Assignment 3: Alternate Technologies


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“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” ~ Margaret Mead

Assignment 3 is due March 1 by 11:55pm

This is an individual assignment worth 100 points. You may of course share ideas with your group members and other classmates, but ultimately, you are responsible for publishing to your individual blog a new post with the following elements:

  • A creative title
  • Category of Assignments (or whatever you’re currently using)
  • Several appropriately descriptive tags including stem110t (examples include urban planning, sustainability, transportation, energy, power, etc.)
  • A 1-3 paragraph overview explaining the “big picture” advantages of your proposal
  • A hyperlink to a Prezi presentation you created (detailed below) suitable for showing (you don’t actually have to present it) before an audience of the City of Norfolk

Use Prezi to Create Your Presentation

For this assignment, you will use a free tool called Prezi to create your presentation. Prezi is a very cool alternative to traditional linear PowerPoint-style presentations. You can start from scratch or even import PowerPoint and Keynote slides! Explore the example Prezi presentations.

Get started by visiting the Prezi website and watching the short video on the home page, What is Prezi? Then, visit the Sign Up page to create your account (you can choose the free upgrade for the Student/Teacher education license option – if you already have a personal account, you can upgrade by providing your ODU email). You can then move on to the Learn Prezi tutorials (including of course the Share Your Prezi tutorial).

Assignment Details

You’re a world-renowned urban planner who has been hired by the City of Norfolk to help it re-imagine Norfolk as a sustainable “city of the future”.

Read: What is an urban planner?

The city already is thinking about this with their PlaNorfolk 2030:  Making Connections, but they’ve asked you to bring in fresh ideas for imagining what Norfolk should be like by the year 2030 and beyond. Your challenge is to prepare a proposal for the city board’s review.

You’ll first want to familiarize yourself with the following resources:

What to Include in Your Presentation

You don’t have to actually present anything (although I may invite a few of you up to show off your work!), just make the presentation using Prezi and embed a hyperlink in your blog post as instructed.

Seriously, this is your chance to think BIG and be CREATIVE with how you might re-imagine the City of Norfolk. Have fun! Certainly reach for the sky in the types of technologies you choose to include: Do you see Norfolk shifting to a completely zero emissions, alternative-fuel transportation lifestyle? What about sustainable, fair-trade farming around the city? Windmills off the coast and solar panels on top of every building in the city? Take what you learn from Chapters 8 and 9 in your textbook, and even search around Google for ideas on how others are imagining cities of the future.

Try to include a mix of text content and image / multimedia content, such as images of “green buildings” and various renewable-energy technologies. Places to find images and multimedia include Google Image SearchCreative Commons, Wikipedia, Wikicommons, and Flickr.

When you explore the sample Prezi presentations, you’ll see that they don’t use a lot of text. Instead, you’ll see short passages and lists with key concepts, terms, and quotes. Focus on providing bites of information, rather than long blocks of text. You’ll see that the presentations move the viewer through in an engaging, yet easy and quick to read manner.

In YOUR presentation, I need to see basic evidence that you’ve addressed the points below and understand the italicized concepts. Keep your presentation focused and concise.

Include all of the following points (I’ve noted the corresponding pages in your textbook):

  • Briefly outline how your city plan exemplifies the concept of smart growth (see p. 265) and the related concept of compact development (see p. 267)
  • List how your city balances the sometimes conflicting challenges of economy versus ecology (see p. 278)
  • List how you will balance issues of technology equity given the diverse socioeconomic population of Norfolk (see p. 289 as well as http://www.norfolk.gov/planning/demographics.asp )
  • Highlight at least one alternative energy technology being developed here at ODU or by an organization (profit, non-profit, or government entity) here in Norfolk. You can search and link to appropriate articles in outlets including but not limited to the News @ ODU webpage, the City of Norfolk website, The Virginian-Pilot newspaper, as well as search the ODU Mace & Crown student newspaper for coverage.
  • Embed or provide a hyperlink to one related TED video or YouTube video you like that is NOT already listed in the Class Schedule. Along with the video include a bullet list of the video’s three key points. Suggested places to start looking:
Choose at least two of the following points: 
  • Highlight and provide an example for at least two key issues you would address in an environmental-impact analysis (see p. 298).
  • Highlight and provide an example for at how your city and the technologies you choose to implement will help reduce the greenhouse effect (see p. 303)
  • Highlight and provide an example for how your city will handle the localized environmental problems including pesticide runoff and water availability (p. 305)
  • Highlight and provide an example for how your city and the technologies you choose to implement will increase air-quality standards (p. 307)
  • Highlight and provide an example for how your city and the technologies you choose to implement will effectively handle the generation of waste (p. 320) through effective treatment, storage, and disposal techniques (p. 321)
Choose at least two of the following points:
  • Feature (and include an image for) 3 of the 7 contemporary renewable-energy technologies (see p. 258)
  • Feature (and include an image for) 3 green buildings, with notes about how they will help minimize waste (see p. 268)
  • Feature (and include an image for) at least 1 example of how you will maximize the potential for using alternative-energy vehicles (see p. 273)
  • Feature (and include an image for) at least 1 example of some connection to sustainable agriculture (see p. 275) and how you will promote fair trade practices where appropriate (see p. 287)

For at least one of the major technologies you intend to implement in the list above:

  • Describe at least one intended positive consequence and one potential unintended negative consequence (see p. 254)
  • Explain how it fits as an appropriate technology (see p. 254) by conducting an evaluation of in terms of each of its technical, cultural, and economic factors (see pp. 256-257). You may use the five items included in the appropriate technology assessment checklist on p. 257
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4 Responses to Assignment 3: Alternate Technologies

  1. Pingback: Great work during Wednesday’s class « Tech & Your World

  2. tange001 says:

    I’m getting to the last points of my prezi and ran into some trouble. I have a different edition of the textbook and my version doesn’t have the appropriate technology assessment checklist. Can you email me the list?

    • No problem. Check your email.

  3. RosalynMuniz says:

    I have been working on this assisgnment all morning and yesterday. It’s almsot done but I realized I was kind of scattered-brained with the information I was using. My presentation had too many focuses and not one particular one. I’m narrowing it down now so it could make sense! lol

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