Thursday, March 7, 2013

Internet/Technology in Vytegra

Although I originally wanted to be involved on the research track of the ASB trip to pursue a better understanding of the psychology of the inhabitants of provincial Russian towns, I am very glad that I ended up doing the service track. My job specifically in Vytegra is to work on the local museum's website, transferring and condensing content from other similar sites and reformatting sections of the website as well; the aim is to make it easier for those who seek information about Vytegra to navigate the site, whether in Russian or English, and hopefully draw more attention to the area.
The process has been a fulfilling one so far, in part because it is drawing upon and testing my computer knowledge, and also because I am more deeply examining information about the town itself and the function of providing that information in a digital format, including facts, quotes, pictures, videos, maps, links, etc. All of these contribute to creating an important, collaborative outlet online, and the work I have put into it so far has only started to scratch the surface of online presence and capability. I do not have a good idea of local attitudes and behaviors about the Internet, but judging by the technology that was available to me for my work and the work of my fellow ASBers (which surpassed my expectations for the most part), there is a desire to be connected to the outside world. I hope to further facilitate the realization of that desire and also better understand how Russians in provincial areas view the role of the Internet and informational technology.

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