Research Post #11

July 27, 2009

The Google alerts this past week featured more people hating getting up in the morning and not liking morning people than it revealed good things about morning people.  Over the course of the Google alerts, it has been interesting to see more people complain about morning people or not liking getting up before they absolutely have to.  Maybe I should have set Google alerts to see if the early birds are complaining about the night owls keeping them awake.   

Here are a few examples of people not liking morning people.   

Misodorky claims to be a night owl and cannot believe there are people who enjoy getting up at the crack of dawn and are fully functional.  She has a perception that early birds wake up in a cheerful mood and are very productive.  Misodorky posts for morning people to leave her alone and refers to morning people as freaks of nature and that she hates all morning people.     

Well, the early birds I interviewed throughout this semester did not come across as this way.  Yes, they did get up early and got moving, but it wasn’t exactly as cheery as this lady thinks.  They may still be groggy, but know that this is their only opportunity to do their personal goals.   

Duoly Noted starts her blog post off with big, bold, red letters “I Hate Morning People.”  Well, what a shocking way to start off a post.  She does not believe in getting up before 8 a.m. and she is struggling with how in the world she will get up at 6 a.m. when she goes to take the bar exam that begins at 8 a.m.  She has already started trying to get up at 6 a.m., but finds herself hitting the snooze for another 45 minutes.  Not only is she angry about the bar exam starting at 8 a.m., she is also mad at society for starting the work day at 8 a.m.  She feels morning people have a superiority complex and look down on night owls.  Her blog post also ends with a reminder that she hates morning people – well, I guess that’s why her blog is called “duoly noted.”


Reaction Post #10

July 27, 2009

What have I learned in MCOM507?

I feel I have benefited from all of the elements of this class.  This includes blogging, creating a Twitter account, learning how to create a specific Google map, learning about my interviewees and creating pieces with the newer internet technologies (slideshows, multimedia, etc).  

Learning some actual HTML coding was definitely a valuable aspect for me (even though I was constantly frustrated with it for every module).  I rely on a WYSIWYG editor or Front Page for the editing I need to do for our intranet and two websites.  I was also glad to know that the extra “stuff” that Front Page adds to the coding is not needed.  I’ve wanted to delete things, but wasn’t sure if I would lose all the information on the page if I did.  I have already improved my use of hyperlinks and what needs links.  

I was not aware of how to customize Google maps to my favor prior to this class.  This will be a valuable tool for me to utilize on our corporate website with references to our corporate headquarters, local restaurants and local hotels for customer visitors to reference.  

I also am approaching the way I tell someone’s story differently.  I’ve become comfortable in the corporate world writing the way the corporation writes and have to look at stories differently and include the human side to them.  Also, I’ll utilize a video or a series of photos from now on instead of just text.  Time is always a deterrent in the workplace, but I’ll need to start working with our video specialist on how we can improve this. 

Like I’ve said before, I also enjoyed refreshing some good rules of thumb:
–          don’t use more words than you need
–          use short  words instead of long ones
–          use words with simple meanings
–          use words with concrete meanings
–          be specific
–          use correct meaning of words

Research Post #10

July 27, 2009

This week’s first research posts talks about sleeping habits to get up earlier.  Seven Surprising Facts About Sleep talks about how to get a better night’s rest which can lead to being able to get up before dawn.  So in addition to what we have already seen regarding don’t drink caffeine too late in the day and don’t exercise right before you want to go to bed there are seven other options to try that I haven’t really heard of before. 

  1. Set a bedtime alert.  This means to have an alarm go off one hour prior to when you want to be in bed so that you can start wrapping what you are doing and starting to shut down.  I think that sounds like good advice. 
  2. Don’t clear your mind.  In other words, if your mind won’t settle down from all the worries of the days, you should not force your mind to clear it as you will end up panicking that you are not sleeping.  I have found myself in this mode as I can’t calm myself down to sleep and then I look that my hours of actual sleep time is dwindling and put more anxiety on myself to go to sleep. 
  3. Count numbers, not sheep.  This is something I will try.  It claims to count backward by 3s starting with 300. Your mind won’t be able to concentrate on anything else and will quiet those nagging thoughts that are keeping you awake.
  4. Get up a half-hour earlier.  This advice is supposed to be the best way to reset your body clock.  This is supposed to make you more tired earlier in the evening and to bed sooner. 
  5. Consider seeing a professional.  In just four to six sessions a sleep psychologist can resolve your sleep problems.  Unfortunately, there is no information regarding how much this would cost.  Everything else has been no cost to experiment with. 
  6. Don’t worry if you can’t sleep right away. I was not aware that it really should take between 15 to 25 minutes from when you lie down until you are sleeping.  I guess I’m doing ok there most nights. 
  7. Go to bed when you’re tired.  This is a huge problem for me, but like the advice they offer with going to bed and if you can’t fall asleep right away, then get up and do something relaxing and then go back to bed when you are tired.       

Another article Sleep and your body clock talks about what a body clock is and how it is connected to sleeping problems.  The article talks about night owls and early birds and how to change to become the other if you want to.  To change from a night owl to an early bird, the article suggests to get up at the same time every day no matter what time you go to sleep, light therapy (expose yourself to light as soon as you get up), a melatonin supplement (once you discuss this with your doctor) and chronotherapy (creating a 27-hour day cycle which disrupts your normal schedule.  Example: Day 1: if midnight is your normal bed time, wait until 3 a.m. to go to sleep.  Day 2 and after: go to sleep at 6 a.m. and then delay sleep 3 hours each day until you reach your desired bed time).

Research Post #9

July 22, 2009

This week’s research consists of two Google alerts on “morning people.”  The first one is Runners club offers encouragement, companionship and early start.     

The article talks about a runners club that meets at 5:30 a.m. on Thursdays and 6:30 a.m. on Saturdays.  That means that runners have to be up and ready to run at 5:30 a.m.  You definitely have to be a morning person to not be up, but have your body ready to move.  

There are about 75 members in this running club and when they are finished with their run, there is a social hour with coffee, snacks and conversations.  So these morning people are not just interesting in working out, but they also want to interact with others and make friends.  

The article states that knowing there are people waiting for you at 5:30 a.m. helps motivate you to get out of bed.        

The second research article for this week is Monday, July 20, 2009 post on Brownies for breakfast blog post.  This lady knows that she is not a morning person and really cannot even function until she has her coffee with cream.  

She feels that she is normally a nice person, but I think that might be true after she has her coffee with cream.  Reason being is that her post is about how the product design changed on the creamer she uses and she was very upset when she could not open the creamer to have her morning coffee.  

So she is blaming that fact that she cannot handle change on her not being a morning person.  I think she needs more sleep.

Reaction Post #9 – Well Connected

July 22, 2009

Well Connected is an interactive Media Tracker on The Center for Public Integrity’s website.  You can plug in your ZIP code and you will find out who owns the media outlets in your town.  I added 17404 (York, Pa.) and learned in the summary section there are 19 licensed television stations, 34 licensed radio stations, 10 matching cable communities, 11 reported broadband providers and 50 newspapers within 100 miles.  The top broadcast owners for this area are:  Clear Channel Communications Inc., Hearst-Argyle Television Inc. (Hearst Corp.), Cumulus Media Partners LLC, CBS Corporation, and Citadel Broadcasting Corp.  This is not new information to me as I have worked for FOX43 and for 93.5 WTPA, however, it was neat to see the interactive map with markers to click on and find out whose tower it is.  The towers represent AM Radio, FM Radio, Educational TV, Commercial TV and Low-Power. 

I prefer looking at this information in the interactive format as opposed to having reading the information.  I don’t think I would read the information if that was the only way it was presented.  

The multimedia tools are very easy to figure out and understand.  The link to the company profile is provided and informative.  The link I find most interesting is titled “political influence”.  I found the Cable One’s political influence statistics showing telecommunications, media and technology contributions of $51,440 (with 43.7 percent for democrats and 56.3 percent for republicans). I looked at the 2005 total parent company revenue for Cable One and I see that they made $3,553,887,000.  I wish more information was provided on the details of this money, but the charts at least start to paint the story.      

Comcast Corporation’s telecommunications, media and technology contributions were $5,781,695 (with 44.1 percent for democrats and 55.7 percent for republicans).  Comcast also contributed $19,151,000 to lobbying efforts between 1998 through 2006.  Wow, that is a lot of money.  Once I looked at the 2005 total parent company revenue for Comcast, I see that they made $22,255,000,000.  I guess the numbers for the lobbyist is really just a drop in the bucket.      

The one downfall is that the information is from 2006 or prior.  The data must be hard to keep current.  Maybe a disclaimer could be added as to when the next updates will be provided.  

It’s interesting to see how the telecommunications, media and technology companies are Well Connected.  I recommend everyone to take a peak.

Reporting Post #9 – Rick

July 22, 2009

While You Were Sleeping…Rick Is Training In Martial Arts.

Rick Alexander has been training in Kosho Ryu Kempo (empty hand or karate) and Muso Jikiden Eishen Ryu Iaijutsu (Japanese Swordsmanship) Martial Arts early in the morning for the past 8 years.  (Please do not ask me how to pronounce these words as I had to have Alexander write out the names for me.)  

Alexander rises between 4:30 a.m. and 5 a.m. to head to the dojo in Pottsville, Pa.  A dojo is a Japanese term for “place of the way.”  The term can refer to a formal training place for any of the Japanese arts but typically it is considered the formal gathering place for students of any Japanese martial arts style to conduct training and exams. 

“We focus on Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu Iaijutsu (or just Iai for short) training consists of warm up cutting patterns, solo waza practice (waza are specific techniques taught to deal with a variety of situations in which a swordsman might find himself), katachi practice (where you work with a partner with a wooden bokken, and sometimes tamashigiri (test cutting rolled mats with live blade),” says Alexander. 

Alexander takes pleasure in his morning workouts. He almost always trains with others.  “I live 99 miles from work and it is hard for me to do this training in the evening since I do not get home until about 7 p.m.  Getting home late doesn’t leave me much time to do anything until I have to go to bed and get up to do it all over again,” explains Alexander.  

I asked Alexander what inspired him to start his martial arts training and he said that he started because he thought it was a cool thing to do, but he found out later there’s much more to it than that and has been hooked ever since.  

Alexander has competed in a few karate tournaments during the first few years, but he does not compete anymore as he is not a big fan of “sport karate.” 

Alexander says he has always been a morning person and really is not a night owl at all.

Links to Comments

July 22, 2009

Reaction Post #8 – 10,000 Words

July 15, 2009

I found 10,000 words maps to be very exciting.  I have been waiting for something like iMove to hit York, Pa. Currently I receive email traffic updates on accidents that have happened on my normal route home from WGAL and try to tune into a radio station for an update on accidents.  However, by the time I’m ready to leave work; I want to see what the traffic looks like to determine which direction I should go home.  This iMove for the Vancouver area looks like it is what I would want plus a whole lot more.  At the traffic accident point on the map, you can click to see what the cameras have captured so that you can make a decision if you want to drive into that mess or chose another way home. 

Triptrop NYC map is fine if you know what addresses to add. I think it is a great concept, but I’ve sat in New York City traffic and I have never gone from point A to point B in 10 minutes.  I still find it to be a useful tool.  

The Marine Traffic map  is informative.  I selected the English Channel and selected to see all of the ports, passenger vessels, cargo vessels, tankers, high speed craft, tug, yachts and unspecified ships and was surprised to see how this plotted out.  You can see how close some of the ships are to each other.  The color coding really helps your eye to distinguish the different types of vessels.

The World News map was useful.  The world map basically stays the same, but you can locate news on a certain day and year for a particular geographical location.  I looked at what happened in Egypt on July 8, 2009 and found Germany ‘not silent’ on stabbing.  This could be a great tool for research.  This article is from the BBC so it was in English.  I’m assuming all the articles are in English, but I’m not sure.  So if this is the case, I wonder how useful it is for non-English speaking people.

Research Post #8

July 15, 2009

The first research article I found for this week is Larks and Owls: How Sleep Habits Affect Grades.  Researchers looked at the sleep patterns of the early birds (larks) and late nighters (owls) as a factor in academic performance.  Poor sleeping habits which are associated more with the night owls tend to have lower GPAs compared to the GPAs of early birds.  

The researchers do feel that other facts such as I.Q., study habits and effort in addition to getting enough sleep are part of the bigger picture, but there is evidence related to getting enough sleep playing a factor in student’s grades.      

The second research article for this week is Reasons to Exercise before Work.  This article talks about reasons why you should get up and exercise in the morning.  It states some similar reasons from other research I’ve reported on like the morning is a great time to be alone and you can clear your mind.  You’ll also burn more calories throughout the day when you workout in the morning and your work out is done and out of the way.  

All of the reasons to get up and workout in the morning in this article have been said from the people I’ve interviewed as to why they get up and get going early in the morning before work.

Reporting Post #8 – Mike

July 15, 2009

While You Were Sleeping…A Father Is Martial Arts Training. 

Mike Koons has been training in Korean Taekwondo early in the morning for the past 19 years.  Koons is about 5 foot 5 inches and weighs about 140 pounds.  He is not what you would expect a black belt martial artist to look like.  His petite build is deceiving.  Koons is actually a 3rd degree black belt in Taekwondo in the United States, a 2nd degree black belt in Taekwondo in South Korea, and a practitioner of Bujinkan Ninjutsu

Koons is also a father of a one-year-old son, so he works out in the mornings while his wife and child are still asleep.  He wakes up around 6 a.m.  He’ll eat a granola bar or cereal and drink a glass of orange juice for a high carbohydrate breakfast before starting his workout.  

“Around 6:15 a.m., I begin an outdoor practice, which is highly aerobic and continues for 45 minutes.  This includes kicking, striking and rolling practice, along with hand and foot conditioning against hard surfaces (repeated striking to harden the hands and feet).  On alternating days, this is either followed by 15 minutes of indoor weightlifting or running,” says Koons. 

Koons enjoys his morning workouts since it is the only time he can find alone time.  Also, the serenity of the early morning allows him to better concentrate on the techniques he is practicing. 

In addition to working out at home in the morning, Koons also instructs a self defense class at Hard Kohr Sports and Fitness Club.  “This is twice a week and allows me to spar (controlled fighting) with other instructors and participants,” says Koons. 

He also assists in training the Guardian Angels on a continuous basis as well as volunteers as a Guardian Angel in the city of York, Pa.  

The Guardian Angels is an organization dedicated to safety and its members do not carry any protection except their skills in martial arts and the ability to defuse a potentially dangerous situation through communication. They share the belief that every citizen has a right to live without fear of physical harm, intimidation, harassment or violence. 

“I need to keep in top shape so that I am able to inspire others,” says Koons.  Koons wants to start a free martial arts program for inner city children to teach them self control, discipline and honor in the York area.   

Has Koons always been a morning person?  “Not really.  Even though I do get up early, I still don’t consider myself a morning person.  I’d rather be sleeping,” says Koons.