While studying, I wrote up a little review sheet for myself regarding some of the IDs. They are mostly copied from other sources, and are in no way exhaustive, but I thought it might be helpful to some to study with. If you want to add something, or comment, im sure others would appreciate it. Good luck saturday.
Game of Life: is one of the most famous formal systems ever devised, created by John Conway. Life is played on a grid of square cells--like a chess board but extending infinitely in every direction. A cell can be live or dead. Life is just one example of a cellular automaton, which is any system in which rules are applied to cells and their neighbors in a regular grid.
Memex: (from Bush’s “As We May Think”) …Consider a future device for individual use, which is a sort of mechanized private file and library. It needs a name, and, to coin one at random, "memex" will do. A memex is a device in which an individual stores all his books, records, and communications, and which is mechanized so that it may be consulted with exceeding speed and flexibility. It is an enlarged intimate supplement to his memory.
Vannever Bush : As Director of the Office of Scientific Research and Development, Dr. Vannevar Bush has coordinated the activities of some six thousand leading American scientists in the application of science to warfare. In this significant article he holds up an incentive for scientists when the fighting has ceased. He urges that men of science should then turn to the massive task of making more accessible our bewildering store of knowledge.
Storyspace: is a hypertext writing environment that is especially well suited to large, complex, and challenging hypertexts. Storyspace focuses on the process of writing, making it easy and pleasant to link, revise, and reorganize. Used to create Afteroon, by Joyce.
Peter/Wert/Lolly/Nausicaa: characters in Joyce’s afternoon.
Emergence: Emergence is what happens when the whole is
smarter than the sum of its parts. It's what happens when you have a system of
relatively simple-minded component parts -- often there are thousands or millions
of them -- and they interact in relatively simple ways. And yet somehow out of all
this interaction some higher level structure or intelligence appears, usually
without any master planner calling the shots. These kinds of systems tend to
evolve from the ground up. (Steven Johnson on "Emergence")
Instrumental Text: (from the Malthrop interview) It's … the notion of a middle space between literary texts and ludic texts—between interactive fiction, or hypertext fiction, and games. You have, with instruments, a text with behavior and temporal dimensions that in some ways maps onto the temporal experience and interactive possibilities in game design.
Smart mobs: [Rheingold] describes how large, geographically dispersed groups connected only by thin threads of communications technology — cell phones, text messaging, two-way pagers, e-mail, websites — can be drawn together at a moment's notice like schools of fish to perform some collective action.
Unifiction: aka Alternate Reality Gaming is an interactive fusion of creative writing, puzzle-solving, and team-building, with a dose of role playing thrown in. It utilizes several forms of media in order to pass clues to the players, who solve puzzles in order to win pieces of the story being played out. This genre of game almost requires participation in a group or community that works together to win past the more difficult hurdles.
Hypertext: (according to Aarseth, p.76) is a medium of text, as an alternative to (among others) the codex format found in books, magazines and bound manuscripts. It is oftern described as a mechanical (computerized) system of reading and writing in which the text is organized into a network of fragments and the connections between them.
Here's what I have come up with from my ID notes. I hope this helps, and DO correct me on anything I may have wrong.
Bug - the first computer bug found was a moth inside a room-sized computer. Found by Grace Mary Hopper, who did a lot of technical work in computer research. A bug is an example of how something almost unnoticable can bring down an entire computer system. Emergent bugs occur when all the different parts of a the program combine, making it difficult to eliminate all bugs.
Compiler - translates another program written in high-level language into machine language so that it can be executed. Ultimately, the seemingly understandable language becomes a series of on &
off's, represented by 0's and 1's.
Tester - a person who's main task is to try to break a program, to find vulnerabilities & bugs and report them to programmers. In THE BUG, Berta is the tester who finds Ethan's bug, which really turns out to partly be the fault of someone else.
GUI - Stands for Graphical User Interface. The GUI makes a computer program more user friendly, by eliminating the need for text commands. Several early interactive fictions were text-based, but now, many are combining text with graphics.
Machine Language - is really the essence of computer language: 0's and 1's. Initially, computer code, such as Java, is natural enough to be read, but a compiler translates it into less readable information, and ultimately the code becomes machine language, triggering millions of on/off switches.
Game of Life - is an example of emergent behavior. It starts with a grid of cells, each of which has a set of SIMPLE rules that govern its behavior. If conditions are right, the cells will prosper, to form vibrant and active "living" communities.
Memex - is an idea devised by Vannevar Bush in the 1940s. The memex is a machine that puts volumes of information at your fingertips. Most importantly, the Memex is a system for organizing and accessing that information. Today, our PC's mimic much of the capabilities the Memex "had."
Vannevar Bush - was the governments Chief scientist in WWII. He wrote about the Memex, a machine that resembles in many ways todays personal computers. Bush also "warned" his contemporaries that they needed to look to the future for new was of storing and organizing data. And finally, Bush wanted to create a machine that works by associative thinking, mimicing the human brain. Bush was truly ahead of his time.
Storyspace - an "early" computer program that made it possible to create interactive texts, such as Afternoon, by using hyperlinks. Hyperlinks in fiction put more power in the hands of readers, by personalizing their experiences and making it all about their forming meaning & connnections.
Peter/Wert/Lolly/Nausicaa - Characters in Joyce's Afternoon. One reading Afternoon for the first time learns about these characers in a seemingly unorganized way. But in the end, Afternoon, and the Storyspace program it is written in, makes it possible for readers to make their own
inferences about the characters. Readers, in a way, pick and choose, where to go and what to
Ute - is the Night Administrator in The Bug. Ethan goes to this domineering figure for help, when he loses all the work he did in one day. Ute is the "Collective Memory" of Ethan's company, who has the magical power to restore code from the void. In many ways, she is the salvation of the company, and certainly of Ethan.
Johanna - is Ethan's girlfriend. She ends up cheating on Ethan and leaving him. She is one of the many "factors" that lead to an emergent bug in Ethan's life, causing it to crash.
Emergence - is, in essence, the idea that simple things lead to complex things. The Game of Life is one example: single cells, governed by simple rules, lead to complex communities/organisms.
Slime Mold is also an example: single cells, for unknow reasons, cluster together to form a colony. Traffic is another example: hundreds of "microscopic" individuals act seeminly in tandem
to create a macroscopic effect; and this is all UN-PLANNED. Emergence is a bottom-up approach to behavior, much like the booting process of a computer.
Bottom-up - the idea that simple things lead to complex things. The Game of Life is one example: single cells, governed by simple rules, lead to complex communities/organisms. Slime Mold is also
an example: single cells, for unknow reasons, cluster together to form a colony. Traffic is
another example: hundreds of "microscopic" individuals act seeminly in tandem to create a macroscopic effect; and this is all UN-PLANNED. Emergence is a bottom-up, much like the booting process of a computer.
Top-down - Homonculous. Yahoo uses the top-down method, because it is already a database of
categories you browse. Our democracy is also a top-down approach to government: it is headed by an executive and legislators. In a top-down computer model, you program the machine, trying to
anticipate every situation.
Homonculous - the idea of a little man in your head controlling your actions. This describes a top-down approach.
Instrumental Text - is a text meant to be "played" as if it were a musical instrument.The "Intruder" is a version of the Interloper that is "played" for the purpose of drawing out the text of the story. And in Arteroids, the reader shoots poetry words to form poems. Some people have likened these texts to the middle-space between traditional literature and games.
Smart Mob - use mobile media and computer networks to organize and perform collective actions.
Unfiction - is alternate reality gaming that uses various methods -- email, phone, fax, etc. -- to communicate clues about a fiticious game. This is significant because it is a fusion of creative writing, puzzles and role playing, used to manipulate reality. People use reality to achieve the goals of fiction. The story-line of the game is planned ahead of time by puppetmasters.
Hypertext - a technology that makes it possible to connect unconnected text and texts through links. Hypertext is important because it is different from the traditional codex form used for books. Joyce's Afternoon used an early version of hypertext.
Flash - is a file format used for delivering interactive animations and graphics through the web. Many authors are just now beginning to experiment with Flash in their works of interactive fiction; The Intruder, for example, uses Flash.
Texting - a relatively new way of communicating via text over cell phone networks. For literature buffs interested in new media, texting has provided a new venue in which to experiment. Onesixty is a cell phone poetry magazine that was originally designed for delivery via text messages.
Slime Mold - illustrates emergent, bottom-up behavior. Single cells, in the right conditions,
congregate to form a community known as slime mold. At the core of emergent behavior is a set of simple rules that lead to complex results. The sum ends up being "smarter" than its individual parts.
THE BUG - a book written by Ellen Ullman about a computer bug that leads to the suicide of Ethan the programmer. The book talks about the language layering typical of computer programs. The Bug
illustrates the contrast between humans and machines.
Software - sets of "simple" rules that govern actions which govern other actions which govern the
behavior of a computer.
Assembly Code - is the middle-man between plain computer language (0's & 1's) and semi-natural language codes such as Java. Computer code is translated into assembly language, which is then translated into machine language -- sets of 0's and 1's.
ENIAC - an early computer which used actual dials and cables.
John Von Neuman - proposed a practical model for how computers would work; helped put Turing's concept into reality.
Stored Program Concept -Neuman's idea that the computer would have a portion of its memory
reserved for programs AND data, making programming a matter of feeding the computer data.
Emergent Bugs - occur when all the different parts of a program combine at just the right configuration, creating unpredictability and making it hard to track down every bug. Ethan's bug seemed to be emergent and even intelligent.
Ada Lovelace - was the first computer programmer. She lealized that Charles Babbage's machines could be programmed.
Charles Babbage - thought up ideas for a difference engine and a programmable analytical engine, which was never completed. Ada Lovelace first realized the programmingpotential in Babbage's machines.
Ethan - main character in The Bug. You might see him as one of the cells in The Game of Life: He blinks out of existence when he doesn't meet the circumstances needed to survive.
Footnotes - can be seen as hypertext, as they are a kind of link that refer readers to a separate part of a work.
Ted Nelson - coined the word "hypertext." He foresaw a global library, called the DOCUVERSE, with documents intertwinkled. Nelson illustrates the fact that scientists decades ago were thinking to the future. Today's web greatly resembles Nelson's idea of the DOCUVERSE.
DOCUVERSE - Ted Nelson's global library of "intertwinkled" documents. Today, we have the web. But the Docuverse illustrates that even scientists of old were thinking to the future, predicting what might become.
Associative Thinking - is the way our brain works; associative thinking allows us to retrace our steps in memory. Decades ago, Vannevar Bush thought about a device that works like the human brain. Today, we have the personal computer, which though not exactly gray matter, is a step in the direction of Bush's vision.
Hypercard - a early hypertext system advertisers boasted of as a way to keep recipes. This shows you how humans are slow to think of the possibilities for new technologies.
Ludic - an adjective that describes the playful properties of many interactive fictions. Today, many authors are creating works that blur the line between game and literature. But even the Oulipo's word games possessed an air of playfulness.
Morphogenesis - is a paper written by Alan Turing that talks about the phenomenom of simple rules leading to complex behaviors. Turing's work was describing what we now call bottom-up behavior or emergence, the idea that simplicity can lead to complexity on a macroscopic scale.