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May 14, 2008

Portfolios: Blog 6

A website for inspiration: http://www.ncrel.org/sdrs/areas/issues/students/earlycld/ea5l143.htm

When we started to think about what presentation type we wanted to use there was almost no question in our minds that we wanted to do a portfolio. I had never really done an official portfolio before so I decided to Google it and see what came up. The very first search result was the website that posted above. This website is very helpful because it talks primarily about portfolios from a student’s perspective. It begins by defining portfolios and goes into great detail of the uses of the portfolio.

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This website includes information that is well thought out and organized. It has specific information about what types of portfolios are used and what they contain. This information is very helpful for someone who has never done a portfolio.

Another great thing about this website is that it includes the benefits and shows what a portfolio can add to your project. It even contains other resources, including books and other websites, that will help you along your way to making a portfolio. This website is a source for which I found a majority of my inspiration.

We also had to think about the format of our portfolio and what we wanted it to look like which was very important to us.

Then I found the website: http://www.coroflot.com/public/help_portfolio_tips.asp

This website primarily dealt with the format of portfolios and how to catch the reader’s eye. This is probably the most important thing about a portfolio. It had multiple tips to improve your portfolio, and it was short and to the point. This as well as the other website were great for finding inspiration.

May 13, 2008

Blog Prompt 3: Revisited

The topic: Environmental Sustainability

While I was starting to research my Millennium Goal, I found a lot of projects dealing with environmental sustainability. It was interesting to me that environmental sustainability is such a broad topic. There are so many projects to chose from, large and small scale. Then, when I really thought into it, I realized that environmental sustainability isn’t very specific. It can deal with recycling all the way into alleviating slum development in third world countries. Any way you look at it, the priorities for environmental sustainability may be different but each project is equally important.

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Before taking this class I had already taken inspiration from many people on the topic of recycling. The main reason for this is because my idol is John Mayer. He has been working for the cause for many years, and has been trying to use his popularity to inspire people to recycle as well as other things. Over the years he has been producing things such as reusable shopping bags made from recycled goods, using unique artwork to make them more appealing. He has also been developing a way to lessen the environmental effects of touring such as overuse of tour buses which emit massive amounts of harmful exhaust. Another thing he is working on is finding a more effective way to recycle the waste left behind at concert venues. He is taking part in the nationwide environmental benefit called Live Earth along with many other famous artists. All of these things make me respect him more and more and allows me to be inspired by his music and his influence on the environment.

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I also take inspiration from my parents on a daily basis. I am originally from Utah and I lived in a very large house with more electronics than NASA it seemed like. Over the years, when environmental talk came around they started to realize that their lifestyle was detrimental to the environment. They explored options for using less energy and they finally decided to install solar panels. The solar panels now nearly completely gather all of the energy that our electronics use. This is amazing to me because they had to make no sacrifice in their lifestyle to do this. The solar panels were expensive, but it is only a one time cost. After buying the solar panels, they will save money on the electric bill and they will be helping the environment at the same time. They are now working on recycling as much of the trash they produce as they can. Both of my parents are also my role models for this reason as well as many other reasons.

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Another thing I take inspiration from is the person who decides to make their small part by carpooling to work, or by throwing their garbage in the trash instead of on the ground. The thing I wish for is that more people would make this decision, and find inspiration from someone or something to allow them to make that decision. It is interesting for me to think that I make the right decision because of the fact that I am a fan of John Mayer, and I follow his career constantly. I do feel that it is possible for everyone to find this in some way shape or form, and this inspiration is found everywhere I just don’t think people are looking for it. I wasn’t looking for it when I found it, I just came across it. I am grateful for this because sometimes I feel like I can make a difference.

May 6, 2008

Presentations Number Two

We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children. ~Native American Proverb

Let me start this blog by saying I hate Moveable Type at the moment. I was typing up my blog last night for an hour and a half or so and was nearly finished when I clicked something mid type that made the web browser click back about five web pages…I exploded. I knew I would make it back to an empty new entry page. I sat there and swore for a few minutes while my roommate sat next to me confused. I was afraid to tell him why I was so angry because he had recently told me that I should type it in Microsoft Word first and then copy and paste it because the same thing had happened to him. He would have loved to say I told you so, but I wouldn’t give him the opportunity. I put down my computer for the night to keep myself from throwing it against the wall. Anyways, now my blog is late. Mercy please?
The presentation that caught my eye in the last recitation was another group doing environmental sustainability. I know my last blog was on the same goal but I find it so interesting, and each group presenting it had something new and interesting to say. The group that I liked was the group that was less interested in presenting their data and more interested to making it available for us to learn ourselves. They merely gave a description of what there project was and showed us how we could learn more. I liked the way they presented and they had interesting info too.
The first thing they touched on was air pollution. I was completely unaware that a lot of the devices they showed existed and I never knew about them. I had no idea there were things on gas pumps that stopped gasoline fumes from entering the air. The next thing the focused on was water sanitation. Our group focused a lot on water sanitation and it was good to hear another group present it because I learned even more about it through them. The most interesting solution to poor water sanitation is UV disinfection. Although it is hard to do this to millions of gallons of water it a very effective way to clean water. The next thing they focused on was ways to stop wasting energy. They focused mainly on biofuels which are good for the environment but drive up the prices and cost a lot for the government to produce which surprised me. All of these ideas though are being tested to achieve environmental sustainability.
Basically all of the topics presented were technologies. Technology can be good and bad in our environment. When we explore technologies it is important that there will be no negative long term effects. There has to be a balance of technology and just plain sacrifice in order to achieve environmental sustainability.