Through my communication/media studies major, I’m able to learn about a wide variety of communication and media theories while also exploring pet interests like music and typography. I’ve crafted my own independent study – On Sound and Symbol, which explored sound studies, typography, and cryptography – and explored topics including why people have strong feelings about plot spoilers. My two minors, English and philosophy, came about through classes that complemented what I was already studying. For example, a linguistics class taught me a more specialized vocabulary to discuss semantics while a class on St. Augustine explored semiotics (the study of signs, which is a recurring theme in TU’s communication classes). The main research I’ve done is focused on the word “forum,” especially its historical context and digital characteristics (you can read the current draft over at Culture Digitally). I’m also a student research fellow for the Oklahoma Center for the Humanities this year, where we’re studying privacy.
I haven’t really considering how I think with technology; about technology, well, that would be a very long post, but I think the idea of thinking with technology is intriguing and I don’t have a great answer for it right now. As far as using technology, the context and application matter. I craft essays and papers on the computer because I jump around adding things where they fit most suitably. On the flip side, I’m terrible at remembering things I read in e-books and enjoy many aspects of reading paper books: tactile elements of reading a book, scribbling in the margins, seeing/feeling how many pages are left, and so on. Similarly, I remember class notes better when I handwrite them (The Atlantic actually just recently had an article about this – apparently I’m not the only one!).