Thursday, April 27, 2017

BONUS: What's Next "Paper"

What’s Next for 3D Viewing Technology?

Nintendo 3DS Rhetorical Analysis Follow-up

Note: my apologies for any oddities you might notice in this "paper". There were technical difficulties when I transfered this document into a blog post format and I can't seem to fix them completely. If you wish, you can view the original version here instead.


The recent decade of technological advancements has certainly been an interesting time period to live in. Phones, watches, televisions, cars - all different kinds of devices are now becoming part computer in one way or another, but amongst all these adaptations there’s been a noticeable lack of the creation of a brand new “killer app”. Though we’ve had devices become more “sophisticated” in a sense, no completely new ideas have really come to the public eye as scientists seem to want to modernize what already exists instead. From this, a certain type of technological innovation has been able to reach out of it’s niche and become a topic of interest; I am of course talking about the use of stereoscopic 3D viewing technology.

Though this kind of tech has existed since the mid-19th century[1], interest seems to waver around it due to the kinds of issues it can present, as well as doubts on whether said technology has any kind of future. Specifically speaking, many wonder if 3D viewing can really be favored over other kinds of viewing types that exist. From looking at various sources on the material, I hope to present an educated answer to this subject.

Digital VS Physical

The first thing to consider is the use of digital means of viewing material. It is thanks to the advancement of digital viewing that 3D technology was able to advance as far as it did. Being restricted to film usage (or similar) due to how such technology works[1], digital media and entertainment allowed people to find ways to emulate 3D viewing in other ways. Most notable being the glasses free Nintendo 3DSTM, which was an advancement of their previous 3D endeavor: the Nintendo VirtualBoyTM.

Point is, if digital viewing technology of the entertainment variety were to lower in popularity over time, it would most likely spell doom to stereoscopic 3D, as it’s one of the only areas of the digital realm that can be used to try out experimental usage of the tool and find it’s benefits/shortcomings. Thankfully, a multitude of sources have been able to find positive outlets of digital entertainment that warrant it staying around society for years to come. As an example, in 2014 an experiment was conducted around game-based digital interventions for depression therapy[9].


The results suggest that digital entertainment was more successful in treating such cases than traditional means[2]. Even then, the article states how more tests on this subject matter still need to be conducted to come to a better conclusion on the matter, so digital entertainment will stay around for that reason alone. With this, worries over stereoscopic 3D’s experimental outlet disappearing are nothing more than a pipe dream.

3D VS 2D[10][11]

Another question comes from whether 3D really has as much staying power as 2D viewing does. The reason why any form of technology has been able to become something that’s used by the masses is because of the public’s ability to adopt the new machinery, as well as the technology’s ability to adapt to different kinds of applications that the public may or may not use. Simply put, if 3D viewing can’t be as naturally used in different contexts as 2D viewing can, people may not be willing to give this venture a chance. Cases in the past have shown people’s reluctance to bring in such technology for various reasons[1], but there’s still hope yet. According to several articles, 3D has actually been able to be applied in various ways that the average person may not realize[3], so getting such technology into the average user’s hands might just be a need to better trigger people’s curiosity in the future. Afterall, it would take years for television to be so common place in the household, and even longer for technology like phones to become so commonplace that people of almost all age groups have one. 3D might just be taking a slower pace to become a standard of our daily life.

3D vs VR
As of very recently gadgets have appeared that’ve made the idea of virtual reality a real possibility. With the ability to not only allow users to see things in simulated 3D, but to also transport them mentally into that place in an immersive fashion has definitely been the most pressing issue for stereoscopic 3D. All things considered, this is actually a case where 3D just can’t keep up. Whereas people have been trying for centuries to make 3D work in different environments - with concerns coming in left and right about it’s unspoken effects on us, VR has been received incredibly well despite the problems it has. Take this video below for example[5], which talks about the issue of “VR sickness”, or lack thereof.
Though focusing more on the video game side of things, the main aspect this video shows is how despite VR having issues like these health problems come up, there are still plenty of people who are advocating for the advancement of this new tech. Various outlets talk solely about the excitement and hope in the air surrounding VR[7], which is just not something that you see or hear about when it comes to 3D - despite it being around for so much longer. Even services that toted themselves as advocators of such simulated 3D technology for decades like Mattel’s View-Master®[6][8] have now switched over to using VR technology[7] due to its overwhelming popularity. As such, it would seem like this is a situation where 3D technology’s future looks bleak as VR ends up overshadowing it in the public’s eye.
Final Thoughts
It’s a fairly tough call to say if stereoscopic 3D has a future ahead. Though traits like the first two mentioned are in it’s favor, being challenged by a visual stimuli that functions identical but has additional uses to it and is much better received by the general public, is incredibly daunting to say the least. We’ve seen such cases occur in the past with other forms of technology, like the transition from records, to tapes, to CDs; or from VHS to DVD (and to Blu-Ray to an extent). As technology gets better, comparatively older systems fall behind as everyone wants to have whatever the “hot new thing” out on the market is. If something major were to happen to cause the abrupt halt of VR, maybe things could change in 3D’s favor, otherwise I think stereoscopic 3D is slowly going to slowly go back to it’s little niche again. This time, possibly for good.
•      •      • 
[1] Rio Kevin (2007). How It Works: The Evolution of 3D Glasses and 3D Technology. Journal of Young Investigators. Retrieved from:
[2] Li Jinhui, Theng Yin-Leng, and Foo Schubert. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. July 2014, 17(8): 519-527. doi:10.1089/cyber.2013.0481.
[3] Harris, Mark. “3D Without Four Eyes.” IEEE, 29 Nov. 2010.
[4] Cass, Stephen. “CES and the Future of VR.” IEEE, 2 March 2016.
[5] “Super Bunnyhop” (2017). Motion Sickness in VR. YouTube. Retrieved from:
[7] View-Master® is a registered trademark owned by Mattel.
Nintendo 3DSTM and Nintendo VirtualBoyTM are both trademark Nintendo Co., Ltd.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Here's to the technological future ahead of us!

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Blog 18: Data Ownership - The Blog Finale

So the time has finally come. With chapters 5 and 6 of Neff and Nafus’ Self-Tracking, we finally
bring our blogging entries to a close. Before getting into the final thoughts of these readings, let’s first cover the chapters read.

The two chapters cover both the common uses of tracking when it comes to people’s health data, as well as how complications can come up when it comes to the subject of who actually owns that data. In general, I think that this problem has a combination of sources it draws from; mainly due to the idea that, all things considered, it’s technically medical professionals that have ownership of your health data - they just allow you to (more or less) access it whenever you want because they understand you might want to look back on such things. This mindset on it’s own is fine, but when combined with the idea of a company owned system, I think it runs into issues where such data is considered to be part of the company’s database, which is owned by that business by law. This leads to resistance because these groups have the mentality that if they make exceptions surrounding their copyrighted works, they risk losing their protection over such material. Despite sounding bizarre, it does make some logical sense, as various things today have become public domain because the owner failed to completely secure their ownership. Even though there is no actual law along the lines of “protect it or lose it”, people have found loopholes in the past to take away ownership and most likely find others in the future. After all, it is kind of nonsensical to believe the real reason is simply because they think the user “won’t understand it” or in general the business just wants to make things difficult. If cases like Kim McAuliffe’s case in Chapter 6 shows anything, it shows that owners of such data are willing to work things out assuming there’s no risk on their end.

Any who, it’s crazy to think that these blogs entries are finally ending and this semester is practically over already. It still feels like we just started the semester recently. Making these blogs was definitely a fun experience and a neat way to get my thoughts on the readings out there. I usually have trouble expressing my thoughts in spoken words so having an outlet to say what I think in text has definitely been beneficial.


  • Have any of these readings changed your opinion on technology, internet, and rhetoric’s effect on people’s lives, or possibly taught you something new about said subjects?
  • What do you think is the biggest legal struggle tracking devices are going to have to overcome in order to become more commonly applied?

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Blog 17: Tracking and Uncertainty

Onto the next two chapters in Self-Tracking, we bring more attention to how these tracking devices are used. In particular, chapter 3 covers the different types of usage that tracking devices commonly find themselves in.

Ranging from evaluating some kind of progress to giving a visual meaning through the results, tracking seems to have garnered a lot more variety in usage than originally intended. I think that the book’s point about how tracking data results show more than what’s initially intended is very true in this respect, and I can’t help but wonder if there are situations if tracking can reveal something that one didn’t want to know about - per se, revealing too much information.

For example, let’s say a person is tracking their diet to make sure they only eat a proper amount of junk food so that they can continue to have a healthy lifestyle. After time though, the tracking device comes to reveal that the person has another unrelated but still important problem - they’re at risk of heart disease because of how much red meat they consume. Now the person has become overly conscious of what kinds of foods they eat in general so as to avoid future health issues. Things like the salmonella outbreaks that’ve occurred in various food products in the recent decade, or the importance of eating fish due to their high levels of omega 3. Though it can be argued that learning such information is ultimately a good thing, as it teaches people that there’s more to a healthy diet than just avoiding having too much sugar/fats, I can’t help but wonder if there are situations where learning so much info could lead to a negative outcome. If I may continue the example, learning about all of this could lead the person to be so worried about their diet that it starts interfering from their regular activities. Just a thought.

  • Have you ever had a situation like this before? How did you react?
  • Many health related things are tracked as soon as you’re born, and so far have yielded consistently accurate results custom built to the person in question. As such, could the inaccuracies that over-the-counter tracking devices have currently be resolved by using a similar tactic?

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Monday, April 17, 2017

Blog 16: Beginning of the End

Our next and effectively last text to read for this semester is Gina Neff’s and Dawn Nafus’ Self-Tracking, a piece that, from the first two chapters at least, seems to focus on the growing amount of tracking that exists in society today and what kinds of effects these tools have on us. At the moment, the chapters chose to focus on introducing us to the different kinds of tracking and its possible downsides.

I can definitely attest to these tracking devices having an effect on how you act from day to day. I remember when I first got my Apple Watch I thought it was neat that it could track how active you were and approximate how many calories you burn everyday. At most I considered it a cute little bonus that came with the device, but some time later I started actually looking into services like that often! I ended up worrying about whether I was getting the “normal” amount of physical activity and proper diet properly, even though I knew full well that I was just as healthy as anyone else. Even now when I have a better grasp that everyone’s different and has different needs that may not be properly measured by health devices, I still like to have these kinds of trackers available so that I can check that kind of info at a moments notice rather than looking for a professional. Assuming others have gone through a similar deal, hopefully people in general will be able to get over such worries or those who make such devices can find a way to appease to such fears as technology advances.

Side note: I just noticed on page 53, paragraph 2, theres a small typo. It states, "We wrestle with this question in chapter 5, but the short answer is that it the jury is out, and it depends on whom you ask." I think they were trying to say "...the short answer is that the jury is out..." unless there's something I'm missing. 


  • Have you ever used some sort of tracking device, and if so had such a worry to go through?
  • Do you agree with the book that such devices bring about privacy issues, or are these worries misguided?

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Blog 15: Onward to Tomorrow

We really are nearing the end here now huh? Not only does this blog mark the end of Samuel Greengard’s piece, it also leaves us with one more book to read before our time this spring comes to an end. For now though, let’s just focus on to subject of Chapter 7, shall we?

So funnily enough, in this chapter we focus on “What’s Next” for the futuristic Internet of Things, and needless to say it really does sound like the kind of stuff you’d hear in science fiction works of yesteryear. I know I already said this in the previous post but it really becomes apparent once the book goes into detail on what the average person’s life could be like once this technology is fully adopted. Of course with all of the positive things the book mentions about the Internet of Things, it does remember to bring up the negatives; and one that I didn’t mention in the previous post but I do want to cover here is how privacy is affected by all of this. Since people in general (and especially in the United States) take their privacy seriously, I think it would take a lot to get people to change their minds when it comes to Internet of Things akin to machines that monitor your health or daily habits. Along with that there’s always the concern that such technology makes the world sound like it could one day reach a utopian sounding lifestyle, and there have been a plethora of written works that discuss the issues that arise when a utopian society comes into play. With all that in mind, I think it could be worth the risk if for no reason other than the “pajamas [that] send a mild sensory alert” to your skin mentioned in page 180 to wake you up in the morning. Never need to worry about missing class from oversleeping again.


  • Do you think we could reach such an advanced Internet of Things within the next decades?
  • How much do you think is too much (for example, the pajamas that wake you up)?

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Thursday, April 6, 2017

Blog 14: How Should Today and Tomorrow Interact?

With chapters 5 and 6 of Samuel’s The Internet of Things, we begin to take a deeper dive into the complications that arrive as a result of adopting this new wave of technology into our daily lives. Though it may seem like a no brainer to adopt these tools so that they become commonplace to future generations, as they mimic what the previous decade predicted the future to be like, there are several social issues that need to be considered before we decide what to advance and what to just leave be. In the past, worries like these were never brought up as the idea of an “Internet of Things”  was considered science fiction. Now that such a thing actually can exist, I think one consideration that is very most important to have moving forward is the worry of how beneficial will smart phones/cars/etc. really be - in other words, could introducing advanced technology actually be a step backwards in comparison to how such things are handled now?

Once again, it’s easy to just say that having a something like a car that can drive itself would be nothing but helpful, but there are several things about how we use our technology that are innately human - things that would be near impossible to program a computer to do. If I may continue using the car example, knowing how to react in a split second situation based on the context of your location and the problem at hand, the ability to communicate with other vehicles when a solution can’t be solved by individual actions (for example, a traffic jam caused due to an accident), and other such scenarios. One way I think this could be handled is by still having a manual option available with the connected version so that in cases where the computer doesn’t know how to resolve the issue, a person can step in and essentially give the machine a “get out of jail free card”.

Another possible solution could be that instead of finding a way to make machines adopt our traits, we could adopt a new format that is custom built for the Internet of Things. For example, if two adjacent cars stop at an intersection at the same time, road laws state that the driver to your right has the right of way, meaning that if you don’t see a driver to your right side, you have the right of way. We could just choose to forget these kinds of old rules and have smart cars handle this by who ever technically reached the intersection first gets to go first. Of course that would entail us having to overcome our species inability to adapt/accept new things, which is never easy.


  • Do you think that having more Internet of Things in our lives is worth having to abandon the older way of doing things?
  • Should we have a mix of both Internet of Things and old fashioned tech or is one just overall better than the other?

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