My E-mail Address: otam@uhunix.uhcc.hawaii.edu

Michelle's Home Page
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Michelle Ota's Lab Reports


report1a Internet
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One of the main things that amazed me was that I could be on the same forum as professors from all over the world. The Internet is amazing. There are things on the system that would shock you. There are forums for people to right articles about pornography, there are forums for car advertisements, jokes, you name it, its there somewhere, you just need to look. And that's where all of the problems can begin, and begin they will. It was so overwhelming the first time I logged on the computer, I could only stay on for about 15 minutes. I got so frustrated that I had to get off. But as time goes on, things get better, and now you literally have to kick me off (but I still get frustrated).

Entertainment

This is something new I found from the newspaper 4/26/1995. A home page for the comic strip writer Dilbert, I thought it was pretty neat. To get the most out of these home pages, you need to be using Netscape, or I guess Mosaic. Another one is Useless, which is purely for entertainment.

Change Personality
Also See Isa's ReportGo to Ota's Index

A second idea that struck me as pretty interesting was how true it seems to be that people really turn into different types of personalities when they get behind the wheel of a car. I for one, am normally a very passive person, but when I get behind the wheel of a car, watch out. I've noticed that I really do yell at people from behind the wheel of my car. I never yell at people face to face, even if I am fighting with someone. I don't even know who it is that I am swearing at, for all I know it could be some little old lady, who is just driving a little slow, and if she were to drive any faster, would probably lose control of her car, but at the time she was just in my way.

Overtaking Also see Balatico's Report
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A topic that came up in class that I found really funny was the idea that people just hate to be overtaken. I remember driving to school one day, and mopeds usually drive on the right side of cars, just like bicycles. Well, from behind me I saw a motorcycle trying to weave in and out of traffic. Needless to say, as soon as I could, I moved over to the right and tried my hardest to block his way. Now that I think of it, my actions were really childish. There was really no reason why I have to go out of my way just to piss this guy off, but I did, and I laughed about it. I have even laughed at people who speed by me on the freeway, but end up at the same stop light right along with me, and really don't get anywhere any faster then I did.

Rush Also See Harada's Report
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Getting places as fast as people can is a large part of our society, I agree with Akagi's week 1 lab report in regard to rushing and always being in a rush to get places in todays society. I know that I am always on the go, and I used to speed everywhere. But fortunately as I got older, I learned to just leave earlier and to plan ahead for delays and accidents. Now, I get to places usually 15 minutes early, but if there are delays, I have never been late. I think that if more people take their time, there would be a lot fewer accidents and delays to make other's late.

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Right of Way
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Everyone seems to think that they have the right of way. I have been in a line of cars on a two way street, and there is only room for one car to drive through, and four or five cars from the other side go before even letting one car on my side go through. I have even seen both cars start to go and ultimately someone is forced to back up, or drive on the side and just barely get through without hitting another car. Balatico also refers to this problem. It is just amazing what people think they have a right to do just because they are in a car.

Report1b Reaction 1
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In one of the Generational Curriculum reports by Lianne Wong, she goes over an article about speeding becoming the norm. In the article, the author puts people into two categories, the "hard-core speeders," who often tailgate the slower drivers and force the speed of traffic to go faster. Then there are the "super cautious motorists," who obey the traffic rules like a religion. These are the people who as Wong puts it, "often stay below the maximum speed limit so that they won't break the law." Wong admits to once being a "hard-core speeder" but says that she has reformed. But now she realizes that its not worth harassing other people just to get to her destination a few seconds earlier.

In a second Generational Curriculum report done by Lianne Wong, she discusses the influence that other drivers have on her attitude. She mentions that when she lets a driver cut in front of her, she usually expects some sort of thanks, a little wave, or shaka. When people don't give a curtious thank you, she gets upset and feels taken advantage of. This feeling then seems to carry over for the rest of the day, she will feel that people every where are taking advantage of her. Now, that she has changed her driving behavior, she acknowledges that we can't take other's behaviors too personally, and maybe she didn't see the person mouth thank you, or the person had a lot of things on his/her mind and just didn't think about waving. With this new way of thinking, she finds that she gets a lot less stressed on the road, and when something happens, she makes an effort to not let it effect her whole day.

I have never really thought to label other drivers into categories, but its true, you can pretty easily group up drivers according to their behaviors on the road and label them. Along with the hard core speeders and super cautious motorists, I believe that there are many more categories, these would be just two general ones. There are also the Sunday drivers, who are going slow and don't seem to be going anywhere any time soon and what I call the "Grandma/Grandpa drivers" who are going extremely slow and should really be off of the freeway or even street all together. Speeding really is an important part of being on the freeway, to an extent, I think that speeding is okay as long as the person doing it is not endangering others and has control over his/her car. I do get upset when I see speeders weaving in and out of traffic, that is when the driver is putting others at risk and should be pulled over by the police.

As far as other drivers influencing my attitude, I really agree with this and have experienced it. I know that in the past when I have let others cut in front of me and they don't say thanks, I will not let anyone else in front off me and I am usually rude to at least one other person. The opposite is also true, If someone does wave, or lets me cut in front of them, I usually let others go. That's when I seems to remember the saying do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Otherwise, it seems to be more like an every man for himself type of attitude.

Throughout the semester, several generational curriculum papers were reviewed. Please go here for a list of other reviews of generational curriculum papers.

report1c
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The Internet is an amazing thing. I still have not even begun to explore the things that it allows me to do. I have already peeked into some newsgroups, I don't quite know how to subscribe to any, or how to be able to get to certain places within each newsgroups. So far I have had to read and page through all of the correspondences every time I log on. It just overwhelms me to think that I could chose to write something in a forum with people of all different walks of life. There are professors from Harvard, people from other countries, students, and even children. It's a true melting pot (of people who can afford to or have access to computers).

So far, the only problems I have encountered are being able to get onto the system and minor problems that can be cleared up with practice. Some of the things I've done and have worked are unfortunately lost, since I haven't been writing things down. But I've learned, and now when ever I try something new, I write down all of the steps and I learn from my mistakes. Other then that, problems have been only a temporary pain in the butt, and most of the time avoidable.

Weekly Homework Assignments

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weekly week4 Also see Akagi's Report
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At first, navigating through all of the files began to confuse me, it all seems like a big blob. But as I practiced using the links, going to and from my home page to other people's documents and the instructors home page, things began to come together. All it really takes is a lot of practice. It also really helps that I have a modem at home. If you have a computer, and think that a modem is either too expensive, or not worth it, you are wrong, at least in my opinion. I only spent $69.00 on my fax/modem, and I really believe that it is worth it. I can log on whenever I want to, don't have to wait for a computer, or go to UH special to get onto a computer, I think that all of the time I save makes up for the $69.00 that I spent. I have also been fortunate in that any problems that I have encountered could be answered by email to Professor James. If you have a computer ... Go and get a modem, you won't regret it.

Search
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To look for for specific things, I use the /, this opens up the search command and I just punch in a word that I am looking for. Of course, this only works if you know a specific word that will be printed on the screen, otherwise, I usually just follow links that I think will lead me to what I want and just keep pressing the space bar to read through everything. Another way to look at things such as the syllabus or the instructors weekly comments is to make a link to the anchors that he has made. I found this to be very convenient. This way, you don't have to go to his home page, then follow the links and press the space bar until you get to the area that you want. That can be very time consuming (I used to do it that way). Now I have links to everything that I find myself having to refer to.

Pessimist
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How to fight being a pessimist? Well, concerning the Internet/emacs/computer environment, I think that the only way to not be a pessimist to continue to practice on the computer, and sooner or later you'll get it. As with everything else, it takes practice, lots and lots of practice. It also helps if you're not afraid to ask questions, even ones that you think are really silly. Nothing is too silly is you don't understand something. This is another reason why having your own computer or modem is so advantageous. I can practice at times when I know that I am not under any type of stress, and I can leisurely try to do something. Never wait until the last minute to do work for this class. When you do that, you put added pressure on yourself because you need to finish an assignment, then if something happens, you become so overwhelmed that you probably give up. Its better to be able to do things early, that way if you get frustrated, you can stop and come back later to try to work things out.

Depressed
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To avoid getting depressed I do the same things that I mentioned above. As long as I give myself time to do things, even if I have problems, I won't get depressed at the fact that I'm having problems. I think of things as a challenge, something new that I'm trying to conquer. Rather then an assignment that I have to do for a class. Doing things this way is a lot better then having to hand in papers every week, at least I think so (we get to save a lot of paper).

advice Also See Smith's Report
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So, my advice to others is to make sure you start things early, so that in the event that you run into problems, you have a lot of time to figure things out. This way you don't get all stressed out and even more frustrated when things start to go wrong. Second, If you can get your modem, or even computer if you can manage it. It really is worth it. It does cost a lot, but we are in a technological society, and having your own computer is almost necessary to survive. I know that with my work, school, and extra curricular schedule, I don't have time to go to the computer lab and wait for a computer. It really helps to also be able to work from your home, its a relaxing setting, and you can take breaks whenever you want to, yell at the computer and not disturb others, or eat while working...lots of advantages. Finally, ask questions and try things out. Practice is how I learned how to get through everything. I started by writing everything I saw down, all of the different commands, etc. Then I learned how to print things, and now I print things that I know I'll use again.

week5
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I read the Generational Curriculum reports that Prof. James had linked to his Week 5 homework file, and I'm not sure if I am reading the right things. Like Taketani I'm a little confused about what I'm supposed to be commenting on. The questions that we are asked to answer seem to be referring to one student, but the file we are supposed to read are comments by several students and professors.

accomplish
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I think that the students from the class that enabled them to used the computer system as an open forum between themselves and the professor is a great idea. Alot of the feelings that they had in regard to teacher's attitudes and multiple choice exams are the same feelings that I have had. If anything, the students accomplished the mastery of a new communication system, and are one step ahead of a lot of people.

Week 5a = anchor Reaction 2
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The following is the corrected homework for week 5. My reactions to my reading of the Generational Curriculum papers.

In the course of one semester, the author of the generational curriculum paper that I read has realized that he/she is an impatient person, is easily irritated, and extremely aggressive, but in situations other then driving, she/he exhibits these behaviors, but to a much lesser extent. The author was also able to acknowledge that she/he is impatient, and always seems in a rush, even though she/he really isn't in an actual rush to get any where. It's mostly psychological. Over the semester, the author was able to learn techniques, such as being constantly aware of pedestrians on the sidewalks, which forces this person to slow down, and let people cross the street, instead of blunting them and acting as though they weren't there, which, in this person's mind would make it is all right for the driver not to slow down or stop to let the cross the street. A second technique this person learned was to listen to tapes that he/she knows the words to and enjoys. This way, when the author is stuck in traffic, he/she can alleviate the stress level that would normally bubble up inside by distracting themselves by singing. A very important technique that the author learned was to not take things that other drivers did personally. This author had a big problem of rudely passing slow drivers, would cut them off, the make very rude comments and gestures to the person, and usually felt justified to do so because he/she felt that the person was doing things to purposely make them mad. Finally, the author realized that he/she broke the law a lot, and it was basically due to the fact that he/she never got caught. To lower the chances of being caught, the author had to imagine that a police officer was always following his/her car, which would make the author think twice before breaking any law. (The author acknowledged that this technique wasn't that successful, and only reduced his/her breaking the law a little).

Throughout the semester, we reviewed several generational curriculum papers. Go here for a listing of my other reviews.

Invincible
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Like many people, I think that this person's state of mind was that once he/she was in the car, they were invincible, and invisible for that matter. The anonymous author described times when he/she would glare at other drivers, and would ignore people trying to cross the street and almost hit them. As though if the people got hit, it would be ok, because the driver didn't see them. I know that when I drive, I tend to think that other people can't see me, or if they do, I'll never see them again, so rude gestures are ok (as long as I speed off really fast). But, this author seems extremely reckless and immoral, not really caring about he/she endangering the lives of others.

Self-witnessing
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As we learn in psychology, self-witnessing isn't the greatest way to collect data, but for the purpose of traffic psychology, I believe that it is essential to someone's research. By self-witnessing, you acknowledge all of the little problems that you would normally not even notice, and you realize that your behavior is normal, but not always appropriate. It also allows us to modify our behavior and be more aware of it.

By reading and listening to other people's self-witnessing reports, I realized that I'm not the only insane person in the world who has feelings of hatred toward other drivers and yells at other cars, knowing that they can't hear me. It also made me realize that there are a lot of people in the world, who drive like maniacs and will keep on doing so, so I need to be a little more courteous and considerate when I drive. (maybe if everyone were to take a traffic psychology course, we wouldn't have any problems on the road). Unfortunately, these realizations make me fully aware that when I'm on the road, I have no control over what happens most of the time. This really kind of scares me and makes me think twice before getting into my car. Do I really want to put my life in other people's hands?!

For new links on other people's lab reports please see Comments Week 5.

week6 Also See Kaneshiro's ReportAlso See Akagi
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I had a hard time figuring out how to use the Web Crawler. Go here for a definition. I finally figured out that if I tab to the line and enter the words I'm looking for it gives me an option to search for things, and then I tab over to the next place and it gives you a list to choose how many documents or files you want it to limit the search to. The first time I tried, I put all and it took a really long time. I used the words traffic, auto, automobile, and driving. I found that a lot of the entries that the computer picked were related to traffic on the Internet. I really didn't find too many things related to traffic. I did find the Southern California Traffic Report which is kind of interesting. It was a new system for people to call into to find out how the traffic was doing, by doing this, I guess the creators were hoping that people would use the system to avoid traffic and delays. They also have a section about possible delays because of road work or hazards. I think that this idea is a good one if people use it. I'm not too sure how many people have the time in the morning to get on the computer to see how traffic is going before they leave for the day. People would probably be more likely to use it at the end of the day, from work.

I also found an Auto Buying Section which can come in handy if you are looking to buy a car, or if you want to put your car on the market.

Finally, I found a Levine's HTML News Page and from there link to a file called alt.autos.rod-n-custom to enter another home page that has a lot of topics related to cars.Also from this home page, you can go to link Number 430 "alt.law-enforcement", then to the article and responses and "Police abusing the law." Some of the ideas developed in these articles are ones that we have gone over, and others are just very interesting. One of the authors, Sloan, questions the presence of police officers, and whether they are really effective. We have police, yet traffic fatalities and accidents seem to be on the rise. Why is this, I know that I would sure like to know the answer to that. Another interesting section off of Levine's home page is link number 888. This one goes to a section called "aus.cars", under this topic there is an article "Floor Mats: Get in, Sit down, shut up, hold on." Apparently, there are car mats that actually say this, wouldn't it be great if people actually paid attention to it and didn't become back seat drivers when you're at the wheel. Sometimes, especially when I'm driving my grandmother, I feel that her constant little remarks are more endangering then my driving. Anyone else feel this way, or do I just take things to personally? Finally, another interesting topic from Levine's home page is link 999,"ba.transportation." There are several articles in this forum that are interesting. Such as "Prove cops speedometer is accurate" this person is trying to find out if there are any ways to prove that speedometers are accurate, so he's put it out, hoping that someone will respond and help him out. Wouldn't it be really funny if the judge that does this case has been keeping track of the conversations on the Internet. There is also another article called "What's better then the CAR" There are a lot of responses to this topic, some people question if cars are safer then other modes of transportation, and one person even brings up the issue of safety features in cars. This person poses that the reason people are buying cars with more safety features is because they want to drive more recklessly, or know that other people drive recklessly.

veronica
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I tried using Veronica, boy did I get frustrated. I went from the Instructor's Week 6 homework into his option to search on Veronica, then chose the PSInet to search on and used the term "traffic." Most of the files that came up were about traffic on the Internet. The files that were related to automobile traffic were unavailable, or "Unable to Access" came up on my screen. After trying almost all of them, I gave up on that topic. So, I changed my search to the word "driving" and the list was much shorter. Some of these files were also unable to access, but I did find some pretty interesting files. Aggressive Driving was one of them. This article is kind of about what we talked about in class recently, driving in packs and blocking people in. This man was driving with a pack of really nice cars and admitted to feeling kind of proud to be along with them. But I guess he also got kind of arrogant, and the other cars began to play games with him on the road, like tailing him and blocking him in. There were several responses, some of which reflect some of the ideas that came up in class. Alex Postpischil expresses that a better way to handle drivers that irritate you is to pull over, and give them about five minutes to go ahead of you, then you can take off and do what you want, providing that there are no other cars on the road. Alice Liu also agrees with the idea to pull over, if you are either the slower driver who is upset about someone tailing you, or the fast driver who is impatient and wants to just speed up. Doug Quara writes how he feels people should respond to other aggressive drivers. He prefers to be a facilitative driver as we had gone over in class.

I've been browsing other people's links to far off places, and it's really cool, the way we've all got everything connected. It's amazing what technology has done for us.

For new links to other people's lab reports Go to Comments week 6

week7 learning
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In reading Professor James' paper on the Behaviors While Learning the Internet, I found some interesting ideas that I can associate with. Being a witness to yourself, some of the comments in the Class Discussion section and the section on Observing and Noting Details on Internet.

I find it strange that we can associate the three domains of self-observation that Professor James goes over in his paper See Professor James' paper for more info with learning how to use the Internet. I know from my own behaviors that I have affective reactions, such as anger when I can't get onto the system, or screaming when the computer keeps beeping at me. Some of the cognitive reactions that I have had were that I really thought that the computer was out to just piss me off when my keyboard would lock up and not let me do a single thing. As for sensorimotor motor behavior, I have more then once hit my computer as though that would make it work, of course, it didn't and in frustration I usually just shut down the computer.

The class discussions that Professor James went over in his paper see paperwere very helpful to me. I believe that it is very true that knowing that other people have the same feelings and frustrations as I do keeps me plugging along. I also agree that interactive learning is a lot more meaningful and allows students to "learn how to learn" which is something that most teaching systems really don't do. Usually it is just the teacher lecturing and students copying and memorizing things (especially in the field of psychology, I feel)which really doesn't teach people how to work in the real world. After taking psychology 459, and other interactive courses that have the students work together, students can learn how to interact and learn while working at a regular job. They can learn how to network and ask other peers for help instead of always going to the boss. It also teaches people how to problem solve on the spot or how to completely shut down and just start over. Also see Yoshimitsu's report on persistence. Which I agree really helps in this class.

Finally, I completely agree with Professor James' ideas on observing and noting details see paper being an important part of answering questions and solving problems. We have gone over this in class several times, that we need to know what people do in order to fix something that has gone wrong. Also, by keeping notes, either mentally or actually writing them down really helps so that you don't make the same mistakes several times (which I have done) and waste a lot of time.

For more links to other people's lab reports Go to comments week 7

Week 8 Spell Check
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Guess what everyone, I went and bought a book on Unix and Emacs and figured out a way to do spell check. At the www prompt, type "spell labreport.html" to do a spell check of your labreport file. Type the same thing for the other files you want to spell check. During the spell check, the program takes you through all of your screens and gives you options to R:replace;a:accept; or you can type in a number which corresponds to a suggested corrected spelling that the computer generates. Hope this helps some people out, I've still noticed some spelling errors in people's reports.

Doing This Again
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I have found this course to be very fun and challenging, and I wouldn't mind taking this course as a 499 along with Jo Allen next semester. See Prof. James' comments on this possibility. i think that it would be a great idea, and would help me learn how to use the Internet a little bit more. Practice makes perfect. I think that I'll probably sign up for the psy409 course too. I really like being able to turn things in via the computer. It saves a lot of paper and time. I also find that I work on things more leisurely, instead of procrastinating and getting all stressed out about being able to print my papers on time.

Hypermail
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I think that the idea of Hypermail is really scary. When I first saw the link on Professor James Comments file To see Prof. James' link I was extremely anxious about trying to figure out what it was. Well, It seems to be the beginning of a new forum or newsgroup. To go Straight to Hypermail Home page At least that's what I make out of it at this point. I wouldn't mind trying to start on hypermail, but it is just like reading a foreign language. I didn't understand a lot of the things listed under most of the links available from the Home page of Hypermail that I linked to previously. It's all so intimidating.

For more links to other people's lab reports Go To Comments Week 8

Week 9
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My concept of what a driving personality makeover is the act of identifying and changing the behaviors that we exhibit when we drive that are immoral or even rude, these could be either physical, emotional or verbal. The relationship between ones driving personality makeover and Traffic Psychology is that in order to identify and change our behaviors, we need to get to the root of the problem, which goes a little deeper then, "that guy pisses me off." As traffic psychologists, we need to look inside of a person and find out why he/she reacts the way they do in certain situations, then find appropriate ways to either cope with the situation or avoid the situation all together. By doing these things, we will hopefully achieve a much safer driving environment, and even healthier individuals.

Good Behaviors
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I believe that a good driver is one that considers all other people's feelings when driving, and doesn't think that he is the only one on the road that may be having a rough day. A good driver is one that drives for the safety of the people around them, and doesn't do anything that may endanger others. Not very many good drivers exist, I think that most drivers today are "acceptable." That is that they drive within a reasonable range of the law. Maybe breaking the law a little bit, but not endangering anyone (at least they perceive that they are not endangering others).

My Driving
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I think that I am one of those "acceptable" drivers, yes, I must admit that I do break the law once in awhile. Especially the 25 mile per hour law. I think that the only time I do really drive 25 miles per hour is when I know that there are kids along the road, and they may run out in between parked cars. I also tend to go over the speed limit a little (at most, by 20 miles per hour). But I always make sure that the driving conditions are safe enough for me to go the speed that I choose. I think that the fastest I have ever gone is 70 miles per hour, and I didn't even realize how fast I was going (I was driving a new car). Not that my excuses justify my breaking the law. Unfortunately, I am also one of those drivers who swears at people while I drive, just because I think that they are driving like jerks. I also yell at people when I perceive them as being rude to me or even to other drivers. I am also guilty of speeding up instead of stopping when I see someone trying to cross the street. I don't know why I do it, but I've caught myself several times.

My Makeover
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My driving personality makeover would take some time to implement, I must admit that I don't think that I will completely succeed (not in one semester at least), but I think that over several years, I will achieve what I consider to be "good" driving behaviors. Go here for my definition.

Affectively, I need to try to understand that I'm not the only person with feelings on the road, and that other people may be having lousy days, so I just need to be patient. I also need to allow passengers to voice their concerns, after all, their lives are in my hands when I am behind the wheel, and if I don't like what they are saying, I can simply tune them out instead of arguing with them while driving. Finally, I need to remember that I don't appreciate it when I hear people yelling or swearing at the way I am driving, so I shouldn't do it to other people. It's that simple principle of "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Cognitively, I will look at what triggers me to exhibit all of my "unladylike" behaviors, and I will brainstorm ways to avoid the situations or better ways to handle the situation. I will avoid making judgments about people based on the way that they are driving. And, to keep myself in check, I will continually self-monitor my driving behaviors.

On the sensorimotor level, I will stop yelling at people, swearing, and replace those verbal remarks with "Thank you" or "That's OK". I will also stop being in a rush, I'm always rushing around to get places early, and I just need to relax and realize that I have always been one to be early, so being on time will be no problem. This behavior will then stop me from tailgating, making last minute lane changes, etc.

aself
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After reading Prof. James' article on Driver's Threefold Self I had to laugh at his section on the Affective Self. I've been in those situations where I have been pulled over by the police and one of the first things that comes into my mind is how embarrassing it is and I hope that no one has seen me. I am also one of those people who looks at other drivers who are pulled over to see if I know the person, and I kind of giggle. Unfortunately, it doesn't stop me from going over the speed limit, but the thought of being embarrassed does stop me from doing other "naughty" things, like running yellow lights right before they turn red, not coming to a complete stop at stop signs and sometime I have been known to make small illegal U-turns (if no one is around). But, as soon as I see a police car I slow down to the speed limit, and its for fear of being embarrassed, not getting a ticket.

compliance
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I really have a problem driving the speed limit at all times. There is a problem of following the law, or abiding by the norms of society. See Prof. James section on Compliance for some more ideas. Or Asahina for some more input. I really tried driving the speed limit for the last week, and I really ran into a lot of resistance. It seems that 25 miles per hour is really extremely slow, and other drivers just won't allow it. I was on Kauai and I tried going the 35 miles per hour in one area, that I couldn't understand why the speed limit was so slow, but all of the cars behind me either over-took me or honked at me. Every single one of them. Now I am really wondering which is more appropriate, to abide by the speed limit, even though there is no danger in driving a little faster, or making other drivers irate and possibly revengeful. One man overtook me and started yelling at me. Then, my mother started to scold me and tell me to drive faster. That was really weird, having my mom tell me to drive over the posted speed limit.

Here is a paper that I turned in on my driving personality:

I believe that having courteous drivers on the road would make driving a pleasant, worthwhile, and peaceful activity. If people wouldn't cut in front of others, would allow people to merge in front of them, and if everyone were to follow the flow of traffic, driving would be a lot different. I think that less people would become aggravated, and would not look to aggravate others. It also might help if there were less cars on the road.

In order for me to change and make my driving a pleasant, worthwhile, and peaceful activity I need to stop feeling as though people are trying to get in my way, stop thinking that I'm always in a rush and just relax a little bit more when I drive. Affectively, I need to stop blaming other people for the situations I'm in. If I am late, I usually rush around and get mad at every living sole that gets in my way. I need to just admit I'm late and not make things worse by getting mad at people and probably doing very mean things and making others mad at me. Even if I'm not in a rush, I tend to feel as though people are doing things to make my mad. Like the person in front of me will be driving really slow to upset me. Or, someone will cut in front of me and I immediately think that he did it on purpose and I get mad at him/her. Then I'll cut in front of him/her if I have a chance to.

As for my thoughts, I need to stop thinking that I'm always in a rush. I've noticed that I have a habit of being really early to appointments. That's fine, but what usually happens is that I drive like a maniac to get places early. I need to cognitively realize that I'll be on time, and that's okay, so I don't have to rush through traffic and alienate everyone on the road. I could also process things a little bit better and not be so pessimistic about everything. I need to realize that other people have problems also, and maybe the person who cut me off is having a bad day, so I shouldn't get all bent out of shape about it.

My actions, well, I just need to relax while I drive. I think that will make a big difference in my driving. I should also stop making wise cracks to other drivers and just mind my own business. I think that this will all make my drives more pleasant and maybe even really enjoyable. As for a long term prognosis for a successful change over, I think that I can do it. I have thus far been relaxing while I drive, I turn up the radio and sing along. I've found that my stress level seems to be going down and I'm able to enjoy my ride and soak up some sun while I'm at it. The only thing that I can't seem to do is follow the speed limit. That seems to aggravate other drivers more and then gets me upset. So I go with the flow of traffic and follow the norms. That makes driving a lot more pleasurable, although a little illegal.

Week 10Convoys
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Traffic convoys here for definition are really very interesting. I find it very interesting that people actually seem to drive in packs to avoid getting caught by the police or for security. I have even noticed that slow drivers tend to drive in small packs in the right hand lanes. I think that the slower drivers drive in pack for security, the same way that fast drivers do, but for different reasons. I talked to my mom, who tends to be a conservative driver, she likes having cars around her to feel safe from other radical drivers. She seems to think that they provide protection to her. Where as, I think that I am a fast driver, and tend to want to drive in packs to avoid being pulled over by the police. I tend to think that if more then one person is speeding, the police may not see the need to pull anyone over as long as everything is under control.

I did most of my self-witnessing observations over spring break, but I try to take mental notes of events that happen when ever I am on the road. I also talked to other people about their driving behaviors when I notice that they have done something out of the ordinary or even very typical. Most people have never really thought about why they make certain decisions, they say that they just do it like a reflex.

Most of my observations were pretty accurate, at least I think they were. I realized that I enjoy driving at the lead of the pack. My reason being that I believe that if people are to get caught for speeding, it would be the last person of the pack and not the first. But, I did realize that when I am at the beginning of a pack, I tend to look in my rear view mirror a lot more then usual. This is because I want to make sure that there still are cars behind me, and that I am not going too fast, to the point that I've left the convoy behind. I think that the reason I do this is because I know that I am doing something wrong, and it eases my conscience to know that other people are breaking the law along with me.

Some of the implications that this has for traffic psychology is why we think it is okay for us to break the law if other people are also breaking the law. Does this somehow make it morally okay to do so. It also brings to mind some topics that have been gone over in some of my other classes, such as: If we did not have laws to break, would we still go at the speed we are going and break the laws. We have gone over the topic of morality in class, and that has a lot to do with why it may or may not be okay to drive in convoys, as with many things, I believe that it really depends on your intent.

As for my driving style, I have been trying not to speed, but I'm having a really hard time. Especially when other drivers seem to get mad or upset. I kind of feel like why should I bother trying to drive the speed limit if it is going to result in making others upset and me more anxious and mad. One thing that I have stopped doing is making sure that other cars are behind me. Because my intent is for another person to get pulled over so that I can get away. But, I think that my speeding problem will be the only driving behavior that I will not be able to improve on.

Week 11Reaction 3
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The second article that I have been given is very interesting. The author has a very different way of seeing things. her Annotated Bibliography is filled with information on how she got her articles, but the few comments that she makes on her driving behavior and the connection to the articles that she has chosen is different.

Cursing
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The author believes that she curses at people because she is lost or late. She always tries to blame other people for the circumstances that she's in. She chose an article that explains the differences between the memory processes of people of different ages. By reading this article, she became aware that it is natural for her to be confused and get lost once in awhile due to natural causes...aging. So now, she doesn't get frustrated and start yelling at other people as much as she used to.

I'm not too sure if I completely agree with this logic. Yeah, getting older does decrease your ability to remember things, but I believe that there are other reasons why people curse at others, and it is rarely just because the people are lost. I think that if has more to do with the "feeling in a rush" that a lot of people seem to express.

Cutting In
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Her next strange topic was on cutting people off and an article she found on feedback. Apparently, she cuts people off frequently and usually feels guilty. She feels that the feedback that she gets from other drivers when she does this is good for her, and will somehow benefit her driving behavior. Although, she never states that the feedback actually has changed her behavior. In a way I agree that feedback is a good way to learn or encourage people to change their behavior, but I have found that feedback while on the road usually just makes me more upset and I start swearing at the person giving me feedback. (Even though I started the problem by being rude to the other driver first, which is what caused him/her to give me feedback.

Personality
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Her next article was on personality growth and making faces. She believes that people who make faces at others need to grow up and are probably "cowards." She goes on to say that personality growth is an important aspect of driving, because it may not be possible to have immature people driving responsibly like and adult should (?). So, the way I understand it is that as traffic psychologists, we need to really understand a person's personality and consider whether it is still developing and changing to begin to help them with their driving behaviors. Furthermore, we need to realize that personalities change from situation to situation, so we may need to have different interventions to cope with the same occurring problems. For example, if someone is in a good mood and another driver cuts him/her off, that person may not get as upset, and therefore will need a "milder" type of intervention. But a person who has had a bad day and gets cut off will need a much more powerful intervention to stop him/her from reacting badly to the situation. Go here for more on personality.

Reinforcement
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The next article that this author chose was about reinforcement, and how it helps her to continue or stop certain behaviors. The specific behavior that she wrote about is using her blinker before changing lanes in traffic. She stated that it is more effective to not use her blinker. When she uses her blinker, she finds that other drivers keep her from entering their lane. So, if she doesn't use her blinker, she is able to cut in front of others without any problems, except that she usually gets some rude comments made at her. But that is okay, because being able to zip in and out of traffic allows her to be places early, such as to pick up her husband. Apparently, when she picks him up on time or early, he is very pleased, and that is VERY reinforcing for her. So, she will continue to not use her blinker.

I agree that reinforcements can be a very powerful way to change driving behaviors, but as this author has proven, sometimes reinforcements can reinforce negative behaviors. So, as traffic psychologists, we need to review a person's personality as thoroughly as possible. Being that people react differently in different situations, it is more effective to consider as many situations as possible before coming up with a driving personality makeover.

Hysteria
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The author of this generational curriculum paper chose an article on hysteria, because she felt that it explained a lot of things about why she becomes so enraged while driving (once in awhile). From this article, she learned that hysteria is usually caused by an accumulation of held in feelings, that finally become so overwhelming that people finally "burst". She realized that she does hold feelings in and that after a while of trying to ignore problems, everything just kind of blows up.

Finally, she chose an article on systematic desensitization. She thinks that by driving more often, she will learn to drive better, and be able to handle situations properly. Then she can become a reformed driver and be a pleasant driver in the world of minor chaos.

For more comments on other generational curriculum reports that I have read go here for a list.

Week 12Tailgating
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In class, we discussed the legal, moral and spiritual implications of tailgating. Personally, I think that it really all boils down to morals and a person's intentions. Our society structures our morals, which is supported by our legal system. Our society also forms the many different spiritual beliefs that could have an effect on our decisions which determines what our morals will be. We also discussed what is considered to be tailgating. It seems that tailgating is being closer then one car's length per every 10 miles per hour that you are driving.

Week 13Reaction 4
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The final paper that I read from the generational curriculum is one that was written after the author tried a mini-self modification experiment. She did three days of just observing her driving behavior. Then, she did three days of intervention. She finished her paper by giving statistics, then citing some articles and concluding with some other research done at the library.

During her first day of observations, the author noticed that her main problem is speeding. She realized that in the area she lived, most of the speed limits are 25 miles per hour, and she usually drives about 40 miles per hour. Furthermore, she noticed that she does try to contain her speed around the places where the police officers usually "hang out." She also believes that if she is following another car, she will keep speeding, because she thinks that the police will pull over the car in front, and not her. Go here for more on convoys. The author does make a point to say that she slows down when she knows that children are in the area.

One the second day, she was in a rush and noticed that she was speeding up and cutting people off. She also blames other people for what "could" happen. She goes on about how she will cut people off, and its okay if they hit here, because they would be hitting her from behind, and it would be their fault. It was also their fault that she had to cut them off, because they wouldn't let her in to the lane when she had her blinker on.

On the third day, she wrote about why it was okay for her to be driving fast. She rationalized everything. She didn't see any children, so it must be okay to go faster. Also, it was okay to speed in places where there are no distractions, or where she felt that the speed limit inappropriate.

Well, her first day of intervention didn't go too well. She felt embarrassed when a moped passed her, and she sick of trying to drive the speed limit (especially on the freeway). It's funny how she mentioned that now, she felt as though she was going to cause an accident. When she should have felt that way all of the times that she was speeding way over the speed limit.

On the second day she begins to rationalize why she needs to go faster, so that she can go with the flow of traffic and not get hit by other cars. She acknowledged that in order to maintain the appropriate speed limit she has to constantly look at her speedometer. She also goes on to say that she thinks it is okay for her to go about five miles per hour over the speed limit, because she has never known anyone to get a ticket for only going five miles over the limit.

Finally, on the third day, she was driving 25 miles an hour, and a lady passed her when there was a solid line. She (the author) got upset at the other driver, then went on to say that she hoped the driver of the other car doesn't get into an accident because of her.

Her reaction to everything was interesting. She wrote that she never realized she had a speeding problem. Then she listed the reasons she does it. She wants to avoid people following her closely, sometimes she's running late, the car is hot and she wants to get home, and she is just to impatient to drive slow.

For a listing of my other reviews of Generational Curriculum papers go here .

Week 14Speeding Tickets
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It's really strange how people act when they get pulled over for a ticket. Go Here for my reaction on getting a ticket. Hopefully the thought of becoming embarrassed when receiving a ticket it will encourage people to obey the law, but in some cases people need to actually go through the act before they learn a lesson. I was very surprised that there are places on the internet where people can vent and express their feelings of receiving a ticket. Hopefully, this will encourage other people to follow the law. Please see my bookmarks for the links to other peoples reactions on receiving a ticket.

Also in my bookmarks file, there is a link to a place where you can enter all of the speed trap areas in your state. This file is being maintained by Andrew Warner, andy@andy.net. Also, if you plan to go travelling, you can look up the state you are intending to visit and find out where all of their speed traps are located. I think that this is a great idea. I know that when I go travelling to outer island, it makes me feel safer and smarter knowing where the police sometimes have speed traps.

There is even a Research Institute on transportation located in Michigan. I think that Universities should work along with the states, to create safer highways and meet the needs of their communities. This forum was created by Pamela B. Cohen, University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, 2901 Baxter Road, Ann Arbor MI 48109-2150, pbcohen@umich.edu -- Phone 313-936-1051 -- Fax 313-936-1081c

Week 15Web Pages
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I think that my Web pages are a little short, but they are asthetically pleasing. I may have put a little too much time into working on how my pages looked, and not enough time into my writing. I was just having too much fun searching for pictures and getting ideas on how to format my pages that I seemed to have gotten a little carried away. I spent a lot of time on Netscape, playing around viewing different home pages of others around the world. But it was worth all of the effort. At first, I thought it would just be a waste of time to go down to the clic lab to get onto Netscape. I was used to working from my modem at home. But once I got onto Netscape on saw the huge difference in what I saw, I just couldn't find enough time to be down at CLIC to work on my pages. I was amazed when I found someone's entire wedding album on the internet...that is what really started me going, then I just couldn't stop.

Future Generations

I would suggest that future generations get onto Netscape first, to see all of the great things that they can do, and maybe this will get people a little more motivated and excited to get onto system. Also, as I said earlier See Here, start early and don't procrastinate. I started off in this class with some computer knowledge, and the desire to learn more, and I have learned much more about the internet then I could ever imagine. The only thing that I would have done differently, would have been to get onto Netscape earlier. I think that I could have done so much more if I had a little more time. I also think that I will continue to explore the World Wide Web, even after I finish school, there is just so much out there that I haven't even touched on, it's kind of exciting.

My Comments on Other People's Labreports

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comments Comments Week 5 Slaughter1 Also see Akagi's Report.
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In reading Slaughter's Lab report I got really worried. How in the world does she make it from Honolulu to Kailua in 15 minutes? I don't drive to that side of the island that much, but can you make it there that fast in traffic in 15 minutes. I take five minutes to get to UH and I live right in town. Well, now I know if I see a very speedy driver on the Pali at 8:15 in the morning, I'll pull over and let her by. I wonder how many other people are in a rush on a regular basis. I am at fault for doing this once in a great while, but not on a regular basis. In fact I'm one of those almost anal people who usually gets places 15 minutes early because I take into account that I may run into traffic. It was kind of funny, once I called work to let them know that I would be late because I was leaving the house later then usual, and I actually got there right on time, it has kind of become an ongoing joke at my work place.

Allen1
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A topic that came up in class is one that Allen calls the Internet Police System. I also think that it is a good idea to have someone "policing" the system, but it does raise a lot of other questions. Wouldn't it be more efficient to make sexual exchanges over the Internet illegal no matter who or what the people are talking about. This way, someone who makes an honest mistake, and really doesn't know the age of the person he/she is writing to, doesn't get into trouble for something he really had no idea he was doing. Naturally, something so simple (a law making sexual exchanges illegal) would probably be extremely hard to implement. So, I'm sure, just like with the phone sex, things will never be completely taken care of, besides, the children of this generation are extremely intelligent (when they choose to be).

Arashiro 1
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I really agree with Arashiro about the need of traffic psychologists in the field of psychology. I think that it would be beneficial to society, being that traffic accidents are fairly high, if we had more awareness in traffic psychology. In fact I think that its ironic that we have a lot of statistics on traffic deaths, but hardly anyone working toward preventing reckless driving by researching peoples emotions and triggers. Possibly even creating some sort of therapy for people who habitually get into accidents, or speed (the drivers training courses that people can attend obviously aren't doing very much, since speeding still seems to be a big problem).

comments week 6 takitani1
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I give Todd some credit. His lab reports are great. Follow this link if you want to check it out. I agree with his ideas on Help Save Mahalo. I fly inter island fairly often, and $26.00 one way is pretty good. Although, I have not yet tried to fly Mahalo, I must admit that I'm a little scared to do it. But I agree that people should support the smaller businesses, which do in turn help people out by bringing down the fairs. So, the next time I fly home to Kaua`i, I'll try Mahalo. That is if they fly to Kaua`i, and are still in business when I go home. :>

Honolulu traffic
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I completely agree with Caroline Balatico in regard to traffic on Oahu's highways. It would be really great if Honolulu did have some sort of on-line information system like the Southern California Traffic Report. Where people in Hawaii could jump on-line, check out what's happening in traffic, then leave for work, being able to avoid any traffic problems, and hopefully travel stress free. This really could have helped this last week, with the really bad weather. i could have jumped on the computer and found out about all of the problems that were happening on the highway because of the flooding that happened on Monday night. My co-worker took two hours to get from Manoa to Aiea on the H1 that night. If we had a traffic report on line, I could have found out about all of those problems that she encountered. Well, I actually realized that there are types of services available to us, just by using the phone, but I've never used any of them. Now I'm wondering if there were on-line traffic reports, how many people would really use them, and if after awhile, people would become bored with it and stop using it, just like people have stopped using other resources to find out about traffic.

Lai 1
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I completely agree with Lai when it comes to speeders. I really don't think there is a need to excessively speed. Although, I do think that it is ok to speed a little above the speed limit, as long as all safety measures are taken, and no one is in danger. I think that it is both the excessive speeders and the extremely slow drivers that cause at least half of the accidents on the road. People who drive too fast, can loose control of their cars a lot easier, (their car may not even be able to handle the speed that they are driving) and they also may scare other drivers into making bad decisions on the road. I can just imagine an old lady, like my grandmother, driving on the freeway and seeing a car coming up behind her extremely fast. She may take her eyes off of the road in fear that the person is going to hit her, which may cause her to run off of the road. She could also over-react and try to get out of the cars way without checking for other cars around. Then, there are the slow drivers that just crawl on the road, these people also cause accidents. They basically hold up traffic, and may trigger other people to react hastily and irrationally.

comments week 7 Reisner 1
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I think that Reisner's little saying "After all, driving habits are relatively simplistic, but we still overlook or ignore them." is so very true. We learn how to drive at about the age of 15 (at least that's the age you can legally get your license in Hawaii), which is relatively young, and we drive for the rest of our lives. That's about 60 years of driving. That's 60 years of bad habits, deteriorating reflexes, and getting away with all of the bad habits. At this point in time, I just jump in my car and drive, I don't really think about the "hows" of driving, I just go. I take all of the things that I have learned, both good and bad and drive by reflex is a basic way of putting it. I think that people are only now realizing how true this is, and I think that society is responding by offering classes for the elderly. It's called 55 alive/Mature driving, co sponsored by American Association of Retired Persons. This class basically makes people acknowledge that there are physical changes related to age, different rules on the road, and that they have perceptual skills that may not work as well as they used to, even though they drive as though they were still 15, they don't react like they did at that age.

Saito 1 Vicious Cycle
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It is very true that the bad attitude on the road is a vicious cycle and I think the only way things could get better are if everyone were required to see a traffic psychologist at the time that you get your license, or renew your license. Wouldn't that be nice, then we would also create a lot of jobs for psychologists. By having some type of requirement like this, we would hopefully have a more healthy society. As Balatico says, a persons emotional state is often reflected in their driving. So, if we require people to see traffic psychologists before they get their license, in essence we would be requiring people to go and get their head examined on a regular basis. Which in turn could provide help for those psychotic people who use their cars as a weapon, or for even the little old lady who turns into the Incredible Hulk when behind the wheel of a car. It could be seen as a kind of preventative measure to ensure safety on the highways, then maybe insurance premiums would decrease and so would traffic accidents. Am I dreaming or what!!! At the rate our government is burning our money, something like this could almost never happen, but isn't nice to just dream.

matsu 2
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I have gone through most of the students reports, and I agree with Matsuyoshi that it is very easy to get lost when you go from link to link, then up a link to backtrack. I have also had to stop to take breaks, so that I don't get too frustrated. Especially when I get kicked off in the middle of a report. That really just gets to me. You would think with all of this technology, the computer system would recognize that there are not very many people on the Internet, and would allow you to work a little longer then the 90 minutes. I got kicked off four times yesterday, and each time I got back on there were less then 50 people on two of the unix lines. I was very upset. I even e-mailed Dr. James to vent some frustration. But on the good side, it didn't take too long to get back on the system, most of the time I was able to get back on within two or three dials.

Beauch 1
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By now, whom ever is reading this probably could use a little study break, well, if you haven't done so already, hit this link and read Beauchman's insurance humor, hopefully it will make you laugh, I know that it relieved some of my stress.

Comments Week 8Modems Asahina 1
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Doing these lab reports takes a lot of time, I have begun to dedicate one entire day to work on them, and I still fall behind. I'm just glad to know that I'm not the only one who kind of thinks this is a lot. See also Asahina's report. I'm just glad that I have a modem, and can work from home any time of the day/night/morning. But what really seems to take the cake is that I'm always being kicked off of the computer after 90 minutes. I've already vented on this topic a little see my comments. It really is frustrating, being kicked off the computer in the middle of a sentence, then having to re-log on and recover your files, etc. But on the happier note, it provides for a much needed break most of the time. For some more options on having/using a modem see Raad's Comments and Noguchi's Comments on modems.

ChattingDiaz 1
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Wow, was I blown away when my computer beeped at me and it said someone wanted to talk with me. I didn't know what to do, and it took me awhile to figure it out. But, as with everything else, with practice, I've learned how to work that "Talk" thing. I just need to log out to the WWW server, or where ever the person who wants to talk to me is, the type talk and their address. The only hard part was figuring out how to delete characters. I tried to use the backspace, that didn't work. Then I tried the Cntl-b and Cntl-d, like how I would erase things in Emacs, well, needless to say that didn't work. Finally, my class mate Shane Akagi suggested that I try cntl-backspace.... It Worked!! See Diaz's report for someone else's experience with "Talk" and "finger".

It's really fun to talk to people on the computer. Someone even requested to talk to me and I had no clue who he was. Apparently, he thought I was someone else also. I guess, if you are a very private person, people interrupting you while you work and start chatting with you could be a problem. But, I think that things can get kind of interesting.. for another story, see Kwock's comments on being "Fingered."

Higa 1
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I'm glad that other people are able to log on from home and can understand the frustrations and the ease of being able to use a modem. See Higa's report for some of his experiences. Also, thank you Mr. Higa for the extra phone number. It does work a lot easier then the 956-5080. But the so far, the times that I tried to use the 956-9333 I got through, but nothing came onto my screen. I'm not sure what my computer was doing. But after giving up and trying over again, it still doesn't work, so I've given up for now. Well, along with the ease of being able to work on my computer at home also comes the problem of not being able to use my phone for the entire time that I am on my computer. Thank goodness I have no social life, and I don't need to use the phone. But I always have a problem just getting on line. The phones are usually busy, or it just rings and never logs on. But over all, I think that using my own computer is a little more satisfying. At least I can yell at it, hit it and throw fits of frustration without other people seeing me. I think if I were to go to a lab and hold in all of the emotions when on the computer, I would probably explode. I applaud the people that are able to handle it.

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If anyone wants to e-mail me about anything, please feel free to. Michelle's E-mail Address: otam@uhunix.uhcc.hawaii.edu