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Why interactive poetry beats interactive fiction
Despite having characteristics of a photographic record, the images of Galvez don’t have and never have had a counterpart in the physical world.
The photographic document is a record that remits us to a point in space and time, that is, it’s an index. Therefore, the index of Galvez remits us to the reality of imagination. In this way, Galvez acquires its right to be considered a document of Reality, making it evident the impossibility to create frontiers between the real and the imaginary.
A little mangled, but you get the idea. It reminds me of the visual aesthetic of Riven — a video game that consisted of nothing but static pictures of a world, created via CGI and photomanipulations. I actually wish there were more art projects like this, or at least more games like Riven, because the have a Dali-esque dreamlike quality that really spooks me, in a good way. Indeed, the stationary nature of the images in Riven were a chief part of the game’s allure: They invited you to study each scene closely, in a way that few modern games ever do. Even the most articulated 3D games never quite encourage this scrutiny, because you’re too busy roaming around to sit still for long enough to drink in a scene. In Riven — or with Galvez — the fun is in staring closely at each vista and drinking in the weirdness.
That’s what made the occasional animations in Riven — and in Galvez — so startling: It felt like a picture that had suddenly come to life. I remember when I was walking through the forest in Riven, then turned around and saw a little girl staring at me, who abruptly fled. I nearly jumped out of my skin.
(Thanks to Erik Weissengruber for this one!)
I'm Clive Thompson, a writer on science, technology, and culture. This blog collects bits of offbeat research I'm running into, and musings thereon.
Currently, I'm a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine. I also write for Fast Company and Wired magazine's web site, among other places. Email or AOL IM me (pomeranian99) to say hi or send in something strange!
May 20, 2011 » 02:28 PM
From Christopher Kennedy’s very droll book “Neitzsche’s Horse”.
July 28, 2010 » 07:35 AM
“Wr” - S
July 06, 2010 » 10:05 AM
My Xbox broke, and I was trying to Google some possible technical solutions, when I noticed that Google appears to be encouraging me to make a typo. I suppose it’s possible that Google’s algorithms know that typing “wont” instead of “won’t” would produce better results.
June 29, 2010 » 05:00 PM
On the other hand, when I tried the test for multitasking, I was pretty abysmal. I performed worse than people who identify themselves as heavy multitaskers, and those who identify as low multitaskers.
June 29, 2010 » 04:58 PM
I finally got around to trying out the interactive “test your distractability and multitasking” page at the New York Times, which they put up alongside their story earlier this month about how computer distractions are eroding our lives.
According to the test, I guess I have good focus — I’m not very distractable!
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