripped jeans, glitter earrings, asymmetric hairstyles, and tight-fitting outfits. Although, they were known for their style, Salt-N-Pepa wanted the world to focus more on their rapping skills. (Keyes)

  1. The last term I will define is Sista with Attitude. A Sista with Attitude is known as being aggressive, arrogant, and defiant. But these women valued attitude as a means of women empowerment. Female artists known for this category are Lauryn Hill, MC Lyte, and Roxanne Shante. Through their lyrics and rapping skills, these women earned respect among their peers, and refused to be second best. (Keyes)


Keyes, Cheryl. “Empowering Self, Making Choices, Creating Spaces: Black Female Identity via Rap Music Performance.” That’s the Joint! 2nd ed. Eds. Murray Forman & Mark Anthony Neal.  New York: Routledge, 2012. 400-409. Print.

“Feature The Art Of Turntablism.” PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 8 Apr. 2015.


Hip Hop and Technology: From Turntables to Computers

Introduction: Hip Hop and Technology. What forms of technology are used in hip-hop music? How have these technologies evolved? Is there a need for DJ’s since most of them now use computers, and do not use turntables or records anymore?

  1. History of Hip Hop:

What did music sound like before hip-hop?

Race music: Billie Holiday “Strange Fruit”

1960 events: free love, Civil Rights, Vietnam, drug culture, Baby Boomers

Where did hip-hop originate?

-The Bronx

1970s: Hip Hop begins to spread beyond the Bronx, but disco still dominates the radio and club scene

Was hip-hop limited to one area?

The Dirty South



The East coast


LL Cool J

Public Enemy

The West coast

Ice T


Tupac Shakur

How did other countries influence hip -hop, such as Jamaica, Latin America, and Africa?

Who are the founding fathers of hip-hop?

DJ Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash

What are the four main elements of hip-hop, such as the MC, the Deejay, break dancing (expressing the way the music sounds), and graffiti (the visual element)?

  1. Masculine Expressivity in Hip Hop:

How are men portrayed in hip-hop? “The Thug/Gangsta” and “The Player”

Acting tough, taking up space, talking about how bad you are, talking about your possessions

Respect, social identity, and street code

The authenticity aspect of the artists (did you actually live what you are rapping about)

The sincerity of the artists (the topic is not fiction, but fiction for the artists)

What affect does this have on young men and society?

Stereotypes of African-American men

  1. Women in Hip Hop:

How are women portrayed in hip-hop?

The Categories of Women in Hip Hop

  1. Queen Mother example Queen Latifah
  2. Fly Girl example Salt N Pepa
  3. Sista with Attitude example Lauryn Hill

Do women have a place in hip-hop?

Who are influential female rappers?

  1. The Art of Turntablism

The turntables have been around since the 1940s and 1950s

The term ‘turntablism’ was created in the 1990s

DJ’s began to scratch the records back and forth on the turntable creating a scratching noise

The role and evolution of the Disk Jockey or DJ (play records on the turntable, mixing in one track after the other)

  1. The Evolution of Technology of Hip Hop

Hip-hop music mainly consisted of recordings of block parties, but DJ Disco Wiz was the first hip-hop DJ to create a “mixed plate”

-The drumbeat is the backbone of hip-hop music

– With the use of electronic technology it evolves

– The use of layering sounds and beats

-The sound of hip-hop is distinct from other music genres

The technology that are known for producing hip-hop’s distinct sound:

-The turntable

-The synthesizer used for melody and basslines

-The drum machine offered a variety of drum sounds, and creating the bass sound in hip- hop

-The sampler (using an element of someone else’s song and making it in the artists own)

Recording in the studio (using a condenser microphone or dynamic microphone)

Cassette tapes, CDs, and Digital music (iTunes, Sound Cloud, Spotify, YouTube, and Pandora)



Electronic Aspirin

Are migraines ruining your life? Many Americans suffer from migraines and chronic headaches. For many of these Americans taking two aspirin tablets are of no use, or only provide temporary relief. Migraines are painful headaches that can be associated with vomiting, nausea, and sensitivity to light. There are no exact known causes of migraines, but it is known that they are linked to changes in the brain, and also genetic causes. Migraines can also be hereditary. Four of out five people who suffer from migraines have a family history of them. There are many external factors that can set off a migraine such as emotional stress, excessive fatigue, and sensitivity to some chemicals and preservatives in foods, like MSG or food additives such as nitrates.

A cluster headache is a type of headache that can come back over a period of time. People with cluster headaches can experience multiple episodes throughout the day. Cluster headache sufferers can get the headaches at the same time each year, for example around spring or fall. Because these headaches often occur during the spring or fall, they can be mistaken for allergies or stress. People who drink and smoke excessively are commonly known to suffer from cluster headaches. Cluster headaches can last anywhere from fifteen minutes to three hours. Cluster headaches can even awaken the person from sleep many times during the night. These types of headaches can also be more intense then migraines, but do not last as long as migraines. The headaches can disappear for years, and then all of a sudden reappear without any type of warning.

A new remedy for migraines, cluster headaches, chronic headaches, and facial pain is electronic aspirin. Doctors and researchers have associated chronic headaches with the sphenopalatine ganglion, which is a facial nerve bundle. They have not come up with a remedy that has long-term effects. The sphenopalatine ganglion is located behind the bony structures of the nose. These nerves supply the lacrimal glands, which produces tears and also the inner lining of the nose and sinuses.

Electronic Aspirin is under clinical investigation at California based company, Autonomic Technologies, Inc. It is a technology that is a patient-powered tool for blocking sphenopalatine ganglion signals, when a patient feels the first signs of a headache. Electronic aspirin works by permanently implanting a small nerve- stimulating device in the upper gum on the side of the head. The lead tip of the implant is connected with the sphenopalatine bundle. When a patient feels like a headache is about to occur, they can place a handheld remote controller on the cheek near the implant. The signals stimulate the SPG nerve and block the causing neurotransmitters.

Electronic aspirin has shown effectiveness and proved to treat migraines and cluster headaches in Europe. Autonomic Technologies is now waiting for the FDA to give them the okay to start testing in the U.S. The tests in Europe were the largest randomized, controlled neurostimulation studies performed. The end of the study’s results showed an improvement in 68 percent of patients.


Social Media: Like, Follow, Pin, and Share

In 1971, the first email was delivered. 40 years later, social media has taken over our world. Medical News Today defines social media as an array of Internet sites that enable people from all over the world to interact (Whiteman). This connection can be through photos, video, and audio. Social media has changed the way our society communicates and has become such an essential part of our lives. Social media can help us stay connected with friends and family. It can help us get involved with different businesses, organizations, and charities. Social media can also help promote our creativity through sharing music, ideas, and art. It can also help people to meet and interact with others who share the same interests as you. The connections we make through social media can cause you to feel like you are part of a community, but these connections can have negative effects as well.

According to Steven Strogatz of Cornell University, he believes social media sites can make it difficult for us to differentiate from real-life relationships and the relationships and connections that we make through social media (Jung). If we focus too much on the relationships that we make online, our real life relationships will not be as strong. Our real life relationships are the ones that matter the most. Another negative aspect of social media is a new form of bullying, cyber bullying. defines cyber bullying as bullying that takes place using electric technology. This electric technology can include cell phones, computers, and social media. The bullies anonymously torment their victims or can even pose as a person that the victim trusts. Cyber bullying is also 24/7 and can take place anytime of the day or night. These online attacks can have negative, impactful effects on the victims. Many victims have also turned to suicide. Social media can also be a distraction and even cause us to not be as productive as we need to be. In chapter 13 of Sherry Turkle’s Alone Together, a young girl stated that a particular social media has taken over her life. She could not log off. She finds herself looking at random things, and then realizes it was a waste of time. Another girl commented that she is afraid that she will miss out on something important (Turkle, 242).

In Alone Together Turkle states that, “Anxiety is a part of the new connectivity” (Turkle, 242). Social media can have effects on our emotions as well. A survey on social media use was conducted in 2012 by Anxiety UK and they found that 53% of participants said social media sites had changed their behavior, while 51% of these said the change had been negative (Whiteman). The participants also said they felt less confident because they compared themselves to their friends. The survey also found that two thirds of the participants had trouble relaxing and sleeping after they used the social media sites (Whiteman). Another negative aspect of social media is the feeling of validation and recognition. We can get so caught up in how many likes we get on a comment or a picture, and if we do not get the amount of likes we were expecting we get sad, or even feel like we are not good enough.

Have you ever been searching the web and you find something you don’t want to forget? Think about the different ways you save it; either by emailing it to yourself, printing it out and putting it in a binder, or saving it to your bookmarks. Well Pinterest is a great way for you to bring together all of the things you find online, whether it’s a great recipe, clothes, or a great book to read on vacation.

Ben Silbermann, Evan Sharp, and Paul Sciarra founded Pinterest. They released a prototype of Pinterest in March 2010 and shared it among family members and friends (“Press”). Pinterest became a hit and grew rapidly. Pinterest is like a virtual bulletin board; it’s just like if you were adding different items you found on an actual bulletin, but Pinterest is a website that allows you to pin things you find online on your own account so that you can easily go back to them whenever you need to. The first thing you need to do is create a Pinterest account you can sign up by email, Facebook, or Twitter. Linking your account with Facebook or Twitter will allow you to be able to connect with your family and friends. After creating an account, you should install the “Pin It” button to your browser toolbar. This button allows you to pin things while you are online. For instance, if you come across an article about a DIY project, you can click the “Pin It” button and the article will then be saved to that specific board.

Just like Facebook and Twitter, Pinterest has some important terms to understand. The first term is “pin”. A pin is an image added to Pinterest. This image can be uploaded by the user, or a website. Each pin you see links back to the site it came from so you can learn how to make a specific recipe, or where to buy a certain product. The next term is “board”. A board is where all your pins are located, and you can have separate boards for different topics. And the last term is “repin”. A repin is once something is repined on Pinterest, it can then be shared or repined by other Pinterest users.

One of the greatest things about Pinterest is that you have the ability to pin whatever your interests are. Everyone uses Pinterest for all different sorts of things. You can save recipes that you want to reference to make for dinner later. You can plan your whole wedding on Pinterest as well. You can find different ideas as far as types of flowers you want to us, even down to the style of cake you would like to have. Others use Pinterest to find ideas for outfits. You can find and create a whole new wardrobe for the upcoming spring season. Pinterest is also different from other social media in regards to having a specific topic for each board. This is a great solution to having one social media but so many interests. For instance, many people have two Twitter accounts, one for their business and then one for pleasure. With Pinterest you can have boards that are unrelated to one another and it does not have to clutter your followers stream.Pinterest can also be a great tool for businesses. Different businesses can use Pinterest to market their products and grow their consumer base. Since Pinterest is a visual medium, businesses can capture their consumer with fascinating images that they can use to promote the product or specific deals.

Just with every social media, I believe Pinterest has its positive and negatives. Pinterest can be a great medium to find ideas, recipes, and allow one to have a collection of important interests that you can reference back to later. I believe a negative aspect of Pinterest is that is very addicting, and time consuming. I can say that I am just going to go on there for 15 minutes but then find myself being on there for an hour, and not even realize where my time went. Since Pinterest engages our senses by being mostly visual, I often find myself looking at the images and comparing my life or circumstances with what I see. For instance, I have a board called ‘My Future Home”, it’s a collection of all the things I want my future house to be. And just like Turkle explains in the introduction of Alone Together, with technology and social media we can create a second life. It’s a place where we can have the perfect life. So it’s like you are trying to create the perfect future life. Also the feeling and emotion of always wanted more material things could occur while being on Pinterest. When I pin clothes and shoes, I just feel like I have to buy those items instead of realizing that I need to be content with the things that I have.

In conclusion, social media has become such an instrumental and impactful aspect of our lives. It has transformed the way we communicate with one another. Although social media has many positive effects on society such as helping us stay connected with family and friends, there can also be many negative effects, such as cyber bullying and anxiety. And with technology growing and new ideas coming about every day, I believe that social media will be here for the long run. I also believe that we have the choice to choose whether or not we will let social media take over our lives and pull us away from our face-to-face interactions. I think it is important to limit the amount of time we spend on social media, put down our phones and pay attention to the people that are in front of us because these are the relationships that matter the most and who we are going to make lasting memories with.

Works Cited

 Jung, Brian. “The Negative Effect of Social Media on Society and Individuals.” Small Business. N.p., n.d. Web. 1 Mar. 2015.

“Press.” About Pinterest. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Mar. 2015.

Turkle, Sherry. Alone Together. New York. Basic Books. 2011. Web. 2 Mar. 2015.

“What Is Cyber bullying.” What Is Cyber bullying? N.p., n.d. Web. 1 Mar. 2015.

Whiteman, Honor. “Social Media: how does it really affect our mental health and well-being?” Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 16. Apr. 2014. Web. 1 Mar. 2015.

Hiding Behind the Screen

080747_Cyber_BullyingBullies have been around for as long as we can remember. But now with technology, bullies now have a new way to target and attack their victims. In Alone Together one girl, Marcia explained, “that it’s easy for her to be mean to people online because she does not have to see their face, and see their reaction. She also explained it’s easier because she is talking to a computer screen, so she does not have to see how she is hurting them.” [3] We all know the term “sticks and stones, may break my bones, but words can never hurt me”, but cyber bullying can have some major effects emotionally on the victims.

Cyber bullying mostly goes on between young people. Cyber bullying is defined as bullying that takes places with the use of electronic technology. The technology can range from phones, computers, online chats, and even though social media gives us a way to connect with our family and friends cyber bullying can occur here as well. The bullies can spread rumors on social media, or can send mean texts or emails. Some bullies will even create a fake account to spread rumors about their victim and harass them. Cyber bulling can take place 24 hours a day in contrast to the bullying that happens at school. The victims can have anxiety, depression, and other stress-related disorders. Some victims have even turned to suicide. [1]

A friend of mine told me a story of a girl she knew that was cyber bullied on a social media site called Tumblr. Other Tumblr users bullied her and she did not even know them. They constantly told her that no one cared about her, she wasn’t important, and she should just kill herself. My friend also told me that the girl posted a video of herself explaining that she tried to commit suicide by over dosing on pills, but her friends found her in time to take her to the hospital. [2]

Turkle explains that technology can cause anxiety and I agree with her, and I believe with cyber bullying it can cause even more anxiety. Teens are constantly checking their phones, they feel like if they don’t they are missing out on information, or missing something important. Teens who are cyber bullied experience checking their phones even more. They constantly are checking to see if the bully posted a new rumor about them, or to see the if other people have added comments to what the bully has said. In Alone Together, the teens explained that, “Facebook has taken over their life. And she is unable to log off.” [3] The victim of cyber bullying could also be getting notifications to their phone about the comments that are being said about them.

People who cyber bully are usually the popular kids or the teens that are trying to fit into a certain social group. The bully wants to look and stay popular, bullying gives them power, or they have low-self esteem so putting others down makes them feel better about themselves. Cyber bullying allows them to hide behind the screen, or they can even bully anonymously. I agree with Turkle’s argument that technology can pull us apart, and I believe using different technology to cyber bully is another example of her argument.



2. Interview with Brenea Gordon on 2/16/15

3. Sherry Turkle. Alone Together

4. Photo from

The Wheel As An Extension of Our Foot

The word car is considered to be derived from the Latin word carrus meaning wheeled vehicle. The word car can be defined as a wheeled vehicle that carries its own motor and transports passengers. [1] Inventing cars was not an overnight process; it took many years to be invented. The invention of the car also did not just happen in one location it spread worldwide, in places such as China, Germany, and France.

A French engineer, Nicolas Cugnot in 1769, created the first model of an automobile. He created a steam-powered vehicle. Then in 1835, Thomas Davenport created an electric car. Shortly after in 1886, Karl Benz created a three wheeled, two-seated automobile that was gas-fueled. By the 1900s gas-fueled cars stared to outsell all other types of vehicles. Henry Ford took the production of cars even further by improving the assembly line and installing a conveyer belt in his factories in 1913. This reduced production costs for cars and assembly time. With this improvement, Ford became the largest car manufacturer. [1]

Cars have evolved so much since then. Just thinking about the features and abilities of the cars back then, I picture a vehicle with four wheels, that runs on a road and can carry two passengers. Cars now can carry up to eight people and come with the features of air conditioning, navigation systems, in car technologies such as Bluetooth and smartphone connectivity, and even the ability to just push a button to start your car up. Back then people traveled from one place to the next by walking or riding a horse, but with cars people were now able to travel distances much quicker. Cars give us the benefit of independence. We can easily get to one place to the other. They have also given us the ability to travel to different places and visit our families and friends, which keeps us connected to them.

After reading the Medium is the Massage, I perceived the meaning to be the medium is the message itself, or it could also mean that the way a message is transmitted affects how the message is received. So for example, television is visual so viewers will be affected by the images they see. I also liked how Marshall McLuhan defined a medium as an extension of the human senses or ourselves. In the book, he said the wheel is an extension of the foot, and the book is an extension of the eye.[2] Also the phone would be an extension of our voice. Each of these mediums enables us to do more than our bodies could ever do on our own. I never thought of technology as being an extension of a human sense. So the wheels of cars extend our foot and so with cars we are able to travel far distances in a quicker way than with walking. As I stated before, cars enable us to do far more than our own two feet would allow us to ever do.

2. McLuhan, Marshall. “The Medium is the Massage”

Artificial Politics – Microsoft Hololens

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Technology is all around us. It has become such an integral part of our everyday lives. Technology has grown over the years and has allowed us to accomplish many things. When you think about technology it’s like we are always looking at some sort of screen. But now Microsoft wants to take you beyond the screen. They are trying to connect you even more with technology with their new launch of their Hololens.

Microsoft’s Hololens takes your personal world and the digital world and mixes them together. Microsoft Hololens will bring high definition holograms to your real life world and they will appear on physical places. The way Microsoft explains it is holograms are made of light not physical matter. You can see the holographic images at all different types of angles and distances. The Hololens are also empowered by Windows 10 and will be wireless. Microsoft has not released an exact date on when the product will be available, but there are rumors that the Hololens will be released sometime this year. Microsoft believes that Hololens will change the way we learn and communicate. You can engage the Hololens by moving your head, giving voice commands, or moving your fingers up and down. Microsoft says that the Hololens are different then virtual reality, because with holograms you can see the real and digital world at the same time. Microsoft is also collaborating with many companies to develop apps that are also capable of holograms.

Microsoft is on to something so big and incredible. I agree with Microsoft that this technology can change the way we learn and communicate. For example if you needed help fixing an appliance in your home there is a feature on the Hololens were you can Skype with another person, and that person can point and show you which objects to pick up and where to connect certain pieces to fix the appliance. Also it can aid designers and architects, to bring their ideas to real life and see their design in 3D instead of just on paper. So this technology can be very helpful and beneficial in that aspect.

I believe that Microsoft’s Hololens imply an arraignment that is democratic because depending on the price of the product; everyone may not be able to afford them. It is also your choice on whether or not you want to purchase the Hololens as well. Technology can have a positive and negative impact on our society. Technology has advanced the way we communicate. It has helped so many people in ways that we would never imagine in the past. Such as YouTube, it has helped many singers get discovered just by the artists uploading videos of them performing. But technology can also have negative impacts on society. We can get so wrapped up with technology that we forget what it is like to even have a physical, face-to-face conversation. We get so caught up with our social media world, that we forget we have a world outside of social media. I think the Hololens could also have a negative affect as well. Although it blends the real and digital world together, it could push society to be even more dependent on technology. The Hololens could cause people to only want to see the digital and real world together and not want to take the lens off and only use them to communicate or do their daily activities. They could potentially cause us to become even more dependent on technology.

In the end, technology is advancing everyday and can have a positive and negative impact on our society. It can connect us together or pull us further apart. Technology can change our lives for the better or the worse.



Photo also from: