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INMS Update

By Karen Kloser and Nora Paul

The Institute for New Media Studies celebrates Knight Foundation grant and soon-to-be released Eyetracking Project research.

Digital Design Consortium<br />
(DDC) lab

INMS awarded Knight Foundation grant


The Knight Foundation's 21st Century News Challenge grant program was looking for ideas that "use innovative news methods to help citizens better connect within their communities."

The Institute for New Media Studies pitched five ideas. Four got into the second round of consideration, and one recently was awarded a $250,000 grant.

The award-winning project, "Playing the News," will create a prototype of a news scenario-building program that will allow citizens to "play" through a news story, interacting with the stakeholders in the issue and, hopefully, resulting in a more in-depth understanding of complicated and ongoing news issues.

The Institute for New Media Studies director, Nora Paul, and Minnesota Journalism Center director, Kathleen Hansen, are co-researchers. They will be working with the Johnson Virtual Reality Center's team at Pine Technical College. Work on the two-year grant began this summer.

Emerging Digerati 2007-08 series moving to new location

Construction at the Weisman Art Museum means a change in venue for the Emerging Digerati series for the 2007-08 academic year.

The Digital Technology Center on the fourth floor of the Walter Library will be the temporary home of this popular student and new media community event.

Be sure to join us for another exciting year of Digerati, where people evangelize and connect to talk about new media in ways no one has imagined. Mark your calendar for the first Monday of each month, October through December, and plan to join us next season.

NMR@UMN Conference Sept. 13-14, 2007

Mark your calendar to attend the annual New Media Research@UMN Conference this fall. It, too, is moving to a new location -- the Digital Technology Center, Walter Library.

Be sure to kick off the new academic year by connecting with fellow new media researchers to learn about their project and poster presentations at this important cross-disciplinary collaboration: Thursday, Sept. 13, 2007, 5-7 p.m., reception and poster presentations; Friday, Sept. 14, 2007, 8:30-noon, half-day conference with breakout sessions.

Eyetracking project research to be released soon

The INMS, in collaboration with Sauman Chu from the University's Department of Design, Housing and Apparel and Laura Ruel from the University of North Carolina, conducted an eyetracking research project in late April to test different techniques for displaying "refreshed" or "breaking" news online, different styles of providing links to supplemental information, and different navigational options for moving through slide shows.

The research, funded by a Digital Technology Center grant, was completed in mid-May with research results expected midsummer.

To learn more about any of the INMS's activities or collaborations, contact the INMS at inms@umn.edu or (612) 625-0576.