News & Comment

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Issue 15   |   September 2000   |   Updated 9-9-00

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School's in... 
The Fall semester is underway, and there are exciting new developments at my current workplace, Cuyahoga Community College West Campus.

For the past two years my colleagues Stan Kohn, Garie Waltzer and Angela Berlingeri have been planning a 2-year Associate's Degree program in Multimedia. They've done a terrific job developing the curriculum, including a new course called Intro to Visual Communication which lays the groundwork for everything that follows. Find out more about the degree and curriculum at our website.

In January the dream becomes reality as we move into a new Multimedia computer lab and Digital Imaging Center that will offer students topnotch technology in a comfortable environment. If you've followed our series of articles questioning the wisdom of all-Mac computer labs, you'll be interested to know that the Multimedia lab will have 18 dual-processor PowerMacs and 6 PCs. Cross-platform work becomes a reality!

More details coming soon.

Smackdown is a smash hit
The people have spoken. Last month's Shockwave game, Mac vs. Windows Smackdown, was our most popular feature ever. Smackdown recorded 465 user hits, about double our previous favorite.

So... give it a try. If you like the arcade game Whack-A-Mole, you'll love Smackdown.
[Mac vs. Windows Smackdown - 101K file]

Course syllabi online
Have you ever gotten an idea or inspiration from the course syllabi and/or descriptions online here or at Paul Lester's New Media on the Web site? If so, you have plenty of company. These sections get 80-100 hits every month, keeping them in our top ten. That's the good news.

The bad news is you don't have many to choose from here at Interactive Design Forum, and the number just got reduced by one. A colleague was told by the department chair to stop "giving away" the syllabus, so I've removed it from the site.

It was painful to do. My original vision for Interactive Design Forum was that it would foster an exchange of ideas among designers and design educators. There's evidence that a lot of you appreciate being able to see what others are doing. But it's pretty much a one-way street.

You can change that. If this vision makes sense to you, if you've ever benefited from course material you've seen here, please keep it alive. Send a course description or syllabus for one of your New Media/Interactive/Digital courses.

Why you should give it away...
By sharing ideas we all benefit. One of the key reasons why web design has come so far so fast is that the creators of the Internet built into the system the ability for anyone to download the HTML code for any site. The result: you and I and thousands of 14-year-old whiz kids learn by seeing what others have done, then adapting it for our own purposes.

Not unlike how artists, musicians, inventors, and scientists have done throughout human history. It's not a new idea. It's one that we as educators should support.

So please contribute to the forum, or it will wither on the vine.

This month's banner graphic
Communication is what it's all about, isn't it? The photo used for the September banner is a clearly-labeled concrete cover somewhere on the Kent State University campus. I guess there's communication happening underneath.

                                                              - Al Wasco 9/9/00


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Lust objects... Usability Nazis... Mac vs. Windows Smackdown!
[August 2000]

New magazines... Fireworks revisited... Director doomed?
[July 2000]

Cancer on the Web?... Barcelona... New CD-ROMs
[June 2000]

Kent State remembered... AIGA-Advance...
[May 2000]

myopia... Lab survey... Student web projects...
[Apr. 2000]

Flash animation: devil or angel?... Mexican graffiti...
[Mar. 2000]

Web usability... Mexican graveyards... online Valentine cards...
[Feb. 2000]

Yahoo!... CoolSTOP Award... Multimedia, the Web & CD-ROM...
[Jan. 2000]

Our new look... Goodbye, AOL... Ideas for critiques...
[Dec. 1999]

What I know about you... Teaching computer-based media... Nudes in Parma
[Nov. 1999]

Graffiti & hip-hop... Better critiques... Photoshop 5.5 vs. Fireworks 2
[Oct. 1999]

Swiss Design Quiz... Barcelona... AIGA / NASAD briefing paper...
[Sept. 1999]

Upgrade junkies,
Part 1.

[Aug. 1999]

Report from International Design Conference at Aspen
[July 1999]

"Interactive Design" or "New Media?"
[July 1999]

If no author name is show, article is written by Al Wasco, author of this website.
©1999, 2000

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