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Books, Disks, or CDs

Søren Pold's dissertation, Ex Libris -- Literature in Media Urbanity will shortly be published by Odense University Press.

Congratulations to Loss Pequeno Glazier, whose new book, Digital Poetics has been published by the University of Alabama Press.

Now in stores! To celebrate Shelley Jackson's book tour, these pioneering independent bookstores are now carrying copies of Patchwork Girl: Prairie Lights Bookstore (Iowa City); Quimby's Bookstore (Chicago); City Lights Bookstore (San Francisco); Ruminator Bookstore (St. Paul); and McSweeney's Store (Brooklyn). Hurrah and thank you to these bold booksellers!

Edward Picot writes to announce that Heronsbrook, a collection of non-linear stories on CD, is now available.

A new textbook, Principles of Web Design by David Farkas and Jean Farkas, is now available! Congratulations, David and Jean!

Arun Kumar-Tripathi sends word of Moral Tales and Meditations: Technological Parables and Refractions, a new book by Michael Joyce, the pioneering author of the first hypertext fiction, afternoon, a story. The book, published by SUNY Press, also features an afterword by Helene Cixous.

Domenico Fiormonte sends word of New Media and the Humanities: Research and Applications , a newly-published collection of essays exploring the relationship between literary research and new technology, edited by Fiormonte and Jonathan Usher. This latest publication from the Humanities Computing Unit at Oxford draws on essays from the first Computers, Literature and Philology seminar, held in Edinburgh on the 7th - 9th September 1998. Contributors include Willard McCarty, Francisco A. Marcos Marin, Allen Renear, Lou Burnard, Fabio Ciotti, Claire Warwick, Federico Pellizzi, Antonio Zampolli, Elisabeth Burr, Giuseppe Gigliozzi, David Robey, Massimo Guerrieri, Staffan Bjoerk, Lars Erik Holmquist, and Licia Calvi.Thanks, Domenico!

Eastgate is pleased to announce the publication of Figurski at Findhorn on Acid, a combinatoric screwball comedy on CD-ROM by Richard Holeton.

Holeton's hypertext belongs in the tradition of screwball comedy, but it raises that tradition to the level of metaphysics--a cross between Borges and the Marx Brothers. -- Michael Tratner, Bryn Mawr College

New from Eastgate Systems: Turning In, the long-awaited hypertextual Bildungsroman by Wes Chapman.Congratulations, Wes!

Coming in September 2001 from West Virginia University Press: a new, revised first edition of Oxford University Computing Services' Guide to Digital Resources in the Humanities, by Frances Condron, Michael Frazer, and Stuart Sutherland, with an introduction by Marilyn Deegan. The press is offering 20 percent off the regular price until 15 September 2001.

Rob Swigart, author of Down Time, writes that his novel, The Time Trip, is back in print. The title is available from,, and iUniverse.

The classic hyperfiction afternoon, a story by Michael Joyce is now available on CD-ROM, complete with super new packaging!

Paul Kahn's Mapping Websites: Digital Media Design is now available. The book deals with using graphics to visualize collections of electronic information.

Literary Machines, Ted Nelson's classic book, is back in print in a crisp new printing! Literary Machines is the original and definitive exploration of Project Xanadu, the original hypertext system that remains the most ambitious and exciting plan for the docuverse. First published in 1982, Literary Machinesremains essential reading for anyone interested in hypertext, digital libraries, and the World Wide Web.

The Cybertext Yearbook 2000 , edited by Markku Eskelinen and Raine Koskimaa, has finally gone to press, and will be available in mid-March. The contributors include Espen Aarseth, Stuart Moulthrop, John Cayley, and Brian McHale. The Yearbook can be ordered by e-mail from:

Recommended reading: Johan Svedjedal's The Literary Web: Literature and Publishing in the Age of Digital Production: A Study in the Sociology of Literature (Stockholm, 2000). Svedjedal is Professor of Literature and head of the Section for Sociology of Literature at Uppsala University.

Just out: ACM Computing Surveys Symposium on Hypertext and Hypermedia Volume 31, no 4, December 1999, edited by Helen Ashman and Rosemary Simpson. This special issue covers a wide range of hypertext research issues, with contributions from many of the best-known names in the field, including Ted Nelson and Doug Engelbart, as well as up-to-the-moment reports from the researchers who know their part of the field best. The official Computing Surveys Web site hosts the archived versions of the papers in PDF format. The ACM Hypertext Research and Resource Testbed contains a full set of HTML versions of the papers, as well as the citation base and global index.

Eastgate has announced the publication of Rob Swigart's long-awaited hypermedia story collection, Down Time. Down Time consists of twenty-one stories of the computer age, connected by shared characters, events and objects. A police officer, a terminal patient, a computer technician, and a high-school guidance counselor are just a few of the characters we follow as they try (and fail) to understand themselves, their lovers, and the strangers they meet. Interactive elements allow readers to create their own paths through different stories, revealing new correspondences and connections.

"Swigart is a serious, accessible, intelligent...writer who deserves to be more widely known." -- Newsday

The Dia Center presents Fantastic Prayers, an interactive CD-ROM by writer-performer Constance De Jong, artist Tony Oursler, and composer Stephen Vitiello. The CD-ROM invites the user to uncover fragmentary narratives laden with physical and psychological histories, and it includes cameo appearances from David Bowie and Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth. It retails for $39.95 and may be purchased online.

CalifiaNew from Eastgate: M. D. Coverley's long-awaited (and eagerly-awaited) Califia.

Engelbart Award 2000: The annual Engelbart Prize was awarded at Hypertext 2000 to Carole Goble, Simon Harper, and Robert Stevens of the University of Manchester for their examination of The Travails of Visually Impaired Web Travellers.

"Abstract: This paper proposes the inclusion of travel and mobility in the usability metrics of Web design....The notion of travel extends navigation and orientation to include environment, mobility, and the purpose of travel tasks."

Nelson Award 2000: The recipient of this year's Nelson Award at Hypertext 2000 was Susana Pajares Tosca of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, for her paper on A Pragmatics of Links.

Abstract: This paper applies the linguistic theory of relevant to the study of the way links work, insisting on the lyrical quality of the link-interpreting activity."

Bob Hughes' book, Dust Or Magic: Secrets of Successful Multimedia Design. It's a particularly interesting volume because of its candid and insightful case studies and profiles of a variety of hypermedia creators and projects.

Now available from Eastgate, Michael Joyce's latest book: Othermindedness: the emergence of network culture.

A new book by Jane Yellowlees Douglas, author of "I Have Said Nothing," is just out from the University of Michigan Press. Eastgate Systems has copies of The End of Books -- or Books without End? Reading Interactive Narratives in stock.

Scott McCloud

Scott McCloud, author of Understanding Comics, will be the opening keynote speaker for Hypertext 2000.

True North by Stephanie Strickland will be displayed at this year's Poet's House Showcase in New York City.

New from Addison-Wesley: Dust or Magic: Secrets of Successful Multimedia Design by Bob Hughes. From the book:

"Hypertext does not seem to have revolutionized either writing or reading ... at least, not yet. The Web has brought some of its benefits -- on a massive scale -- but the greater dream still thrives in a delightful 'side-valley' of Cyberia that is visited mainly by discerning and literary folk. Eastgate Systems, of Watertown, Massachusetts, is one of the best points of entry."

Jakob Nielsen's long-delayed book, Designing Web Usability, is now available.

The second issue of Hypersurface Architecture (volume II), guest-edited by Stephen Perrella, has just been published by John Wiley & Sons, in the Academy Edition series: Architectural Design, vol. 69 9-10/99, profile 141. "We are excited to have been able to continue a project that investigates new possibilities for architecture/culture in the exchanges between the realms of architecture and everyday consumer culture. This second issue reached for a greater focus on work and theory that considers the interface between media and matter as the new space-time of the forthcoming millennium." Thanks, Stephen Perrella!

Adrian Miles sends word of an interesting new book, "Du Papyrus À L'Hypertexte: Essai sure les Mutationes du Texte et de la Lecture.", by Christian Vandendorpe (n.p.: Boréal, 1999). En Français.

Newly available from Eastgate: From Web To Workplace: Designing Open Hypermedia Systems by Kaj Gronbaek and Randall H. Trigg (386 page hardcover, MIT Press)

Winchester's Nightmare, a "novel machine" by Nick Montfort, is now available for download. "Harcover" editions -- shipped with a (used) laptop computer, are also available. Premiered at Digital Arts and Culture '99 in Atlanta, it is a novel-length interactive fiction with a text-adventure interface.Thanks, Nick Montfort!

Eastgate's new special offers discounts on the work of Michael Joyce. Joyce, perhaps the most widely acclaimed hypertext writer, is the author of afternoon, a story, Twilight: a Symphony, as well as the insightful volume Of Two Minds: Hypertext Pedagogy and Poetics.

The definitive incarnation of filmmaker David Blair's WaxWeb is now available. The feature-length movie was a feature of Hypertext '93, and its new multimedia incarnation is available in English, French, and Japanese. "Jacob Makefr is a beekeeper who designs flight simulators. One day, the past arrives out of the future..." (Thanks Paolo Petta)

Randy Trigg and Kai Grønbaek have a new book: From Web To Workplace: Designing Open Hypermedia Systems (MIT Press, $45). Congratulations!

Crawford Killian's new book, Writing for the Web, is now available. Kilian also hosts The Fiction Writer's Page, with topics ranging from "Hard Facts: what you face as a first novelist" to tips on "Reading a Contract"

Stuart Moulthrop's latest hypertext, Reagan Library, appears in the hypertext CD of The Little Magazine volume 22. Also featured are Mark Amerika, Pierre Joris, Eduardo Kac, John Cayley, and many other hypertext notables.

Magazines, Newspapers and Journals (print)

Linton Weeks surveys the state of the e-book in the 9 July edition of the Washington Post.

"So much about e-books was about simulating paper on the screen. It's like vinyl siding. People rarely like simulations as much as they like the real thing." -- Mark Bernstein

The first bi-annual print edition of NowCulture is available in bookstores now. This issue features a roundtable discussion of new media literature with Katherine Parrish, Kenneth Goldsmith, Megan Sapnar, Al Filreis, Scott Ambrose Reilly, Robert Kendall, Diane Greco, M.D. Coverley (Marjorie C. Luesbrink), Talan Memmott, Jason Nelson, Judd Morrissey and Lori Talley, with an introduction by Thomas Swiss. You can also order it through the Web site. Copies are $10.

Rejoice, Shelley Jackson fans: There are new interviews with the author of Patchwork Girl at Booksense and Random House's Bold Type, and a review of Jackson's brilliant new book, The Melancholy of Anatomy, is just out at Weep. Congratulations, Shelley!

Shelley may be coming soon to a bookstore near you: check out her tour dates.

New at the Village Voice: Anya Kamenetz weighs in with a review of Shelley Jackson's new book, The Melancholy of Anatomy. Jackson is the author of the acclaimed hypertext Patchwork Girl. From the review:

"Working with material so rich in associations requires irony and delicacy, and Jackson's prose has both--lip-smacking, sometimes stomach-churning, but always surprising, with a kind of time-release lyricism."

Hypertext writers in print: A new poem by Stephanie Strickland, author of True North, appears in the latest issue of Fence. Eastgate editor Diane Greco reviews David J. Gunkel's Hacking Cyberspace in the new issue of The American Book Review. And the inimitable Shelley Jackson, author of Patchwork Girl, has new stories in Conjunctions and Crowd.

A lovely article about Eastgate, by D. C. Denison, appeared recently in the business section Boston Globe.

Driving out of Boston on Route 20, I wasn't really sure whether I was headed into the World Wide Web's past or future. That's because hypertext pioneer Eastgate Systems, which is located in a small professional building just outside of Watertown Square, definitely has a role on both sides of the spectrum.

Bye-bye, ArtByte: After three and a half years of struggling to be the "magazine of digital arts and culture," Artbyte has suspended publication. Although the magazine was widely read among fans of digital art and culture (with a reported circulation of 40,000), the magazine still isn't profitable, according to its publisher.

The new issue of Loop: AIGA Journal of Interaction Design Education features a number of articles on user-centered design. Contributions range from professional position papers on user-centered design methods to a report by Melissa Niederhelman on "Designing User-Centered Experience," a workshop held at Arizona State University with Katherine and Michael McCoy. Melody Roberts of SmartDesign, Liz Sanders of SonicRim and Rob Wittig of THIRST and TANK20_literary_studio are also featured in this issue.

Matthew Mirapaul looks at motion graphics in interactive storytelling at the New York Times online. Included in Mirapaul's discussion is an interview with University of Iowa professor Brooks Landon, who said, "The promised immersive experience just isn't there for me yet... Our imagination of the technologized future of narrative remains much more intriguing than the actual narratives that keep turning up."

The NY Times explores self-organizing Web sites, a classic idea descended from K. Eric Drexler's Engines of Creation. FEED's new spinoff,, is the latest effort to leverage the idea, which hopes to conquer the graffiti effect through collaborative filtering. Thanks, John R. Smith, Jr.!

Internet artist and novelist Mark Amerika was featured in the February 19, 2001 issue of Time magazine, as part of the Time Innovators series. "It's like being in People magazine," says Amerika.

Writing in The Guardian, Karlin Lillington provides a retrospective of the roots of The Hypertext Revolution.

The January/February 2001 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine contains a special section devoted to electronic literature, with articles by Rob Wittig, Nick Montfort, William Gillespie, Stephanie Strickland, Justin Martin, Diane Greco, and Charles Bennett.

The new issue of American Letters & Commentary contains a special feature on "Hypertext: Facts, Fictions, and the Brave New World," with articles by Stephanie Strickland, Jennifer Ley, and others.

The October 2000 issue of TEXT contains an essay by Annette Comte on the use of feminist literary theory in developing a critical language for hypertext.

The Allston-Brighton Free Radio web site has a new look, and streaming webcasts are coming soon. Feedback is welcome! Congratulations, Steve Provizer and ABFR!

The August 9 installment of Zippy is all about hypertext fiction. "You've got to let go of linear story structure and get into programmable browsing, linguistic simultaneity, cognitive flexibility theory, and information farming!" A milestone for hypertext.

The September 2000 issue of Dr. Dobb's Journal focuses on scientific and numeric computing, including an interview with Doug Engelbart.

A long, chatty piece on electronic fiction and the Electronic Literature Organization in the LA Times, with pictures of Cathy Marshall (Forward Anywhere), Shelley Jackson (Patchwork Girl), and a peek at M. D. Coverly's Califia, along with provocative quotes from Scott Rettberg, Kate Hayles, and Robert Coover.

In The News: an interesting article on the state of the art in digital storytelling from Thanks, Matthew Josefowicz!

The New York Times' Circuits column picks out Lasting Image, a Web hypertext by Michael Joyce and Carolyn Guyer, in "The Net as a Flea Market of Ideas".


Stephanie Nolen writes of collaborative fiction and "Books Without Borders" in the Globe and Mail.

David Kolb, author of Socrates in the Labyrinth, writes: "I've written an essay on creating "learning places" on the web; it's called 'Learning Places: Building Dwelling Thinking Online' and it's in the Journal of Philosophy of Education, vol. 34, No. 1, 2000, pp. 121-133."Thanks, David!

Publishers Weekly debuts a new editorial department devoted to e-publishing. Writes Nora Rawlinson, PW's editor-in-chief: "We believe that electronic publishing will profoundly change the structure of the business and even the structure of the book itself."

The February 14 New Yorker includes a bravura tribute by Art Spiegelman (Maus) to the late Charles Schultz's Peanuts, entitled Abstract Thought is a Warm Puppy. Densely layered, this intricate little three-page history is a superbly executed Speigelman/McCloud crossover, the best introduction to understanding comics since Understanding Comics. Spiegelman needs to keep two ideas afloat at once -- something too few critics seem able to manage -- and careful readers will see how cleverly he uses visuals to enrich and subvert his text, balancing admiration, respect, nostalgia, and censure to reach a nuanced judgement.

"Snoopy, the linchpin of a billion-dollar-a-year empire, thinks awfully loud for a small drawing of a beagle!"

Robert Horn, author of Mapping Hypertext, is the subject of an article in this month's issue of Lingua Franca. Horn's work in organizing and visualizing information has culminated in the publication of Can Computers Think?, a work composed of seven large maps representing more than 800 different arguments. According to Lingua Franca, Horn's work has ruffled more than a few academic feathers because it points "to a world beyond text," an "efficient visual language" communicating "much of what the academic community has hitherto largely communicated using text alone."

With some help from Michael Joyce and Diane Greco, Julia Keller takes aim at the nostalgia for print so often expressed by critics of hypertext and new media, in a wonderfully fiesty article that appeared in the November 2 edition of the Chicago Tribune. Keller opens by recalling one of the nuisances of print books: you can't read them in the tub. "There it lay," she says of her current reading, "stranded in the midst of rising waters."

The November issue of Harper's includes an essay by William Gass "In Defense Of The Book: On The Enduring Pleasures of Paper, Type, Page, and Ink". Gass finds glowing screen of "the interbunk" a poor substitutefor the jam-stained pages of the copy of Treasure Island he loved as a child.

Eastgate is offering a collection of Proceedings of the Hypertext Conference 1996-8. These hard-to-find volumes are filled with hypertext research. Supplies may be limited.

Frank Shipman and Raymond McCall have a fascinating paper new paper about Supporting Incremental Formalization in hypertext tools. The core problem is very hot right now: You can have simple hypertext documents like Web pages that are easy to build, or you can have smart documents (like auction servers) that "know" problems domains or business processes but are hard to build. How do you get from one to the other without taking one huge leap? (ACM Transcations on Information Systems 17 (2), 1999. pp.199-227)

The new SIGWeb Bulletin is out. Highlights include an interesting paper by Daniel Schwabe and colleagues on OOHDM, a wonderful trip report on Hypertext '99 by Elli Mylonas and David Durand, and reports on Hypertext '99 workshops, panels, and other fascinating events not reflected in the invaluable Proceedings. SIGWeb membership costs only $29/year ($12 for students).

About Hypertext and the Web

This section has moved to its own page.

Other Notable Reading

Ronda Hauben's article about Google and Usenet archives, Commodifying Usenet and the Usenet Archive or Continuing the Online Cooperative Usenet Culture?, was published in volume 15, number 1 of Science Studies.

Shelley Jackson, author of Patchwork Girl, is on the road to promote her new book, The Melancholy of Anatomy, published last month by Anchor. You can read her tour diary at Bold Type. Reviews of Melancholy have sprung up all over, including The Los Angeles Times, Bookforum, and The New York Times Book Review. Congratulations, Mistress of Bawd!

A trip report from the ELO Symposium: Ravi Shankar reports from LA.

Wondering about the future of blogging-as-autobiography? Check out Dear Diary Revisited, an intriguing article by Elayne Zalis about the late history of women's autobiographical videomaking, in which Zalis discusses the use, in videography, of multiple narrative arcs to tell a single life story.

If you're a student of nineteenth-century American history, don't miss The Nineteenth Century in Print: The Making of America in Books and Periodicals, a digital archive of books and periodicals published in the United States during the nineteenth century. Over 1500 books are currently available, as well as twenty-three popular periodicals including literary and political magazines, as well as Scientific American, Manufacturer and Builder, and Garden and Forest: A Journal of Horticulture, Landscape Art, and Forestry.

Thanks to the ever-expanding Jobs page, the Hypertext Kitchen gets a shout-out from Penelope Trunk at Business 2.0!If you sent a job listing recently, thanks very much!

The BBC's Tracey Logan interviews hypertext guru and visionary, Ted Nelson.

I thought I was going to be a filmmaker but at the same time I was an intellectual and I felt that I could make a contribution to some field, as yet, not invented. So in my uncertainty, I went to graduate school and there it all happened. In my second year in graduate school, I took a computer course and that was like lightening striking. The heavens rolled apart. This was it - it was obvious, the human race would spend the rest of its career at computer screens.

Check out Openlaw, an experiment in extending the open source model to law. Harvard's Berkman Center for Information and Society developed the project.

"Openlaw is an experiment in crafting legal argument in an open forum. With your assistance, we will develop arguments, draft pleadings, and edit briefs in public, online. Non-lawyers and lawyers alike are invited to join the process by adding thoughts to the 'brainstorm' outlines, drafting and commenting on drafts in progress, and suggesting reference sources. By using the Internet, we hope to enable the public interest to speak as loudly as the interests of corporations...We believe that an open development process best harnesses the distributed resources of the Internet community. What we lose in secrecy, we expect to regain in depth of sources and breadth of argument."

The Family that Slays Demons Together: James Gorman covers the Diablo phenomenon in the Circuits section of The New York Times.

The other thing I might point out is that although Diablo seems to be all about preadolescent fantasies of violent destruction, I have discovered that it is actually about shopping.

Surf the Web as it was at, an ambitious project to archive the Web.

The new issue of PIF is now online, featuring an interview with Victor Rangel-Ribeiro, zine reviews by Tom Hartman, a review of Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, lots of new fiction and poetry, and Camille Renshaw's monthly column, Art and Technology News.

Check out the nice discussion of peer-to-peer networks at Thanks, Alan Sondheim!

Scott McCloud contributes a new comic on Napster, micropayments, the Web, and the dangers of letting an industry control your dreams. "We tend to forget that the 'piracy' of file sharing is, in some respects, a philanthropic gesture."

A recent update to includes articles on Flash 5 preloaders, actionscripting, and many other interesting things.

Keith Gessen's Automatic Writing appeared in a recent issue of The New Republic Online. While the article is reasonably well-written (if a tad stodgy), it's also a bit light on the fact-checking. Curiously, although Gessen approvingly reproduces part of Diane Greco's essay, Sticky Fingers, he cites the author only as "[a]n editor at the electronic publisher Eastgate." Hey, why write when you can cut-and-paste?

On 12 June, PW Daily's Steven Zeitchik reported that e-publisher LiveREADS will include a hypertext component in the e-edition of Gary Null's best-selling The Seven Steps to Perfect Health. Hypertext links will allow readers to buy "a raft of health products...without leaving the book itself." LiveREADS CEO Neal Bascomb said, "This can work for a business book, a health book or a motivation book. If it's a guide on how to dress better, you could have a relationship with the Gap."

According to a recent announcement, ebooks will now be eligible for the National Book Awards. However, because judges will read the books only in print, hypertexts will continue to be ineligible.

Munchausen by Internet: Bloggers following the saga of Kaycee Nicole, the cancer-stricken college basketball player whose blog united a huge community of friends and well-wishers, were stunned to learn, after Kaycee's alleged death was announced on 14 May, that the whole thing was a hoax. Read all about it at, Metafilter, and BWG.

The Kaycee Swensen hoax was the subject of a recent New York Times article.

Further adventures in Web authorship: get the latest on the Kaycee Nicole story at the new Kaycee Nicole FAQ. Lots of typos but very complete.

Mark Hurst's weblog, is full of tips, news, and observations for creating meaningful online experiences for consumers. While you're there, check out Hurst's recent column, Bits As Art.

Storylab, a Danish Web magazine, offers its second issue: a stylish exploration of Digital Storytelling (in Danish).

The much-buzzed independent film, Memento, is a tale told backward that begins with a Polaroid image that fades back to white. Its Web site,, is a highly-artifactual Flash hypertext. Thanks, Nick Palevsky!

A new twist on the AYBABTU phenomenon: All Your Brand Are Belong To Us.

Now online: a complete history of All Your Base Are Belong To Us, the Flash meme that has spread everywhere in the past month, including appearances on Australian bridges and Carnegie-Mellon rooftops.

Eastgate's Mark Bernstein has posted a list of URLs seen at SXSW 2001, ranging from wireless initiatives to Flash experiments to intriguing personal sites.

Fun Flash! Get jiggy at, or do the Dubya at jibjab.

Matthew Mirapaul looks at motion graphics in interactive storytelling at the New York Times online. Included in Mirapaul's discussion is an interview with University of Iowa professor Brooks Landon, who said, "The promised immersive experience just isn't there for me yet... Our imagination of the technologized future of narrative remains much more intriguing than the actual narratives that keep turning up."

Look! A fun robot construction kit! Thanks, Blake Hannaford!

Ted Friedman explores the Semiotics of Sim City in FirstMonday. Thanks, Ed Blachman!

When does a game cease to be a game? Is it when the computer feels like an organic extension of your consciousness or when you may feel like an extension of the computer itself? This paper explores SimCity and its significance as a simulator not only of reality but consciousness. Computer gaming is essentially process of demystification, discovering how software is organized for a certain set of goals and actions.

Will Wright's new game, The Sims, is now shipping. Wright was the designer who created the urban-planning simulator Sim City. The Sims explores interior design and personal time management as the keys to suburban happiness.

Hey, Scott McCloud fans: Understanding Understanding Comics Thanks, PeterMe!

Peck Here. A well-known hypertext writer recently wrote us to report a recurring dream of an oracular Hypertext Hen. This superlative fowl lives in a teepee covered with words, and will occasionally answer the dreamer's questions by pecking at bits of teepee-text. If this hen belongs in your henhouse, please send email in care of Eastgate, where it will be forwarded to the appropriate parties.

Ira Glass, of the NPR radio series This American Life, discusses 13 facets of good radio storytelling. Thanks Dan Bricklin!

ArtsWire is sponsoring Nonprofit Toolkit , a Web 'zine on smoothing out the learning curve in technology planning.

Interactive Spectrum has an interesting report on SIGGRAPH 99 by Patric Hedlund and Michelle Matossian. "One pixel by itself is a longely thing, but that same pixel with thousands of friends will rule the world."

Andrei Condrescu discusses storytelling in Making Up America."What I do is tell stories. Some of these stories are about how strange America is, which pleases and startles Americans who no longer see themselves as strange.

Bruce Tognazzini's recent essay, How Programmers Stole The Web, became an instant meme -- picked up immediately by Scripting News, PeterMe, Tomolak, and who knows how many otger Web logs. Tog believes the key problem is the JavaScript isn't enough like BASIC. The golden age is always what you learned as a teenager; guess what Tog's first computer language was?

The Motion Picture Advisory Board is a revealing indicator of American media anxieties. Rachel Lahmann-Haupt interviews film director Colette Burson about her struggles with her Hollywood feature, "Coming Soon". Big stars, big studios, no nudity, but plenty of double standard. Another reason to be glad hypertext isn't (yet) Hollywood.

Modern Maturity (of all places!) has a stunning interview of film critic Pauline Kael, by Susan Goodman. "If you think it is so easy to be a critic and so hard to be a poet ... may I suggest you try both? You may discover why there are so few critics, so many poets." (Thanks, Arts & Letters Daily)

Arts and Letters Daily is a weblog on current ideas, writing, and criticism. Its four-column format seems at first to be merely a nostalgic gesture, imitating newsprint, just as does its Latin tagline VERITAS ODIT MORAS. The multi-column display, while ugly and hard to read, opens up interesting opportunities for accidental montage. Thanks to Michael Druzinsky for the tip.


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