Alternative Text- To me, an alternative text means "Something that can shape the way a person thinks and learns and that can, at the same time, be altered by that same person". Perhaps the last part doesn't need to be there; perhaps it is not critical that alternative texts be shaped by it's learners but I think, in accordance to this class, that is an appropriate definition.
In my project/paper I tried to illustrate this definition of alternative text by introducing a young adult sub-culture which employes it's own rules on its participants. Meaning, that sub-cultures teach youth how to act a certain way, read people a certain way, and interact with both people and technologies in a certain way. To me, a text is something that a person who has specific skills can understand. For example a book is a text because someone who has the skill of reading can interpret it. Furthermore, a computer game is a text because someone who knows the right controls and rules of that game can understand it and play it well/properly.
The presentations on text messaging/cell phones/black berries all talked about these same things and also perhaps forgot to mention a few. As I have said before, there are many programs that can be used through a cellular phone/black berrie by using text messaging that can help students learn. But the cell phone itself is something that a person needs to LEARN how to use by learning the controls and programs on the machine. Furthermore, text messaging requires a person to be able to use the proper numbers on the key pad, and in some cases, they need to be able to understand 'youth lingo' such as brb or cyl8r.