For a minute there, I lost my self.
The semester is getting into gear now. I’ve got a separate blog set up for Internet, Writing, and Society where I will be posting my responses from the class and compiling things for my final project. I am, at this point, completely devoid of any notion of what the focus of my project will be. I hope that comes together soon.
My other classes this semester are Stoic Comedians: Contemporary American Poetry, American Cinema, and The Computer as an Art Tool. Generally a pretty fun semester. It’s nice to have an excuse to hone some Photoshop skills. I have to say, though, that I have been a little disturbed by the seeming inability of upper class Lit majors to respond to requests to simply think about what we’re reading. This specifically applies to the poetry class. The professor tells the class that the responses are really good. So why does it seem like everyone in the classroom besides a few other people are utterly brain dead the whole time we’re in class? It’s not that bad if people just don’t want to contribute, but there seems to be this palpable air of oppression in the room, as though the start of an actual discussion of modern poetry would be the equivalent of spitting in church. Maybe it’s just me. And of course, of the few people who do talk, some of them are complete smacked asses…
On the subject of poetry, I eliminated the page I had for my poetry on this blog and replaced it with a link to a separate blog. I’ve been writing a little bit again, and I hope as the class goes on I’ll be inspired to do so even more. To my way of thinking, a separate blog to update might serve as another little bit of psychic impetus to write. You can find it here.
So in a previous post I mentioned my idea about a multi-player version of the game The Movies. I’d like to elaborate a tiny bit on my thinking. Basically, the idea is that if the internet represents the emergence of a participatory culture, as opposed to a purely passive consumer culture, then naturally forms of expression should develop in this culture that are themselves participatory. In it’s present form, machinima is simply the use of existing game technology to make short films in a traditional manner. There may be improvisation of varying degrees within the context of the film, but it is likely not a significant feature. This can be assumed due to the complexity of co-opting the games for film making at all, let alone improvisational film making. But if a program existed that’s sole purpose was the facilitation of machinima then the creators would eliminate a lot of time spent on technical concerns. This would leave them free to experiment more with content. In particular, machinima serials would be able to capitalize on improvisation. For years, pen-and-paper role-playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons attempted to serve two separate audiences. There were those who viewed it as more of a goal-oriented game, worried primarily about leveling their characters and gaining ever more in-game wealth. Then there were those who viewed the game as more of an interactive storytelling experience, somewhat akin to the oral tradition but with a democratic twist. It is this latter group that finds its interests less served by existing electronic RPGs, and would be early-adopters of machinima making software.
SPX is very soon now. I can’t wait.
Well, that’s about it for tonight. Elise leaves for Chicago tomorrow for work. She’s only going to be gone for one night, but I’m still going to miss her. You get used to living together pretty quickly and it’s weird whenever the other person isn’t around. She’s a bit nervous about flying, but I keep telling her the most dangerous thing about flying is the TSA.