Archives for : tic104

First computerized dating service EVER!!: Operation Match


In 1965, Jack Tarr and Vaughan Morrill, students at Harvard University, began the first computer dating service called Operation Match.

Interestingly enough, before building Operation Match, they had a conversation in which they discussed that computers would not help the fact that they dreaded mixers and blind dates.

These two partners knew that in Europe companies were arranging marriages through the use of technology and making money off of this. They also knew that these technologies were often used at some mixers (from which Tarr was tired of coming home alone from) for similar, more college environment purposes.

They decided to create a questionnaire that asked students to answer questions about themselves and about their perfect partner.


Students would then fill these out and return them with a $3 subscription fee.

By late February of 1965 they started advertising their service.



In March of 1965, the founders realized they weren’t receiving enough money to keep up with the work and actually profit from it.
Morrill was contacted by the CBS show “To Tell The Truth” so that he could appear on it, he quickly responded to the offer as it would boost their business and possibly give it the popularity they needed in order for it to be a success.
Soon after that Vicki Albright, a UCLA 19 year old, was selected as the Law School’s Woman of the Year, who had appeared on the cover of Newsweek magazine a couple of weeks earlier. Tarr and Morrill decided to sponsor her visit to Harvard and decided to match her with Harvard men using their dating service. She was matches with Kevin Lewis and pictures of them appeared on the Associated Press and other media like the L.A. Times and the Houston Post.
With so much esposare the amount of cuestionares they received doubled and they set up offices in major cities like New York, Los Angeles, Bloomington Boston, and Chicago. However, this rapad expansion hurth their business with only 70 responses in Bloomington and a lack of responses in Boston.

Subscribers would punch their answers to IBM cards, and then a 1790 Avco computer would grab all questionnaires and match similar answers. Then, in a couple of days, subscribers would receive computer print outs with the names of six people and their phone numbers, addresses and graduating years.


Just six months after its launch, they had already made $270K. When they sold Operation Match in 1968 they already had over one million users.

Media credits:


TEDxEunji: Fact/Fiction

I really liked this TED talk, I had never watched it but the title of it stood out for me as I was browsing through the videos. The title of this talk is Markham Nolan: How to separate fact and fiction online. This title stood out because this practice was the first thing we were assigned to do as part of this course. We had to look for articles related to our topics. These articles had to follow the CRAAP (still can’t get over that name) guidelines: current, relevant, authority, accuracy, and purpose. As I searched for interesting yet CRAAP approved articles, I encountered articles that weren’t very reliable.

Markham Nolan is a journalist in the Ireland. At the begginning of his TED talk, Nolan points out how the relationship with the media has changed. Before the audience would react to news. Now, journalist react to the audience.  This same audience  helps them find the news. The internet has allowed this relationship to change. The audience can now help journalists figure out how to react to news and what is the best angle to take. We, make these news outlets now what it is we want to hear. This practice has evolved because it is through the internet that this happens quick, in real time.

Nolan tells us that today, even though there is a greater flow of information, there are free internet tools that help us verify the legitimacy of our sources allowing us to filter the truth from the lies.

I would like to end this post quoting Nolan’s closing statement of his TED talk.

“But here’s the thing. Algorithms are rules. They’re binary. They’re yes or no, they’re black or white.Truth is never binary. Truth is a value. Truth is emotional, it’s fluid, and above all, it’s human. No matter how quick we get with computers, no matter how much information we have, you’ll never be able to remove the human from the truth-seeking exercise, because in the end, it is a uniquely human trait.”


“It’s Complicated” by Danah Boyd Review

For the past four days I’ve been reading “It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens”  by Danah Boyd. She is currently giving away free online copies of her book here.

I feel this book’s intended audience are adults, adults who typically don’t comprehend teenagers’ use of the internet. I would say about 2/3 of this book is dedicated to those adults that continue to misunderstand us. However, the other 1/3 remaining is dedicated to us young adults struggling to maintain our digital presence in the ever evolving social media we encounter. It gave me a greater insight on many of the social implications of interactions we perform online, some things that I would never think about and I bet most young adults don’t even think about when interacting online.

I like the extensive field work she has done throughout the United States. Boyd has interviewed many young adults about their opinion on social media and the way they use it in their daily lives. However, I feel like the book would’ve benefitted from surveying young adults in less economically developed countries because many of the situtations described aren’t applicable outside the United States or Canada.

In her book, Boyd points out that teens reject profile requirements in these sites because they refuse to portray themselves like these sites want them to. Teens don’t really pay attention to these requirements because for the most part the people they will be interacting with are their own peers who know them well. Boyd explains that social media are extensions of social interactions are therefore NOT ways in which teens hide from the outside world, rather they use it as a way to further extend their relationships.

Boyd looks into social issues of racial and ethnic inequality. Many people assume that the internet and social media would blur these divides in society. However, the truth is that when teens participate online they are reproducing their race based dynamics. In her chapter “Inequality” Boyd says “Although thechnology makes it possible in principle to socialize with anyone online, in practice, teens connect to the people that they know and with whom they have most in common” to signal this further division and racial and ethnic inequality of those participating in social media.

Boyd presents the idea of being in public and being public. I believe this is an idea to always keep mind. Most adults think that teens need to be part of social media is because they want attention. However, teens use social media to interact with others in a more selective way not really crying out for approval from their peers. By deciding what to post and what not to post online, teens are demonstrating a side of them without revealing their entire self, this is where they separate their digital identity and true self . Many adults claim that teens are “addicted” to social media. Having said that, Danah draws attention to the fact that constant interaction through social media for teens is a highly social behavior. Teens aren’t addicted to the components of social media but they are rather addicted to one another.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading Boyd’s book on the way young people like me interact with social media. Many of the passages and interviews she did with teens make her book relatable and demonstrate concrete evidence of her explanations. I would definitely recommend this book for any one trying to understand teens’ interactions online or for a course like this one.


And to those adults out there still not understanding our constant need of the internet and social media: Go out and buy this book and OH YES IT IS COMPLICATED YOU HAVE NOOO IDEA.


TEDxEunji ;)

Today we talked about the impacts the internet has had in our lives that be it socially, culturally or economically. This panel reminded me of one of the TED talks I watched as part of my FSEM last semester.

This TED talk is called “Txtng is killing language. JK!!” by John McWhorter. McWhorter is a professor at Columbia University and has contributed to extensive works in the fields of linguistics and politics and how these are affected by race.
I highly recommend you watch his talk which I have provided a link to above. It is not very long. Also, the funny and relaxed atmosphere he creates while communicating his ideas at his TED talk, is the one I hope to be able to attend in the future (yes, it is one of my lifelong goals to a attend a TED talk, ANY talk).

In class today, we were talking about the wink ;) involved in texting. When people use the wink face when texting it has other connotations than simply an innocent wink. This got me thinking about the lack of tone and other aspects of face to face conversation that texting lacks. People use emojis (like the wink), the word “lol”, or a period at the end of a very brutal statement to give written speech, face-to-face conversational characteristics. In this TED talk, McWhorter describes texting as fingered speech. He further discusses what we were talking about in class today and the whole wink emoji. The internet is helping us change our forms of interaction and by doing so are also shaping these forms. McWhorter further supports the evolution of texting by saying that ” Increasing evidence is that being bilingual is cognitively beneficial. That’s also true of being bidialectal. That’s certainly true of being bidialectal in terms of your writing. And so texting actually is evidence of a balancing act that young people are using today, not consciously, of course, but it’s an expansion of their linguistic repertoire.”

We are shaping the ways we communicate with people. We try to incorporate a tone in our texting in order to imitate it the way we would say that same thing in person. We are shaping the internet and technology phenomena no more than it is shaping us and our lives!!



TEDxEunji Blog Series

I’ve been meaning to begin a blog series merging my Computer Science course and TED talks. I can’t describe my love for TED talks, they have not only taught me about contemporary ideas in many fields but also brought tears to my eyes, many times…
I have enjoyed TED talks for many years now so when last semester, I took a class called FSEM: I was beyond excited. It was the only class I would look forward to  because it was engaging and I felt I learned more from discussing TED talks with my classmates than reading my biology or polisci textbook.

So, from here until the end of the semester I will try to blog biweekly about TED talks I find reflecting the topics we have discussed in our computer science class.

Please look out for my posts about my TED and TIC104 reflections I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoy writing them.


Two Birds, One Stone

I just ended my two week straight panel disscussions.

First, we discussed Privacy/Openness. Even though I feel like we concentrated our panel on the Privacy part of it, these topics are so intertwined that I feel we got a good grasp of both. This was my favorite of both panels I was on. I just feel privacy and openness are topics we deal with on a daily basis since we are constantly debating on in our lives. We are so conscious and aware fo what we post and others post on social media every day. We are always talking about what people posted as a facebook status or a tweeted to someone. We scrutinize on what people decide to share to the world. This may seem judgemental to some people, however, we all have the to choice to either be active members of cyberspace or not. Also, we are also aware of the “Big Brother” that has entered our society. One doesn’t even feel safe googling something because we are afraid the US government or other governments spying on us might take our google search and suppose its something its not.
I liked how we brought the corporate and media marketed part of this topic to the discussion by pointing out how every time we create an account in some website we agree to Terms of Use not one of really reads, openning ourselves to allowing our privacy to be violated. 

Then, this past week we discussed Digital Identity. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go to class on Tuesday because I had dinner with President Hurley! But thats a story for another day…
I liked how Amber talked about her own personal experience with this issue. She used the internet as a médium to meet people and her experience turned out great. People are so afraid of the digital identities people portray on websites. We are repressing our digital footprint and this isn’t right. We mold our digital identity just like other people do. However, as we discussed on Thursday, this line between our physical and digital identity is being blurred by our ever changing world. People trust those who they can physically touch and see with their own eyes but we forget that people might be acting fake and people we meet on the internet are just as real as those we meet physically.
When it comes to shaping our profiles on the internet we are selective on what we share, and we wish some people would be a little but more careful with what they share. Sometimes we see lifestyles on instagram or twitter that just seem unreal to us because they only makeup a single facet they want others to have of them.

Overall, I really liked the topics I got to discuss and hopefully we all took a little bit from both of these topics!!




In 50 years…

Thinking about the future is both overwhelming and exciting. I believe our human potential can take us anywhere we want to go.

I believe our future will be one in which first of all: EVERYONE WILL HAVE FREE ACCESS TO THE INTERNET! The internet is a public resource. It should not be a privilegie but a RIGHT! If we want to look out for ourselves and really see what we are able to do as a society, the internet should be easily accessible not only by the middle class but also by children living in impoverished countries. The internet is a window for people to realize their individual capability. We would never know if a person living in a hut in some country in Latin America, Southeast Asia or Africa is the next Bill Gates or the next Einstein until we give that person free access to this valuable resource: the internet.

Another thing I believe will be in our future is floors within buildings that will move for us. We won’t need to walk around buildings, the floors would be like giant treadmills that would take us around the different offices, classrooms, shops.etc. No more walking and feeling tired!

Finally, our future will have flying cars, no need for roads! We will be able to fly away in our own cars. There will be no more traffic!!

I believe these three ideas I have presented will make our lives more convenient and I hope that there are people in the future who will make these things happen for us!



Summary #6= Pre-service teachers’ digital literacy practices: exploring contingency in identity and digital literacy in and out of educational contexts.

This paper demonstrates that individuals portray their digital identities as those that fit context specific identities. Also, that there is a motivation and expectation from our environment and from ourselves to continue the certain digital identity we have decided to show in the internet. Here, the author has used pre-service teachers as an example and further pinpointing the importance of teacher identity to discussions concerning the disconnect between digital literacies in and outside schools. Our digital experience is framed by appropriateness, legitimacy, and risk. This articles recognizes that the digital literacies skills, orientations, and attitudes might or might not be able to help when translating to education. Finally, it emphasizes the importance of teacher’s digital literacy experiences in their different domains should be taken into consideration because of emerging technologies.

The reason I chose this articles is because it shows us the link of how technologies and teachers should be in accordance when it comes to our educational system, which is one of the main ideas we are exploring in this course.

Summary #5= Revealing our digital identity.

The authors of this article discuss the importance of identity formation. The research they have conducted demonstrate that students know their identities can be explained by external factors but they don’t seem to really care what these factors are. However, the students in this research do seem to care about their digital appearance and image that they portray of themselves through the internet, but only as an immediate social form. 1 out of 4 students don’t seem to be worried about the impact of their digital impact on their own future. What they mean by this future is not only their educational future but when seeking jobs as well. There is a focus on the new form of identity, that is digital identity, and how it is represented in social networks and the impact of these identities of the current up and coming generation.

One of the reasons I chose this article was because the secondary author’s main field of study is psychology. Digital identity can still be treated with such a science. I also like that they conducted an experiment that is relatable to the students in our class and how they perceive themselves in the internet.