Monday, 29 April 2013

Week 11

This is the final post for this blog. Though probably not my final blog post period. I'm thinking of starting a blog in the summer that will relate to my podcast. In this post I will be looking at information gathered by both blogger and Google analytics. Some of the information will be factoring in my activity on the Blog.

 First I'll look at some information gathered by Blogger :

  • The total number of page views was 305. 
  • Biggest source of traffic was CIT with 131 page views. 
  • Post with the most page views was 'Week 02' with 13 views.  
  • The majority of views came from Ireland with 201 views. 
  • The most popular browser was Firefox with 126 views. 
  • The most poplar Operating System was windows with 279 views.
  • There was no information relating to search keywords.
The information is as I expected. I'm assuming there was no information realting to search terms because nobody found my blog through a search engine.

Now I will look at some information gathered by Google Analytics:

  • The bounce rate on my blog was 77.33%
  • New visitors was 73% .
  • Returning visitors was 27%.
  • The most popular ISP was local ethernet.
  • The most popular language was en-us.

This information is pretty much as I expected as well.

This has been a pretty interesting module. I got to learn about things I had an interest in and learn a load of new things that I ended up finding interesting. Some of the extras we could do on the blog were pretty cool as well. Mainly when were recommended to write a movie review. I look forward to starting my new blog in the summer.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Week 10

We only had one lecture this week as our lecturer is getting busy with meetings and things. In that lecture we looked at Google analytics. This service allows people to gather information about the type of users that come to there website as well as monitor traffic in general. This information is gathered by the website regardless but it is stored as raw logic files that can be tedious to analise The service works by placing code provided by google into the sites html code.

We will be writing about Google analytics in our final blog post. We will be writing about the information google has gathered on the users who have viewed our blogs.

In the lab this week people continued to work on their assignments.

Below is a video of our lecture.

Week 09

This week our first lab was on video compression. We looked at how essentially videos are made up of lots of images. However if we stored them in the same way we stored images their file would be massive.

Two types of compression we learned about are Inter-frame and Intra-frame compression. They were slightly difficult to fully understand and are more difficult to explain. I think our lecturer did a pretty good jon at it. They involved sending information regarding only the important changes in each frame. This information is taken from "key frames". These are frames that are seen as having a significant amount of changes in them and can be used to fill in the deviation in the other frames. I feel the video below will explain it better.

In the second lecture we looked at something I am much more familiar with, Podcasting. I regularly listen to 9 podcast. Some weekly,some bi-weekly. I also do my own Podcast with some of my friends for fun. In the lecture we talked about the history of podcasting. How it's origins was to do with the existence of RSS feeds. We also talked about how Podcasting really took of after the mid naughties, when it became much easier to download and put them on portable devices like iPods. We looked at how there is a podcast for every kind of topic. No matter how niche it is.

In the labs this week we wer asked to look at the other student blogs and post a comment regarind mistakes if we noticed any. I didn't notice quite as many as last time. I guess that mean student are paying more attention to what they write.

Below are the videos of our lectures.

Week 08

Been having some trouble geting things up on my blog as I've been having difficulty getting acces to my CIT e-mail. But I'm here now so let's get to it.

In our first lecture this week we took another look at dithering. This helped me to get a better understanding of it.

In the second lecture looked at image formats. This included GIF, PNG and JPEG. We talked about how the different formats are mainly used for different types of images. Such as how JPEGS are used for images with lots of colours, such as a vibrant landcape and GIFs are used for images with very few colours, such as a cartoon image.

In the  Labs this week everyone just worked away on their assignments. I enquired about my essay title. I chose 'Podcasting' I am a big fan of the medium.

Below is the video of our lecture

Monday, 18 March 2013

Week 07

In this weeks lectures we talked about image compression. We looked pixel depth reduction, sub-sampling and colour look up tables, digitising and dithering.

Pixel depth reduction involves reducing the number of buts per  pixels in an image. An image may not need all of the 256 colours that can be produced from 8 bits. So if you reduce the number of colours you reduce he number of bits and therefor reduce the image size.

Sub sampling is when certain rows and columns are discarded to reduce the size of the image. The missing pixels are made up for by making the pixels bigger or with a process called interpolation. The is when missing pixels are filled in with remaining pixels in the image. However this can create blurry images.

Digitising is when the image is broken up into grids of squares. The average amount of darkness in a square is calculated and given a value.

Dithering is the simulation of colours that are not in the pallet. It is done by arranging the colours in a checkered pattern. This gives the impression that there are more colours in the image. If you were to zoom in on the image then the impression would be broken.

In the lab we tried to work on our Goole online challenge. However the group came to the decision that we would be better off do option B for or assignment 3. Option B is an assay on a topic that relates to the module

The video for our lecture is below.

Monday, 11 March 2013

'Stoker' Review

This weekend was the Irish debut of South Korean film maker Park Chan-wook's first western feature 'Stoker'. My friends and I were very much anticipating this movie as we are big fans of Park's previous body of work. Particularly 'The Vengeance Trilogy' and what I consider to be his magnum opus, 'Oldboy'. Which is unfortunately getting an American remake this year, as most western audiences are to lazy to read subtitles *grumbles*.  Unfortunately it seems most others were not anticipating this film, as me and my two friends were the only people in the theatre.

Although we were a bit sceptical about how his style would work in western cinema, I'm glad to say that 'Stoker' has turned out rather well. Not nearly as fantastic some of as Park's Korean films but definitely something worth taking time to try and see.

'Stoker' is a difficult movie to talk about without revealing to much. As with all Park Chan-wook films, it is best viewed knowing as little as possible. I can however go into as much as is revealed in the trailer. The protagonist of 'Stoker' is India Stoker, played by Mia Wasikowska.

India can be best described as if actress Summer Glau(Especially if she is playing River Tam from 'Firefly') and Wednesday Adams had a baby. In the opening India's father is killed in a car accident and we learn India is not particularly close with her mother played by Nicole Kidman. Tension really begins to build when India's uncle Charles(Matthew Goode) moves in with them. India never new about her uncle and all her mother knew is that he has been busy spending his years in Europe. It becomes immediately clear to the audience that we should be suspicious of Charles. Especially when we notice he has an unusual interest in India. This is as far as I will allow myself to go with regards to the plot. I will say that you'll get your standard Park Chan-wook affair. A plot that seems confusing and unclear until a gut punch revelation arranges everything out for the viewer, great performances and monologues of fascinatingly perturbing characters and plenty of moments that make you think "Eww"

While I can't go any further with the plot I can delve into Park's outstanding direction. If there is one thing Park knows, it's how to shoot a scene. At times his framing is so perfect I just want to have them still framed for reference when I make my own short films. If you are completely unfamiliar with his work I suggest you look at the famous one shot hallway fight from 'Oldboy'. No context is needed and with regards to the plot it's completely spoiler free. Just hit play and behold.

Anyway back to 'Stoker'. As I was saying the direction is great. Colour and lighting bewitch you to the screen, the framing on objects and characters speaks more then most standard scenes and with his actors park has procured performances that captivate the audience and given them a desire to be able to see the inner workings of a human mind. Particularly the minds of the psychopathic.

The sound design in this film is also stellar. It is revealed to the audience early on that India has some sort of hyper awareness of her surroundings. This is very well portrayed through the Foley work. Everything from the cracking of eggshells to the sliding of a wine bottle against a table is clear and stands out to the viewer. This very atypical of stander Foley sounds which generally are/suppose to be unnoticed by the audience.

On that note I will say the score is also quite good. It effectively fills you with whatever mood is required for the scene(mostly uneasiness). It is unfortunately however not very memorable. I would find it difficult to actually recall any of the music of the top of my head. (Unlike the absolutely astounding score to 'Cloud Atlas' which was robbed at the Oscars this year by not even getting a nomination for best original score! You should all go see this movie as well, it's amazing)

All in all 'Stoker' is solid movie. It's script doesn't quite pack the punch of Park's other films, but that is a tall order. I would highly recommend it. Especially seeing as this is probably one of the last small drama films to come out before blockbuster season begins mid next month. Which don't get me wrong I love a good blockbuster, but they are not every ones cup of tea and those people may want to get a  cinema trip in before there drought until mid September.

This would be the part where I give the movie a rating out of 10 or 100 or whatever...........But I don't that.

P.S I was for a moment somewhat disappointed when I found out what this film was about. When I only knew the title I though it might be about vampires.

Week 06

This week in our lecture we were taken to a lab where our lecturer explained what we would be doing for assignment  2. We are going to be compressing images for websites using Photoshop. We are to change the images and saving them at different quality levels. We were given time to start on this assignment during the lecture. The assignment seems pretty simple in my opinion. However it's a bit tedious.

In our labs our lecturer talked about our Google ads assignment. He showed us some of the features available in AdWords. Not much else was done in this lab.

There are no videos for this weeks lectures.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Week 05 B: Thoughts for the Food

Thinking about if someone had access to Google's database. Like say if the police where using it to build up a profile on a criminal. If someone had the meant of viewing all your activity on Google services they could learn a tremendous amount about a person.

Using a record of a person searches and visited sites they could learn what there interests are, what they want to learn up on or what they are curious about and just how they generally spend their free time. With access to there activites on Google sites, such as posting comments on YouTube. You could learn all about their views on politics, people, religion, cultures and the world in general.

This sort of information could be very handy for building a profile on a criminal. You could for example gather information on how the individual feels toward things like guns and violence in general.

If they individual keeps some sort of online diary(like say Blogger) and depending on how much they put up on this diary. You could have a timeline of events that show how the individual came to commit the crime.

It is quite fascinating the amount of information Google would have on you depending on your use of their services. A lot of people might find this rather scary and off-putting. Personally I kind of like it. Especially if it means I can one day get only advertisement content that I actually care about.  

Week 05 A

This week in lectures we talked about search engines and web directories. Web directories are basically a list of websites under specific headings. It's made up of multiple sub heading under a main heading. These help users find what they are looking for within a website. They are a functioning form of web searching but are not ideal in my opinion. Web directories have to look at websites manually and then add them one by one. Although this mean the websites listed may be good quality, it also mean that there is not a massive amount of them.

A search engine is like a massive data base that hold a version of the internet. This stored internet is constantly updated with Google's "spiders"/web crawlers". These "spiders" download and index the websites. This allows users to find what they are looking for faster.

Our lecturer also sent us a video about Google's advertisements. I found this video very interesting. It explains how the words chosen to related to a search on Google must be carefully selected. The chosen words must not be to broad so that they relate to large number of searches unrelated to your product or service. However they must also not be to specific. As this may result in your ads going unseen by the potential market. Here is the video our lecturer sent us.

In our labs our lecturer looked over our blogs and provided us feedback. I'm doing well in the over all presentation of my blog. It was recommended I focus on the content. With the free time most of us studied for our Computer Architecture exam on number systems. Our lecturer provided us with a helpful video on the subject.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Week 04

This week we looked at how to upload files to the web using FTP(File Transfer Protocol). I thought it was going to be more complicated then it ended up being. In our lab we created a basic webpage  and uploaded it using FTP. Here's the link to the webpage

We also worked on the Google online marketing challenge that we will be taking part in as groups. We looked up potential clients and selected one. My group ended up selecting Mianra: artisan soaps. We chose them as we felt they had a niche market, that had a bit of potential. We were also asked to take an online test about Copyright infringement, defamation and invasion of privacy The test should be easy enough in my opinion.

Here are the videos of our lectures.