Design and Theory – ZHughes

One may say the importance in designing the prototypes of these technologies for uses in aiding social justice is not only the intention to help in the “fight”, but to also to make sure that these prototypes are designed with the proper mobility and social properties in mind. And also any possible privacy and accessibility complications should be addressed if possible. My technology prototype is an app that acts as an information hub while also featuring some recruiting and social aspects with the proposed Indeed or LinkedIn inclusion. This app is designed only for smartphones. It attempts to address the underrepresentation of minorities in leadership roles in education through two components. The first is providing a channel for awareness by pushing information about prominent black admins, and their contributions to their respective universities. The second component allows for action following awareness by providing information on job openings in these moderately high to high ranking admin positions, specifically at more racially diverse universities. Addressing underrepresentation is important because, while what one sees at an institution regarding diversity shouldn’t determine their success or their pursuit of helping to set the stage for the next generation that follows, seeing someone who is alike in a position of deciding power is sure to bare positive results.


Regarding social interactions and the mobility of this app; there is much to be discussed. First, we must understand mobility. By using Kakihara and Sorensen’s Expanding the ‘Mobility’, we look to understand how one breaks down mobility. Mobility is more than just actual travel of people from one place to the next. It’s more so the way we interact with each other socially (2001, p. 33) The three types of mobility are spatial, temporal, and contextual. Spatial mobility involves the movement of objects, symbols and space. Each carry its own importance. The movement of objects can be defined as the movement of people and the objects attached to people. For instance, the Sony Walkman; (2001, pg. 34) it is mobile in its design. It is designed to be a part of one who is in constant movement. Being that my technology is an app designed for smartphones,  it will live inside of the ultimate modern mobile object and thus takes advantage of this. Then, there is the movement of symbols; “Global satellite television networks, for example broadcast visual images and sound enabling billions of people to receive news almost simultaneously. Likewise, the internet has become a place where an immense amount of information, sound, and images travel beyond national borders.” (2001, pg. 34) To an extent my application takes advantage of movement of symbols as it lives in a space where everyone with the app, through the internet is “pushed” the information about the minority admin. With the movement of space, Kakihara and Sorensen speak of existing in a virtual space between people. I do not think my app takes advantage of this in its design. This is because this is an automated information hub pushing information to whomever has the application, and providing opportunities to find job openings, but it does not allows those to directly communicate with these admins they read about or with other people who are also reading about these people via the app. The next type of mobility is temporal mobility.


Temporal mobility regards time. “Efforts to invent new technologies and introduce them into existing work settings are motivated to a large extent by the desire to accelerate the pace of work and save time” (2001, pg. 34) Tech is being designed to help perform work and at a more desirable rate and save us time in doing so. My app does not engage this at all. My app prototype aside from possible job recruiting isn’t time sensitive. One has the information pushed to them or they can actively search for the information inside the hub. The third type of mobility is contextual. Contextual mobility regards the context in which objects interact. “…not only enables people to asynchronously connect with others in distant areas, it also transforms the contextual constraints amongst those interacting” (2001, pg. 35). My app does not engage here either. This is because my object does not really involve the interaction of people of distant areas as much as it involves the movement of information through objects and symbols. All in all my app design engages with mobility in a very limited but still possibly effective way.


Regarding social interaction, my design does not engage very much. It does not operate through a social network even though it does request the opportunity to work with other networks that are social.  In its core design it’s not social media. Using Lee Humphrey’s Connection, Coordinating, Cataloguing we understand that mobile interactions with these social media are based on people communicating with people through these media (2012, pg. 495). My app is information based and not interaction based. You do not know who else has the app; at least not directly using the app.


While there aren’t any main concerns regarding privacy, there are concerns regarding accessibility with my app. However, lets first look at privacy the main concerns of privacy in technology is information and surveillance. Using Alice E. Marwick’s The Public Domain: Social Surveillance in Everyday Life we come to understand that people reveal and conceal personal information when making connections with other people, and also that the information is digital and thus is can be replicated, searched, disseminated, and accessed easily. (2012, pgs. 378, 381 [referenced Boyd, 2010] ). Although there is a possible privacy concern regarding sensitive information with LinkedIn and Indeed collaborations, that concern would be with the design of those social networks, not the design of the app. My app’s design does not require the input of any sensitive information. One way to address this possible privacy hiccup would be to provide a warning stating that you may be posting sensitive information in the databases with the network that my app is collaborating with.


There are definitely some accessibility concerns with my design. My app is designed for smartphones only; and so anyone who either cannot afford a smartphone or has trouble looking at screens will struggle with this app. It is also information pushed by the internet, so anyone who lives in an area that struggles with internet connections,  albeit from a internet provider or cell phone service provider, will struggle using this app as well. Gerard Goggin’s Cell Phone Culture: Mobile Technology in everyday life details accessibility with mobile phones. Goggin speaks specifically on disability and cell phone use. This includes those who are blind, deaf, or color blind along with other disabilities. He also speaks on how in designing to fix one accessibility issue you may alienate another. Smartphones have some features that help to fix the accessibility issues regarding the screen issues that could accompany my app design flaw. However, my app can not tend to the accessibility issue regarding the price of smartphones, and the possible inconsistencies of internet access. These will have to stand as accessibility flaws.


Work Cited:


-Humphreys, Lee. (2012). Connecting, Coordinating, Cataloguing: Communicative Practices on Mobile Social Networks. Retrieved 2015, March, 29 From

-Kakihara, Masao & Sorensen, Carsten. (2001). Expanding the ‘Mobility’ Concept. Retrieved 2015, March 29 From


-Marwick, Alice E. (2012). Public Domain: Surveillance in everyday life.  Surveillance & Society. Retrieved 2015, March, 29 From


-Goggin, Gerard. (2006). Cell Phone Culture: Mobile technology in everyday life. Retrieved 2015, March, 29 From


The ability for men and women who are transgender to properly represent themselves in the way that they themselves see fit has left much to be desired. While they will change how they identify, including how they physically appear, they are not fully able do so because their voices do not match their new appearances. People identify each other with not only their eyes, but their ears as well. Enter; the Exceptional Voice AppEVA is a voice training application that addresses this social justice issue. By allowing a person who is transgender to completely identify(combining audio and visual cues) as the gender they chose to, it has the potential to improve on their own lack of personal confidence as well possibly avert harassment, violence, and discrimination that comes with being a perceived unfavorable minority in society.


EVA’s voice training is done using a smartphone and the designed application. It uses pitch, breathing, and other exercises to help to completely modify their voices over time. It is available for both iOS users and Android users. However, due to some software  inconsistencies a number of android devices do not support EVA. EVA is a Technology-enhanced learning (or TEL) tool.

Because EVA is a smartphone based application that teaches one to modify one’s voice to different frequencies and therefore is a tech-enhanced learning tool, it brings it into the realm of evaluation of a TEL regarding addressing social justice. As Light and Luckin discussed in their Designing for Social Justice excerpts, TELs have an important place within social justice agenda. TELs can offer learners an experience that is specific to them and that is designed to meet their individual needs.(Light and Luckin, 2008, p. 27). They can address the needs of the many, especially members of marginalised groups and help them articulate their voices. (Light and Luckin, 2008, p. 27). Perhaps most importantly, it supports a learners social and communicative activities; this allows them to voice their views and needs more effectively. EVA does this effectively. EVA literally and figuratively gives the transgender a voice to operate with. Not only does it give one the voice they desire, it gives them the voice they desire for the attention and possible acceptance of those outside of the marginalised group.

There are some positive points and concerns regarding privacy and accessibility with EVA. First and foremost despite EVA’s seemingly permanent effects over time, it is still a wearable technology. It’s a wearable audio technology. In a way, one may deem it partially similar to visual technologies i.e. Google Glass and other augmented reality devices. As detailed in Steve Mann’s Mann Glass, Speed Glass, GooGlass, and The Veillance Contract one of the biggest issues within wearable computing is that of surveillance and the hypocrisy of surveillance and sousveillance. “The very same people who were building a world of watching — were afraid of being watched!” (Mann, 2013). When one that deems an uneven playing field of communication as normal is challenged by the playing field becoming even, it is now no longer normal. One way privacy in certain respects is a form of hypocrisy. However, in regards to EVA, not only is the app itself designed to be private by working from your smartphone, when it “evens the playing field” for representation of transgender, it is done in a manner to simply allow transgenders to live the lives they have earned instead of forcing an even playing field of privacy through the visual cue of wearable visual image capture technology.

However, with EVA there are some serious concerns with accessibility. As detailed in Gerard Goggin’s Cell Phone Culture: Mobile Technology in Everyday Life, although mobile technology is made in mind for all (especially commercially), unfortunately it does not actually play out this way. For instance, cell phones were once difficult for ones with disability to hold and use because it was too bulky. Then, as technology allowed for phones to become greatly smaller, it created another issue with people who lacked the dexterity and nimble fingers to sift through the small screens and even smaller interfaces on them. (Goggin, 2006, p. 91) By fixing one you exclude another.

Screen Shot 2015-03-08 at 10.00.30 PM

While being transgender is not a disability, having a phone with a fragmented software is; in terms of accessibility to technology. This means if you don’t have the supported phone with the supported software, despite the app itself being available on all major mobile platforms, you do not have access to this application.

Works Cited:

– Goggin, Gerard(2006). Cell Phone Culture: Mobile technology in everyday life. Retrieved March 8, 2015 From:

-Light, Ann and Luckin, Rosemary(2008). Designing for social justice: people, technology, learning. Retrieved March 8, 2015 From:

-Mann Steve (September 26, 2013). MannGlass(“GlassEyes”), SpeedGlass, “GooGlass”, and “The Veillance Contract”. Retrieved March 8, 2015 From:

-[Picture of Phone will running “EVA” app] (2015). Retrieved March 8, 2015 From:

-Perez, Kathe. (May, 8, 2009). Rachel Now and Then. Retrieved March 8, 2015 From:

-[Screenshot of Accessibility claim for EVA] (2015). Retrieved March 8, 2015 From: (Original Site)

-Perez, Kathe. EVA: Eva From Kathe Perez: The World’s FIRST and ONLY Transgender Voice Training App!. Retrieved March 8, 2015 From

-Lewis, Shanna. (August 25, 2014). Transgender people whose voice doesn’t match their looks turn to new app. Retrieved March 8, 2015 From

There Will Indeed, Be An App for Minority Education Justice

As previously stated in the research paper, there is a social injustice within the education realm. It’s haunted by its history and its unclarity in the future. To be specific, the social justice here is under representation. Minorities are underrepresented in leadership roles and administration. Perhaps the greatest problem surrounding this injustice is that we are just unaware of how important it is to be properly represented in these roles, and how important it was to be represented in those roles. To address this issue, I plan to make an app for smart phones. Smart phones are the ultimate tool. However, most people, especially young adults, do not prefer to have to search all around for important information. They’d rather have it “pushed” to them.

This app will utilize the internet and it’s ability to gather information and bring it right to your screen instantly. This application is intended for high school students, college students, and recent graduates; as these are the people who are looking for jobs. The app will operate similar to popular dictionary apps work on iOS and Android respectively. Similar to how the dictionary app provides a “word for the day”, this app will provide a prominent black administrator for the week past or present. It will detail where they work, and what major work they have done. This could be seen as romanticizing the position(s). An addition to providing information about prominent black admins now and then weekly, a searchable database within the app that uses location based technology from the smartphone, will help detail where one can find educational institutions that have open administrative positions, as well as the most and least diverse student bodies as well. To make the secondary feature more powerful, a possible connection with Indeed or LinkedIn could work to bring a social media aspect as well as a job board aspect to the application as well. Which fits into the mission of the app.

As previously referenced, the scholarly works of Jerlando F.L. Jackson (A Crisis At The Top: A National Perspective) details why this app is needed.  “An examination of the status for African American in leadership positions is needed to help facilitate the development and advancement for the next generation of leaders.” (Jackson, 2004). What better way to help that then by providing weekly information about prominent leaders and providing a search database to help hire the next? Also in a joint work from Khaula Murtadha and Daud Malik Watts(Linking the Struggle for Education and Social Justice: Historical Perspectives of African American Leadership In Schools). “African American educational leaders then worked to overcome these barriers and pushed to bring Black leaders of education and their staff to the forefront. However, these stories and accounts have not been incorporated into the literature of school administration, leadership, reform and change.” (Murtadha and Watts, 2005). Again, a lack of awareness can be remedied by making that information readily available even outside of the school system, especially because today’s technology allows for us to learn without ever stepping foot into a classroom.


There is a flaw in this application concept. Ironically, it is visibility. The Apple App Store and Android Marketplace have matured to hold over one million and then some; applications. It is hard for apps that are not established or a viral hit to make it to the front pages of these app stores. And also the rating systems are at the mercy of public opinion and that could bring complications as well. However, if the application brings any sort of measurable result then the application is a success.

Work Cited

-Murtadha, Khaula and Watts, Daud Malik[2005], Linking the Struggle for Education and Social Justice: Historical Perspectives of African American Leadership in Schools. Retrieved (2015, February, 15) from

-Jackson, Jerlando F.L. [2004] A Crisis At The Top: A National Perspective. Retrieved (2015, February, 15) from

ZH Under-Representation of Blacks [Edu Justice]

Black Under-Reps in Administrative Positions


One of the storied areas of social justice that has needed acknowledgement and reform countless times is in the realm of education. It’s often plagued by its history and the problems the future holds. One of the main injustices that lies in education is misrepresentation and under-representation. One of the key parties that suffer from misrepresentation and under representation are the African Americans. However, it is fair to say that other minorities as well suffer from this. To focus this even more, it is the under-representation of African Americans in positions that oversee the student body. Throughout American history, African Americans have fought for equality and a fair chance in many aspects of life thus far. And that has led to a much more diverse student body overall specifically in colleges/universities. The Institute of Education Sciences’ National Center for Education Statistics reported that The percentage of American college students who are Hispanic, Asian Pacific Islander, Black and all other major minorities, have increased. The percentage of Blacks amongst other minorities attending college over the past 50 years has risen from 10% to 15%. That doesn’t seem like much of a growth, but in that same period of time White students have dropped nearly 20%. While a lack of diversity in the student body is an injustice in itself, the trends could point to that slowly but surely changing. However, the real injustice is the lack of proper representation in the administration sectors of colleges and universities. In an excerpt from A Crisis At The Top: A National Perspective from Jerlando F.L. Jackson article in The Negro Journal, we see that this injustice is on the radar of scholars as well what may be the cause of the issue and possible solutions. “Fundamentally, it stands to reason that, those making decisions for a diverse student population, should themselves be diverse…The higher and postsecondary education research literature abounds with recommendations for retaining and advancing students and faculty of color. However, little empirical or practice-based knowledge is provided” (Jackson, 2004). Jackson provides a possible solution of building a conceptual framework, while also producing the proper knowledge for policy implementation. Also it should be identified who possess administration positions that lead to executive positions at colleges and universities that are African Americans. “An examination of the status for African American in leadership positions is needed to help facilitate the development and advancement for the next generation of leaders.” (Jackson, 2004). Also in a excerpt from a collaborative article Linking the Struggle for Education and Social Justice: Historical Perspectives of African American Leadership In Schools from Khaula Murtadha and Daud Malik Watts also acknowledge this injustice with the under representation of powerful black administrators. “Woodson argued that there were serious problems with inaccurate, ill-planned, depoliticized curriculum content and lack of resources, as well as problems with the poor, unethical preparation of teachers.” (Woodson [The Mis-Education of the Negro], Murtadha and Watts, 2005). African American educational leaders then worked to overcome these barriers and pushed to bring Black leaders of education and their staff to the forefront. However, these stories and accounts have not been incorporated into the literature of school administration, leadership, reform and change. (Murtadha and Watts, 2005). The central cause for this injustice seems to be a lack of awareness. Also,in  J. Luke Wood’s Ethical Dilemmas in African American Faculty Representation we get a numbers perspective of this injustice. “Black faculty represented merely five percent of the professoriate in 2003 (NCES, 2006). However, when viewed in light of the percentage of African American students, a disparity is seen in that African American students accounted for 12.5% of the enrollment of college and universities in 2004 (NCES, 2006b). Additionally, while African American faculty represent nearly the same numbers as they did more than two decades ago(Trower and Chait, 2002), the total percentage of the Black population in the United States has increased from 11.7% in 190 to 12.3% in 2000 (Hobbs and Stoops, 2002) (Wood, 2008)” Wood also highlited that while Black adminstrators are under-represented, there is research that shows that African American faculty are just as valuable and maybe even more effective than their other counterparts. He quotes that Black faculty are more likely to engage and collaborate, take on diversity related activities that will help their students learn to function and work in a diverse society, and spend more time working on their teaching strategy and advising students. However, again it is a lack of awareness, education, and other factors involving complications such as Affirmative Action that hurt possible reform. African Americans are under-represented in education leader positions, due mostly to a lack of awareness and education. We must increase awareness, educate our youth no matter the race, and make Black educational leader positions desireable.

Work Cited:

-Postsecondary Enrollment Rates. (Retrieved 2015, February, 15) from

-Murtadha, Khaula and Watts, Daud Malik[2005], Linking the Struggle for Education and Social Justice: Historical Perspectives of African American Leadership in Schools. Retrieved (2015, February, 15) from

-Jackson, Jerlando F.L. [2004] A Crisis At The Top: A National Perspective. Retrieved (2015, February, 15) from

-Wood, J. Luke[2008] Ethical Dilemmas in African American Faculty Representation. Retrieved (2015, February, 15) from

Space And Place Written All Over Your Face

We are in the infantile stages of 2015, and as most postmodern individuals, we expect new technological advances to become publicly accessible instead of just publicly known. Google Glass (although heavily delayed, most likely completely canceled), has ushered in what we see in the mainstream of augmented reality. Microsoft is expected to unleash their tech in the near future, as they have just given us a teaser trailer

; and we can expect Apple to take their chance on it sooner rather than later.  As with all technology, augmented reality(dubbed as AR from now on) doesn’t just appear, it is theorized either by accident or practice and then placed into practice. So we must define AR by its history as well as today. We must also understand AR’s appeal. Why should we care that this technology is beginning to mature into a stage where we can make use of it in the masses?

Merriam-Webster defines Augmented Reality as “an enchanced version of reality created by the use of technology to overlay digital information on an image of something being viewed through a device..”. In essence, AR is a mobile wearable technology. It falls somewhere in between reality and the virtual. (Liao and Humphreys, Pg. 1) Now that we know what AR is today, we must understand the building blocks that gave oxygen to this technology, especially in theory. AR is a wearable tech; the newest mainstream wearable tech. So the highlighted history of wearable tech is where we find what made AR plausible and appealing for today. I believe that we can find these highlights in the wearable tech that was the ace before AR became ace, the mobile phone; specifically in the 1990’s and 2000’s. It is not the existence of the cellphone that helped to give us a peek into AR, but the highlight developments of what is now the modern cellphone and smartphones that do. In the 1990s we saw the mobile phone extended its array of features beyond just calls. Text messaging(precursor to instant messaging), picture messaging, and multimedia in general becomes part of the mobile phone repertoire. In a short time this would become a lucrative division of the mobile phone industry. These are seen as necessities today and are still go-to features for the newest forms of AR today

. It is in the 2000s where the key developments happen, however. In the 2000s we see mobile phones gaining access to the internet, thanks to GPS developments phones have location awareness, and data retrieval as well; this also allowed for phones to interact with cultural objects. phone_sensors

While these were milestones in the development of the mobile phone which essentially became necessities when put into mass practice as years followed, they were building blocks for the basic features of AR. 

AR has taken the prized possessions of the mobile phone and made it the standard building block. There are many other trivial and advanced capabilities AR possesses but what makes it truly appealing is the changes it brings beyond the technology, and the potential fall outs of having AR in the mainstream. Returning to Tony Liao and Lee Humphrey’s “Layer-ed Places” gives us a more imperially evident look into the fallout of AR. One of keys in Liao and Humphrey’s article is understanding the meaning of space and place and AR’s role in space and place. “This study focuses specifically on users of Layar, one of the most widely used mobile AR applications. Layar displays points of interest (POIs), user-created annotations, or graphics based on the Global Positioning System (GPS) location of the device and…Users can download different content layers (e.g. restaurants, apartment listings) and view that content overlaid on the physical world by pointing their mobile device at a location. Layar also allows users to create content and place them on particular locations.” (Liao and Humphreys , Pg. 2-3). Essentially Layar uses the the mobile phone’s camera and GPS, and to make it even more recent; Google Glass takes this element and makes it constant. As long as its on your eyes, and on, you are “pointing your mobile device”. It has gone from an application to a literal tool. This means, that a new version of control and point of view has been created. These tools interact in the realm of space and place. Space is static and so we use static tools to navigate this space; like a map. Place is not static, place is a social act and AR (which allows us to change what we see on these spaces with created augmented content), allows us to manipulate place. We have mobile technology that seems to have peaked the cellphone’s ability to thank for that building block for AR. Theoretically the possibilities are endless with a non-static “place” that is constantly redefined as AR continues to mature. Not only is AR technologically appealing, it’s socially appealing. People have already begun to use the technology for social commentary. Screen Shot 2015-02-01 at 12.40.09 PM. Constant redefining of place can even change the meaning of the space. In the picture above, what was once defined as a means for freedom and advancement is now defined as a memorial and a warning. Liao and Humphreys did infact interview some people who have used AR and the responses shown that there is a measurable appeal to AR already; especially amongst content creators(Liao and Humphreys, Pg 9-10). However, AR is not all good especially because it carries social fallout with it. For instance, a major gripe many had with the idea of Google Glass is the possibility of being observed and recorded at any given time without the knowledge of it. This included industry and people alike. This has even led to violence against people who possess and openly use AR devices. So while there is an appeal to AR and possibly down the line even a demand, it should come tentatively.

Cited Sources

-[Definition of Augmented Reality], Retrieved (2015, February, 1) from

-Liao, Tony and Humphreys Lee [2014]. Layer-ed places: Using mobile augmented reality to tactically reengage, reproduce, and reappropriate public space. Retrieved (2015, February, 1) from 

-Mobile History Timeline. Retrieved (2015, February, 1) From 

-[Untitled, picture of smartphone capabilites], Retrieved (2015, February, 1) from

-Triple6Games(Channel).Microsoft.(2015, January, 22). Microsoft Hololens Trailer. Retrieved (2015, February, 1) from 

-Google. (2013, February, 20). How it Feels[through Google Glass]. Retrieved (2015, February, 1) from

-Google Glass.(2013, April, 30). Google Glass How-to:Getting Started. Retrieved(2015, February, 1) from 

Intro Post -ZH

Hey all readers this is Zach Hughes, I’m senior and since this is not my first time taking Dr. Shaw’s class I’ll use the same twitter I did for the last class, @TU_Z2. I took this class because after a number of years in the media school I too have come to the realization that the next frontier in the information age is mobile media. I’m also aware that growing pains will come within this realm like the development of the all the mediums before it. I intend to learn the history of mobile media, the present, and the future of mobile media so we can predict what follows. I intend to learn these and whatever pleasant and unpleasant surprises we learn about mobile media along the way.

As for me personally, I’m a Philly transplant; I’ve spent half my life here, and half my life in The Bronx, New York.

I’ll be graduating in the fall God willing and I intend to start small working at a video, radio, film, or music production company and eventually move on and build my own production company. I’m a sports and music junkie; I love Hip-Hop, R&B, and I’m trying to get into art. I used to operate heavy on Twitter but unfortunately I had to delete it and start from scratch. My personal Twitter is @ValidZach. I love memes as well. One of the funniest new age past times for me when I’m not out is to “watch” events with Twitter and laugh at the people I follow’s reactions. I hope to build and network with whoever wants to, I’m hoping there’s a coder or two in the class as well so when we get to the app design segment we can see some of these apps possibly come to life.

Work Cited

– [Co-op City, Bronx, NY] [WebPhoto] Retrieved January, 20, 2015 From:

-Minuum Keyboard. (2014, September,17) Frustrated by autocorrect? Try the Minuum Keyboard for iPhone. Retrieved January 20th, 2015, From: