Tuesday, April 28, 2009

quit school and start a band, I should

quick column catch up: this week's and last week's.

Finals are here, which means less time to post. BUT I did make time to see two really awesome concerts last weekend: The Flaming Lips and Okkervil River. Both were a blast, and I'm extremely please at how my photos turned out—considering I was using my small, digital camera that usually can't handle dark concert situations. Luckily, both concerts were fairly well lit, particularly The Flaming Lips, which was so bright I should have worn sunscreen.

Monday, April 13, 2009

...and take a nap

The park next to ASU's downtown campus is almost done—set to open on Thursday. The city is calling it the "Downtown Civic Space Park"— a very utilitarian name for a really nice looking space. I can't wait to chill out between classes in the grass under the new trees, or even beneath this thing:
Janet Echelman’s "Her Secret is Patience" There's also a live web cam to chronicle the construction.

I'm also interested to see what will be in the new art gallery (you can see the side of it on the photo's left) they refurbished in the middle of the park. We'll see.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Piestewa to some; Squaw to others

A bunch of us went hiking Saturday at Piestewa—formerly known as Squaw—Peak. This means, after living in the Valley for 20+ years, I have finally hiked the two "quintessential" mountains. I can finally be a true Phoenician!

We decided to hike on a stormy day and got caught in a downpour on the way down the mountain. It was a bit chilly, but refreshing during the hike—definitely not something you experience every day in Phoenix.

Friday, April 10, 2009

clouds and clouds of time-wasting

Have you heard of Wordle?

Wordle, a free "word-cloud" mapping service, is the essential equivalent, and more aesthetically pleasing, answer to coding literature. Simply copy, paste any text into the software and it will visually map words into a cloud, determining the size of each word based on the frequency it appears in an article.

Here's a map of my latest opinion article to appear in "The State Press":

Wordle: "De Novo" represents the American ideal

It's a great way to see where biases lie or perhaps which words a writer relies on as a crutch. I've also noticed that words closely related to, yet not quite the topic of a paper, seem to appear frequently as the biggest, at least in what I've seen. I sense this will become an epic time-waster.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

pesto is the new black

Today, I had lunch for the first time at Café Biblioteca, a small but higher-fare-food cafe tucked in the corner of ASU's Hayden Library in Tempe. My experience left me wondering, why haven't I eaten here for every lunch of my entire life?

It's one of the closest places I've found that serves illy coffee, and there are tons of vegetarian options, from which I chose the veggie-pesto pizza. It was amazing—to the point of blogging about it. The other reason for blogging? Café Biblioteca isn't on Yelp. That's right; this is uncharted territory baby. (Maybe that's because lame pseudo-restaurant bloggers like me can't afford to go anywhere that doesn't accept college meal plans... ah well)

among the internet-savvy + column

Tuesday is column day.

This one only turned out so-so from my perspective. I was rushing because I had a lot more work over the weekend (including a 25-page research paper) plus a lack of inspiration. It's not bad, just not the caliber I could/should shoot for.

Also, I finally learned some basic html in my Online Media class today. Beware Internet world; I am html-literate!

For an "internet-savvy" generation, it seems surprising how few young people understand the Internet — myself included until recently. I'm happy to be among the savvy now, though.

No doubt, cyber-publishing will soon dominate our culture as newspapers, books, and physical print atrophy. It's ridiculous to say that print will disappear completely. Books, periodicals and newspapers will continue to exist, but perhaps to a lesser extent. So many people, my young friends among them, continue to tell me "there's just something about having the physical copy," and I couldn't agree more.

That said, don't become too elitist to embrace the digital tide! Online publishing holds incredible potential. It's just too bad for me, and thousands of other young journalists, it doesn't hold financial potential.

"Ah," the starving artists of the world sigh...