Tomorrow is going to be watershed moment in American history, and for those of us who are twenty-five and under, tomorrow is an especially important moment. This is because this will be the inauguration of the first “Digital President” – and a President who – more than any in recent history – engaged with the youth of our nation. I was at panel discussion at UW last week where the topic was “The Digital President,” where the panelists discussed the Web 2.0 tactics the Obama campaign used to better engage today’s youth. Brett Horvath, a college student and social media strategist, referenced the book Born Digital, which posits that those of us born after 1983 grew up on the internet, and understand it in a fundamentally different way than those born before,who have had to learn or adapt to the internet. As a “digital native” himself, Brett called this “the election of the first ‘Digital President.’ The election of our President.”
I thought I would point you to a few ways that you can experience this watershed moment tomorrow, powered by Microsoft. The Presidential Inaugural Committee has chosen Silverlight to power their online broadcast of the inauguration [coverage of the announcement here] so you should go out their site to watch tomorrow. TechCrunch has a pretty thorough list,and includes a CNN/Microsoft PhotoSynth. Essentially, people at the inauguration can upload their photos, which are then transformed into a PhotoSynth which stitches all these 2D photos together to make one 3D panorama.If you’re at the inauguration and take a picture “the moment” President Obama is sworn in, you should email your pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as it happens. The PhotoSynth will then be created with all these pics, and will be posted here.
Happy MLK Jr. Day!