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					C-4   THE NEW MEXICAN Saturday, September 18, 2010



                                                                                                                                                            Tech campus
  TECH                                                                                                                                                      spends week
                                                                                                                                                            without social
                                                                                                                                                            networking
                                                                                                                                                            By Kathy Matheson
                                                                                                                                                            The Associated Press

                                                                                                                                                               HARRISBURG, Pa. — A central Pennsylvania
                                                                                                                                                            technological college with fewer students than many
                                                                                                                                                            Facebook users have friends is blacking out social
                                                                                                                                                            media for a week.
                                                                                                                                                               The bold experiment at Harrisburg University of
                                                                                                                                                            Science and Technology — which has drawn praise,
                                                                                                                                                            criticism and even a jab on late-night TV — means
                                                                                                                                                            students and staff can’t access Facebook, Twitter or
                                                                                                                                                            a host of other ubiquitous social networks while on
                                                                                                                                                                                    campus.
                                                                                                                                                                                       Provost Eric Darr said the
                                                                                                                                                                                    exercise that began Monday
                                                                                                                                                                                    is not a punishment for the
                                                                                                                                                                                    school’s 800 students, nor a
                                                                                                                                                                                    precursor to a ban, but a way
                                                                                                                                                                                    for people to think critically
                                                                                                                                                                                    about the prevalence of social
                                                                                                                                                                                    media.
                                                                                                                                                                                       The blackout comes on the
                                                                                                                                                            heels of a report that Web users in the U.S. spend
                                                                                                                                                            more time socializing on Facebook than searching
                                                                                                                                                            with Google, according to data released last week
                                                                                                                                                            from researchers at comScore Inc.
                                                                                                                                                               Still, Darr said he can’t believe the controversy
                                                                                                                                                            generated in the Twitterverse, blogosphere and aca-
                                                                                                                                                            demia, with some accusing the school of inflicting
                                                                                                                                                            “a terrible thing and an infringement upon people’s
Customers await the launch of the new iPad tablet computer in May at an Apple store in central Rome, Italy. At first glance, the                            rights.”
iPad looked like a heavy, overgrown iPod touch to this reviewer. But with a few months use, it became apparent to him that it’s one                            “By and large, the students are supportive of the
of those devices he’s always needed. ANgElo CArCoNI/THE ASSoCIATEd prESS                                                                                    whole exercise and don’t get so worked up over it,”
                                                                                                                                                            Darr said.
                                                                                                                                                               On campus, attempts to log in to MySpace or
Tech TeST                                                                                                                                                   LinkedIn return the message: “This domain is
                                                                                                                                                            blocked.” E-mail, texting and other Web surfing is still




iPad wins over skeptic
                                                                                                                                                            allowed, but not instant-messaging.
                                                                                                                                                               Student Ashley Harris, 22, said the blackout has
                                                                                                                                                            freed her to concentrate on her classwork instead of
                                                                                                                                                            toggling on her laptop between social networks and
                                                                                                                                                            the lesson at hand.
                                                                                                                                                               “I feel obligated to check my Facebook. I feel obli-
                                                                                                                                                            gated to check my Twitter. Now I don’t,” Harris said.
                                                                                                                                                            “I can just solely focus.”
For one user, device fulfills                      tablet computer when it came out in April.
                                                      It cuts the mouse and keyboard out of the
                                                                                                         hold comfortably in one hand. In particular,
                                                                                                         I need one hand free to steady myself on the          Part of Harris’ willingness to disconnect stemmed
promise of tablet computer                         equation, giving us a straight, tactile connec-       New York subway.                                   from her feeling that the experiment demonstrates
                                                                                                                                                            the young university’s focus on innovation. The pri-
                                                   tion. While the iPad builds on the iPhone,               I was wrong. The iPad isn’t too heavy if I
By Peter Svensson                                  it feels like a bigger achievement. The first         support it on a bag when standing. And the         vate nonprofit institution was founded in 2003 and
The Associated Press                               iPhone was a great phone, driven by far-              screen is just big and sharp enough to display     operates out of a 16-story building in downtown Har-
                                                   thinking new ideas. But other people had              decently a letter-sized document or a refor-       risburg, the state capital about 95 miles northwest of
   NEW YORK — At first glance, the iPad            made good phones before. Before the iPad,             matted newspaper page with teasers for a           Philadelphia.
looked like a heavy, overgrown iPod Touch.         no one had made a good tablet computer.               couple of articles.                                   Adam Ostrow, editor-in-chief of the social media
After just a few months of use, however,              When I first got my hands on an iPad for              Replacing paper was the rationale of            news site Mashable.com, said he’d be interested to see
this iPad skeptic realized that it’s so much       a review, I played games on it for about a            Amazon.com Inc.’s Kindle e-reader, but the         if the university collects any hard metrics from the
more — it’s one of those devices I’ve always                                                                                                                ban, such as better class attendance or more assign-
                                                   month. My favorite strategy game, Battle for          multi-purpose iPad beats it at its own game.
needed. Those don’t come around very often.                                                                                                                 ments turned in on time.
                                                   Wesnoth, was written for the PC, but actually         The Kindle was revolutionary, but it has been
                                                                                                                                                               But he doesn’t think a blackout is feasible over the
   Most things get less interesting the more       works better on the iPad, thanks to the imme-         held back by a screen technology that’s slow
                                                                                                                                                            long-term. Though Facebook has been blocked in
examples you see of them. If you’ve never          diacy of the touch interface. Several other           to react to our commands. It can display
                                                                                                                                                            some workplaces as a time-waster, it is a crucial tool
seen a computer before, the first one is a rev-    games conspired to suck away my productiv-            static page after static page, but scrolling and
                                                                                                                                                            for college students to coordinate social schedules,
elation, but each model gets less remarkable.      ity, so it took me a while to realize that the        zooming don’t really work.
                                                                                                                                                            organize events, plan study sessions and collaborate
   Apple Inc.’s iPad is the other way around.      iPad actually fulfills a longtime tablet vision          Amazon launched a new TV spot this              on assignments.
It looks more impressive in light of what’s        as well: It’s like a sheet of paper, electronified.   week, showing a man struggling to read                “You really can’t disconnect people from it in the
come before it. I’ve seen many tablet com-         That’s what made me plunk down $499 for               an iPad poolside in bright sunlight, while a       long run without creating some real inefficiencies and
puters of different stripes since 2002, when       one of my own once I was done with the bor-           bikini-clad woman next to him is reading           backlash,” said Ostrow.
Microsoft introduced Windows XP Tablet             rowed review unit.                                    a Kindle comfortably. It’s true that Kindles          Ironically, the university hosted a social media
Edition. The quality has varied, but they’ve all      I knew I was waiting for a device that             are more readable than iPads in bright light.      summit on Wednesday — mid-blackout. That caused
been failures, even the recent ones. They’re a     could replace printouts, magazines, news-             What the ad doesn’t mention is that that’s the     some angst for guest speaker Sherrie Madia, commu-
Stonehenge’s worth of near-useless slabs.          papers and books in my life. At first, I didn’t       only situation in which you’ll be happier with     nications director for the University of Pennsylvania’s
   The iPad finally fulfilled the promise of the   think the iPad was it, because it’s too heavy to      a Kindle.                                          Wharton School, who, like many, is used to tweeting
                                                                                                                                                            during conferences.
                                                                                                                                                               She said the buzz around the ban has started a
                                                                                                                                                            much-needed conversation about effective use of
                                                                                                                                                            social media and how to balance online life with the

coming out: Games                                                                                                                                           world offline.
                                                                                                                                                               “Do we really want to be enslaved to Facebook or
                                                                                                                                                            Twitter?” Madia said. “Once you create anything in
                           The following video games are              u Cars Toon: Mater’s Tall Tales (Wii,      Wii and dS, rated E10+)                    social media, you have to feed the beast. When you
                           among those set for release this           rated E)                                                                              stop adding content, you disappear.”
                           week, according to vgreleases.com:                                                                                                  The university has created course work around the
                                                                      u gladiator Begins (pSp, rated M)          Friday, Sept. 17                           ban, and some students will write essays about their
                                                                      u UFC Undisputed 2010 (pSp, rated T)
                           Tuesday, Sept. 14                          u gormiti: The lords of Nature (Wii        u lionheart: Kings’ Crusade (pC)           experience.
                                                                      and dS, rated E10+ on Wii and E on                                                       Darr acknowledged students can use smart phones
                           u Halo: reach (Xbox 360, rated M)                                                                                                to bypass the university’s computer network or go
                           u Scooby-doo! and the Spooky               dS)                                        Today
                                                                      u Truth or lies (Xbox 360, pS3 and         u Horse life Adventures (Wii and dS,       to a nearby hotel for unblocked WiFi. And at a tech-
                           Swamp (Wii, pS2 and dS, rated E10+)
                                                                      Wii, rated T)                              rated E)                                   centric school, he said, some students will try to get
                           u The lord of the rings: Aragorn’s
                                                                                                                                                            around the firewall just to prove they can.
                           Quest (pS3, Wii, pS2, pSp and dS,          u legend of the guardians: The
                           rated T)                                   owls of ga’Hoole (Xbox 360, pS3,                           Mcclatchy Newspapers          Yet if people feel that compelled to check status
                                                                                                                                                            updates or Twitter replies, that’s important to know.
                                                                                                                                                               “I want an honest reaction to the experiment,” Darr
                                                                                                                                                            said.
                                                                                                                                                               The provost also confessed to some trepidation:
                                                                                                                                                            College officials can’t use social networks this week


In brief
                                                   similar recommendations when you visit a              standing a human’s thoughts.                       either for student recruiting, business networking or
                                                   new city.                                                                                                curriculum planning.
                                                      Tech companies are already working to
                                                   predict what people want, but only in pieces.         AT&T, Sprint, Verizon                                 “Next week, I will be as thankful as the next person
                                                                                                                                                            we’re back on social media,” Darr said.
Mind-reading phones?
                                                      Search engine Google Inc., movie-rental
                                                   service Netflix Inc. and online radio service
                                                                                                         to carry Samsung tablet                               So will junior Giovanni Acosta, 21, who said he’s
                                                                                                                                                            been texting up a storm trying to coordinate social
                                                   Pandora try to anticipate what people want              NEW YORK — All four major U.S. wire-
Tech’s evolving there                              even before they know they want it.                   less carriers will sell an iPad-like tablet
                                                                                                                                                            events without Facebook and Twitter.
                                                                                                                                                               But student Dan Warseck, 36, said it doesn’t bother
  SAN FRANCISCO — How smart do you                    Stringing those functions together with the        computer from Samsung Electronics Co., the         him — he prefers face-to-face communication and
want your smart phone to actually be? Do you       wealth of other information that phones col-          companies said Thursday.                           doesn’t even have texting on his phone.
want it to read your mind, even a little bit?      lect about people could pave the way for even           Samsung and the service providers                   “I’m not one of these people who puts their life
                                                   more helpful electronics, Rattner said.               — AT&T Inc., Sprint Nextel Corp., T-Mobile         online,” Warseck said. “My friends have my phone
  Intel Corp.’s research chief, Justin Rattner,
                                                      A challenge is training computers to ana-          USA Inc. and Verizon Wireless Inc. — didn’t        number if they really need to get in touch with me.”
says that technology has advanced to the
                                                   lyze data from “hard sensors” (which mea-             say how much the Galaxy Tab will cost, or
point that “context-aware computing,” an
                                                   sure location, motion, voice patterns, tem-           exactly when it will be on sale.
idea that’s been around for two decades, is        perature and the like) and combining those
becoming more of a reality with the rise of                                                                Verizon Wireless said in a statement that it
                                                   findings with data from “soft sensors” (such          will start selling it “in the coming weeks,” and
mobile devices.                                    as calendar appointments and Web browsing             Sprint said it will do so “this fall.” T-Mobile
  That could lead to phones that act as            history).                                             and AT&T plan to sell it this holiday season.
psychics in your pocket. Rather than simply           For example, your phone could detect that
amass secrets about you, the devices could                                                                 The Galaxy Tab has a 7-inch screen, half
                                                   you’ve just left work and seem to be on your          the size of the iPad. It runs Google Inc.’s
be doing things with that information, such        way home — a location it might know from
as predicting what you might do next and                                                                 Android smart phone software and can play
                                                   your address book. It could then automatically        Flash video from the Web, which the iPad
offering suggestions.                              recommend the best route around traffic.              can’t. It also has two cameras for videocon-
  Rattner showed a few examples during his            “Things don’t get really interesting until         ferencing, which the iPad lacks.
keynote speech Wednesday at Intel’s annual         you fuse that hard sensor data with soft sen-           The iPad starts at $499. The Tab will prob-
developer conference in San Francisco.             sor data,” Rattner said. “It gives devices almost     ably cost less, both because it’s smaller and
  Among them: a prototype application Intel        this sixth sense of anticipating what a user will     because carriers will probably subsidize it
worked on with Fodor’s Travel. It learns           need in the future, whether that’s the next few       when buyers sign up for two-year data ser-         People walk by the Harrisburg University of Sci-
what types of foods you like to eat and what       moments or at dinner later in the day.”               vice contracts.                                    ence and Technology building last week in Har-
types of attractions you like to visit, based on      Rattner added that researchers are even                                                               risburg, Pa. The university is experimenting with
searches you type into the phone or locations      making steps toward the “ultimate form of                                                                shutting off Facebook, Twitter and other social
identified using GPS. The software makes           sensing” — a computer capable of under-                                         The Associated Press     networks on campus. MArC lEvy/THE ASSoCIATEd prESS

				
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Description: iPad is an Apple on January 27, 2010 released tablet PCs, positioned between the Apple iPhone smartphone and notebook computer products (MacBook, MacBook Pro and MacBook Air) between the provision of access to the Internet, send and receive e-mail, view e-books, play audio or video capabilities.