Timetoast: A little boring but gets the job done, except you can’t embed

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TimelineTimetoast, released publically in 2008, is a website where you can make digital timelines. It can be used to commemorate events, build historical timelines, launch a product or make a plan. The site has been mentioned by PC Magazine, Lifehacker, The New York Times, Mashable, Adobe, and 37 Signals among others. The founder of Timetoast, Daniel Todd, is the owner of the software and its trademarks.

This site has been around for about ten years, which may be a good sign that it will continue. Also, it appears that the site may do what it actually says it will do.

Timetoast is a commercial entity, its entry level plan is $5.99 a month and its pro plan is $8.99 a month. There is a plan that is free to the public, however it’s lacking some features that may be necessary for use on a blog—such as embedding.

With Timetoast, you are responsible for securing the use of any copyright, patent, trademark or trade secret rights of any third party. By publishing content on the site, you agree that downloading, copying and use of the content will not infringe the proprietary rights of a third party. If you violate their policy they may remove your content or drop your account.

By posting content to Timetoast, you give them the royalty free rights to reproduce, modify, adapt and publish your content. Seems like when you post content here it pretty much belongs to them from that point on. They’re not going to tell you what to do with the material. There aren’t any guidelines on how you can use it, but it’s theirs—if they want it, they can come and get it.

This tool could certainly be used for our class purposes. However, I don’t think you can add video or music to the timeline (which is kind of lame). Its design is pretty cut and dry, a photo with a caption pinpointed on a line marked by a date.

I think Tiki-Toki looks like a fun choice for doing timelines in this class. I like the fact that you can incorporate other digital mediums. However, I haven’t researched much into the details. I’m hoping someone else in the class will write about it soon. All in all, we could use Timetoast, but it’s a little lackluster.

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Phil Ochs Audio Story

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The audio assignment started off a little rough. It took me awhile to fully understand exactly what the requirements of the assignment were. However, my media instincts led me to feel confident about the assignment no matter what the circumstances. It eventually smoothed over when our group had the chance to get together and discuss the assignment. The ladies and I took a discussion approach to the assignment. We used this opportunity to speak about interesting aspects of Phil Ochs that we found intriguing as individuals.

 

Recording

When it came to recording the audio, our group was a little rushed. Knowing that I was going out of town the next week for spring break and was eager to mentally check out (I felt myself slippin’), we wasted no time recording the audio in a study room downstairs. We prepared an outline for the questions and hit record. Recording was seemingly smooth—that is until we discovered “that track” in editing. That one track with the tapping sound throughout its entirety. I wasn’t too worried, I assured the girls that we could re-record the track effortlessly and it would be like nothing ever happened. As it turns out we did re-record the track, but there might be something wrong with my phone’s speaker. In the end, we made a better recording but it wasn’t really a great recording. My advice, be careful of mic placement when recording, listen to your recorded audio to make absolute sure it turned out ok.

 

Editing

Having used Audacity in the past (“oh, the horror”), I requested that we use Garage Band, a software I feel is more user friendly. The editing process went smoothly, and I was able to show the ladies in my group how to edit audio on Garage Band.

 

What I Think Could’ve Been Done Better

I would say that our project could’ve been more conversational and less “rehearsed sounding.” I would say that we could’ve done a better job with mic placement and taking our time too.

All in all, I think the project turned out great. I really enjoyed working with Amairani and Laurelyn, it was great to get to know such awesome ladies.

Stressing Procrastination

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Don’t stress before a project, instead find ways to get focused.

It’s so easy to procrastinate, especially in world full of everlasting distractions. It’s so easy to feel overwhelmed and stressed, making it harder to focus on the tasks ahead. Often times the stress of starting a project is worse than doing the actual project itself. Once you get started half the battle has been won.

The anxiety is what feeds the procrastination.There are a so many ways to ease the stress and anxiety of starting a project (taking a walk, staying warm, removing distractions, etc.) However you find motivation to climb over the procrastination hump is up to you, but there is one thing to keep in mind. Take it easy.

The Media in a Battlefield of Lazy News Consumers

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Flickr - photo by Thomas Rossi Rassloff

Reporting the news is no easy task.

More often these days I hear complaints about the media’s integrity. Yes there is corruption in the media, but there are also hard working, fact seeking journalists  who are risking their lives to bring the general public a story. The same people who criticize the field also seem to be the least informed. Most people just simply do not do the research.

Journalist are already doing the research so the general public doesn’t have to. However, that doesn’t exempt the general public from having to search for the truth themselves. Most people don’t realize that journalists provide the facts, but it is you who must decide the truth for yourself. When you’re ready, just pick up that copy of the New York Times on your coffee table and try it out.