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Social + Interactive Media Centre at Emily Carr University

Alexandra Samuel's blog

An open design process for

Shh...don't tell anyone, but we're redesigning our website.

That's the standard attitude towards website redesign, at least since the (merciful!) death of those horrible "under construction" signs you used to find all over the web. It's kind of the way people are about disclosing plans for plastic surgery or corporate reorganization: nobody wants to admit an overhaul is needed until it's all done and you can put a happy face on the results.

We've decided to break with tradition and put the redesign out in the open. After all, it's no secret that the Social + Interactive Media Centre website looks pretty rough. We pulled it together in about 3 days, borrowing heavily from a pre-existing website profile and using a default theme. It got the job done but it certainly hasn't reflected the creative and design talent or innovative tech thinking that we find at Emily Carr and among our partners.

For the past few months we've been working on something better...hopefully a lot better. And since we are here to share Emily Carr's creative and design capacity with the community, we want to invite you along for the ride.

Crowdsourcing 101 with partner Work at Play

SIM Centre partner Work at Play shared a great post summing up the best practices in crowdsourcing

The broad range of web-based tools that enable commenting, contributing and collaborating all helped pave the way for the crowdsourcing model. From the relatively straightforward acts of writing/editing Wikipedia and translating Facebook, through to setting briefs for scientists around the world, crowdsourcing seems to be able to offer a solution to just about any problem. 

A couple of key principles to bear in mind:

  • Start small: Try a crowdsourcing experiment within your company first, to see if it fits with your organization’s culture. 
  • Manage expectations: The 90:9:1 rule will likely apply - 90% consume, 9% comment, 1% contribute.

Read the whole post on the Work at Play blog.

Show + Tech:What I did on my summer vacation

Stinky socks. Talking dogs. Dancing jelly beans.

We got to see all of the above — and more! — at the SIM Centre‘s inaugural show + tech. Show + tech is a chance for members of Vancouver’s business, art and technology communities to connect with the faculty, students and staff at Emily Carr, and to discover one another’s projects and passions.  Tonight's gathering included digital artists, web developers, curious onlookers and Emily Carr President Ron Burnett.

How to think like a social media artist

If you want to sharpen or deepen your use of social media, try going to art school.

That’s the big takeaway from my first months here at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. I can’t say I’m “going to” art school — my role heading up the new Social + Interactive Media Centre has so far kept me out of the classroom, though I’m dying to audit everything from the course on art since 1945 to the Continuing Studies class in Arduino.

A novel approach to life online

For the first time in a year, I’ve lost myself in a book. It’s Barbara Kingsolver’s latest, The Lacuna– a marvellous historical novel that centers on a Mexican-American who becomes cook and secretary to Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo and Leon Trotsky. I’ve disappeared into the world of mid-century revolutionaries and artists, surfacing into my own life with that lingering distraction that comes from having half of my head, and even more of my heart, ensnared in a fictional world.