Module 2: Blogging

From the start of taking DGST 101 I soon noticed how much we would be blogging throughout the course. With the creation of my DGST subdomain for the course I thought I might as well expand my subdomains even further by choosing to do the blogging module. This module was very appealing to me because I’ve always been interested in making a personal blog that was not school affiliated such as a travel blog. One of my goals in making this new subdomain was to do it all on my own without the help of others or the DKC which I accomplished. When creating the travel blog I took little details into consideration like the theme, menus, colors, pictures, etc. I wanted the blog to have a good layout and aesthetic for a travel blog. The theme I chose was Twenty Seventeen because I liked the big image spot as the header and thought it would be good for this type of blog. I wanted to make the title simple but with the point so I just called it “Travels” and included my name under it. I only wrote one blog post on it to create the effect that this will be an on going blog with more posts to come. I hope to travel a lot this summer and have some plans for Europe and the Caribbean that I would love to write about on the blog. Another reason I chose Nassau was because I remembered I had gone to Junkanoo Beach there which was mentioned in the book we read, Midnight Robber. Another feature I liked about this theme was that I could include a gallery next to my posts which I found perfect for a travel blog! So on the side next to my posts there are many little thumbnail pictures of places I’ve been to. I am overall pleased with how my travel blog turned out and am happy that my initial idea for this module worked out the way I hoped it would.  Here is the link to the travel blog I created,

Afrofuturism: Midnight Robber

After reading the book Midnight Robber by Nalo Hopkinson I feel as though I’ve been exposed to a very different type of book. I’ve read different science fiction books in my past but none have touched on controversial topics as this one did. Today, there are many arguments about the future, particularly in regards to the environment and science, along with racial problems in the US. I found this book overall relevant and topical. While reading the book I was surprised to how many words I came across and was not familiar with. Some of which I felt like I had heard of but did not know the meaning and others sounded completely foreign. I found the literature challenge throughout the book appealing and I could tell it was the authors way of challenging the reader to something they’re not used to. Nalo Hopkinson, a Canadian native, knew the audience of her book would be mostly young Americans, and chose to challenge them through new literature. For my retelling of the story I chose to draw a picture. At first I had stated that I was going to make a gif or multiple gifs of important events throughout the book and portray it in a digital art format. I found it difficult to pick only particular parts of the story and did not know how to accurately portray the story through pictures since it was a chapter book. The idea of retelling the story by picture sounded more appealing to me in the end because I realized I could make it my own and show more of the story with a pen and paper. Another plus I found in drawing a picture instead of making an animation was the use of color. In this case I thought of the importance of Carnival in the story and Caribbean culture. So I added the pop of color in the top right corner to show the different colors and patterns that represent Carnival in the Caribbean. In the center of the picture I drew a building in the Half-Way Tree in Jamaica. I found it important to incorporate the Half-Way Tree in the drawing since it was an alternate universe version of Toussaint. I used a planet and sun in the background to represent the different dimensions and portals in the story. On the bottom of the picture is the main character Tan Tan. I used the cover of the book as an inspiration for this part. In the top left corner I drew Eshu or “Papa Legba”. As a trickster god and for being known as sly I created his outfit likewise. Next to him is a symbol that is used to also represent him. The green hills represent Cockpit Country, Jamaica, the home of Tan Tan.

Deep Tech Thought 2: Internet Security

In the New York Times article “The Latest Data Privacy Debacle”, Tufeki talks about a fitness app called Strava. Strarva has a global heat map that shows where users are. The problem with this though is that many military personnel are users of this app which is causing military bases and airstrips to become visible to the public. Many military bases and airstrips are not known to the public for security purposes for the country. It is important to have unknown bases and military locations for enemy countries to not have access to this information and vulnerability. This is a dangerous situation that the US is in right now and should be taken care of quickly by the Strava app administration.

The leaking of social media users data is wrong and is the responsibility of the app or network to keep this information private. When users make an account whether its for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc, they assume that when they put their profile on certain privacy settings it will be private.

“The data analytics firm that worked with Donald Trump’s election team and the winning Brexit campaign harvested millions of Facebook profiles of US voters, in one of the tech giant’s biggest ever data breaches, and used them to build a powerful software program to predict and influence choices at the ballot box.” said Cambridge Analytica Files. If these Facebook profiles of US voters had known that their profiles would be used for a software program it would have been different. Many things technological come down to consent and whether or not you give a company or program consent to use your personal data. Campaign and voting statistics are very important for governmental information and for campaign research but it is important to get consent from the voters for their information.