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2009 Capstoners Show Their Stuff
From "Franimation" to "Project Fog," from teenage tattoos to Passamaquoddy parables, from expressive dance to virtual performers--all are on view at this year's Capstone Night.

New Media Capstone Evening

Wednesday, April 29th (Maine Day)

6:00-8:00 PM

Lord Hall


This will include a wide range of New Media work and will highlight the range and excellence of the undergraduate student research in the new media department. This will include physical displays of projects, demonstrations, oral presentations and a chance to talk to the students about their work and experiences over the year as they have worked on their research projects.

Also featured at the Capstone Fair will be posters by third-year students describing their proposals for next year's capstones. Come give them feedback and encouragement!

This is also a great opportunity to gather ideas about a capstone project that you will be required to do for yourself in your senior year.

All New Media Majors are required to attend this event. There will be a sign in sheet at the entry of Lord Hall so be sure you check in with Velma or Owen.

Oral Presentations:

Amanda Blanchette, The Rise of the Social Network: The Fall of the Social Being. A critical analysis of modern communication trends.

Recently, the Social Network took a center stage in the life of American youth. Its merit as a social device often goes unquestioned, even as gatherings scheduled via Facebook regularly prove fruitless and the term "friend" has become naively indiscriminate. While the Social Network can indeed be a powerful tool for "keeping in touch" with current or old acquaintances, it can also be the primary means by which a misguided youth seeks attention. The latter can be dangerous and detrimental, as bonds that originate and exist primarily in a Social Networking context are often weak. Young people should be encouraged to step back from the computer and create closer personal relationships.

Dawn Steeves, Modification Memoirs

In 1891 the first electric tattoo machine was created which has spurred the proliferation of tattoos to the point where one at out four American's have a tattoo. It has become so popular today that the tradition, reasoning and thought behind a tattoo has become lost. There is a need for a place where those that are truly dedicated to the art and culture can unite, document their tattoos, share their stories and communicate with one another. Modification memoirs is here to bring us together.

Ashley Senecal, Expressive Dance

Dance as we know has been around for many years, beginning with ritualistic dances, moving into ballet, and then modern. Today, new technologies are being added to performances pushing the boundaries of traditional dance. With the addition of video, sensor and computer technologies, dance itself is becoming more innovative, transformed, and re-created. This paper will take an in depth look at Expressive Dance, a digital performance piece that uses these very video, sensor and computer technologies. It will outline the projectís purpose, the goals, tools that will be used, and the driving question of the project, ìDoes the addition of a digital medium corrupt the purity of a live performance?î In addition to this, the document will provide the reader with a better understanding of how the project will work, be deployed and assessed after it has been put to use.

Brian Monahan, Re-Contextualize

Re-Contextualize is simply named, in that it is trying to make the users of the piece crate or generate a new understanding of their interactions with, a public space, a fish, content, the creation of art and art in general, what it means to be a passive viewer opposed to an active participant, and what can be said or conveyed using a system based on affecting peoples perceptions of the world they live in.

Kathleen Bailey, "Original Identity" [Adoptee C.A.R.E]

Society and our culture have changed but the laws have not kept pace reflecting those changes. Change will come when the masses demand it. Through the AdopteeCARE website and Internet forums/communities, we are seeking to educate people of the need for change and then connect those people with the resources to make the change. Web-based education and advocacy will show policymakers the need to protect children from being labeled illegitimate through closed birth records, which is no longer relevant and has been surpassed by the rights of adoptees to learn their origins.

Timothy Howe, [cv.simon]

Human computer interaction with personal computers has changed little. The same devices that were used 30 years ago are still used today. The use of the personal computer in a person's everyday life has grown and changed. Shouldn't the way people interact with computer also grow and change. The idea behind this project is to explore the possibility of incorporating new technologies and devices to create a computer that can interact like another person. This would allow for a person-to-person communication style with ones personal computer. This project focuses on giving the computer the tools and abilities of human senses to accommodate this interaction, and experiments with the possibilities of giving a computer a sense of sight.

Ian Larson, The Passamaquoddy Living Language Project

This project develops amulti-sensory language preservation strategy using interactive web basedtechnology. The system promotes multi-tiered generational language learning forthe Maine Native American Passamaquoddy tribe.

Eric Carlsen, Franimation

"Franimation" is a curriculum-based animation adapted from "Le Petit Prince" by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. It was made for a middle school French class in Bangor, Maine, in collaboration with the teacher, Alex Todorova. "Franimation" was designed as a learning tool to engage students and help immerse them in the language in a new way that was made specifically for their curriculum. Key components that have been integrated to increase student comprehension and engagement include: built-in interruptions allowing for student input; lip syncing and subtitles; understandable emotional reactions of the animated characters; and, various anecdotal scenes inserted to further relay the story.

Cassie Kinney, Palette

Helping artists find the materials and resources they need to create and flourish. Finding what you need online can be a trying task. Finding a collaborator, material source, or establishing credit as a digital artist can be even harder. With the amount of information on the web, keyword searches are becoming obsolete. It is time we tried things a little differently. Using the basis of a the concepts of web 3.0 this program redefines how artists locate collaborators, materials, and the very search methods we've all grown used to. Together with increasingly familiar user interaction methods, this program creates a more intelligent searching system that works for the artist to deliver to them exactly what they want even if they're unsure of what they need themselves.

Jacob Powers, The New Pamphleteer

The New Pamphleteer is a news site that takes user submitted news stories about the state of Maine and uses them as topics of discussion to develop action and improve the quality of life for Maine residents

Patrick Gill, End Game

Storytelling is an ageless and pervasive tradition. Over the course of human history, the art of storytelling has successfully colonized many mediums; song, written word, and film. Within each new medium, the Storyteller adapts, developing new means to create compelling, emotional, and entertaining experiences. In recent years, Story has begun the colonization of a popular new medium: The Videogame. Thus far, Videogames have failed to produce narratives as strong as those found in more traditional mediums. This failure is the result of conflicts between the conventions of Games and Stories. The things that make a good story don't necessarily make a good game, and vise versa. It seems the main obstacle of good storytelling in Videogames is the Player. Endgame is an experimental, postmodern Videogame that addresses the opposing forces vying for control in Videogames.

Jennie Isgro, Maine Art Xpo

Although there are many websites available for the public to obtain information about artists and art happenings, there are few websites available strictly for marketing the work of Maine artists. Maine Art Xpo is unique in that it allows users to explore Maine artwork, specifically paintings, by using a "virtual exhibit" through the metaphor of an online trade show. A link from Maine Art Xpo directs users to websites created for the individual artists involved which include; biography of artist, image and information of artwork provided, and option to purchase the artwork through a paypal system.

Ken Lozier, Virtual Performer

Live performance has changed quite a bit over the past century, from Broadway musicals to Band Tours. Scenery, lighting and special effects are just a few things that have been drastically altered by new technology. One thing that hasn't changed much is art of "real" live performance. The average person demands a "flesh-and-blood" performance to be presented to them at all of these venues. However, we have reached an age where technology has been so infused in our lives' that seeing something different for a change does not easily destroy our suspension of disbelief. By combining video technologies with a performance, be it musical or theatrical, Virtual Performer creates a new experience for those on stage and those off.

Jacob Landry, Project Fog

Project Fog is an exploration into the use of sketches to portray meaning. Inherently, when a person sketches something that sketch has meaning to that user. In the information age the use of sketches has been ignored, though they may prove to be quite useful. Using the keyboard and mouse as a sole method of input into a computer is quite limiting. Project Fog attempts to lift some of these boundaries by allowing a user to communicate with their computer through sketches by training their computer to understand what these sketches mean.

Jacob Williams, Active Media

Throughout our existence, human beings have documented life's events through various representations and media forms. In modern media there is a trend of personal perspective sharing through digital media such as images and video. With the creation of these active visual perspectives viewers have become life's documentarians intending to share their opinions and perspectives to potential observers. It is the accessibility of digital tools that creates this active role in a formerly stagnant audience. As an exploration of this visual literacy, the facilitation of a educational participant media archive will aim to discern cultural investments in modern media.

Jessica Lavoie, New Media Collaboration

New Media Collaboration is an effort to help establish collaborations among students that may extend beyond the classroom or beyond our respective college. As new media is continually being redefined and foundational resources within the field are relatively limited, collaboration becomes a vital component. Perhaps in the process of working and problem solving with other students we can also gain different perspectives on new media and better understand our place within the field.

Trevor Campbell, Direct Manipulation

Direct Manipulation (DM) Animation is an analysis of contemporary human-computer interactive tools, the limitations these tools place on the process of three-dimensional (3D) animation, and how this process can be improved significantly by introducing a higher level of interactivity. DM Animation proposes a system that demonstrates how interactivity would facilitate 3D animation and increase the efficiency of the animation process by providing a greater amount of control to the animator.

Amanda Paradis, The Web 2.0 Sports Fan Experience

This capstone project examines the concept that Web 2.0 technology can be used in the sports community to enhance the experience of sports fans. Since its creation, the Internet has evolved from a static resource into a vast series of networks that serve as the platform for information distribution which relies heavily on users to create content and add value. This phenomenon is known as Web 2.0. Online Web 2.0 applications have become integrated into our everyday lives and they allow for more interpersonal communication to take place on a global scale. Using Web 2.0 technologies, specifically online social networks, in sports communities will enable sports fans to take a more active role in their fandom and allow them to form stronger bonds with one another. This increased interaction will aid in the formation of more cohesive and united sports communities.

Daniel Webster Pierce, Filmocracy

The future offilm production is rapidly changing with the advent of newer digitaltechnology. While this technology is leveling the playing field and making iteasier everyday for filmmakers to see their dreams become reality, it is alsoestablishing a larger community of would-be filmmakers who could benefit fromNew Media tools in order to rise above the rest and get their work noticed. Filmocracy explores the formation of online community collaboration, NetworkedSelf-Analysis through over-producing, and online film investment opportunities. "The industry‚" in a totalizing or unified sense does not exist (Caldwell, 7). We are living in a production culture that threatens almost a century oftradition with dramatic change. Anticipation of these changes and applicationof New Media methods will facilitate amateur filmmakers in the challenges theyface in the current digital production revolution.

Ryan Martin, Connected Recovery

Drugs and alcohol can cause a number of problems in people's lives. It can sometimes be hard for a person to seek help, or realize that it is available. The goal of this capstone is to create a way for someone to easily reach the point where they are ready and able to get help. Connecting people with similar stories and thoughts to share can aid in the process of recovery. By using the Internet and technology as an innovative means of achieving this goal, more people can potentially be helped on a wide scale.

Alissa Dow, ÜberMaine

ÜberMaine is an experiment of collaboration in the form of a multi-media magazine. Combining the power of online communities and the UMaine community, students are both the audience and contributors of ÜberMaine's content. This hybrid theory for magazine design allows for a multitude of "many to many" participation, resulting in a unique and engaging PDF publication for UMaine students.

ÜberMaine Online will be distinct from current "social networks" based around the individual and interaction with other select individuals. As a media-rich meeting ground, ÜMO will foster creativity and collaboration among students of various disciplines and expertise. ÜberMaine will offer students a voice and deeper insight into the whole of the UMaine community, thereby making the community as a whole stronger.

Juan Carlos Valencia

The real challengeof America is double: first, recognized itself as a multicultural, andmultiethnic society. And second, not to resist to its reality but accepted. Itis a fact that in these times of change there are going to be consequences andconfrontations, but history has taught us that is the only way to a truerevolution, to a true change of power, to a true change of life.

David Wilkins, N.e.Training : Integrated Training Systems for New England Restaurants

Many New England restaurants experience an intense ebb and flow of business based on the seasons. This seasonality results in a staff that increases tremendously in response. N.e.Training is a system that will subside some of the costs of training, while making it more efficient. This online learning management system will incorporate a human resources database and various training modules that will allow New England businesses to take advantage of current trends toward online training in the hospitality business.

Zach Louten, An exploration of interactive video games through documentary film

My Capstone is a documentaryfilm on interactive video games with a primary focus on the Nintendo Wii. The documentary uses New Mediamethods to acquire content and push the envelope to motivate the subjects in the film. Themethods will be creative and the goal is to generate content that isprofound and changes the way a documentary film can be made.  

Caroline Nurse, Exploring whole system thinking and re-defining sustainability as it pertains to the University.

In the current atmosphere the word sustainability is loosely and often misunderstood. I am presenting sustainability to be understood within the realm of whole system thinking. Whole system thinking is when all members of a systemare considered and equally valued regardless of their role within the system.The living machine is a model of whole system thinking. The sustainability ofthe living machine is compared to the University. This model allows for consideration of the interaction and networking that occurs in both systems.

For more information on the presented research work please contact Mike Scott via First Class. For more information on the New Media Department and its programs please contact Owen Smith at ofsmith@maine.edu or 581-4389.

Updated: 2009-05-06 by Jon Ippolito
Posted 2009-04-27 17:01:26 by Jon Ippolito
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