04/10/16 ~ digital me.

in today’s lecture i learned about info-graphics, data visualization, and self tracking. at first i found it difficult to understand the difference between info-graphics and data visualization, but once i was able to distinguish the two, i understood them as very different. as an artist i find data visualization more appealing. i appreciate that it delivers to an audience to make their own personal conclusions and own decisions.

the social media that i participate in most often is instagram. i do have a facebook but use it on occasion and only for family and close friends; which interestingly enough has made me quite the weird looks when in group projects since i have started here. a lot of other students seem to be allergic to emailing?

instagram is a platform that allows me to post photographs of things i want to remember. a lot of the times they are different angles of places i stare off into because it is a time that i have realized or thought about something i wish to remember. it is a way for me to track not only my life, as i don’t have a particularly good memory of the day to day, but also my emotions, reactions, fond memories, alone time, and to see how these change or stay stable.

i tracked my use of social media in relation to my concentration levels. i found that the less concentrated and engaged i was in what i was doing, the more interested and keen i was to check my social media app. when i was more into what i was doing, my desire to check social media went down. this was particularly obvious to point out as the period that i tracked was a constant change from class to an hour break, class to an hour break…

i think the growing trend of tracking and sharing shows good and bad qualities in us as expanding beings. the idea of being more self aware and wanting to know more detailed things about our everyday life can show our continuous growing curiosity levels and our capacity of knowledge. it makes us more aware of ourselves so that we can understand and better our own self, as well as understanding other people to potentially be more open minded. by sharing with each other we learn even more because we are comparing and adjusting in order to try new things and understand things we don’t understand or did not think about. it also allows for us to realize and be okay with the fact that there are so many different kinds of people and that people do different things in many different ways – even in ways that we could not fathom.

on the other hand, our growing desire to track and share could just be an obvious response to our increasing selfish desires and obsession to belong and fit in with society. society has been growing more selfish generation  by generation. social media presents people in front of other people in a different way than reality. it can be  used as another way to gain acceptance and popularity in a group without the physical appearance, initial social awkwardness, and perhaps the help of enhancing technologies. having lived in many different parts of the world, i have often gone to catch up with friends i had not seen in a long time and become shocked at their state because their social media gave the sense that it was exactly the opposite. and in this sense, it can be used and is used a lot of times to hide, to fake, and to not be willing to show and therefore ask for help.


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