OSU professors trained by Apple on iTunes U

By Taylor Altier

As if they didn’t control enough of our lives as it is. For those of you who are diehard PC fans, Please Consider switching over to the Apple market. It will be well worth your while … and it will eventually take over the world of technology anyway so … what better time.

As you look at the stuff you hold dearest to you, a few of those probably include your iPhone … then your iPod (if you didn’t merge that with your phone already), then your MacBook Pro … then your iPad … then your iPad Mini … I could go on forever.

But those are the things you spend the most time on. So why not use that time on those devices to – I don’t know, let’s say – learn.

iTunes University is launching itself full-force as an online platform for college courses. These are fully-engaged, fully online courses for which you can earn college credit, provided the professor allows it. Disclaimer: You can only access the iTunes U courses on an iPad. Weird.

I spoke with three professors who attended the highly secretive and incredibly classified Apple Headquarters to learn how to do just this. Of these professors were Nicole Kraft, Clinical Assistant Professor in the School of Communication; Dr. Cynthia Dassler, Instructor and Curator of Plans in the OSU Herbarium; and Cynthia Selfe, Humanities Distinguished Professor in the Department of English.

A large topic in our discussion revolved around the idea that technology has become such an important part of our lives and we have no choice but to keep up with it, as it is and will always be a part of the future. But how does that conflict with the traditional classroom, face-to-face setting? What kind of learning elements are we missing out on by moving everything to the iPad?

Check out the interview for these instructors’ advantages and disadvantages: Direct link and iTunes U link



From “Forget the Storm,” here’s Tyler Hilton!

A few weeks ago we sat down with Tyler Hilton as he was on his way through Columbus for his solo acoustic tour with Dion Roy. Tyler explained the process and reasons as to why he left Warner Brothers Records to release his long-awaited album, “Forget the Storm,” independently on Hooptie Tune Records.

Forget the Storm Album Cover

(Hint: it has something to do with embarrassing honesty.)

Tyler also tells us why he hates thinking about marketing, but has managed to master it over the years. Tyler has employed the idea that doing what you want is the best way to market yourself, because being disingenuous won’t cut it in this business. And good or bad, opinions have a shelf-life:

“I had to get over my own stigma with that so that I could do some of the things that I want to do” – Tyler Hilton

Watch our time with Tyler to hear how this lent itself to his casting as Elvis, how he wants to approach his future albums, what went into writing this album, and how he chose the songs that make up “Forget the Storm”.

We have a second video on the way with Tyler’s stories behind a few of the tracks on the album – so watch for that to be released very soon!

In the meantime, you can find “Forget the Storm” on iTunes, or buy a physical copy here. And visit his website for summer tour dates, and other news and updates!

Rob Delaney Interview

We sat down with comedian Rob Delaney before his tour stop at Woodlands Tavern in Columbus. Between his sold out tour dates in cities like Washington D.C. and New York City and a Twitter following of more than 300,000, Rob is well on his way to becoming a household name!

Listen the full interview here to find out more about:

  • His upcoming book
  • His self proclaimed excessive tweeting
  • How he went from an office in a skyscraper to the life of a comedian
  • And when he is a substitute for Josh Groban

For a preview of the whole interview, and an exclusive on what happened with his pilot for Comedy Central, check out these excerpts:

Tune in to  WCRS Monday (4/23) at 7pm and WCBE at 8pm on Wednesday (4/25) to hear Rob’s view on everything from impersonating Mitt Romney to how his experiences getting sober led to some of his funniest material!

Follow Rob on Twitter @robdelaney for 140 characters of laughter and check out his website, complete with a How To “Make It” in Comedy tutorial.

The Front Bottoms Interview

We recently met up with Brian Sella and Matt Uychich of The Front Bottoms before their show at The Basement. The interview was filmed in their van because here at Writers Talk we are all about participatory journalism!

The Front Bottoms are an indie-pop-punk-rock-dance duo from New Jersey, and yes, dropping their music into a single genre “bin” is exactly that challenging. The band released their self-titled album last September on Bar/None Records, and are currently on tour with Say Anything, Kevin Devine and Fake Problems.

The full interview can be heard here; we talk about Tom DeLonge, maturing out of releasing garbage, and how they classify their music. Plus, Brian and Matt tell us the story behind their song “Rhode Island”, which I’m not sure you could make up,

“‘Do you guys know the best way to bike through NYC?’…He had this backpack full of just prescription pills and drugs.”

For the whole story, watch this excerpt of our in-van interview with Brian and Matt in which they also talk about their budget for music videos, album art, and more.

Tune in to WCRS on Monday (4/9) at 7 pm, and WCBE on Wednesday (4/11) at 8 pm to hear more of our conversation. In the meantime, check out The Front Bottoms’ video for “Maps”: