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Here is the NEW BLOG for the Fall 2008 New Media In Journalism class:

It’s a new semester, a new channel and a new blog!


Family and Trip Information

This is the last I intend to post about the family and our trip on this blog. Since this is off topic for this blog I am covering this topic on my family blog here.

Three grandkids

More photos of Solomon’s First Day

Today was quite a day and I am tired. Today was the birth of grandchild number six, Soloman Sloan. I have covered the day in several ways:

I am too tired to do or say more. Wow, what a day! If you did not get an answer to an Email today. Here is why!


I am up in Washington and we have a grandchild coming today. This is grandchild number 6!

I will be posting updates on the trip and birth on my family blog and on my twitter stream.


Spring 2008 New Media Class

My Spring Class was great!

I really enjoyed this, the biggest class I have ever taught. These students were a pleasure to teach. The really stretched themselves and went beyond their comfort zones. I am going to be awarding a lot of good grades because these folks delivered. I am really proud to have known and taught them. We had a good time. This is a fine bunch of young people!

For our final I bought pizza and drinks for the whole class, except for one student who is a Vegan and so I got her a Vegan dish. It wasn’t just them learning from me. I learned from them and will be making changes that I think will make me a better teacher. Besides learning to teach better I learned some fun things. For example, I plan to go back to Vegan restaurant when I return from vacation (which starts tomorrow.)

But first, on Friday my wife and I will be in Seattle for the birth of our sixth grandchild! I will be back at SJSU on June 9th.

These are the video and audio blogs of students in this class:

If it has not been turned in already, it is now too late.


Wednesday, May 21 5:15p-7:30p, DBH 226

Final Projects are here.

You will only be able to present from one computer. This computer will only have iTunes and a Web Browser Available. The videos or audios all have to be on a central theme. You start with 100 points. Here is how grading works. You loose points based on the following:

  • Minimum 3 episodes. Minus 33 points for each audio or video less than three.
  • Minus 15 points if all episodes are not true to theme.
  • Minus 10 points if your episodes fail to tell a story.
  • Minus 10 points each if you failed to create a Blogger Video Blog (vlog) and/or a Feedburner RSS feed for your final project and/or that vlog is not dedicated to the final project.
  • Minus 15 points for each instance of the use of copyrighted material without permission.
  • Minus 10 points if you are unable to present from within iTunes due to a failure of your RSS feed.
  • Minus 25 points if you are unable to present from either iTunes or your video blog.

Today’s Lab

Using Feedburner to create a podcast

Creating your RSS “podcast” Feed
This evening we will be using Feedburner to create a podcast RSS feed to your vlog. The screen shots shown here are from the Freevlog tutorial “Get an RSS Feed.” This pdf guide is meant to supplement, not replace, the fine video by Ryanne Hodson and the good folks at Freevlog.

ITunes Lab

Verify your podcast works!
Now is the time to test your podcast. I use the term “test” quite literally here. iTunes is what you will be presenting your Final Presentation from! You do not want this to fail!

Take home assignments

Due Today


Open Lab

I plan to be here next week on dead day during “class time” if you want help


Wednesday, May 21 5:15p-7:30p

Six feet under final six minutes

Sit down, I have something important to tell you…
I was in my twenties when my father died. My youngest son was about a year old. My dad died of a rare disease, but this is not about my dad, it is about you. Every day is a gift. This is not just a gift to you. Each day of your life is a gift to all the people who love you and anybody who does now and or will someday want to know you. Believe it or not what happens to you is important. We think we have a long time, but we never know, we likely do, but…

My first wife was thirty-three when she was killed in a car accident. In a blink of an eye she was gone and I was a dad raising three kids on my own. Her story passed to me to tell them. But, this is not about her, or me, it is about you. You may live to be over a 100, but someday you will not be around to tell the story of who you are now. But, now you can tell that story, you have the power to tell that story now, to the whole world.

Gone the Sun
In the book Gone the Sun, Winston Groom writes, “Sometimes I think we should be issued another paper, a Life Certificate if you will – which could contain some brief statement for historical purposes that could explain how a person lived and what they accomplished and where they failed and why.”

You have a story to tell to people who may not be alive yet
Someday somebody will wonder what it is like to be you, now. Maybe your children, grandchildren, great…

Maybe that person will be you
You may someday look back on life and wonder what it was like to be you, now. You may someday be your own audience. You can also share stories as you remember them of folks you care about who are already gone…


“Hey, my name is Rianna,
I am a Junior at Tesoro High School and I am on the varsity song team.” This is what Rianna’s MySpace blog says. According to the LA Times, “Rianna Woolsey, a 16-year-old cheerleader, last logged onto on Dec. 6, 2005. She died the next day when her car smashed into a tree near her home in southern Orange County.” Her page that has not changed since her death. The page is a time capsule of a life cut short. The only part that is different is the section where readers post comments. Since her death over two years year ago, friends have written probably over 1000 messages there. Her friends whom she authorized to post to her page still are posting there, to her, to this day. When I mentioned her on our class blog last year, I received a nice Email from a member of her family thanking me for mentioning her, for remembering Rianna. This person found the post through Google. As I mentioned in that blog post:

Every blog post we make builds our legacy and tells the story of our lives. This is so important, this is what folks will look back on when we are gone. This is our lives with permalinks and cached in Google. Her (Rianna’s) words, my first wife Candy’s words, or my sister’s (who died from Cancer a few years ago) words, or my father’s words, all these words and stories I have, and the stories you have, that we hold in our memories can now be written and shared in the world by us and those living with us and preserved for a world without us. Rianna’s continuing story is in the comments of Rianna’s MySpace page. Her memory is shared for those who never knew her there. It is a story started by her before her death certificate and still being written by those who remember her.

As you contemplate your final movies for this class or even your next post to your blog or MySpace or Facebook, or wherever; remember, you don’t have to be heavy, or try to do something poignant. Your memory of the best burrito you ever had in your entire life is a good story, an important story. It is a story that may be real important to someone who wants to hear that story either today or someday. Perhaps that person, someday, may be you. I wish I had videos of loved ones lost telling the story of the best burrito they ever had. I wish I had a video of myself at your age telling that story.

Lab assignment

Posting media files to Blogger

How to post your media files to your Blogger Blog
This is a basic and critical skill for video blogging. You have to do this for your vlog to be a vlog. Here is the info you need!

Video on getting a Blogger blog

We get blogs!
Our lab today will be to get a Blogger Blog. This will be the first step in creating our Vlog and then our Podcast! Here is a great video by the fine folks at about getting a Blogger blog.

Apple tech spec

Geek RSS Stuff: What are the rules of podcast compliance?
THE TECH SPECS – According to Wikipedia, “As of September 2007, the iPod had sold over 110 million units worldwide (stated in “The Beat Goes On” conference) making it the best-selling digital audio player series in history.” If you want an audience for your podcast you have to be able put your content on the iPod platform. There are plenty of tools that make it possible to do that, but to make it easier for folks to find you, and to make your podcast look more attractive in the iTunes interface, you may want to tweak that RSS feed.

If you are ready to take the leap into true XML hacking, Apple has the technical specification right here. In short, this is the podcasters Bible. Thou shalt comply! (Resistance is futile…)

Take home assignments

Due Today


Due Next Week, May 7


Brian Baer with Nikon

Visit from an old friend
Brian Baer, an old friend and now political photographer for the Sacramento Bee, came to SJSU Today. Brian was here for the School of Journalism and Mass Communication’s media ethics symposium in Engineering 189 which focused on covering presidential candidates. It was great seeing Brian and catching up on old times. Brian graduated in 1989, two years after I started working at SJSU. Brian will not be able to come today’s class due to a schedule issue.


A demo of editing from tape.

Open Lab

Work on assignments that are due.


Due Today, April 23

  • The first episode of your final project
  • Read: “We the Media,” by Dan Gillmor
    • Please read Chapters 10, 11 and 12 through the end of the book. This is starts on page 191 in the printed O’Reilly edition of the Dan Gillmor book. Label this post “We the Media 4”
    • Do a post on this blog (or put a link on this blog to a post on your own blog) related to that reading indicating what the author said and why you agree or disagree with the author.

Due Next Week, April 30


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