April 29, 2012

Christian Bök in Purple Blurb *Thursday* 6pm

from Post Position
by @ 9:14 pm

Update: Thanks to Francisco Ricardo, a video of some of Christian’s Purple Blurb reading is now online.

The Spring 2012 Purple Blurb series comes to an end this week, not with a whimper, but with Christian Bök!

Thursday May 3

April 26, 2012

“Creative Material Computing in a Laboratory Context”

from Post Position
by @ 11:28 am

The Trope Tank has just issued a new technical report:

Creative Material Computing in a Laboratory Context
Nick Montfort and Natalia Fedorova

Download the full report

Principles for organizing a laboratory with material computing resources are articulated. This laboratory, the Trope Tank, is a facility for teaching, research, and creative collaboration and offers hardware (in working condition and set up for use) from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, including videogame systems, home computers, an arcade cabinet, and a workstation. Other resources include controllers, peripherals, manuals, books, and software on physical media. In reorganizing the space, we considered its primary purpose as a laboratory (rather than as a library or studio), organized materials by platform and intended use, and provided additional cues and textual information about the historical contexts of the available systems.

April 25, 2012


from Post Position
by @ 8:52 am

Developers of digital storytelling systems, take note: The call for papers for the Fifth International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling is now out. Conference to be held November 12-15, 2012 in Spain.

April 24, 2012

The Amiga Book: Maher’s The Future Was Here

from Post Position
by @ 8:34 pm

Congratulations to Jimmy Maher on his just-published book, The Future Was Here: The Commodore Amiga. As you might expect, Amazon has a page on it; so does Powell’s Books, for instance.

This MIT Press title is the third book in the Platform Studies series. Jimmy Maher has done an excellent job of detailing the nuts and bolts of the first multimedia computer that was available to consumers, and connecting the lowest levels of this platform’s function to cultural questions, types of software produced, and the place of this system in history. The book considers gaming uses (which many used to brand the Amiga as nothing but a toy) but also media production applications and even, in one chapter, the famous Boing Ball demo.

April 23, 2012

Star Wars, Raw? Rats!

from Post Position
by @ 1:59 pm

Un file de Machine Libertine:

Star Wars, Raw? Rats!

… is a videopoem by Natali Fedorova and Taras Mashtalir. The text is a palindrome by Nick Montfort that briefly retells “Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope,” making Han Solo central. The soundtrack is a remix of Commodore 64 music by Sven Schlünzen & Jörg Rosenstiel made by Mashtalir.

The palindrome is a revised version of the one Montfort wrote in 75 minutes for the First World Palindrome Championship, held in Brooklyn on March 16, 2012:

April 21, 2012

Borsuk, Bök, Montfort – May 5, 7pm, Lorem Ipsum

from Post Position
by @ 7:05 pm

I’m reading soon with our Canadian guest Christian Bök and with my MIT colleague Amaranth Borsuk, who will present Between Page and Screen (published by Siglio Press this year). The gig is at:

Lorem Ipsum Books
1299 Cambridge Street
Inman Square
Cambridge, MA
Ph: 617-497-7669

May 7, 2012 at 7pm

Straight into the Horse’s Mouth

from Post Position
by @ 10:39 am

My word-palindrome writing project (being undertaken as @nickmofo) has been boosted by Christian proselytizing, by Bök’s page. I am delighted to be featured in Christian Bök’s post on Harriet as an instance of conceptual writing on Twitter – named, in fact, right after @Horse_ebooks.

This makes it particularly apt that Christian describes my writing as potential poetic “fodder.” Why not treat this feed of texts as the gift horse that keeps on giving? Please, feel free to make the tweets of @nickmofo into your chew toy.

Steve McCaffery Reading Carnival at Purple Blurb

from Post Position
by @ 10:32 am

Steve McCaffery read at MIT in the Purple Blurb series on March 19, 2012. A recording of part of that reading (his reading of Carnival) is embedded above; the text of my introduction follows.

Thank you all for braving the cold to come out today. Did you know that today is officially the last day of Winter? Ever! Winter is officially over forever!

April 17, 2012

Come to the Mad Scientist Open House @Tiltfactor!

from tiltfactor
by @ 4:20 pm


THURSDAY // APRIL 19TH // 5-7:30 PM

NORTH FAIRBANKS HALL green entrance behind Tucker

This Thursday, come greet the ✿spring✿ with the folks behind Tiltfactor, Dartmouth’s game design and research lab!

See what games we’ve been cooking up, as well as some science-themed classics. Meet our diabolical student interns, staff, and founder Mary Flanagan. Participate in a study and get a treat!

To participate in the study you must be at least 18 years old. There are a limited number of slots so please RSVP @ geo@tiltfactor.org.

Be there or be ❒.

April 5, 2012

Sukie goes to PAX East

from tiltfactor
by @ 5:20 pm

Hey gamers!

This weekend, almost 70K people will be gathering in Boston at the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) for the ultimate gaming event. Game lovers of all forms–digital to analog, casual to hardcore, serious to playful–will be represented and you’ll play your socks off nonstop for three days. Are any of you attending? Sukie will be there, with Buffalo and other prototypes we’ve been cooking up this year. If you want to play some Tilt games or just meet up and chat with Sukie (he’s a cool guy, I promise), be sure to shoot Sukie an email at suki@tiltfactor.org.

April 4, 2012

[EVENT] Learn the mathematics behind the game SET!

from tiltfactor
by @ 2:12 pm

Tonight at 7pm in Silsby 028,  come learn about the mathematics behind the game SET with Professor Liz MacMahon from Lafayette College! If you haven’t played SET before, be sure to do so! Play online at www.setgame.com. Explore the card game through combinatorics, probability, linear algebra and geometry.  See how to use the geometry to explore the game and, even better, how to use the game to understand the structure of the geometry. Sure to be an interesting talk!

A Study on Board Games and Numeracy: Analysis, Implications, and Future Directions

from tiltfactor
by @ 4:46 am

Can you learn math skills through moving your token in a board game? Geetha Ramani, a professor at the University of Maryland, and Robert Siegler, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University, have published a study that suggests that low-income preschoolers demonstrated more proficiency on mathematical tasks after playing a linear number board game.

The researchers were interested in studying preschoolers’ math skills, specifically how children think about the relationships between numbers. According to prior research by Siegler, preschoolers do not yet have a linear representation of numbers, which is a concept that, once mastered, correlates with a variety of tasks related to superior mathematical performance (Siegler & Booth, 2004).

April 1, 2012

On Reading

from Post Position
by @ 6:00 pm

I was asked to discuss reading (and reading education) from my perspective recently. Here’s the reply I gave…

The students I teach now, like other university students I have taught, have the ability to read. They are perfectly able to move their eyes over a page, or a screen, and recognize the typographical symbols as letters that make up words that make up sentences or lines.

The problems they face usually relate to a narrow concept of reading, which includes an unwillingness to read a wider variety of texts. These are not problems that are restricted to well-qualified, well-educated university students who are expert readers. As the networked computer provides tremendous access to writing and transforms our experience of language, all of are asked to rethink and enlarge our reading ability.

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