Links van 9 mei 2012 tot 12 mei 2012

zaterdag 12 mei 2012 in Links. Permanente link | Eén reactie

Gamasutra – News – In-depth: Is it time for a text game revival?
In a market where books and games are close rivals for the most popular category on app stores, what happens when today's new gamers are hungry for something more than word puzzles?

Datavisualization.ch Selected Tools

RUDI: Bookshelf: Classics: Christopher Alexander: A city is not a tree part 1
It is more and more widely recognized today that there is some essential ingredient missing from artificial cities. When compared with ancient cities that have acquired the patina of life, our modern attempts to create cities artificially are, from a human point of view, entirely unsuccessful.

Calming Manatee

Glueslabs
One last thing: If I could trouble someone out there to do me a small favor, I’d like you to contact the manager of my apartment building. Or I guess you could call the Seattle PD. It doesn’t matter. I just don’t want to sit in here too long without being discovered and I’d like for my cats to be rescued.

Links van 12 november 2011 tot 5 december 2011

maandag 5 december 2011 in Links. Permanente link | 3 reacties

Arcade Improv: Humans Pretending to Be Videogames – Waxy.org
Instantly, Mike and Jerry understood, along with everyone in the audience born before 1978.

Catherine Young & Family, Page One
A family working in the Tifton (Ga.) Cotton Mill. Mrs. A.J. Young works in mill and at home. Nell (oldest girl) alternates in mill with mother. Mammy (next girl) runs 2 sides. Mary (next) runs 1 1/2 sides. Elic (oldest boy) works regularly. Eddie (next girl) helps in mill, sticks on bobbins. Four smallest children not working yet. The mother said she earns $4.50 a week and all the children earn $4.50 a week. Husband died and left her with 11 children. 2 of them went off and got married. The family left the farm 2 years ago to work in the mill. January 22, 1909. Location: Tifton, Georgia. Photo by Lewis Hine.

Sass – Syntactically Awesome Stylesheets
Sass makes CSS fun again. Sass is an extension of CSS3, adding nested rules, variables, mixins, selector inheritance, and more. It’s translated to well-formatted, standard CSS using the command line tool or a web-framework plugin.

Memoires of a Heroinhead
It was over a year that I had been in France. I had gotten clean and then gotten dirty again. So it was good news one day when my mother phoned.

“Shane, there's a little surprise coming over your way! That fucking Irish John has just been around here, bought me two rocks of white and left twenty five quid to get you three of choice and post over. And you ya little bastard, you never told me he 'ad AIDS! An I've been sharing my fuckin' crackpipe with 'im!”

SFE: Science Fiction Encyclopedia
Welcome to the beta text of the third edition of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. Some sample entries are below. Alternatively, you can browse the Encyclopedia through the search box above or the categories in the grey bar above.

Paris Review – The Grand Map, Avi Steinberg
“And then came the grandest idea of all! We actually made a map of the country, on the scale of a mile to the mile!”
“Have you used it much?” I enquired.
“It has never been spread out, yet,” said Mein Herr. “The farmers objected: they said it would cover the whole country, and shut out the sunlight! So we now use the country itself, as its own map, and I assure you it does nearly as well.”

Final report of the commercial starship Nostromo, third officer reporting. | MetaFilter
The Nostromo model from the first Alien movie sat outside in the rain for over two decades before it was bought by The Prop Store in 2007. They sent it to Grant McCune Design to restore it to its previous glory.

GROGNARDIA: Retrospective: Barbarian Prince
If you're the least bit curious about Barbarian Prince, you can download a legal copy for free here.

Nate Hallinan Portfolio
The Smurf is actually the result of a symbiotic relationship
between two organisms. We believe that Smurfs put their
'embryos' in the button of a developing mushroom. From a
distance, Smurfs seem like they are wearing a hat and pants
but as you can see this is a fallacy. The fungus provides
camouflage and protective epidermal layers for the creature,
while the creature provides nutrients and mobility for the
spreading of spores.

Research:Wikimedia Summer of Research 2011/Summary of Findings – Meta
This is the summary of findings from the Wikimedia Foundation Summer of Research, a program in the Foundation's Community Department which brought together eight academic researchers from around the globe to study the dynamics of the Wikipedia editing community.

How Star Wars Should Have Ended: Reflections on Taste, The Expanded Universe & Radical Politics « Human Iterations
Basically a totalitarian Empire makes sense, a rotting and unsustainable Republic makes sense, a teemingly complex anarchic and increasingly more nomadic post-collapse culture also makes sense.  But a more or less decent galactic-sized democracy instantly formed and accepted out of the goodness of all the Rebel’s hearts?  Totally unbelievable.  And basically a stubborn Liberal lack of imagination.

Main § Digital Atlas of Roman and Medieval Civilization
The Digital Atlas of Roman and Medieval Civilization (DARMC) makes freely available on the internet the best available materials for a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) approach to mapping and spatial analysis of the Roman and medieval worlds. DARMC allows innovative spatial and temporal analyses of all aspects of the civilizations of western Eurasia in the first 1500 years of our era, as well as the generation of original maps illustrating differing aspects of ancient and medieval civilization.

Hugo Blogging – Connie Willis May Be The Worst Writer In Existence « Sci-Ence! Justice Leak!
"I have now discovered a way to produce a masterpiece. Just read Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis, do the exact opposite of what she does, and you will have the greatest work in the history of English literature." (Come come now – surely it can't be much worse than Dan Brown?)

The sad, sad demise of Greenpeace | COSMOS magazine
GREENPEACE WAS ONCE a friend of science, helping bring attention to important but ignored environmental research. These days, it’s a ratbag rabble of intellectual cowards intent on peddling an agenda, whatever the scientific evidence.

The 1140px Grid · Fluid down to mobile
The 1140 grid fits perfectly into a 1280 monitor. On smaller monitors it becomes fluid and adapts to the width of the browser.

A cherry picking tale, and an update on spinal manipulation science « Alternative Medicine « Health « Skeptic North
Spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) has long enjoyed a solid reputation for the treatment of so-called “mechanical” low back pain, and is widely used by physical therapists as well as chiropractors. Even skeptics tend to give it a pass, regarding it as the one thing chiropractors offer that we don’t really have a complaint with, much the way we used to think maybe acupuncture had something going for it, until better evidence crushed our optimism. For instance, just recently Dr. David Gorski — as tough-minded a quackery critic as they come — casually mentioned that “no one argues that … manipulative therapies can’t help back pain.” Actually, skeptics who’ve been following the SMT science are now arguing exactly that.

Historical Meet-Ups –   Samuel Beckett Playwright, novelist, and Nobel…
Wow.

The price of ebooks - oxylogos.com
Think the book industry learned from the mistakes the music and film industry made?

Guess again.

They are quickly heading to the top of the charts of sheer stupidity. And what they don't realise is that, unlike the movie industry and—though to a somewhat lesser extent— the music industry, they have even less of a legitimate ‘raison d'être’ than their counterparts in those industries.

Gigawatt {The Illuminated Mixtapes}
Gelijk een statische versie van http://musichunterapp.com/ en door echte mensen gedaan.

Villa La Vigie – Koksijde – Bezoeker
Na de oorlog werden de twee bunkers ontdaan van alle uitrusting en rails. De twee bouwwerken fungeerden een tijdje als toeristische bezienswaardigheid. Begin de jaren '20 werd één van de bunkers afgebroken. Rond 1923 kreeg aannemer Remi Rys uit Koksijde de opdracht om boven de resterende bunker een villa te bouwen en de bestaande oorlogsconstructie te integreren in het nieuwe project.

Lernert & Sander: Natural Beauty – NOWNESS
Mission Statement: We wanted to apply 365 layers of makeup in one day to see how much is needed to go from a natural look to an outrageous one.

A celebration of the writing and art of Mervyn Peake | Books | The Guardian
Mervyn Peake, creator of Gormenghast, is now recognised as a brilliant novelist and artist. Michael Moorcock, China Miéville, Hilary Spurling and AL Kennedy celebrate his achievements

Extinguishing and Understand Barking Dog Behavior
If your dog barks and you yell at him to shut up, you are reinforcing the barking.

Top 5 Ways to Build a WordPress Site that’s Easy for Your Clients
Here are our top 5 tips for simplifying the WordPress back end so that your clients will find it much easier to use, and you will find it much easier to teach them how to use it!

Restoring a Photograph from the 1870sTop Dog Imaging
"From here, I began the laborious process of restoration, which involved a prodigious amount of retouching. The process took about four hours." Of hoe een mens een uitgebreide post kan schrijven met veel beeldjes erbij, en op Kottke vermeld worden en alles — met rotslecht werk.

Dissecting an Episode of MythBusters
27% of the time is spent watching advertising.

Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking
"The most important book in the culinary arts since Escoffier" — Modernist Cuisine is a six-volume, 2,438-page set that is des­tined to rein­vent cook­ing. The lav­ishly illus­trated books use thou­sands of orig­i­nal images to make the sci­ence and tech­nol­ogy clear and engaging.

How Apple re-cut Final Cut Pro for the better | Video | Creative Notes | Macworld
It's not dumbing down, it's targeting

Jennifer Pournelle’s The Mote in God’s Eye sequel actually looks interesting | Wis[s]e Words
Intriguing — de dochter van de meneer van Chaos Manor schrijft een vervolg: "Sequels written to well loved science fiction classics by the children of the original writer never turn out right therefore you can safely ignore them. It’s a rule that saved me a lot of frustration, but I think I might break it for Jennifer Pournelle’s Outies, a sequel to her father’s and Larry Niven’s The Mote in God’s Eye. "

Zo, dat zijn veel vissen! :: nrc.nl
Bloody hel. Scary! "Sinds enige tijd hebben Amerikaanse wateren, met name de Mississippi en haar aftakkingen, bezoek van de Aziatische karper. In 2010 begon dat bezoek onaangenaam te worden."

My Opposition – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
After the war many Germans would insist they knew nothing at all about The Holocaust. More recently, Holocaust deniers have questioned the extent, and even the existence of the Holocaust. Friedrich Kellner's diary counters such suggestions.

Fietsherstel Aan Huis | omdat service belangrijk is !
Heeft uw fiets een lekke band, is de verlichting defect, of heeft uw fiets andere gebreken?
U kocht uw fiets in een grootwarenhuis, waar geen herstellingen mogelijk zijn?
U heeft een tandem, bakfiets, elektrische of andere fiets met extreme afmetingen?
Wilt u geen beschadigingen meer aan de kofferbak van de auto?

Dan kunt u gebruik maken van een unieke service: wij komen uw fiets bij u herstellen.

N Korean children begging, army starving: exclusive – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Footage shot inside North Korea and obtained by the ABC has revealed the extent of chronic food shortages and malnutrition inside the secretive state.

History Cookbook – Cookit!
Welcome to the history cookbook. Do you know what the Vikings ate for dinner? What a typical meal of a wealthy family in Roman Britain consisted of, or what food was like in a Victorian Workhouse? Why not drop into history cookbook and find out? This project looks at the food of the past and how this influenced the health of the people living in each time period. You can also try some of the recipes for yourself. We have a wide range of historical recipes from Brown Bread Ice Cream to Gruel (Why not see if you would be asking for more – just like Oliver Twist).

Dear Emma B : Pharyngula
Schoon — The question you can always ask is, "How do you know that?"

Everything You Think You Know About the Collapse of the Soviet Union Is Wrong – By Leon Aron | Foreign Policy
Every revolution is a surprise. Still, the latest Russian Revolution must be counted among the greatest of surprises. In the years leading up to 1991, virtually no Western expert, scholar, official, or politician foresaw the impending collapse of the Soviet Union, and with it one-party dictatorship, the state-owned economy, and the Kremlin's control over its domestic and Eastern European empires. Neither, with one exception, did Soviet dissidents nor, judging by their memoirs, future revolutionaries themselves. When Mikhail Gorbachev became general secretary of the Communist Party in March 1985, none of his contemporaries anticipated a revolutionary crisis. Although there were disagreements over the size and depth of the Soviet system's problems, no one thought them to be life-threatening, at least not anytime soon.

the A.I. is a lie » #AltDevBlogADay
I can tell you right now there is no I in A.I., and nor should there be.

Arrested Westeros
What happens when Game of Thrones meets Arrested Development.

Verdediging Belfortploeg zaterdag 18 juni | Belfort ploeg
Ik zou bijna sympathie krijgen voor Francis Van den Eynde c.s.

Hot Dudes with Kittens from Funny Or Die, Sam Trammell, Romany Malco, Sean Carrigan, Mark Valley, Matt Dallas, Tanc Sade, Matt Lanter, Ryan Eggold, Chad Faust, ellhoof, and Shauna O’Toole
Who doesn't love hot men holding cats and kittens? Oh you don't? Too bad, this one is… for the ladies.

GET LAMP: John Romero Interview : Jason Scott : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive
Romero's path crossed with Infocom's in the late 1980s; while working for a company he co-founded called Ideas From the Deep, he wrote an operating system for the Apple II that was used in the last round of Infocom games: Journey, Shogun, Zork Zero, and Arthur. He didn't get to meet anybody but he was proud of his contribution and offered to be interviewed.

bradley’s almanac – the sims torture test (a mirror site)
I guess people actually play this game to make their little sims happy. I'll admit that i did that for awhile, but to be honest, it just got boring. So of course I reverted to my typical gaming pattern of torturing innocents to death.

Coilhouse » Blog Archive » Resonance: Where Sound Meets Geometry
In this 11-minute clip, a group of over 30 animators and sound artists teamed up to create short pieces between 12 and 20 seconds with the aim to ”explore the relationship between geometry and audio in unique ways.”

YouTube – Prora-Das erste KdF bad
Kraft durch Freude.

CK01 Standard/Honors Chemistry Kit – Home
Droool. Ik zou mijn linkerarm gegeven hebben voor zoiets als ik klein was: "Because chemistry is widely considered to be the most difficult lab course to do well—particularly on a tight budget—we offer the CK01 Standard/Honors Home School Chemistry Laboratory Kit. It provides a comprehensive, rigorous laboratory component for a first-year high school chemistry course, and does so affordably. With the exception of standard household items (such as table salt, sugar, vinegar, aluminum foil, foam cups, and so on) and other minor items that are readily available locally, the kit contains all of the special equipment and chemicals you'll need for a complete chemistry lab course."

Michele Bachmann’s Holy War | Rolling Stone Politics
Bachmann lies because she can't help it, because it's a built-in component of both her genetics and her ideology. She is at once the most entertaining and the most dangerous kind of liar, a turbocharged cross between a born bullshit artist and a religious fanatic, for whom lying to the infidel is a kind of holy duty.

What is International Baccalaureate?
Hierzie, dat ge 't weet: "IBO lumps Christianity … into the category of what it calls "fundamentalism" — along with the Taliban and various terrorist groups, saying that these "fundamentalist" groups are all "dangerous." It would be difficult to imagine a more clear, and repugnant, attack on Christianity." "While IBO undermines Christianity, it also advocates its own religion. IBO promotes the worldview of New Age-Pantheism guru William Butler Yeats … Another New Age leader, Joseph Campbell, is often required reading for IBO students. Like Yeats, Campbell aggressively promotes "inclusive" New Age-Pantheistic doctrines while undermining Christianity."

555blue
Er zijn toch rare mensen in de wereld.

Wikipedia talk:Dispute resolution – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
I REPEAT, I DO NOT KNOW MR. STEVEN ZHANG FROM ADAM, I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR HIM, HE IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ME, but JUST IN CASE HE MAY FEEL HIS PERSONA OR FEELINGS SO DEEPLY HURT BY MY MISTAKE, I BEG HIM FIRST OF ALL NOT TO HURT HIMSELF OR HURT OTHER HUMANS, including me, DUE TO UNDUE AGGRESSVITY POOTENTIALLY ARISEN FROM DEEP DISTRESS, especially if occuring on a VULNERABLE PRE-EXISTING SUBSTRATE, and SECOND of ALL NOT SUE ME, Eugen Craciun aka Rudolph Aspirant, beacuse HE, Mr. Steven Zhang WOULD LITERALLY OBTAIN NOTHING FROM ME, TOTAL PAUPER and INDEBTED TO THE HILT TO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA GOVERNMENT, and to BOTH MY OWN MOTHER and MY FATHER.

Talk:Circumflex – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
WHOEVER IS IN CHARGE HERE MUST IMMEDIATELY TRANSMIT THIS URGENT ESSENTIAL ERROR/FEIL TO GOOGLE-TRANSLATE, which I have just noticed myself today, 18, May, 2011, Anoo Domini, which is AN INEXCUSABLE ERROR, without PRECENT in ALL of the history I have used Google-translate for all sorts of purposes and reasons.

Interactief

woensdag 3 mei 2006 in Programmeren. Permanente link | 2 reacties

Wijs!

Ik heb indertijd nog dingen gemaakt met Inform 6. En, euh, meer dan twintig jaar geleden dingen gemaakt met The Quill.

Met “dingen” bedoel ik dan wat men nu Interactive Fiction noemt, en indertijd Adventure Games. Of, nadat er ook point & click-dingen waren zoals de King’s/Police/Space Quests: Text Adventures.

Werelden bouwen is wijs, zelfs al zit er niemand anders in. En met Inform 7 wordt het wel heel erg eenvoudig. Natural language programming! Hoera! Kijk, dit is de broncode:

“House”

by Michel Vuijlsteke

Section 1 – Setting things up

The player is wearing a bathrobe and some slippers.

The description of the bathrobe is “It’s a dark blue striped bathrobe with deep pockets.” The description of the slippers is “They’re pretty threadbare slippers.”

The bathrobe is the player’s holdall.

Section 2 – Ground floor

The Hallway is a room. “You are in a dark and narrow hallway. Heavy oak beams loom overhead. A rickety door, all wood and metal and jingly glass bits, leads outside.
[if the curtains are not in the room]A doorway leads east [otherwise]Gray curtains hang down from the ceiling on the east wall[end if] and a large brown wardrobe looms against the west wall.”

The front door, some beams, some curtains and a wardrobe are scenery in the hallway.

The wardrobe is closed and openable. It contains a dark green overcoat. The overcoat is wearable. The description of the overcoat is “The coat is a dark green ankle-length affair, shiny in patches and with its lining hanging out.”

The front door is south of the hallway and north of the street. The front door is a lockable and unlocked door. [if open]The front door is open, gently swaying in the wind. [otherwise]The front door is shut.”

A door-mat and a white desk are in the hallway.
A small brass key unlocks the front door.
The white desk is pushable between rooms.

Instead of taking the desk, say “You can barely lift the desk, let alone carry it. You may be able to push it around though.”
Instead of taking the door-mat, say “Ugh! It’s all muddy!”
Instead of taking the front door, say “The door may be rickety, but it’s still surprisingly well attached to the door jamb.”
Instead of taking the beams, say “You can’t quite reach the beams.”
Instead of taking the curtains:
  say “You tug on the curtains. They practically fall apart in your hands, revealing a dark room behind them.”,
  remove the curtains from play. 

The Street is a room. “You are standing in the middle of an empty, weirdly modern street running through muddy fields. Sand crunches underfoot.
The only house in the street that doesn’t have its doors and windows boarded is a drooping affair to the north.”

Some sand is scenery in the street.
Instead of taking the sand, say “You consider pocketing a handful of damp sand but think better of it.”

The house is scenery in the street.
The description of the house is “The house looks like a mediaeval affair hidden behind peeling nineteenth century plasterwork. It has quite obviously seen better times.
There’s a rickety door and a window with half-drawn blinds on the ground floor.”

The window is scenery in the street. “The window is gray with caked on dust.”

The street is outside of the hallway.

En dat geeft dan bijvoorbeeld dit:

House
An Interactive Fiction by Michel Vuijlsteke
Release 1 / Serial number 060503 / Inform 7 build 3K27 (I6/v6.31 lib 6/10N) SD

Hallway
You are in a dark and narrow hallway. Heavy oak beams loom overhead. A rickety door, all wood and metal and jingly glass bits, leads outside.

Gray curtains hang down from the ceiling on the east wall and a large brown wardrobe looms against the west wall.

You can see a door-mat and a white desk here.

>look at myself
As good-looking as ever.

>inventory
You are carrying:
  a bathrobe (being worn and open but empty)
  some slippers (being worn)

>examine bathrobe
It’s a dark blue striped bathrobe with deep pockets.

>put slippers in bathrobe
(first taking them off)
You put the slippers into the bathrobe.

>look in wardrobe
You can’t see inside, since the wardrobe is closed.

>open it
You open the wardrobe, revealing a dark green overcoat.

>wear overcoat
(first taking the dark green overcoat)
You put on the dark green overcoat.

>open door
You open the front door.

>examine door
The front door is open, gently swaying in the wind.

>go out

Street
You are standing in the middle of an empty, weirdly modern street running through muddy fields. Sand crunches underfoot.

The only house in the street that doesn’t have its doors and windows boarded is a drooping affair to the north.

>get sand
You consider pocketing a handful of damp sand but think better of it.

>look at the window
The window is gray with caked on dust.

>n
Hallway
You can see a door-mat and a white desk here.

>get door-mat
Ugh! It’s all muddy!

>get desk
You can barely lift the desk, let alone carry it. You may be able to push it around though.

>look
Hallway
You are in a dark and narrow hallway. Heavy oak beams loom overhead. A rickety door, all wood and metal and jingly glass bits, leads outside.

Gray curtains hang down from the ceiling on the east wall and a large brown wardrobe looms against the west wall.

You can see a door-mat and a white desk here.

>get curtains
You tug on the curtains. They practically fall apart in your hands, revealing a dark room behind them.

>get beams
You can’t quite reach the beams.

>get desk
You can barely lift the desk, let alone carry it. You may be able to push it around though.

Een uurtje werk, twee kamers en het begin van een puzzel (het bureau verplaatsen tot onder de balk, wie weet zit daar wel iets in!), en ik heb er serieus goesting in om er aan verder te doen.

Ach, wereldliteratuur it ain’t, en ik ben hoedanook niet van plan om dergelijke dingen op de wereld los te laten, maar het is ongelooflijk wijs om te prutsen, en Inform 7 is echt machtig.

DNS Adventure

donderdag 16 maart 2006 in Computers en dingen. Permanente link | 5 reacties

Old Server
You’re in a shabby hallway on a crowded Dreamhost server. The lights flicker on and off. In the distance you can see a placard with the words “welcome to limbo-randy” engraved on it.
A forbidding passage leads off to the north, and there’s an open trapdoor at your feet leading down.
You can see a switch here.

> FLICK SWITCH

The entire place shudders. The trapdoor swings shut, and a massive slab slides down from the ceiling shutting off the exit to the north.
A ghostly voice intones: “moving A record for blog.zog.org from 66.33.218.140 to 212.3.247.238. Please stand by.”.

> WAIT

Nothing much happens.

> JUMP

Wheee! This is fun.

> LOOK

Old Server
You’re in a shabby hallway on a crowded Dreamhost server.
You can see a thrown switch here.

> WAIT

Tum dee dum.
The lights are fading.

> WAIT

Tra la lee. You think about tapping your toes but change your mind at the last moment. Phew!

> WAIT

Your busy schedule of waiting around is interrupted by the same disembodied voice as before: “Propagating DNS changes. Please stand by. Your mileage may vary. Have a nice day.”
The lights are now seriously dim.

> TURN ON LAMP

You don’t have a lamp. Oh dear.
It’s getting quite dark.

> PANIC

I’m sorry, I don’t know what you mean by that.

> FIND LAMP

You can’t find any lamps, candles or other light-producing devices.
Suddenly, the lights stop flickering. Sadly, they’ve stopped flickering only in the sense that they now seem to be off for good.

> LOOK

It is dark. You’re likely to be eaten by a grue.

GET LAMP

donderdag 2 maart 2006 in Weblogs. Permanente link | 2 reacties

Jason Scott is de meneer die de fantastische BBS Documentary maakte. Hij is nu bezig aan GET LAMP, een documentaire over text adventures.

Ik zag mijn eerste op de Wang (of was het een Nixdorf) bij mijn oom. Colossal Cave of simpelweg Adventure: het originele text adventure.

You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building. Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and down a gully.

>ENTER

You are inside a building, a well house for a large spring.

There are some keys on the ground here.
There is tasty food here.
There is a shiny brass lamp nearby.
There is an empty bottle here.

>GET LAMP

Taken.

Magisch: rondlopen in een wereld gemaakt met niets anders dan woorden. In Adventure is het, helaas, beperkt tot zeer weinig interactie (smerige dwerg!) en heel veel mysterie (een mysterieuze schaduw aan de andere kant van een mistige kloof—pas jàààren later kwam ik te weten dat het mezelf in een spiegel was). De beperkingen van het medium zijn er ook wel naar: zo worden sommige locaties prachtig omschreven, maar is er gewoon niets te doen. Een klassieker, maar echt wel na al die jaren duidelijk een onvolwassen ding.

In de jaren 80 zijn text adventures, of interactive fiction zoals ze nu genoemd worden, volwassen geworden. Voor mijn part is dat allemaal dank zij Infocom, dat op een paar jaar tijd een aantal onnoemelijk fantastische dingen gemaakt heeft. Zork, uiteraard, I en II en III, die eigenlijk een geavanceerde versie-cum-parodie waren van Adventure, en hun leven als DUNGEON op mainframes begonnen waren in 1977—maar met elk nieuw spel gingen ze reuzenstappen vooruit.

In 1984 was er bijvoorbeeld Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, dat nog dezelfde conventies gebruikte maar meegeschreven was door Douglas Adams. En nauwelijks een jaar later was er al het ongelooflijke A Mind Forever Voyaging, voor mijn geld nog altijd één van de allerbeste dingen geschreven ooit.

Parallel met de ontwikkeling van de spelletjes ontwikkelden ze bij Infocom alsmaar fantastischer verpakkingen voor hun dingen, met hoogtepunten als Stationfall, Bureaucracy en vooral Leather Godesses of Phobos—allemaal fantastische dingen om te spelen ook, trouwens.

Hoe goed waren die dingen? Zo goed als een zeer goed boek—bij Stationfall heb ik zitten wenen met de gewetensnood van Floyd, mijn robot-vriendje—maar met de added bonus dat je zelf meespeelde in het verhaal.

Technologisch stelde het allemaal niet echt heel erg veel voor: de parser (het stuk software dat interpreteert wat men de computer vertelt) en het hele spel moesten uiteindelijk werken op computers die misschien honderd keer minder krachtig waren dan een gemiddelde GSM tegenwoordig. Maar het schrijven was wat het allemaal maakte, met genieën als Steve Meretzky.

En met al die mensen gaat  Jason Scott dus praten, om een veel-DVD-pack vol goeie film te maken.

Een tijd geleden hield hij een oproep om geld te ronselen om materiaal te kopen, The Adventurer’s Club (kijk eens naar lid nummer één :)), en nu onlang is hij effektief beginnen filmen.

Ik heb er het volste vertrouwen in dat het een even goeie—zoniet veel betere—film wordt als de BBS-film. Het is alvast uitstekend goed begonnen: kijk, dit is hoe je zoiets doet.

Die meneer is zeer, zeer goed bezig.

update: zoals Peter terecht opmerkt, en zoals wel al meer van hier gelinkt: het genre is nog lang niet dood. Haal u een z-code interpreter, koop ergens een de twee Lost Treasures of Infocom-CD’s kwestie van basismateriaal, ga dan naar het uitstekende (maar, toegegeven, minder dan intuïtief in elkaar gestoken wegens eigenlijk gewoon kopie van een ftsite die al decennia lijkt het wel meegaat) if-archive. En wie er niet genoeg van krijgt: download u een versie van inform (of TADS, al heb ik daar niet de minste ervaring mee) en maak uw eigen dingen.

Vriendjes

Zoek

<insert standard disclaimer>

Alles wat hier staat is mijn eigen opinie. Het wordt niet nagelezen of goedgekeurd door mijn werkgever voor het on-line komt, en ik bied geen enkele garantie voor kwaliteit of correctheid.

Mijn werkgever is het niet noodzakelijk eens met wat ik schrijf, en het spreekt vanzelf dat hij dan ook op geen enkele wijze aansprakelijk kan zijn voor wat ik hier publiceer.

Ter info

Eén van mijn e-mailadressen is michel [at] zog punt org. Normaal gezien antwoord ik daar, buiten de kantooruren, onmiddellijk op.

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