Sunday, February 20, 2011

Week 7 (Feb 14-20)

Price and Price Chapter 5

Cut 50% of your text
Text buttons and links, headings, menus, intro sentence are important
Make it worthwhile
Make it straight to the point
Make paragraphs short – 2-3 paragraphs
Don’t over exaggerate
Use simple direct language
Connect to the reader and prove to be part of their community
Use your side bar for important information
Use charts to compare your data.
Keep it short but keep it understandable
Write out your words: don’t = do not

This week in Price they were discussing the importance of making your information easy to read. Cutting out all of the talking text that is pointless make the reader happier and more likely to keep reading. This is why I did a point form style of note summary for Price this week.
When I write on the web, especially in blog style I ramble, and it tends to stray from my over al purpose. The reading this week will definitely help me tighten up my text.

Bolter Chapter 7 

In Bolter chapter 7 hypertext is referred to as literary expression. Hypertext is truly a new form of expression, it offers the ability to link ideas and different sites together. The below quote is from Robert Coovers book on hypertext fiction. 

"Hypertext is truly a new and unique environment. Artists who work there must be read there. And they will probably be judged there as well: criticism, like fiction, is moving off the page and on line, and it is itself susceptible to continuous changes of mind and text. Fluidity, contingency, indeterminacy, plurality, discontinuity are the hypertext buzzwords of the day, and they seem to be fast becoming principles, in the same way that relativity not so long ago displaced the falling apple." 

Hypertext is used in one main website and links it to other websites in a non-linear form. Reading an essay off of a printed page doesn't offer any further expression or links to other ideas. Where as an online environment offers links and various pages with no set beginning and no ending. 

Submit Edge - Content writing service

They submit content for your website. Giving you content oriented writing. The required content will be 100% original with topics being handled and given originality. All of the content in price varies, there will be no key word stuffing. As soon as the order is received the requirements will be met. 

What Service does this company provide? 
They are a content company providing content for your web page. 
With what verbal and visual strategies does this company sell its service? 
This company uses both audio and visual content to draw in their customers. They use photographic and pictorial evidence to emphasize their point of making strong content and working as a team to achieve a plagiarism free content based website. 
Does this company "do" what it sells on its web site? 
This company claims to offer content but I feel after looking at their website that they don't offer the content but rather offer increased publicity for the website that they are highered to help. 
They offer: 
  • Guaranteed ten day indexing of websites

  • Manual directory submission

  • Social bookmarking services

  • Search engine optimisation

  • The website isn't super clear on the main page of what they are offering but once you go into corporate information the above is listed. In the youtube video they claimed to be a content company when they actually just help to advertise for the company through social networking sites and various search engines. 
    Would you hire this company? Would you work for it? 
    I wouldn't hire this company nor would I work for it. This is for a few reasons. Optimizing your website in a search engine isn't hard to do, and when it comes to making websites there are other website designers that would offer me more of what I am looking for. 

    Sunday, February 13, 2011

    Week 6 (February 7-13)

    Bolter chapter 6
    Bolter starts out in chapter 6 talking about how writing and reading is like reading music and having it come to life. When a musician reads music they have the ability to bring it through life through their instrument. When a reader brings a book to life they do it through speaking. 
    The dialogues that are created to the written word are much different through printed word because they are written rather than spoken. Bolter said that the biggest fail in literature was when people didn't have the ability to read and write. Plato provided us with a dialogue through his writing there was a compromise between written and spoken language. 
    Conversation written on a page is a much more skillful task than flat linear writing like an instruction manual. On the web users who are interested in a topic click to different links on the page rather than just clicking next, next, next. There is more than just a linear way of getting to the end. The way in which we arrive at the end is much more fun, or I find when you get to click around about a subject you can learn a lot more. 

    Price and Price chapter 11-16
    In order for me to deconstruct the text from P&P this week I am going to use the article below and the Toronto Star website as an example. P&P first say that when writing on the web you have to make the subject line mean something. There is no clearer way to announce an article than to tell the reader exactly what is going on "York bus strike possible at midnight" clearly states that there could be a bus strike in the York region at midnight. On page 360 they say to put the subject into the title, which is exactly what the Toronto Star writer did. 
    On page 346 P&P state that you should provide more information not less. While, in this article there isn't much extensive information in this article the way it is set up is to give less more direct information. All of the information however, is still in the article. 
    There is also a hypertext link to the York Region Transit website for people who want more information about the pending strike. 

    Online Article 

    The Toronto Star printed this article in their online paper (contradiction I know but I still feel that even though it is online it is still a news paper) 

    York bus strike possible at midnight 

    Alexandra MacAulay Abdelwahab
    Staff Reporter

    The deadline to avert a transit strike in Vaughan on Monday is close and so far no deal has been reached.
    The Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 113, which provides service for the southwest YRT area, may go on strike at 12:01 a.m. if they can’t reach a contract agreement with private contractor Veolia Transportation Services.
    This means 28,000 Vaughan transit riders might have to make other arrangements to get to work Monday morning, as 24 YRT bus routes that operate mainly in Vaughan, but also Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Aurora and Markham would be affected.
    As of 6 p.m., Bob Kinnear, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 113, said the union and management were no closer to reaching a deal.
    The strike would affect the 214 drivers and mechanics that maintain the 131 buses managed by Veolia.
    If there is a strike, YRT Transit Inspectors and Customer Information Representatives will be at busy transit stops to help riders with their trip planning, according to a release issued by the Municipality of York.
    A full list of buses that would be affected by the strike is available on the YRT website.

    My Thoughts

    The above is a hard news story; its purpose is to inform the audience of the hard facts. The writing is done in a pyramid style with the most important information at the top of the article moving to less important information near the end. There is also a hypertext link to another website to allow people to find further information on the topic. The lead gives the information that everyone who would read the article is looking for. There is a strike deadline Monday and still no agreement. Straight to the point with no dancing around the details. The paragraphs are short because this article is strictly informative and about the facts. The article is telling the facts rather than showing them however, it is important for articles such as this to tell the strict facts. 

    Sunday, February 6, 2011

    Week 5 (January 31- February 6)

    Finding stuff to write about isn’t really difficult for me. In fact I rather like the idea of finding different things to write about. However, do my readers just want random information? NO. and this is what chapter 11 of Price and Price’s Hot Text is really hitting on. You are writing for the reader and not the other way around. Engaging the readers in your writing, answering their questions and writing in a style that they can understand is a way of keeping readers.
    The way in which Price and Price are explaining genres and websites is to make it idiot proof. Let me explain, by idiot proof I mean incredibly easy to navigate. Help should be offered where needed, information should be explained and if you need someone’s information that should be explained as well. Embedding links and hypertext to explain your idea’s is a great way to keep the audience coming back because they know they can get their information and it will have reliable sources, which, are proven through the links.

    Main lesson: Customer first. Make them understand everything, and if they don’t, HELP THEM!

    The move to electronic writing
    How cool would it have been if we were able to go back in time and see what life would be like with out electronic means of writing? Originally, as Bolter says, people wrote on 25 foot long pieces of papyrus. There weren’t mass produced books, no one had the option of continually reading and rereading books. People had the option to listen to a writer read his book. Now we have books printed in mass, we have encyclopedia’s and we have online everything. I think it would be safe to say that the digital age is here to stay.


    Like Bolter was saying in chapter 5, there has been so much change since the beginning of time and the act of writing, reading, and the distribution of texts.

    I went to the Weldon Library yesterday and went to the 2nd floor found one of the larger books, around 700 pages, picked it up, cracked it open and took a wiff. From the Sex and the City movie, I am a lot like Carrie. She uses the public library and takes out books and just loves the smell – as do I. While the smell might be mould there is something about the old pages that really turns my crank.
    Then I went through all the steps it would take to produce a book that was produced in the 1800s. A person would either have to conduct the research himself/herself or, find another book that had already done the research and figure out facts. The book would have to be written, sent to a publisher, be printed, distributed, and then sent to the library. Libraries weren’t always categorized the way they are now. The Dewey Decimal system wasn’t invented until 1876 and has since been greatly modified. Needless to say, I feel our society has become increasingly lazy and innovative. Thusly we have to do things with the least effort possible… aka use the internet for everything (at least this is the way I feel about most of the Western culture)