Interactivity Code Elements

So my portfolio of artistically visual  engaging pieces is starting to take shape however I want to take it to the next step. I want to put the user in the piece and I have chosen to do this in 2 different ways.

  • Using the webcam

Analysing peoples pictures was hot topic of discussion throughout the research process with people being openly admitting to judging other peoples pictures and then having to almost remind themselves that other people would be doing the same about them. By using a webcam plugin I aim to pull the live image of whoever is engaging with the piece and making them believe that their face is in a live social media image environment. By mocking up a page whereby a live feed of comments of what people are actually usually thinking when they see their image upload online, this will demonstrate not only what people are really thinking when they see pictures or upload pictures themselves, but to make to the viewer feel uncomfortable and to poke fun at the fact that they would not truly enjoy a life online quite so much if they really did feel as exposed in real life and not just through images and status posts.

The design aspect of incorporating a live webcam image is relatively easy to mock up, with the webcam image box imbedded in a page and then the surrounding image can be designed as a Facebook photo page.

  • Using live Twitter stream

This project is all about the blurring lines between social media online and off… so since Twitter has often been criticised for people just “shouting” about stuff one really cares about, I want to turn this on its head. I want Tweets to be read aloud as if they were being spoken. This will be representative of how people wouldn’t really behave on Twitter how they would in real life and again poke fun at the fact that we engage with social media at all. Since research has suggested that “hashtagging” is the ‘done thing’ and that people do it either because other people do or to be funny, the functionality of this interactive section will occur from people searching a word and then a tweet with a hashtag of that word will be read aloud. The functionality of this will be quite complex, especially if I want it to be live. It will require registering as a Twitter app developer and getting an API key.

Having openly admitted that code is not my strong point I have located help from Dominic White, a Ba (Hons) Computing final year student at Bournemouth University. By working with somebody outside of the course and building cross course collaborations I feel I have improved my communication skills and furthered my computer knowledge more generally. Dom has acted similar to that of a tutor which I feel has benefited my personal development more so than  a straight swap collaboration would have done because I have seen the code parts grow and form from the very beginning. By working through the coding aspects of both these interactive elements, I now have better under Twitter API’s, Jquery, Javascript and  how plugins work.



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