“free” as in “free speech,” not as in “free beer”

When reading the article on “What is free software”, I immediately thought of open source software. Reading the section talking about different degrees of freedom made me think free software is the same as open source software. However, after doing a little more research on free software and open source software, I learned that the […]

Hacker Ethics and Steam: a question of Communal or Commodity

In Christopher M Kelty’s Inventing Copyleft the issue of copyright is disputed through Stallman and Gosling over their respective programs. This discussion challenges the nature of the web and its ability or lack of to properly commodify code. The “hacker ethic” implies a mentality of cooperation and sharing to develop code and software. To what […]

42 Ways in Which Google Gives You the Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything

Carr’s article indicates that the internet has changed the way in which we read, think, and speak. That is, “It’s becoming our map and our clock, our printing press and our typewriter, our calculator and our telephone, and our radio and TV.” It has taught us to value efficiency over, say a close-reading of a novel. […]

Levels of Design

I am currently in a software engineering course. In the course, we learn to identify a problem and develop a solution for it. My team and I decided to work on the problem that exists in dietary restrictions. Our android app allows the user to take a picture of a barcode and the app will […]

BP#4: Search Engines and Us

In this weeks readings (not the new set in Communication Design) I found there to be an interesting split in perception of technology and information abundance. On one hand we have individuals like Nicholas Carr who puts forward an argument that the Internet changes the way our brain works in a negative way. On the […]

The Democratization of History and Its Audience – An Urban-Rural Divide?

The essay in the Graham reading discusses relinquishing control of the historical voice in order to crowdsource cultural heritage and history. It begins by stating that while a successful crowdsourcing site like Wikipedia have led to a “democratization of history”, it does not yet  allow the “democratization of audience”. The essay argues that digitization is […]

Topics I’m interested in…hopefully

I have been delaying this for so long because I have no idea what topic interest me. So after many hours of research, I believe I found a topic I would like to focus on. Having a flashback to my first year in university, back when I was in Life Science. Long ago when I […]

Oral Tradition: The Western Fascination with Homer

In thinking of oral histories and their political uses, I am reminded of perhaps one of the greatest authors in ancient literature, Homer. Famed for works such as the Iliad and the Odyssey, Homer is an example of the oral traditions that has since been recorded. The question of the validity of Homer has long […]

BP #3 Understanding History through Spoken Word

This week’s readings tackle another modus operandi of history – recounting of historical events through conversation. Rather than the often-practiced reading of literature – a crucial and valid part of historiography, historians can also turn to actual people who have lived through events or otherwise have extensive knowledge in a certain field. It is in […]

A tad late, Inquiry into the Beaches of Toronto

In thinking of the development of the water resources that surround Toronto, I became interested in the development of beaches. In reading the article which discusses the development of Hamilton and its relation to its native waterways, I became interested in the development of beaches in Toronto. Beaches were represented as both a necessity of […]

Lake Ontario – From Military Fortifications to Recreational Fishing

In the past few weeks, our class did readings on and talked about the history of the Great Lakes. In terms of fresh water in Canadian history, the Great Lakes Public Forum briefed us on strategies for the assessment, restoration, and protection of the lakes, which had to meet the commitments stated by the Canada-United […]

Blog #5 – Dominion over the Lake: Commerce, Power, and Speed.

Speaking frankly, I know next to nothing on early Canadian history. I believe it is truly a disservice that the Canadian schooling system seems to prioritize more contemporary political history or “British Canadian” history rather than the long and fascinating period when the territory of “Canada” was a chaotic assortment of powers on the uncertain and shifting […]

New Form of Narration

Coming from a computer science background, I always looked at things from a design and innovate side of things. I find history to be very different to computer science. In the world of computer science, we’re always taught to look for the problem and find a solution. Usually the problem is something that already exists. […]

A Historian’s Guide to Making Use of GIS

According to Knowles’  Placing History: How Maps, Spatial Data, and GIS Are Changing Historical Scholarship, despite of the fundamental characteristics of GIS that make it difficult for historians to use, the use of GIS will exponentially increase over the next decade. This is because GIS require expertise visual and mathematical characteristics, which “count[s] against the […]

Mapping Ararat: Understanding Spatial History

In reading this week’s readings, I am reminded of a project introduced to me prior in another class. This project dealt with the issue of spatial history in a Jewish context. Before the establishment of the State of Israel, there have been many proposals to establish a Jewish homeland. One such proposal was the city […]

Blog Post #2: History and GIS, ‘Old’ vs. New

  In the piece by Knowles as well as Bodenhamer I get the impression that Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is either a hit or miss depending on which historian you speak to. It seems that historians have a good understanding of GIS – its raison d’etre, what it is good for, but maintain some kind […]

Blog #4 – Geography and Visual Sources, a Critique of the Discipline of History

“If GIS is ever to become central to historical scholarship, it must do so within the norms embraced by historians and from a sophisticated understanding of the philosophy of history and not simply its methods.” – David J. Bodenhamer in “History and GIS: Implications for the Discipline” It is difficult to believe that geography and […]

Awareness in Hamilton

I was always aware of oil being dumped into lakes, rivers, etc. and covering animals with oil because of the Dawn dish soap commericals. In 1860s, Hamiltonian John William Kerr, reported that the fish caught in the Sherman Inlet tasted of coal oil emitted frmo two refineries at the water’s edge alongside the railway tracks. […]

Long Over Due

My name is John Cho and I am in my fourth year. I am doing a specialist in Computer Science. I know basic web development (HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP, etc.) from projects and designing websites. I am taking this course because it is very different from the courses I have taken in university. All the […]