“We’ve got fun and games…”

Some musings on this past week in ds106:

I’m glad someone did the timeline assignment.  There are many more assignments than I can keep track of. If I knew about this one ahead of time, I might have made it recommended or required, if I had thought of taking this approach to it. There are an infinite number of ways we could choose to connect to the 80s theme. We can see some themes emerging from the timeline: advancing technology, political tensions, environmental concerns. All of these are relevant to us today. It would have been interesting to see the similarities and contrasts between different people’s views.

I think this week I really challenged myself, and I have to say I’m proud of all the work that I’ve done.

This is pretty much the best thing I can hear in ds106. It’s not so much about what we make, or doing anything perfectly, but rather looking for ways to grow creatively and expressively, and recognizing the value in our accomplishments. That’s not likely to look the same for any two of us.

One thing that people find particularly challenging with writing assignments is blogging the process. It’s usually not meaningful to talk about the technical aspects of using a keyboard or a word processing program in the same way as we might discuss creating a GIF with Photoshop. But in both cases, there are decision-making processes taking place. This post gives a good example of reflecting on the writing process. It’s not the only way to do it of course. There are many ways to open a window upon our thoughts and efforts.

I didn’t really like the daily creates this week. I’m hoping next week there will be more that include photoshop and stuff like that

The Daily Create is really about developing a regular habit of creativity. There is no “right” way to do it. Friend of ds106 @dogtrax often uses a comic strip creator to respond to prompts.

And I used Photoshop last week for a poem prompt. We all have permission to creatively reinterpret prompts and assignments. But we need to beware of putting ourselves in a rut too, so we shouldn’t make everything a Photoshop project.

The CIA would like to formally declare that more dancing would be a huge positive to modern life, and would like to make a motion to require more dancing in daily human lives.

I am in no way a dancer, but I move to nominate Agent Burke for Director of the CIA.

I also wanted to muse on the banner for this blog. Of course ds106 wants to have fun. We’ve got fun and games. But the pairing of Cyndi Lauper’s hit with Guns n Roses also reflects two competing moods of 80s culture. On one hand, there was the upbeat, happy components, like Girls Just Want to Have Fun or Back to the Future or the numerous comedies of the decade. On the other hand, there was a dark side, represented by the horror of Stephen King and the numerous slasher films. And tech-noir, which along with cyberpunk came into its own in the 80s, looking at the way things were and forecasting dark times ahead. They Live, which has been mentioned elsewhere in ds106, was an example of the genre. I’ve thought about using tech-noir as a theme for ds106 in the past, but I felt it might be too specific and limited, not to mention a bit dark for some people’s tastes. Generalizing out to 80s pop culture as a whole gives more leeway for everyone to find their own angles on the theme, so we can all make of it what we will.

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