CS4031 Introduction to Digital Media 2017

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The short URL for this page is http://tinyurl.com/IntroductionDM2017



  • The influence of technology on cognition and activity;
  • An overview of conceptual development of computer media.
  • The relationship of Technology to Practice, Form, Content and Remediation.
  • Case studies will consider the influences, consequences and interrelationship of media and thought, including examples from the world of work, education, video games, social media, ubiquitous computing, personal fabrication and so forth.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Assess the influence of technology on human cognition and activity.
  • Compare and contrast a number of case studies focussed on particular technologies and media.
  • Critically evaluate the relationship between technology and human development.
  • Understand and critically assess the quality and reliability of various types of digital media resources.
  • Search for information on specific topics, integrate information and context and produce digital content using various media and correct citations.
  • Select, research and summarize information on various digital media topics, collaborating with a group of colleagues in producing and publishing content online.

Practical skills

  • Write and produce an "explainer video".
  • Create an academic article.
  • Create and publish an online blog/portfolio.



Alan Ryan

Reading list


  • B Buxton, Sketching User Experiences: Getting the Design Right and the Right Design.
  • D Norman, The Design of Everyday Things, Basic Books 1988,2013.
  • A Dunne, F Raby, Speculative Everything. The MIT Press 2013.
  • Paul Mayer, Computer Media and Communication. Oxford Univ. Press 1999.
  • Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media. Routledge, 1964.
  • Walter J Ong, Orality and Literacy: Technologizing the Word. Routledge 1999.
  • Howard Rheingold, Tools for Thought. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2000.
  • Michael Rush, New Media in Art. Thames and Hudson world of art 2005.


Venues & Timetable

  • Lectures:
  • Tuesday - 16:00-17:00 in FG042
  • Friday - 09:00-10:00 in SG16
  • Labs: CS2-044 (PC Lab)
  • Wednesday - 12:00-13:00
  • Wednesday- 13:00-14:00


  • 5.09.2017 – Introduction. The role of this module in the context of the course. Content, learning outcomes, assignments and deadlines. Topics discussed in labs.

History of Computing

Authoring media

Digital Media in art and society

  • 20.10.2017 – no lecture – Open Days
  • 24.10.2017 – State of the Art - How far did we come? Hypertext and Dynabook– Alan Kay; Robotics; Smart Homes, Smart Cities; AI; Wearables, musical instruments, performance; Ubicomp as material; Arduino & Raspberry Pi; sensors and actuators ; nanomaterials; technical textiles
  • 27.10.2017 – Innovation & Inventors; fostering creativity. The confluence of art and science.

Application Domains

  • 15.11.2017 – Revision
  • 24.11.2017 – late submission meeting

CS4031 Labs


  • 2 Assignments: 30% + 30%
  • Groups are of 3/4 members. As you have your group member's ID, you have their email.

To find your own name in the PDF, press Ctrl+F, then type your name.

  • If a group member is unresponsive to email, please carry on without them.
  • If only 1 or 2 group members actively engage with the project, please send an email to me so I can combine you with other partial groups to restore your group to its appropriate strength.

Group Video Project

  • Create a 1-2 min video presentation of one organisation included on the list below.
  • Record, on video, the location (or a location agreed with your interviewee), and ask the person to give you one sentence about their organisation, and how their organisation supports local communities and the UN sustainable development goals. It might be helpful to save this image on your phones.
  • Date due: End of Week 10
  • 30% of your final grade
  • 1-2 min – penalties 1% any second either side
  • Send alan.t.ryan at ul.ie the video file as an attachment via UL email stating the number of your group and the organisation represented in your video-one per group. It has to be less than 25Mb.
  • If we do not receive an email containing all relevant information enabling us to post your video on the module page, your group gets 0% and its members will fail the entire module!
  • The official list of Video Projects will contain the links to all of your videos.
  • If one or more members of your group did not contribute, please send an email to me, so that they don't get undeserved grades.

Organisations for the Collaborative Economy map

  • Group2. Canteen, Catherine Street, contact Paul Williams
  • Group 5. Limerick Boat Club, entrance via Sarsfield Bridge, contact through their website
  • Group 7. I Love Limerick, 96 O'Connell St, Limerick, contact Richard Lynch
  • Group 8. Doras Luimni, Central Buildings, 51a O’Connell Street, contact TBC
  • Group 9. The Urban COOP, Tait House, Southill, contact Deirdre McMahon- TRANSPORT NEEDED

The List of Video Projects 2017-2018

Individual Blogging Project

  • Create your own blog/portfolio and post 3 blog posts. Post the link to your blog on Sulis by week 8.
  • The List of Class Portfolios .

Post 1.

  • Write a blog post in relation to the actions you personally are taking (or planning to take) for dealing with climate change-300-500 words. It can be on transport, waste management, recycling etc. Embed at least 1 video and 1 photo in the post, crediting any external sources you used.
  • Date due: End of Week 8
  • 10% of your final grade

Post 2.

  • Write a short academic article (500 words not counting the references) on a concept presented during lectures. Use references and examples. Publish the abstract (50 words) as blog post, and include a link to the full article as PDF. For every 100 words more or less than 500 words, there will be a penalty of 1% of the assigned points.
  • Date due: End of Week 11
  • 15% of your final grade

Post 3.

  • Write a blog post on “the making of” your group video. What exactly was your contribution? How difficult was the assignment? No word limit.
  • Date due: End of Week 12
  • 5% of your final grade
  • If we do not get your blog URL enabling us to post it on the Portfolios page, you get 0% and will fail the entire module! The official list of Portfolios will contain the links to all of your blogs.

Exam - December 2017

  • You will have full Internet access during your essay style exam.
  • Date of Exam: 13 December 2017 @ 12:30; CSIS rooms CS1044, CS2044 & CS2045
  • 40% of your final grade
  • You will submit your exam (a single Word document) through your UL Sulis account.


  • All 3 deliverables MUST achieve at least a passing grade (40%).
  • You MUST score at least 12/30 for your Video, 12/30 for your Blog and 16/40 in the Exam to pass this module with a minimum grade of C3 (40%).
  • Missing your lab (without a valid reason + appropriate proof) will result in a 3% deduction from your grade EVERY TIME.

#ixdm17 on Twitter

  • We can use this Twitter hashtag for communicating within our group
  • Create your own account on http://twitter.com

Places to go, things to see

Personal tools