DJ Roomba

Week 8 – New Media Transgressions

I think we have all imagined a day in the future where we can spot advanced humanoid androids walking among us in the busiest of crowds, interacting with us where ever we go. As expressed in Amelia’s blog, it is without a doubt an exciting prospect to witness the human-like capabilities which robots can possess in order to encourage a deeper level of interaction.  Probably as old as the idea of the creation of robots itself, the fear of robots matching or even surpassing our own intellect has also been largely among sceptics.  The Modeled Behaivor blog reported a survey in 2011 which revealed that 50% of the survey participants believed the creation of human-level (and beyond) machines will likely produce an extremely bad outcome (2011).

As much as we might be frightened with the potential of artificial intelligence it’s important to be aware that robots have already been integrated and heavily used in societies around the world already for many years. A notable is the self-vacuum cleaning robot Roomba with the video “DJ Roomba” (2010) demonstrating its popularity and acceptance in today’s homes.

I am excited for the future of robotics as Cynthia Breazeal explains in her 2010 presentation “The Rise of Personal Robots” (2010) that they can change our private and professional lives in terms of the way we communicate, perform tasks and use media. As explained in this blog, I agree that such technology is beneficial to us but we cannot let it rise to the point where it can takes over our lives and it essentially replaces us perhaps in the work place or it increases our growing dependancy for them.

I believe we should welcome helpful and supportive artificial intelligence for certain parts of our lives as long as it doesn’t blur what it is truly important which is our humanity, the way we work, bond and live. Besides, if we have too many robots then where will DJs go for work?


Amelia. 2012. “Will your robot keep you warm at night?” KCB206AMELIA. Accessed April 29, 2012.

Breazal, Cynthia. 2011. “The rise of personal robots.” Accessed April 29, 2012. /talk/cynthia_breazeal_the_rise_of_personal_robots.html

Justqualitymusic. 2010, “dj roomba.” YouTube video, posted Februrary 5, 2010.

Leong, Susan. 2012. “KCB206 Week 8 Lecture.” Accessed April 29, 2012.

n7075782. 2012. “We control the new media or it control us?” n7075782. Accessed April 29, 2012.

Ozimek, Adam. 2011. “Should we fear the robot future?” Modeled Behaivor. Accessed April 29, 2012.



Week 7: Working In/With New Media

A word like “mompreneurs”, coined in John Zittrain’s lecture “Minds for Sale” (2009) when introducing the idea of housewives finding work online, immediately tells us how deep the internet has integrated into our personal and professional lives. As mentioned by Ivan, the internet has opened doors to a larger variety of easily accessible jobs making employment simpler than ever.

The line between the professional and the amateur life has been blurred where the “Information Age is full of myths about the fate of work and employment (Castells 1999, 401).  New media has created countless online jobs, raising serious questions on the future of traditional careers and the workplace. Scepticism has also been raised on the exploitive nature of crowdsourcing due to the extremely low pay for certain tasks. (Gill 2007, 40).

Like explained on Will’s post, I personally believe crowdsourcing should be viewed as a new, fresh and positive change to the way we approach work rather than being seen as exploitation by corporations. There are a huge range of jobs and wages being offered online from science experiments to art drawings, all appealing to certain worker’s interests. As long as one finds work and pay they are satisfied with then what else could you ask for?


Castells, M. (1999). ‘An Introduction to the Information Age’ in The Media Reader: Continuity & Transformation. Hugh Mackay & Tim O’Sullivan (eds), London: Sage: 398-410

Cheung, Ivan. 2012. “Crowd Sourcing – New Concept for Companies and Us.” The New Media World – We Just Sharing, April 18. Accessed April 21, 2012.

Gill, R. (2007). Informality is the New Black. In Technobohemians or the new Cybertariat?New Media work in Amsterdam a decade after the web. Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures: 24-30 & 38-43

Will. 2012. “Crowdsourcing a Darwinian Theory of Evolution.” Life: New Media, April 22. Accessed April 21, 2012.

Wired. 2008. “Data Art: The Sheep Market.” YouTube video, posted March 6. Accessed April 21, 2012.

Zittrain, J. 2009.  “Minds for Sale”. YouTube video, posted November 29. Accessed April 21, 2012.