October 23, 2019

Clowns Applaud Insanity Now Available

The next game developed at Tiltfactor, Clowns Applaud Insanity, is now being published by Resonym! It’s a hilarious black and white party card game filled with adults-only humor, and after writing and rewriting its cards for years now, I’m excited to make it available to the world.

Gameplay

Draw a question card, like “With our planet doomed, our only chance for survival is ___________.” Then all other players submit their funniest answer card, like “Nothing” or “Nick Offerman chained to a power-generating exercycle.” Choose the most hilarious answer, and the player who submitted it gets an “Applause Point.” Play until you get bored, then whoever has the most points wins.

October 9, 2019

Professor Flanagan’s Studio Work Update

In addition to her game design work, Director Mary Flanagan has also been creating new pieces as a part of her fine arts practice! These range from technologically-driven 2D images to experiential projections and sculptures. Her work covers a broad range of issues including language, artificial intelligence, and acts of mass violence.

Read about her work and subscribe for more updates here!

July 16, 2019

Professor Flanagan on NHPR

This week Professor Mary Flanagan of Tiltfactor joins Laura Knoy of NHPR, and Dr. Paul Weigle, a child and adolescent psychiatrist who studies the mental health impacts of video game and internet habits of young people, in a conversation about how to study the impacts of video game design.

Read the transcript or listen to the recording here: Video Game Design: How It Impacts Us, And How We Study Its Impacts

July 11, 2019

VR Study wrap up!

We’ve just completed data collection on our VR study!

Stay tuned for more information as we submit our results for publication…!

July 2, 2019

Gomringer’s Untitled Poem [“silencio”], an Unlikely Sonnet

from Post Position
by @ 8:54 am

The untitled poem by Eugen Gomringer that we can only call “silencio” is a classic, perhaps the classic, concrete poem. According to Marjorie Perloff’s Unoriginal Genius, the “silencio” version of the poem dates from 1953. In my 1968 edition of The Book of Hours and Constellations I find the German manifestation of this poem (with the word “schweigen”) and the English poem (with the word “silence”), on the same page at the very beginning of the book — but no “silencio.” The place where I do find “silencio” is An Anthology of Concrete Poetry from 1967, edited by Emmett Williams. My copy is the re-issue by Primary Information.

May 15, 2019

Student Perspectives: Grace Dorgan

Grace is a sophomore at Dartmouth College doing game design, development, and research at Tiltfactor

There’s a reason computer science majors are stereotyped as being socially awkward. It’s because we are. That’s why when I started working at Tiltfactor, the one part of the job I was not sure I could handle was the communication with other people. It is also the area of the job that I have learned the most from.

May 10, 2019

Tiltfactor Director on NHPR

Professor Flanagan talks about the future of work and automation on The Exchange. Check out the show!

https://www.nhpr.org/post/exchange-depth-new-hampshire-s-workforce-shortage#stream/0

May 8, 2019

Student Perspectives: Patrick Matlin Redondo

Patrick Matlin Redondo is a senior at Dartmouth College and a game designer and researcher at Tiltfactor

Over the past year or so the Tiltfactor team has been working on a virtual reality puzzle game called “Entangled.” In Entangled, you’re trapped in a room, but you’re able to see a parallel dimension superimposed on yours. You can’t touch things in the other dimension, but you can get things in your dimension to overlap with things in the other dimension, “entangling” them and allowing you to manipulate them across both.

February 13, 2019

Buffalo Facilitator’s Guide Debuts on Amazon

from Tiltfactor
by @ 3:26 pm

Buffalo Facilitator’s Workbook: A Game-Based Guide to Leading Difficult Conversations Debuts on Amazon

New workbook turns fun, fast-paced party game into a workshop that can be used by organizations to facilitate difficult, but much-needed conversations

HANOVER, NH– Tiltfactor, creators of Buffalo: The Name Dropping Game, have announced the debut of Buffalo Facilitator’s Workbook: A Guide to Leading Conversations to Reduce Implicit Bias. The workbook takes Buffalo, a fast-paced party game, and turns gameplay into a workshop that organizations can use to facilitate what can sometimes be difficult workplace conversations.

January 15, 2019

A Bit about Alphabit

from Post Position
by @ 9:38 am

During Synchrony 2019, on the train from New York City to Montreal, two of us (nom de nom and shifty) wrote a 64 byte Commodore 64 program which ended up in the Old School competition. (It could have also gone into the Nano competition for <=256 byte productions.) Our Alphabit edged out the one other fine entry in Old School,a Sega Genesis production by ModeDude also written on the train.

December 26, 2018

Taper #2 is Out

from Post Position
by @ 10:52 pm

The second issue of Taper, a literary magazine featuring small-scale computational work, is now online.

The second issue was edited by Sebastian Bartlett, Lillian-Yvonne Bertram, Angela Chang, Judy Heflin, and Rachel Paige Thompson, working collectively. Bad Quarto (my micropress) publishes the journal.

The call for issue #3 is posted. The deadline is February 18 (2019).

Taper #2 features 18 works by six a., Sebastian Bartlett, Kyle Booten, Angela Chang, Augusto Corvalan, Kavi Duvvoori, Esen Espinsa, Leonardo Flores, Judy Heflin, Chris Joseph, Vinicius Marquet, Stuart Moulthrop, Everest Pipkin, Mark Sample, and William Wu. Go take a look!

December 16, 2018

Two new publications at ICIDS 2018

We’re trying to get into the habit of posting about all our publications, so here’s a post about the two things (one poster and one demo) I just got back from presenting at ICIDS 2018 last week!

The poster is called “Sketching a Map of the Storylets Design Space”, and the associated paper can be found here. Abstract:

October 9, 2018

Hard West Turn at Time Farm

from Post Position
by @ 12:04 pm

For two weeks only (today through October 23), my limited-edition computer-generated book, Hard West Turn, is available for reading in an installation at Time Farm, underneath the MIT Press Bookstore, 301 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA.

Time Farm entrance

Hard West Turn awaiting a reader

Hard West Turn open to the title page

Hard West Turn is a computer-generated novel about gun violence in the United States. The copy exhibited is one of three artist’s proofs; only 13 copies (one for each of the original states) were made for sale. The generating program is free software, but the specific copy-edited text of this book has only been made available in print. Hard West Turn will be regenerated annually for limited-edition publication each July 4.

August 26, 2018

A Web Reply to the Post-Web Generation

from Post Position
by @ 8:46 am

At the recent ELO conference in Montréal Leonardo Flores introduced the concept of “3rd Generation” electronic literature. I was at another session during his influential talk, but I heard about the concept from him beforehand and have read about it on Twitter (a 3rd generation context, I believe) and Flores’s blog (more of a 2nd generation context, I believe). One of the aspects of this concept is that the third generation of e-lit writers makes use of existing platforms (Twitter APIs, for instance) rather than developing their own interfaces. Blogging is a bit different from hand-rolled HTML, but one administers one’s own blog.

August 15, 2018

VIdeo of My PRB Reading

from Post Position
by @ 6:03 am

Thanks to host Joseph Mosconi, I read at the Poetics Research Bureau in Los Angeles from two recent computer-generated books. Sophia Le Fraga and Aaron Winslow read with me on this evening, on July 21.

I have now posted 360 video of my readings of both The Truelist and Hard West Turn.


Montfort’s Poetic Research Bureau reading of July 21, 2018

I read from The Truelist (Counterpath, 2017). The Truelist is available as an offset-printed book from Counterpath, as a short, deterministic, free software program that generates the full text of the book, and as a free audiobook, thanks to the generosity of the University of Pennsylvania’s Kelly Writers House, its Wexler Studio, and PennSound.

July 26, 2018

Platform Studies at 10

from Post Position
by @ 5:13 pm

The Platform Studies series from MIT Press is now about ten years old. The first book in the series, my & Ian Bogost’s Racing the Beam: The Atari Video Computer System, was published in 2009. (We also edit this series.) Before our book on the Atari VCS/Atari 2600 came out, we launched the site and announced the series, back at the end of 2006, and Ian and I were presenting about it at conferences the next year. So, although the exact birthday is uncertain, let’s say a (probably belated) happy 10th.

July 25, 2018

Exquisite Corpses are Now on Display

from Post Position
by @ 3:18 pm

"Some red pendulums will quickly consume the grim president ..."

In 1984, a type-in program appeared in the French Hebdogiciel—no surprise there, since this weekly publication was all about type-in BASIC programs! This one, however, was not entirely unlike the games and mathematical recreations that typically appeared; it did, however, have an explicit link to a French 20th Century avant-garde movement, Surrealism. The program, by Philippe Henri, was for the TRS-80 and called “Cadavres Exquis.”

Ariane Savoire and I have translated this program to English (as “Exquisite Corpses”) are very pleased that the Vassar Review has just published the edition we have prepared, which includes:

July 1, 2018

“Bullet” and Poem without Suffering

from Post Position
by @ 11:51 am
A bullet
Discussed in this review: “Bullet,” David Byrne, American Utopia, Nonesuch, 2018; Poem without Suffering, Josef Kaplan, Wonder Books, 2015

David Byrne’s earworm takes a distant yet close perspective, describing a bullet’s fatal encounter with a human body. Did he know about Kaplan’s similar short, rapid, book-length poem? Byrne’s song sets its sights on an adult man, Kaplan’s poem on a child. The life of the child is hinted by describing what a warm maternal relationship is like, and by mentioning injuries from falling off a bunk bed and being hit by a baseball. We hear about the man’s life because of what the bullet cuts through: “Skin that women had touched,” “Many fine meals he tasted there,” “his heart with thoughts of you.” The general description is very effective. There are striking metaphors — positive associations — for the bullet itself, also. In Poem, it is a triumphant runner (such as Usain Bolt, who bears the name of a crossbow’s projectile) dragging gore from the body as if it were a trophy or banner. In “Bullet,” it is “Like an old grey dog / On a fox’s trail.” Perhaps America’s reliable old dog cannot be taught new tricks.

June 28, 2018

New paper: “Gardening Games: An Alternative Philosophy of PCG in Games”

I’ll be presenting my new paper, Gardening Games: An Alternative Philosophy of PCG in Games, at the PCG Workshop at FDG 2018.

Abstract:

Procedural content generation (PCG) in games is often framed as a way to feed the content furnace, satisfying the voracious appetites of players by generating infinite seas of content for them to consume. Although this dominant framing provides a clear structuring purpose for PCG research, it also unnecessarily limits our vision of alternative purposes that generative methods might serve. Furthermore, generative systems designed with this purpose in mind may tend to reinforce certain problematic dynamics in game design. In this paper, we draw a contrast between two approaches to procedural terrain generation and the dynamics of play they tend to enable, which we term mining and gardening. We then extend this analysis to PCG more broadly and suggest that the latter (gardening) dynamic represents a viable and compelling alternative philosophy of how generative methods can be used in games.

May 22, 2018

Concise Computational Literature is Now Online in Taper

from Post Position
by @ 7:55 pm

I’m pleased to announce the release of the first issue of Taper, along with the call for works for issue #2.

Taper is a DIY literary magazine that hosts very short computational literary works — in the first issue, sonic, visual, animated, and generated poetry that is no more than 1KB, excluding comments and the standard header that all pages share. In the second issue, this constraint will be relaxed to 2KB.

The first issue has nine poems by six authors, which were selected by an editorial collective of four. Here is how this work looked when showcased today at our exhibit in the Trope Tank:

On Khevna Joshi, Blogger and Game Designer

from Tiltfactor
by @ 9:18 am

Khevna Joshi, blogger and game designer at Tiltfactor, won this year’s Dartmouth Student Employee Contest in the category of academic/professional impact. Below is her essay on how Tiltfactor helped her build skills and knowledge to develop her resume!

Upper Valley Senior Center, October 16, 1:00 PM

“So, what types of games do you like to play? Board games, card games, digital games?” I asked.

“I love card games,” one of the senior women said. “Bridge is my favorite!”

“Really?” a senior man asked. “I have my phone with me all the time, so I like playing games like Candy Crush on it.”

On Khevna Joshi, Blogger and Game Designer

from Tiltfactor
by @ 9:18 am

Khevna Joshi, blogger and game designer at Tiltfactor, won this year’s Dartmouth Student Employee Contest in the category of academic/professional impact. Below is her essay on how Tiltfactor helped her build skills and knowledge to develop her resume!

Upper Valley Senior Center, October 16, 1:00 PM

“So, what types of games do you like to play? Board games, card games, digital games?” I asked.

“I love card games,” one of the senior women said. “Bridge is my favorite!”

“Really?” a senior man asked. “I have my phone with me all the time, so I like playing games like Candy Crush on it.”

May 8, 2018

On Nick Feffer, Undergraduate Design Fellow

from Tiltfactor
by @ 9:35 am

Tiltfactor: Hey Nick! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and the work that you are doing in the Tiltfactor lab?

Nick: I am a Dartmouth ‘21 and I have been working at Tiltfactor since fall of this year. Currently, I work as a Tiltfactor Fellow. My role is similar to that of a lab intern, but I’ll be working more closely with Max and Mary to develop new games this term. My background is in computer science and graphic design, so I mostly contribute to the coding and 3D modeling required for making some of our games. Right now, I’m working on a couple of different projects: a phone game code-named Potions and a new virtual reality puzzle game code-named Entangled.

On Nick Feffer, Undergraduate Design Fellow

from Tiltfactor
by @ 9:35 am

Tiltfactor: Hey Nick! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and the work that you are doing in the Tiltfactor lab?

Nick: I am a Dartmouth ‘21 and I have been working at Tiltfactor since fall of this year. Currently, I work as a Tiltfactor Fellow. My role is similar to that of a lab intern, but I’ll be working more closely with Max and Mary to develop new games this term. My background is in computer science and graphic design, so I mostly contribute to the coding and 3D modeling required for making some of our games. Right now, I’m working on a couple of different projects: a phone game code-named Potions and a new virtual reality puzzle game code-named Entangled.

May 4, 2018

On Spring Yu, Undergraduate Design Fellow

from Tiltfactor
by @ 1:34 pm

Tiltfactor: Hi Spring! Can you tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do at Tiltfactor?

Spring: I’m a Dartmouth ‘19, and I have been working at Tiltfactor on and off since my freshman spring. This is my 4th term working at the lab! I am currently an undergraduate fellow at the lab working on graphics, illustration, user interface, and user experience design. This means that I do a lot of the design work for layouts of what the screen looks like in our digital games, and I make decisions about how to draw the players’ attention to things they need to look at in order to have a good time in the games.

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