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2011 Term 1 Assessments

In Term 1 of the HSC course, a series of small assessments replaced the large exam that was given each term.

Three topic quizzes

  1. Databases & Introduction to Multimedia (paper, sample solutions)
  2. Multimedia Hardware, Software & Issues (paper, sample solutions)
  3. Introduction to Communications Systems (paper, sample solutions)
NB. Sample solutions focus most on those questions that were not answered well by students, as a result some sections have little or no detail (as students scored consistently highly on these).

Four debates

Debate A

In the light of its recent social unrest, the Egyptian government has taken extreme measures in restricting the flow of information within & out of the country. Citizens are now concerned that the government will take the next step & seize control of private data stored in the databases of social media services in order to assist them in organising the response to the opposition.
"Governments should possess emergency powers to take control of databases that store personal & private information."

Debate B

Multimedia has enabled individual and collective immersion into technology and artificial worlds like never before. The line between reality and online interaction is blurring across personal, financial and political spheres of life.

"Multimedia has changed humanity for the better by opening up new and amazing opportunities  that would have been impossible without it."

Debate C

In November 2008, the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (representing several movie and television studios) filed a lawsuit against iiNet relating to the ISP's network being used to perpetrate thousands of instances of copyright infringement related to multimedia. So far iiNet has been judged as innocent, but the legal battle continues and iiNet's actions are symbolic for all internet service providers in the country. 

With the National Broadband Network already launched in Tasmania and continuing to roll out across Australia over the next few years, this debate is only set to intensify.

"Internet service providers are legally responsible for employing effective measures to curb the use of their networks for inappropriate purposes."

Debate D

"Watson, come here! I want to see you!" These were the historic first words spoken by Alexander Graham Bell on 10 March, 1876 - Bell's first successful experiment with his prototype telephone. And the world has never been the same since. The ability to (virtually) instantly communicate with someone great distances away - whether it is by audio, text, video or any combination of the above - has become a reality that most modern people simply assume is normal. 

Additionally, most modern people assume that this ability is a step forward by humanity - the classic use of a new technology to do amazing and previously unimaginable things. This is true in many ways. But many would argue that telecommunications has created as many problems as it has solved. People never need to be punctual any more because they may just call in late or cancel the meeting with a simple text. We have hundreds of 'friends' through social network sites but very few real relationships. It is common for individuals to spend hundreds of hours every year watching YouTube alone. We are a society that, more and more every day, simply cannot switch off.

"We - both as individuals and as a worldwide society - are better off with telecommunications technology as a regular, integral part of our daily lives."

An oral presentation

You were divided into six groups and each given a topic to present on. Your topic group will divide up into four "presentation groups", each having one representative from each topic group. The six topics all stem from the "Multimedia Software" topic, and are as follows:

A. Multi-purpose content applications (e.g. Word, Excel)
B. Authoring / publishing software (e.g. PowerPoint, Publisher, Acrobat, InDesign, PhotoShop, Premiere)
C. Scripting software (e.g. Dreamweaver, Expression Web)
D. Programming languages (e.g. C++, Java, JavaScript, PHP)
E. Cloud-based multimedia software (e.g. WordPress, Picasa)
F. Display platforms (e.g. QuickTime, Windows Media Player on computers; apps for Android and iOS on mobile devices; Foxtel iq, TiVo, Google TV and Apple TV on digital television)

With the exception of topic F, each of these focuses on software that is used in the creation of multimedia (topic F focuses on software that is intended for the display of multimedia). For each topic, the presenter must address the following points:
  1. Describe the software.
  2. Identify its unique advantages and disadvantages.
  3. List out its typical uses: the products generally produced by the software, and the normal users.
  4. Concrete examples of (i) this kind of software (several are posted above) and (ii) the products it creates
  5. Research this kind of software and pose 5 marks worth of questions for your presentation group to investigate and answer (use the HSC keywords to construct your question)

An essay

HaitiChileEgyptKenya. New Zealand*. Each of these countries - and many more - is a testimony to the power of mobile devices, multimedia and social networking websites in responding to disasters, both natural and man-made. While each tool has its own unique features, it is the combination of all these services - as well as their near-universal accessiblity - that has made an incredible and internationally recognised impact on the way that groups and individuals handle earth-shattering events such as those that have occured over the last few months. 

Critically analyse the use of modern information technologies and systems (by all categories of people: governments, authorities, relief agencies, reporters, individuals in the midst of the event, etc.) in responding to the crises of today.

Compose a response to the task above that meets the following conditions:
  • 1500 words in length (± 10%)
  • Employs a formal essay structure
  • Includes (i) in-text citations and (ii) full bibliography showing the author, URL and date published of all relevant sources
You may consult the marking rubric to see how marks are assigned.

* To help you out, I've provided a shortlist of articles related to the importance of technology in helping to manage the aftermath of the Christchurch earthquake. This list is nowhere near exhaustive - just treat it as a starting point: