On Hypertext Narrative

2,927 views
2,781 views

Published on

Understanding the difference between plot and story, and how this impacts the design of interlinked narrative.

Published in: Technology
0 Comments
2 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Views
Total views
2,927
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
628
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
45
Comments
0
Likes
2
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

On Hypertext Narrative

  1. 1. “We are of o different kinds,” the older waiter said. He was now dressed to go home. “It is not only a question of youth and confidence although those things are very beautiful. Each night I am reluctant to close up because there may be some one who n ds the cafe.” “Hombre, there are bodegas open all night long.” “You do not understand. is is a clean and pleasant cafe. It is well lighted. e light is very good and also, now, there Ernest Hemingway ”A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” are shadows of the leaves.”
  2. 2. On Hypertext Narrative Mark Bernstein www.eastgate.com markBernstein.org
  3. 3. a link and a narrative walk into a bar: from telling stories to technical documentation
  4. 4. Eastgate serious hypertext fiction nonfiction poetry since 1989
  5. 5. The Paper 45 References & 21 Footnotes why links destabilize the story how stretchtext tried to fix this why it failed how to fix it
  6. 6. How did this Reading paper happen? Hypertext I reread lots of terrific papers in the course of compiling a new anthology about Reading Hypertext. Mark Bernstein (Want a set of bound galleys? Ask Diane Greco me)
  7. 7. Reading Hypertext 1. Into The Weeds 1 Mark Bernstein Reading 2. Why are we still talking like this? 15 Diane Greco 3. La Maison Hypertext 19 Charles A. Perfetti 4. Piecing together and tearing apart: finding the story in a ernoon 21 Jill Walker Hypertext 5. A Cognitive Model 35 N. J. Lowe 6. “How Do I Stop this Thing?” Closure and Indeterminacy in Interactive Narratives 59 J. Yellowlees Douglas 7. Reconfiguring Writing 89 George P. Landow 8. The Lyrical Quality of Links 99 Susana Pajares Tosca 9. A Pragmatics of Links 103 Susana Pajares Tosca 10. Stitching Together Narrative, Sexuality, Self: Shelley Jackson’s Patchwork Girl 119 Much of this work is insufficiently George P. Landow 11. These Waves Of Bugs 129 known. Anja Rau 12. Cinematic paradigms for hypertext Adrian Miles 137 13. Nonce Upon Some Times: Rereading Hypertext Fiction 149 Michael Joyce 14. Returning In Twilight: J oyce’s Twilight, a Symphony 165 In particular, the apparent quarrel Dave Ciccoricco 15. Hypertext Structure Under Pressure 193 between narrative and the link has David Kolb 16. Reading Spatial Hypertext 213 Catherine C. Marshall 17. Hypertext Teaching 223 generated terrific confusion. Adrian Miles 18. Hypertext with Consequences: Recovering a Politics of Hypertext 239 Diane Greco 19. What the Geeks Know: Hypertext and the Problem of Literacy 251 Stuart Moulthrop
  8. 8. If you are a ACM Hypertext Conference regular, it might surprise you that… is is the System Trac Information Structure and Presentation
  9. 9. ere will be a esult…
  10. 10. … and there will be a formalism (though not a very good one)
  11. 11. but, first, we n d a detour through theory
  12. 12. Three Layers Story “what happened” Plot the sequence in which we explain what happened Presentation what we see on the page or the screen
  13. 13. Hypertext & Consequences we want hypertext to do what we can’t do in print The fraudulent hypertext lots of links but whatever link you choose, you go to the same place How can we know? only through rereading propo tion 1: hypertextuali is perceived through rereading and refle ion.
  14. 14. If our choice of links is to prove more than superficially consequential, links must either affect the story or the plot. Story choose your own adventure Hamlet on the Holodeck Plot afternoon, a story
  15. 15. It’s That Kind Of Movie the problem with changing the story Historians can’t change the story. Some stories don’t change. It’s not all about you. Elna Borch Death and the Maiden Ny Carlsberg Glypotek
  16. 16. Max Klinger My Friend Hamlet Dramas A Mother 1-2 more problems with changing the story Many stories interest us because events happen as they did Hamlet could have gone back to school Juliet should have had a long talk with her mother Winston Churchill might have been killed by a taxi in 1931 e world full of unhappy sons, preco ous daughters, and wayward tax . s “Card Shark and espis”, HT01
  17. 17. Changing the Plot Bolter and Joyce, HT87 Changing tone, pacing, point of view Starting and ending at different points Embedding in new frames • e Longest Day • e Big ed One • Saving Private Ryan • Band Of Brothers
  18. 18. John Collier Dante Gabriel Rossetti (detail) Henry Osawa Tanner Changing the Plot Three annunciations: all different. Plot is not a surface detail. Allusion has always worked through hypertextual, nonsequential linkage.
  19. 19. Little Red Riding Hood (Arne-Thomson 303) A wolf deceives a girl into climbing into bed with him. (Early lessons re social software) When do we tell the reader that the wolf has run ahead and eaten grandma?
  20. 20. Little Red Riding Hood When do we tell the reader that the wolf has run ahead and eaten grandma? early tragedy in the woods horror movie, melodrama at the last comedy, romance moment Rashomon, “The Babysitter”, afterwards Portrait of a Lady
  21. 21. a crucial paper Nonce Upon Some Times the most accessible Joyce (a writing exercise) version had a critical typo Describe four things that happen, forming a sequence Next, we link back to a previously-visited node Where can we go now?
  22. 22. for example… Preston Sturges, The Lady Eve A guy and a gal walk into a bar. He is wealthy, and is returning from a long stint of postdoc field work. She is beautiful, and is a con artist.
  23. 23. for example… Preston Sturges, The Lady Eve As is his nature, he falls in love. As is hers, she swindles him out of a large sum of money.
  24. 24. Nonce Upon Some Times Joyce A wealthy and handsome boy, returning from an isolated outpost, embarks on a ship and encounters a beautiful girl who, it happens, is a con artist. They meet. As is his nature, he falls in love. As is hers, she swindles him out of a large sum of money. He discovers that he was been swindled; the lovers quarrel. She discovers that she has fallen in love with him. They part, and do not see each other for a long time. The estranged lovers meet again, It is like they had never parted. Where do we go from here?
  25. 25. What Happens Now? four link primitives A wealthy and handsome boy, returning from ecursus We follow the cycle an isolated outpost, embarks on a ship and again (literally, or with variations, encounters a beautiful girl who, it happens, is or metaphorically, or …) a con artist. Time i We proc d to a new They meet. As is his nature, he falls in love. As node that follows naturally om is hers, she swindles him out of a large sum of what has gone before (they get money. married; and then…) He discovers that he was been swindled; the enewal We proc d to a new lovers quarrel. She discovers that she has node that takes off in a new fallen in love with him. They part, and do not direction (a German submarine see each other for a long time. appears off the port bow…) The estranged lovers meet again. And then: ... Annotation
  26. 26. so… We want to vary plot Our tools are the 4 lin primitives recursus ❧ time i ❧ renewal ❧ annotation We now s m to understand hypertext narrative
  27. 27. Four Kinds of Links propo tion 2: the four fundamental lin s in narrative are recursus, time i , renewal, and annotation.
  28. 28. But there was one thing they had forgotten Print stays itself; ele ronic text replaces itself. (Joyce)
  29. 29. what the doctor feared arrival and departure cycles postmodernism afternoon, a story
  30. 30. what the doctor feared arrival and departure cycles postmodernism afternoon, a story
  31. 31. Parable: The 4th Century Codex
  32. 32. 4th century software engineering Chopping continuous scrolls
  33. 33. Experts Might Have Predicted What the doctor • disorientation feared • cognitive overhead What Happened • much longer works • silent reading
  34. 34. PJ Brown GUIDE Gould, Zellweger, Mangen FLUID Ted Nelson has seen stretchtext as a (the?) natural form of hypertext since the beginning. The Cure for Navigation: stretchtext
  35. 35. PJ Brown GUIDE Gould, Zellweger, Mangen FLUID Ted Nelson has seen stretchtext as a (the?) natural form of hypertext since the beginning. The Cure for Navigation: stretchtext
  36. 36. But there was one thing they had forgotten... The Cure Zellweger, Gould, Mangen Print stays itself; electronic text replaces itself. Stret text no navigation (or at least no departure) context remains present no slippery cycles ( e real obje ion might have b n recursus, and the real target either modernism or postmodernism)
  37. 37. Why The Cure Didn’t Cure GUIDE replacement button ABC ADEFC If Y follows X in some reading, then Y will follow X in every reading in which they both appear. us not only must we forego cycles, we must always adhere to the same narrative sequence.
  38. 38. Stretchtext Constrains Plot as well as Story GUIDE replacement button ABC ADEFC propo tion 3: conventional stret text greatly restri s plot variation
  39. 39. More Notation Conventional stretchtext (GUIDE, outliners) A AB Chunks/lexia/scoping AB CD ABX CD Open a new window or text stream (Trellis) A A+B
  40. 40. Generalized Stretchtext ABC [DEF] ADEC [BF] A pool of hidden nodes Links may promote hidden nodes, and demote visible nodes ❧ expander ❧ replacer ❧ choice ❧ jump ❧ Add predicates, and we have a stretchtext system that is formally equivalent to Storyspace while retaining the textual stability of stretchtext.
  41. 41. generalized stret text Implemented as a javascript library.
  42. 42. generalized stret text Write with Tinderbox (nice ont end while you’re building your own)
  43. 43. phew!
  44. 44. our bu ness is varying plot, not story
  45. 45. text stays itself; ele ronic text replaces itself
  46. 46. stret text ps us om varying plot
  47. 47. Generalized stret text lets us vary plot without arrivals and departures.

×