Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone

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I am fired up about this class to say the least. As a New York sports fan it is definitely one of the more exciting things going on in my life right now. I have been active on social media since high school, so I am familiar with several different platforms. But this class is an entirely different ball game. I’m looking forward to understanding how to utilize the platform for a couple reasons:

1.) It is hard to move your way up the ranks as a person within a company or hard to help your company compete within an industry without a strong understanding of the importance of social media and digital business.

2.) We have the unique opportunity to help each other start building our own personal platform through the effective use of social media, specifically through blogs or tweets in this class.

I have some thoughts about the two main platforms we will be interacting with:

Twitter

Nothing embodies the fast paced, unpredictable digital environment today like Twitter. I have been on Twitter since it started, but never for anything other than news updates or a good laugh. This class is providing us with the unique opportunity to become a part of the #IS6621 community. I am honestly a little nervous because this class has some very smart people who I feel know more than me about social media and digital business. My expectation is that it will take me a little time to find the best social media and digital-related tweets and articles, but I hope that I will be posting high-quality tweets about subjects I knew nothing about before taking this class.

WordPress

As I mentioned in my test blog post , if you told me I would be regularly blogging at any point in my life I would have had said you are crazy…5GaKIgp

but here I am! I think this will be the biggest challenge for me (for example, I’ve been working on this post literally all day), but also the most rewarding thing I do in the class. Having to blog is going to help me craft my writing skills, an essential tool in the work place, and it will also give me a platform to help detail my personal journey through this course.

 

To give you a better sense of how I feel about social media as I start this course, here is an analogy. I feel like I am in the early stages of a friendship. I don’t know much, but I am excited to learn more. I am simply just getting in the “social swing” of things. By the end of this class, I expect to feel the same way I would feel once I am well into a friendship–I will know a lot of the best things AND the worst things about it. The same goes for the different aspects of digital business and emerging technologies we will discuss. Regardless, I think everyone should have to take a class like this. It does not matter whether you are going into business, science, etc. Technology is now an integral part of life almost everywhere in the world, and we should all be aware of its benefits and its dangers and know how to use it in order to better ourselves. I do believe social media creates a unique community aspect that improves the quality of life. It gives you a platform to share thoughts and experiences with millions that was not there 20 years ago.  But with great privilege comes great responsibility, and although we each represent such an infinitesimal percentage of the social media community, we have a responsibility to always maintain a high level of integrity when using a platform that gives us a great deal of power.

On a more personal level, I am most interested to learn more about blockchain and the impact it will have through cryptocurrencies on the financial markets. I know what you may be thinking: “Oh, of course. You and everyone else wants to talk about Bitcoin this, Bitcoin that. Blockchain this, blockchain that.” Fair enough. But I will be working in financial services this summer so I feel it is important for me to understand something that could play a much larger role in the financial markets in the near future. I have very little knowledge of blockchain and cryptocurrencies so it will be interesting to learn more.

Something that is a big concern for me and many people is AI. I want to know more about AI because I am certain that in my lifetime it will play a major role. A big question I have is should people trust AI as much as they are slowly starting to? See my tweet (and take the poll before it expires!) for an interesting example of advanced AI in our homes. In my opinion, AI is going to enhance our quality of life and make us more efficient, but I am also open to Professor Kane’s and my classmates’ opinions. I have a feeling several opinions I have may change because of some great points by some very smart people. That is what is great about this class.

So those are some of my thoughts and expectations! Here is how I expect myself to react when I start reading this post again in May after (hopefully) mastering blogging:

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A fellow classmate put it best in their blog: “It’s Darwinism – you evolve and survive, or you stay in the past and get left behind.” So by taking this class and stepping out of comfort zone in some ways, my hope is to develop a more well-rounded understanding of the pros and cons of social media, digital business, and emerging technologies.

 

Thanks for reading!

 

2 comments

  1. Yup. I think you’ll like this class. I’ve only been teaching blockchain and AI as a part of this course for about a year now, but it’s been well received so far. I’m by no means an expert, but I think I know enough to get students up to speed to learn more. And, yes, I still think Bitcoin is a bubble.

  2. I thought the analogy of comparing this class to a friendship was perfect. I too was a little concerned about blogging at first because I was afraid that my true voice wouldn’t be able to shine through enough. I think it will be fun to look back at our first blogs of the semester in May and see how our voices developed throughout the semester. I also am looking forward to learning more about Bitcoin and AI. I think part of what makes them so interesting to study is that we are still trying to understand the capabilities of the technology and how it will impact business in the future.

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