Monday, April 27, 2015

Study Drugs Multimedia Project


          It’s finals week and you’re a sophomore at Lehigh University. You’ve already procrastinated for the last three weeks by watching Netflix until the wee-hours of the night or socializing at an off-campus party. You know 20 percent of your grade depends on next week’s accounting exam, but you decide to wait and study, for it’s only Monday and that test isn’t until next Tuesday. It’s suddenly Sunday and now you begin to worry. You have seven chapters to read in two days. What do you do? All of a sudden you remember your friend who told you he could cram out four accounting chapters in three hours because his Adderall prescription keeps him focused. You think for a moment, grab your phone and shoot him a text: “Hey, can you sell me some addy?”

            Abusing prescription drugs in college is a problem throughout the United States. CNN once reported that the most popular prescription drugs among college students are ADHD medications like Adderall and Vyvanse. In 2009, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health performed a study called “Nonmedical Use of Adderall among Full-Time College Students.” Researchers found that 64 percent of 18 to 22-year-old full-time college students had used Adderall in the past year. None of these college students had been prescribed the drug. 70 percent of full-time college students ages 21 or 22 also used the drug in a nonmedical situation. While this survey included colleges throughout the country, Kiersten Moore, a junior at Lehigh University created her own study in which she surveyed Lehigh students, ranging from freshmen to seniors, about “study drugs,” such as Adderall.

            “I’ve known people in high school and even at Lehigh who have sold their prescribed ADHD medication to students without ADHD,” Moore said. “I’ve talked to people who have taken Adderall right before a big test, who don’t medically need the drug, just because they say it helps them stay focused and makes them feel smarter.”

            Moore found that 65 percent of the students that took her survey have used Adderall or other medications known to be “study drugs.” On the contrary, 35 percent of students have never experienced these medications. On average, most students who did answer “yes” to using Adderall or other types of study drugs claimed they only used the drug during a big test or had only used the drug a few times total. Less than 20 percent of students admitted to using study drugs once or twice a week or daily.

            One of Moore’s questions asked students if they thought taking study drugs actually impacted academic performance. 82 percent of students said yes and only 18 percent disagreed.

            “Although I am not prescribed the drug, I do think study drugs are effective,” said Anna Eggert ’16. “Many of my friends have an Adderall prescription and they always seem so focused and able to do their work at any moment, while for me, going to the library and actually sitting down to study is a process and takes time.”

            According to Moore, she found that people ranked Lehigh 8 (on a scale to 1-10) when it came down to how prevalent study drugs are on campus- one being least prevalent and 10 being most.

            What students may not know is that taking study drugs or selling them without a prescription at Lehigh can cause some serious consequences. The Lehigh University Police Department Associated Policies and Regulations say, “The University will not tolerate the sale of illegal drugs on campus. The University will take decisive action against any individual who is involved in drug trafficking.” These drugs don’t include illegal substances like marijuana, but legal and prescription drugs as well.

            “I honestly didn’t even know you could get into major trouble at Lehigh for selling ADHD medication to students,” Ryan Bertrando ’16 said. “I mean, I understand why it could be dangerous, but I feel like there are more serious matters to take care of at this school before citing someone for selling Adderall.”

            In conclusion, while the stressful, college environment continues to grow, so will the need for prescription drugs at Lehigh and across the country. For more information on these substances and their existence on campus contact LUPD at (610) 758-4200. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Ali's Glass Process Video

So as a second semester senior, my process video naturally focused on alcohol. Kidding...sort of.

I actually found this assignment rather fun compared to when I was just getting used to the device. Teaching my subject how to use glass wasn't as hard as I thought it might be, once we got past the whole "extend video" part. The main issue he ran into was not being able to tell if what he was doing was actually in the frame of what he was recording, which I totally understood because my first time using glass I had the same problem. I was able to see how glass might be more useful than I had originally given it credit for, though. Watching someone do something from the first person perspective really does change a story.

The only difficulties I ran into editing the video involved audio. We did two takes of making the drink, and it seemed like every time I liked the audio, the visual wouldn't be up to par, and vice versa. This probably could have been remedied by him explaining the process once through without actually doing it, so I could match that audio up with the video later.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Turning in Glass assignments

We're nearly done with the Glass phase, although most of you are still working on your Glassumentaries.

I haven't told you how to turn these in completely because your time with the device is so staggered. Plus the process video is subject to revision. So here's what I'm requiring to get this finished.

1. Glass process video revisions are due May 8. When you've uploaded your revised version, I want you to tweet out that link with a social media optimized pitch and link.

2. When you finish your Glassumentary, do the same - SMO pitch and link.

3. Once you're done with #1 and #2, I want you then to create a post on this blog that puts all of your Glass projects together as embeds (including your stuff from Phase 1). Also include your Glass tweets. In that post, I also want you to write about 500 words. We know the Glass project has been put on hiatus but wearables with cameras are not going away. Answer some of these questions and anything else that comes to mind.

  • What was the process like?
  • Where do you see this fitting into our journalism of the future?
  • Is Glass viable for journalism as is, or would it need changes to work better? 
  • So Glass is on hiatus. Can you think of ways this experience translates to other technology, gadgets or products on the market and used by journalists now? Where could you apply these skills in your work?

Get these posts up by May 11.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Emilie's architecture through Glass video

For my Google Glass Day 2 assignment, I got to look at some of the projects that architecture students are working on in the studio. Kathleen is an architecture major and is currently working on a light model in her class. She came up with the idea based off of one of the class's previous projects, and it inspired her to first make a computer model of the light building. The building is designed so that the light comes through the windows at different angles throughout the day and makes cool looking designs along the buildings. She is in the process of making the computer model come to life and the video shows her cutting and measuring the cardboard which are the walls of the structure. Showing her how to use Glass was fairly easy she was really interested in the idea and I think it was able to capture how she uses an exacto knife very preciously for all of her work. Architecture projects require long hours of tedious work and it's cool to see her create the model through her perspective.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Cooking with Glass

For part 2 of the google glass practice assignment I was in Philadelphia the entire weekend because I went to visit my sister for Easter. Since I was not at school I had a tough time deciding what I was going to use glass for in Philly. Then, I realized how much my sister enjoyed cooking and how she always said it's one of her greatest skills. Therefore, I thought why not use glass to show her cooking.

To be honest, teaching her how to use glass was quite frustrating. For some reason she just didn't understand how to use the device. Every time she was close to recording she would stop the video or touch the side of the google glass and mess everything up! She finally (sort of) understood the device and used it when she was cooking. Although she made a number of  meals on Easter, I used the process technique to show the different things she was making. Since each meal took about 30 or more minutes, I only had her record certain things, such as chopping and slicing vegetables/ grilling, etc. Overall, although it took some time for her to get use to, it was fun and I enjoy google glass.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Sam's timeline

I'm familiar with Timeline so this wasn't too hard to make. But no matter how good you are at it, it's still a tedious process. There's a lot of information that needs to be available and compiled in order to create an effective timeline. It's also more exciting when there's other media that can be pulled in besides just photos – things like tweets, Facebook posts, videos, etc. The more interactive, the better. It also has to be something that presents itself well in a linear format – whether it be the events of a day, a year or ten years.

I think all of these elements along with length of the timeline and relevance (no one is going to care about an Obama timeline right now) can make it a cool multimedia piece. Especially if it's paired with something like an article or a video, it works even better than just a standalone.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Gaby's Process Video

So for my process video my friend Noah Satlzman wore Glass while welding a part of one of the brakes for the formula SAE car that the Formula team builds over the course of the semester. After some technical difficulties (he wears glasses and had to wear glass under the welding helmet) we finally got glass to record well and this is the result.

I think it was cool to watch the video that was recorded, even if sometimes it wasn't showing everything that Noah was doing. After wards I had more than half an hour of footage that I had to condense into 2 minutes, which was somewhat of a challenge, but I did it and this is the end result.

Ali's Timeline of Chernobyl Disaster

Kelley Phi Kappa Theta Update

Madison annotated


Ali's Annotation

Sam's annotation

Gaby's update on Phi Kappa Theta - Genius Annotation

Austin's Genius Annotation

Jeremy annotated

Danielle's Genius post

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Gaby's Timeline

I had used Timeline Js before to publish a Lehigh-Lafayette Rivalry timeline for the Brown and White. Even so, I definitely think this is an awesome tool for documenting historical events and making sense of chronological information.

To find events I simple found other timelines and extracted the most interesting information. For videos and pictures, I used YouTube and Getty images respectively. I also embedded one tweet, which was the famous "Four more years." tweet by President Obama. I think these timelines are fairly easy to make and so practical

Emilie's Timeline

This is my first time using timeline and I think it'd be a cool tool to use for certain news stories, and maybe even on the Brown and White for some events. I did mine on the history of same-sex marriages in the U.S. over the past 25 years and found it interesting while doing my research. I found multiple timelines on the web with different information so I compared them and complied the most important information into my timeline. I didn't know much about which about the history of marriage legalization by state so I actually learned a lot while doing the research.

The thing I disliked about using timeline was the tediousness and inflexibility of using a Google document. Although it is helpful because it produces the timeline automatically, I don't really like using google documents for multimedia work. However, I was able to find images on both flickr and Getty pretty easily and imbed them in the document. There were one or two events in my timeline that couldn't really tell a visual story so I had a tough time finding pictures for those. I think it would be best to use timeline for an event that is really visual and can share the story with just one image.

I chose to do mine on events that have influenced the gay rights movement in the U.S.  I liked working on this assignment, mainly because I have never used photos from public sites like Getty Images before. It was cool to see all the interesting photos that are available for us to use, and it was also very encouraging to see how so many people are willing to share their work. I liked coming up with an ideal image in my head to go along with an event, and then looking for a photo that kind of matched or even exceeded that vision. It helped me to think visually about how to represent events in an interesting way.
A couple of times, I could not find an image to go with the event, so that also made me think of what kind of photo I would use if I could take the photo myself. For example, for the Stonewall Inn riots, I thought it would be cool to find a photo from a more recent gathering or parade in front of the inn, to show how it's still such an integral symbol of the gay rights movement, not just a static moment in history. But, I couldn't really find a photo that tied those two concepts together. Since I'm currently taking photography for the Brown & White, I'm starting to think about how I can incorporate my own photography into my future journalism work and getting used to thinking on my feet when I'm first assigned an article.


Although I've never used Timeline before, I didn't think it was too difficult to use. I think it's a really useful multimedia skill to have so I'm happy I was able to use it. I think it would be a cool thing to include for a Brown & White essay or assignment.

I think one of the toughest things was putting links in the media section. Like Austin, I couldn't find out how to use the Flickr images for my timeline. I found a lot of good pictures on the site, but I didn't see how to embed them. Therefore, most of my media came from Getty Images (which was much easier to use), youtube or wikipedia. I liked including youtube videos in my timeline because many of the events during the Bush presidency included speeches, which I think are best shown through video. I wasn't a huge fan of finding tweets and embedding them, so I stuck with more visuals. In terms of finding timeline information on Bush's presidency, I also compared different sites with different timelines to see what each had in common. Overall, I like timeline and will probably use it again!

Danielle's timeline

I'm not sure why, but when I try to embed the code nothing is showing up. I keep trying to repaste and when you click on the link it's fine, so I'll have to figure out what I'm doing wrong. Besides that, I like using Timeline.js. It's a really cool tool and it's pretty easy to use. The most difficult thing is just collecting all of the data and putting it in the appropriate places.

I used Getty Images, Youtube and Twitter for my timeline. Once you get into the swing of things, it's pretty easy to do. I think it would be a great tool for The Brown and White to continue using, as it pulls together information in a really visual way, and it's super easy to interact with.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Austin's Timeline: Obama's Presidency

This is my second time using the Timeline feature, so I was already a little bit experienced with how to use the technology, but it was my first time doing the entire thing by myself. It's a good idea to be able to just place all the info into a Google spreadsheet and have it create itself automatically. Google Sheets can be a little clunky at times though, so it's sometimes annoying to paste all the info in there, but it's a whole lot easier than it could be.

To find the key events for my timeline, I looked at other timelines of events during Obama's presidency (on various websites, not timelines made through Timeline JS). I compared a bunch of different ones to see which events they had in common to determine which were the most important, but I also used my own judgment based on what I thought was most important. As for photos, I mainly used the Getty Images creative commons search because it had a much wider selection than Flickr. It also was a lot easier to use...I couldn't figure out how to get the embed code from a photo on Flickr. I would just search key words from the event I was trying to find and it would often have at least a few related photos. It wasn't too hard finding ones for available use though. Overall, I enjoy using the technology as a way of displaying info because it's very visually pleasing and relatively easy to use.