This week was Thanksgiving, so we only had one day of class for project teaching. The day was still informative, and I joined a group learning about HTML. It was definitely a good refresher, as I haven’t worked very much with HTML since DGST 101. Creating sites with professional embedding, and more usage of CSS is definitely something I could work on myself. I was also able to gather more video footage for my mocumentary. I’m looking forward to teaching myself, and continuing my work with my final project.
I’m continuing to work on a mocumentary type video for the DKC. My project hasn’t changed much since I first proposed it, simply solidified. I think at this point I will be able to have portions of my video with simple music and text, and other portions that contain dialogue. As far as accomplishments go, on November 6th and 7th I was able to secure a rode mic in addition to a camera, allowing me to capture some quality audio with my footage. It took some time to figure out how to adjust the settings, but I was eventually able to do so. My next step is to begin the editing process (and potentially do one more day of shooting since I’m missing one DKC tutor in my footage). I’ll probably use Adobe Premiere on the DKC editing computer, and spend some additional time using the software in the editing suite on the first floor of the HCC if need be. I may need some help/need to do some additional research regarding working with audio in Adobe Premiere.
I still really enjoy the language of my group’s minifesto, which stated, “Coding is a valuable skill utilizing a blank canvas, creating something tangible from the nearly intangible.” I might add that coding is a product of humans and culture, and these aspects may need to be considered when coding. For example, the structure of coding may unintentionally lend itself to excluding certain groups, or making limited binary categories with little room for context.
Currently, I have a pretty good understanding of the syntax of Python in addition to the logic and structure of basic coding, such as if/then statements. My previous exposure to coding involved HTML and a little bit of Java. My experience with java, which occurred in an intro to computer science class, had given me a lot of information that assisted with constructing things like methods, and organizing code. However, my specific understanding of Python, and how to accomplish tasks utilizing it, has definitely improved. I can no undertake basic computational functions, manipulate text, and perform some basic image editing. I’m not sure if it’s enough knowledge to place on a resume, but it’s at least a good start.
The book we used to learn Python was definitely a good resource. I will say that it was a bit frustrating to try bits of code that the author specifically designed to not work, but academically I understand that he was trying to illustrate certain points regarding how the code is structured and how it works its way through problems. A huge resource was my classmates. I learned a lot simply by teaching others and being taught by others. Some basic troubleshooting could be accomplished, in addition to the practical application of creating code during class to help solidify concepts. It was great to hear from peers, and it was great to teach. This helped hold me accountable to staying on top of the material, while also providing an avenue by which to improve. Often in the act of teaching we learn ourselves, and this was a great opportunity by which to do so.
I never did get to my reach goals regarding Text III or Statistics and Visualization. Perhaps if I have spare time during winter break I could explore some of those topics on my own as a way to further my programming knowledge.
This week began by discussing our final projects. It was interesting to hear everyone’s progress and/or struggles. It definitely sounds like the semester is ramping, and time management may be an issue for a lot of people as they juggle various end of semester assignments. Once again I was able to talk with someone who was very much into audio work, and was very excited as I discussed my project. I was able to bounce some ideas off of her, which was definitely of benefit. At this point I’ve collected most of my footage, and I look forward to beginning to string it together in editing.
During the rest of the week, we concluded our Python lessons. I had the opportunity to go over a bit more basic image-editing, and some more string work. I think overall, I’ve definitely grasped the mechanics, basic syntax, and thought process of coding, in addition to most of the intricacies of Python 2. Most of the practical creative potential I reached was in regards to strings. Basic image-editing was interesting, but was similar to work I’ve done in JAVA. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get through more complex data processing applications, but this is something I could pursue on my own in the future.
I’m working on creating a mocumentary video centered on the DKC made shooting my own footage. The project has not officially changed, but I’m thinking that audio recording will be at least a smaller aspect of my project (as opposed to a major component). In the past week I was able to record a fair amount of footage on two separate days made using an EOS rebel t5i camera from the HCC desk. Unfortunately at that time they did not have a USB rode mic, so I was unable to collect audio on those days. My hope is to use that footage with music and narration. Hopefully the HCC desk will have a rode mic next week, and I can collect some video in conjunction with audio as my next step. Then I can potentially blend the two styles (narration + proper audio/dialogue). If I am pressed for time and unable to utilize a rode mic, I’ll utilize my narration/music strategy throughout the entire video. In the event that I am able to collect audio, this will be the component I will need the most help with. I haven’t worked with a rode mic before, so I may need some guidance with this, in addition to potential post-production work (manipulating audio in Adobe Premiere, etc).
This week began with my own teaching on Monday, focused on iteration and recursion by examining palindromes. The teaching experience was fairly positive, and I hope that my participants felt feel the same way. On Wednesday I was part of a group had a very in-depth examination of strings. At this point I’ve been part of multiple string-centered groups, and I feel very confident in my ability to work within the topics covered in this section. Finally, my Friday group worked on the basics of image-editing. This was my first foray into this topic, and I feel it began fairly well. I’m hoping to continue to pursue this topic into next week.
Overall, I feel fairly good about my progress in Python. I believe I have a solid understanding of the foundational skills of this coding language, and hopefully have enough to potentially explore creative projects with Python after this class if I so desire.