Political Quizzes Reflection

The word “political” has many definitions. Although it is commonly believed that the word refers to the running and organization of a nation-state and its smaller branches, the word can also refer to one’s individual beliefs on how that governmental branch should operate and how interested and active that person is in that specific field. By using these definitions, it is clear that everyone is political to a certain extent, whether they are the president or leader of a nation or just an ordinary citizen. Therefore, I consider myself to be political. In the modern era with the development of technology, the world is being an increasingly smaller place. This not only means that political knowledge and beliefs are spread around quicker to most remote locations, meaning that more people would have an interest in politics, but the increase in global peace and democracy has led to many contrasting opinions that develop among individuals, in contrast to single-party autocracies (which were common in the past) in which a citizen has no right to hold certain political beliefs, subsequently decreasing their interest in politics.

Although I believe it is very important to be aware of current political events as any political decision could affect an individual, I don’t believe everything is political. Some things that people do are part of human nature. For example, one may argue that taking a shower is political as through the course of political decisions, you were able to shower. However, showering is a part of human nature, and whether or not the government will be able to provide you with it, people will be showering however way possible, and this can not be changed through political decisions. Currently, I think the US presidential transition will be a huge change in global politics as a whole. The US has dominated world politics for decades now and the way that the new president will conduct himself will largely determine what will change in the world in the next four years.

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The Social Dilemma Takeaways

Imagine you were browsing through your Instagram feed when you suddenly see an advertisement recommending top-tier mattresses at over 50% off its normal price. You immediately feel a sense of joy and relief as you’ve been looking for a high-quality affordable mattress for over six months now. But wait a minute, how exactly does Instagram know that I’ve been looking for mattresses, did I explicitly tell them I was looking for it or somehow started following some sort of mattress Instagram account? Can’t think of it. In relation to this topic of cybersecurity and the right to privacy online,  The Social Dilemma talks about the dangers and harms of social media and the internet and its effects on its users. Although social media certainly has many advantages such as long-distance communication and acquiring knowledge, underneath all of this there is a dark side of social media the many of its users are unaware of but is taking an enormous toll on their daily lifestyle. The first thing online media corporations do is create a virtual version of yourself, in which they predict every move that you’re gonna do based on your prior activity on that media site. They have access to everything that you do and almost know you as well as yourself, and use this to their advantage to sell advertisements to make money. Additionally, they also use the virtual models they create to make you stay at the site for longer, or in other words make you addicted. They contain algorithms that manipulate and deceive you into the maze, where they can target and use you for their profit as well as keep you hooked into the website. The addiction is the most common in teenagers and young adults, that are often dependent and rely on social media as sources of entertainment and relaxation, which will cause poor decision making and can lead to anxiety and depression, seen by the rise in female suicide rates among teenagers. Fake news is the last topic discussed, and the use of social media to spread misinformation and disinformation only leads to a strong political barrier between different sides. As discussed earlier, people are only exposed to what they believe in as a technique by social media corporations to attract consumers. This will lead to a common misunderstanding between both sides of the political spectrum and misinformation and conspiracy theories are spread along those lines as well. It is much easier to spread misinformation online as it attracts more consumers due to real information being much more unattractive and boring, and social media corporations aren’t even attempting to solve this problem.

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Implications for the Development of Knowledge

Before comparing and contrasting the knowledge tools and school experiences of the past and the present, we need to compare shared and personal knowledge. Personal knowledge is developed through the person’s own experiences and senses, as opposed to shared knowledge which is knowledge acquired from others but may not have been experienced by yourself.

Apart from some tools such as paper, pencil, and notebook to produce knowledge, the tools used by my mom a couple of decades ago and the tools I use today to produce knowledge is very different. Instead of the internet, my mom tended to get her knowledge from sources close to her, such as asking teachers and friends questions, as well as going to the library to read books and encyclopedias. I on the other hand get a lot of my knowledge and skillsets from the internet, while teachers and friends are around me to help me certify and apply that knowledge. Although my mom believed that the traditional methods of producing knowledge were important for reliability and experience purposes, she also believed that the efficiency of not being able to have the internet negatively impacted her ability to find information with a wide range of perspectives, as well as finding a wide range of knowledge in the first place. Relating to the common knowledge sources of today, she believed that due to technology and its accessibility, people are relying on it too much and are therefore unable to “think for themselves”, decreasing the personal knowledge someone could potentially acquire. People will look to other people’s opinions and ideas online and look for shared knowledge instead of gaining personal knowledge and experiences for themselves. For example, if someone was trying to find the relationship between pollution and lung cancer, they would most likely search for a lab report online instead of conducting the lab themselves. However, if someone was to go to school with traditional resources, people would be forced to find everything by themselves or from others close to them,  meaning they would get much less information from shared knowledge and more from personal knowledge.

In conclusion, although both personal and shared knowledge has been used since the beginning of mankind and is still both in use, the development of modern technology and communication has shifted the balance and increased the amount of knowledge that we share.

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Ignorance is Bliss Debate

As a member of the side disproving the phrase “Ignorance is Bliss”, all we had to do was list certain examples and scenarios in which being completely unaware of something can be damaging. Our side mainly had two arguments. The first was that in certain cases, ignoring something and keeping it out of your head for a long period of time can eventually come back and hurt you. If you realize a small pain in a certain part of your body but decide to ignore it in the hope that it causes less pain and it will heal by itself, and decide to not book a doctor’s appointment, there is potential that it could lead to more problems, such as the spreading of the pain and possible death. Surely it would be better to deal with the issue and not be ignorant, so you can find bliss after it is dealt with. Our second argument was that although one person could find bliss while being ignorant, it can often be at the expense of the collective whole, causing pain and suffering. A good example of this was in world war II. A German industrialist who owned a factory wasn’t aware that his workers were all Jewish slaves who were forced into labor by the nazis, and although he was feeling bliss with the success of his company, he was unaware of how his company was achieving that success. He later admitted that he wasn’t aware of the slaves working for him.

The side that was for the statement of “Ignorance is Bliss” believed that the examples with war and genocide were extreme cases of ignorance causing harm. They believed that in a normal day-to-day situation, being unaware of something can cause additional stress and pressure and they would be better off not wasting any time or energy trying to deal with the problem. If a child or a young adult lived their whole life noticing that their parents were prostitutes, it could cause significant stress and harm for the child due to the early exposure of these sorts of acts. However, this leads back to our point that ignoring something could potentially lead to even more problems in the future. Although the “for” side had some good points and examples to back them up, the side against the statement ended up winning the debate as our only responsibility was to list cases where ignorance wasn’t bliss, which made our job easier.

I believe that when it comes to acquiring knowledge, we mustn’t ignore information as by doing so, we are not only putting ourselves at risk, but it is also possible that the people around us suffer from our ignorance as well. We must evaluate all knowledge claims that come our way to ensure that we are constantly learning what is true and what is false.

 

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Are Some Ways of Knowing More Likely Than Others to Lead to the Truth?

Imagine for one minute you were a climatologist, and your job was to record the temperature in your city every day in the month of July. You do this over a 5-year span and notice that the average temperature each july is around the same. Does this mean that climate change doesn’t exist? Although the information and knowledge you are obtaining suggests that climate change didn’t exist for that specific month in a 5-year span, it doesn’t suggest that this is the truth for all locations and time frames. This is the difference between ‘knowledge’ and ‘truth’, as although you may make conclusions based off your knowledge and the facts and data that support the claim, it can’t be considered the truth unless applied to a wider context.

There are 8 ways that humans are able to transmit and acquire knowledge, many of which only exist and humans and is the reason behind our superiority. Some ways of knowledge are used more frequently than others, while some can be used at the same time, which leads us to the question of whether there are some ways of knowing that and more likely than others to lead to the truth. I believe there are some ways of knowing that are more effective than others in certain circumstances. Examples include when imagination is important for developing new ideas and truths, such as the idea by humans thousands of years ago that flying could eventually exist, and when memory is used most often to connect old knowledge to new knowledge to create truth, such as when you observe your friend unable to kick a soccer a ball, and you recall that he plays for the JV soccer team, creating the truth that he is bad at the sport. How exactly would memory help in claiming the truth that flying could exist and how could imagination help in developing the conclusion that your friend is bad at soccer when he is right in front of you? Certain ways of knowing would be completely useless in some circumstances and sometimes only one way of knowing is used in finding the truth.

For many people, all 8 ways of knowledge are used on a daily basis and are sometimes used interchangeably without even knowing. If you were walking down a street and saw a cute girl, your emotions will tell you that you like her and should pursue her, while your intuition will tell you to start a conversation with her as it’s your natural instinct to talk to people you like. There are many other examples of WOK’s working together, and can sometimes be faster and easier to reach a truth if multiple ways of knowing work together.

Although ways of knowing are definitely not mutually exclusive, and can in some cases find the truth easier and faster than WOK by themselves, not all WOK are used in many circumstances, and therefore, some ways of knowing are more likely to lead to the truth than others.

Word Count: 499

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What do you know for sure, and how do you know it?

I’m Evan and I enjoy sleeping, eating, and chilling.

Knowledge can be defined as facts, information, or skills acquired through experience or education, or it can also be loosely defined as awareness or familiarity developed through experience in a certain situation. There are mainly two ways that we acquire knowledge, and that is either discovering and analyzing it ourselves or when someone tells you information, and you convert it into knowledge. Seeing something for yourself is generally the more reliable and useful way of acquiring knowledge, as when you use your senses to pick up traces of information, your body will naturally process the information and take into consideration multiple factors depending on the information you just acquired (ex. who was it provided by, why is it significant) and determine whether or not you want to keep the information or whether or not you think it’s bull crap. However, in this day and age, many of us obtain our knowledge online or elsewhere from other people in our daily lives. Generally, when finding information elsewhere, you need a certain level of interpretation skills, as you didn’t really see the information for yourself, someone is transmitting it to you, so you can’t verify it for yourself. In that case, we would have to ask ourselves the essential questions of ‘Who provided this information and is he/she reliable’, ‘Was the information realistic’ and many other questions that you would have to ask yourself to be able to consider the information as knowledge. Through this process, we would be able to know something for sure and our knowledge will therefore expand.

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Food Truck Project

For the last unit of the Graphic Design class, we moved on to design our own food trucks and any supporting materials that we also needed such as logos, menus and packages. This was a multi-step process that involved planning, refinement, designing and presenting which lasted over two months. Our first stage of this journey was the planning stage in which we found inspiration from online, incorporated them into some ideas and ultimately have a rough idea of what and how we are going to design the truck. I decided on creating an ice cream truck with a target audience of kids and young teens as I believed that it was the easiest product to expand my knowledge and creativity as I believed that when it comes to children, there is unlimited potential and options that I could choose from. I also decided that the ice cream truck would be placed at a theme park during a hot summer day in order to attract more business as ice cream appeals to people the most during that time and place. An original idea that I thought of during this process was the making of a bus in which people can eat inside and dine in the air conditioning, but I decided to go against the idea as it was too complicated to pull off. The example of the ice cream on top of the truck, on the other hand, inspired me to copy that design and put it on my truck. The next stage of the process was the ideate and development process in which we sketched all the ideas we had in mind, narrowed them down to make one or two specific ideas and developed them through illustrator. In my case, I had to choose the specific truck base and chose specific stickers from online to sketch that I thought would look the best on my truck. The final stage was gathering all my work and putting them into a structured presentation in which I explained the purpose and design process of the specific object. Throughout this entire process, I learned many new things about Illustrator that I didn’t know previously as there was a week dedicated to learning the app’s components. I also learned about the basics of logo design and although I believed it could’ve been better and I could’ve thought of something more creative, I learned how to use a logo to reflect a food truck as much as possible. Overall, I think I did well by not only thinking of the idea of designing stickers but also designing them myself. Next time, I feel like I could spend time on little details such as coloring and shading to make my design look more realistic and aesthetically pleasing.

This is my presentation: Food Truck

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Typography Booklet

We started this unit researching the features and the history of our typefaces. After we were able to present the information in a word document, we moved the information into an A4 Composition as seen on your left. After running this composition through a few drafts and taking feedback, we moved on to a third stage. Even though our original plan was to use a different classmate’s research and typeface, all of us decided to stick with our own to create multiple typeface compositions.

Typography is the arrangement of typefaces, fonts, coloring, etc. into a design, and it’s important for designers as it makes the design more attractive and aesthetically pleasing. Although typography seems pretty basic and self-explanatory, I still learned many things from this unit.

I learned the art of alignment and the placement of objects that kind of splits design into different parts. I also learned hierarchy and which objects should be made bigger or smaller based on their importance and relevance to the design.

Final Draft

One aspect of typography I think I still need improvement on is the sizing and fonts of letters.

For example, in my final composition, I made a design in which a bunch of letters of different sizes was placed on a surface, but I was confused and didn’t know how to make this look the best. This may be a creativity

issue, but I think I still need to learn more about fonts. I have a total of five photos here, and the ones with a red background are my A4 compositions, while the ones without a background are typographic compositions. My earlier drafts are near the top while my final drafts are at the bottom. Thank you for reading and feel free to leave a comment or question if you have anything to say.

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Unit 2: Drawing Folio

We started this unit with observational drawings, in which we looked and carefully observed an object and tried our best to replicate it using shade and texture. We did this with basic kitchen utensils, cutlery and other basic objects around us. We then moved on to visualization drawing in which we tried thinking of ideas to design ISB’s 40th-anniversary logo. Visualization drawing is relatively harder as you have to produce a large number of potential designs, but at the same time, they have to be varied in different ways. That’s where I struggled when I had to visualize 20 different anniversary designs and make them special in different ways. The reason observational drawing is important for the earlier stages of designing is to not only warm up the brain but also to consider ideas around you that you can incorporate for the upcoming design. In the end, I was able to

manage three logo designs that I thought were my best, and I may consider developing them even more in the future.

 

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AI Portrait & Poster Reflection

This was my first time using Adobe Illustrator, but not the first time that I used any adobe design platform nor my first time taking a design course. At first, when I started the project, I had some issues re-downloading the adobe platforms and wasted about two classes trying to sort that out. But once I got the app to work, I got straight to work tracing the different parts of my face. Even though I knew the basics of illustrator from previous classes, I was lacking creativity and ideas from the start. Therefore, I started the project very slowly, slowly trying to adapt to all its functions to fit my vulnerable ideas. However, over time, I was able to trace my features quicker and was never at a point in which I didn’t know what I was doing. After this project, I think my familiarity with AI has improved, as well as some of my artistic skills.

As you can see from my portrait, it is relatively simple without the involvement of shading. My portrait is also pretty simple with a one-color background and standard Calibri font. This not only reflects my poor artistic skills in general but also who I am as a person. Throughout my life, I’ve always considered myself a static person without too many interesting personality traits. If I like something, I would probably stick with it for a long time and vice versa. In terms of designing, this project shows that I like to start simple and add adjustments and complexions as the project goes on. I usually have a hard time executing those complexions, though.

So there you have it, my first project in Graphic Design. Feel free to leave a comment or question on your opinions of my design or anything in general.

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