July 31, 2012

Tiltfactor Laboratory receives NEH Digital Humanities Implementation Grant to Expand Metadata Games, Add Other Media Formats

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(pdf version)

contact -at- tiltfactor -dot- org
(603) 646-1007

July 31, 2012 (Hanover, NH)The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) has announced that Tiltfactor director Mary Flanagan is one of seven award recipients in the endowment’s inaugural Digital Humanities Implementation Grant program. The Digital Humanities Implementation grants “support the implementation of innovative digital humanities projects that have successfully completed a start-up phase and demonstrated their value to the field.”

July 27, 2012

Be Kind, Reconstruct

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by @ 7:07 pm

It’s not bigger and longer than Star Wars, but it is more uncut: “Death of the Author [Psycho Shower Scene RECON]“ by Dick Whyte. This, somewhat like the later famous Star Wars video, is a “reconstruction of Alfred Hitchcock’s famous shower scene from Psycho using amateur YouTube remakes.” 57 of them.

If you got that and you’re ready to increase the avant-garde, see also “John Cage – 4’33″ [May ’68 Comeback Special RECON]“ and “Andy Warhols Eat A Hamburger [38 Scenes From YouTube RECON].” All from 2010, but recalled here for your enjoyment.

An Insight Gained from Re-Watching Tron

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by @ 10:47 am

Enron (logo)


Infocom (logo)


Encom (logo from Tron still)

July 21, 2012

Tiltfactor & Dartmouth College Library Launch Game to Identify Alumni

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Mary dot Flanagan at Dartmouth dot Edu

Tiltfactor Laboratory and the Rauner Special Collections Library at Dartmouth College are releasing  “Alum Tag,” an online casual game designed to add metadata to a large collection of photographs donated by Dartmouth alumni to the college’s archives.

The game involves players earning points by tagging photographs with key words. The system then weighs the tags using frequencies and other statistical measures; those that are considered “valid” are associated with the corresponding photograph and stored, essentially creating data about the images.

July 19, 2012

The Problem with “Videogames”

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For years, many people have been use the word “videogames” to describe various different things – often a similar category of games playable in arcades and at home thanks to digital electronic technology and using video displays. Sometimes this category is distinguished from “computer games” which are played on general-purpose home (or, if one is lucky, office) computers. Often people nowadays who think about gaming don’t think of specific classic titles (Zork, Hunt the Wumpus, Star Trek) as videogames but are willing to consider them computer games.

Now Hiring: Game Designer in Residence

The Center for Games and Playable Media at UC Santa Cruz is in search of a talented game designer with a portfolio of interesting games for a new position, the Game Designer in Residence. Like an Artist in Residence, the game designer will continue to work on personal projects as well as contribute to the academic environment with a mix of teaching duties, offering feedback and critique, collaborating on research opportunities, and providing design guidance.

The full job posting is here:

July 13, 2012

Islands of (Text) Adventure

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In the “Michelangelo” room of the Portofino Bay hotel, at Ascendio (the latest and last in a long series of Harry Potter fan conferences), just down the lagoon from The Islands of Adventure and the Harry Potter area of that theme park, Flourish Klink presented her interactive fiction, “Muggle Studies.”

(In Michelangelo the women come and go, talking of rooms…)

We had a reading/playing of the game, to start, in the People’s Republic of Interactive Fiction public reading style. It worked well; another option would have been to “demo” the game using the successful format we tried out at the New School, Penn, and some Purple Blurb IF readings. The audience was game to try commands, though, and a volunteer read the game’s text aloud.

July 11, 2012

Ubu Runs Ubuntu!

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Welcome back to the Web’s major agglomeration of the avant-garde, Ubuweb.

(I don’t know that Ubu actually runs Ubuntu, but some statements are univocalically true regardless. And the site is back up, that’s for sure.)

July 10, 2012

Opening this Thursday…

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by @ 5:13 pm

More art than game, but still playful and instruction based, this work will be shown as part of the Permanent Collection show – a massively multiartist exhibition “covering” the works from MoMA’s permanent collection at the Nancy Margolis gallery, New York. It’s like the art equivalent of the cover album. The show is curated by Jordin Isip and Edward del Rosario. The opening is this Thursday 6-8pm and the show runs July 12 – August 4, 2012.

Drawing Series Mashup
[after Sol Lewitt’s Drawing Series III/2314/ B (1969) and Composite Series (1970)]

July 9, 2012

A Take on Sea and Spar Between

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I was extremely pleased to read Michael Leong’s discussion of Sea and Spar Between in At Length. Among other things, he considers in what way this could be considered a “long poem,” makes connections to Whitman’s “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry,” treats the interface and experience, and recounts a hilarious exchange between Toni Morrison and Oprah Winfrey. I really appreciated his discussion of different types of attention spans; these were issues that I (and I know Stephanie) have had in mind for quite a while.

July 8, 2012

Language and Code at the Gate

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by @ 6:15 pm

What are we waiting for, assembled in the forum?

A technical report is to arrive today.

No need to worry about what will become of you without a technical report! The report, the fourth “Trope Report” in the Trope Tank series that started this year, is here:

In “Carrying across Language and Code,” Natalia and I discuss issues of translation and computational writing. With reference to electronic literature translation projects in which we have been involved as translators or as authors of the source work, we argue that the process of translation can expose how language and computation interrelate in electronic literature. Various small poetry generators, a cybertext poem, and two works of interactive fiction are discussed in this report.

July 7, 2012

Uncreative Launching

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by @ 7:33 pm

Here’s an effective remix: Every space shuttle launch. The audio, as well as the difference in that one cell of video, draws attention to most memorable one, and the array of all of them drives home that the space shuttle launches can be presented in their entirety – the program is over. The video is by McLean Fahnestock.

July 5, 2012

“Taroko Gorge”: The Vandalism Continues!

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As I wrote a few days ago, I made a statement about “Taroko Gorge,” and all of its vandals, at the ELO conference in Morgantown, WV.

Sepand Ansari created a Beckett-based “Taroko Gorge” remix at the ELO conference. And now I have the URL for this piece, “Waiting for Taroko Gorge.”

Kathi Inman Berens has created “Tournedo Gorge” “to mash the space of computation with the female, domestic, and tactile,” as she discusses in her blog post.

July 4, 2012

A Note on Stacking

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by @ 8:32 am

In February 2011 Tim Schafer’s Doublefine Productions released a game, Stacking, in which the anthropomorphic figures are Russian nesting dolls. Set in a nicely developed Victorian world of social ills and technological marvels and making use of a toy-like mechanic, Stacking is somewhat like Lego Star Wars without either the Lego or the Star Wars brand. It combines charming play with plenty of cutscenes.

July 2, 2012

Notes from Games for Health 2012

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by @ 5:30 am

Games for Health was awesome! Two weeks ago I gave a talk and demo at Ludica Medica II: Medical Modeling, Simulation, Learning & Training with Videogames & Videogame Technologies, an all-day event as part of the Games for Health Conference week in Boston. The day was filled with combination of larger discussions and game-specific talks, including my talk on the development and subsequent studies on POX: SAVE THE PEOPLE (available both as a board game and for iPad). Concurrently with the Ludica Medica session, the Out & About III: Mobile Serious Games Day was running as was Enabled Play: The Fourth Annual Games Accessibility Day. With all of these events happening at the same time, I jumped in and out of many great presentations and discussions covering such topics as exergaming apps, a program that helped families of military veterans with PSTD, and subversive game design. Below are some of my observations and quotes heard from the day:

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