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The Oklahoma City Bombing Online

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					                                                                              Jordan Miko
                                                                                  ENG444
                                                                       Print To Web Essay
           The Oklahoma City Bombing Online



         This was a very unique assignment to me. At first I did not understand what all of

the fuss was about. However, my outlook changed shortly after that. I realized that when

you convert a print-based document to a web-based document, it under goes a

transformation. The “author” can add style, flair, and emotion to a normally monotone

story.

         When I began the assignment I started by merely applying different but similar

(different color schemes for accent, but displayed with the same style), but then started

playing with different techniques to change the text of the document for style and

emotion, but without changing the literary content. An example of this is the fiery e-mail

“written” by Timothy McVeigh to an online neo-nazi forum; this is different from its

original context.

         It was originally written to a law enforcement agency within the F.B.I. However,

I decided it would look and read better if it was being sent into an online forum via-e-

mail, as we are all so used to reading from such an electronic source anyway. For the

employee of the Federal Murrah Building, it was originally an on-site interview with a

reporter on the scene. But it had much better drama if it looked like it was written on a

crumpled-up piece of paper in red ink, almost a last will and testament, but different

content.

         Now with the document I chose for this project, it was already naturally broken

down into reasonable sections. Once I had determined the proper way to present each
                                                                              Jordan Miko
                                                                                  ENG444
                                                                      Print To Web Essay
segment, I started adding style and trying to develop a continuous theme, interweaving it

throughout all of the 9 or so segments. I found that I liked the idea of a cross between

pictures, shapes (rectangles), and content for each of the segments. However, there were,

I believe, two segments I felt that did not need all three criteria, only two. The segments

were chosen because there sources were not realistically identifiable (the on-site

interview, and the reporters notebook).

        When comparing my print-to-web assignment to others in the class, I discovered

that I took a considerably different approach than my peers. I wanted my document to

look completely different when presented on the web than when presented in print, as

with the web, one can ad interactivity and other “bells and whistles” that can not be

afforded in print. When laying out the different colored rectangles on each page, I was

trying to do so in a way so that the reader would easily recognize it was a different page,

but still get a sense that they were not “lost.”

        Now while doing this project, I realize that I did not necessarily obey every one of

Lynch and Horton’s little rules they come had up with. However, I did feel that they did

not directly address such a project as my endeavor. The conversion took a lot more time

than I had initially estimated it would take. It would have been one thing if I was just

posting a written document in an .html document, so that it can be read without

downloading any documents or drivers for software, but of course I did not do that. I

started with merely adding a picture to each background, then laying the text from the

respective text section over top of it, giving the reader a sense that they are reading a first

hand source.
                                                                             Jordan Miko
                                                                                 ENG444
                                                                     Print To Web Essay
        I spent a decent amount of time comparing and contrasting different fonts, sizes,

and line heights against the picture that I had placed in the background. Some were very

easy, but the more challenging examples turned out to be on plane lined paper, trying to

align the text so that it fits like a natural human writing stroke.

        Then I started adding supporting pictures to help the reader along. While almost

everyone knows who Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols are, I am willing to bet the

case is not that same with Mike Fortier. The pictures were a handy device to convey an

authentic message and to remind the reader of one or two details that are necessary to the

so-called “plot.” But still, my pages didn’t look related what so ever. Then came the

rectangular light bulb. I discovered that no matter the relative size or color of the

rectangle, the human mind would recognize it as similar, although the content and

positioning had changed. Also, it is imperative that I let you know that cascading style

sheets played a vital role in this project and without them I would have been left with an

ugly, horribly aligned web document.

        After this had dawned on me I started to really play around. However, I must say

that I actually would have liked to put more time into this assignment than I was

restricted to. That is not to say that I am displeased with the final product.

				
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