Monday, January 17, 2005

Communication 200: Webpage Pictures and First Reading Thoughts

I posted the photos and you can check em out by clicking here. A couple of them came out fuzzy, but I can always retake your image later. If you hate, hate, hate your headshot, send me another and, if it is accurate, I will post it later. We will actually use some of these later in your blogs.

Also, your first reading is "Learning to Spy" by Elsa Walsh. When you read it think of the FBI and the CIA not as espionage organizations, but as "research organizations". And look for places where these organizations did solid research but did not necessarily share or understand the information that they required. I want to talk about why it is that a "fact gathering organization" such as the FBI may not necessarily have been the best organization to think about what the evidence means or what it could mean with regards to future events.
Why would it be bad to have too much information, as the article implies.

Why do certain organizations have a hard time communicating about the same topic or idea? Why would the NSA, FBI and CIA have such a difficult time finding a common way to research "terrorism" as the article implies?

One of the things that CIA and NSA develop is many of our "reconnaissance capabilities" for military targeting. Why would the quality of research information be key for this?
Jot down some other thoughts about the article as you like. Admittedly, I find the article kind of scary, but it also interesting to note that doing research is always hard work. There is little magic to it. My favorite quote from the article is the following,
Everybody, Baginski said, tends to make intelligence “sound so hard and mysterious, and it’s really not. You need something, you go get raw material, and you add value to it. You put out a product and you keep adjusting, based on the feedback that you get. That really is all it is.”
Adjusting from solid feedback from other is key! We will come back to this time and time again throughout this course so be prepared to give it to your peers through discussion and web posts.

1 comment:

Casey said...

Well...hopefully it's okay that I set up an account already. I was just excited to get started on this. I'm really looking forward to this class!