December 18th, 2012 by susan

The devastation and pain caused by Hurricane Sandy in October was not about you and your activism on the cause of global warming. The horror of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School was also not about you and your opinions on gun control. These tragedies are about victims and how we can help THEM. It is obnoxiously pompous and cruel to turn their pain into your podium.

Personally I have supported my first activist group this week. It is one which will hopefully keep the Westboro Baptist activists from their planned demonstrations at the funeral and memorial services of the Newtown victims. The Westboro “church’s” cause and platform is something I find despicable and their completely tasteless and thoughtless disruption at a family’s time of grieving is something I cannot avoid helping to stop.

NEW MEDIA: A Timeline of New Media

November 30th, 2012 by susan

Thanks to HLit for a link to Labirintexto which gives us a nice listing of new media works and informative articles and books according to timeline.


None of my work has been listed nor have several others that are really important to the development of the genre, but this does give a wealth of links to some of the great pieces in the field and I’ve added it to my New Media category link listing.

HYPERTEXT: Something New

June 2nd, 2012 by susan

Thanks to HtLit, just found two new resources for interactive storytelling.

Signed up for Storynexus and should find out shortly what that’s all about.

Downloaded HypeDyn, which looks similar to Storyspace from Eastgate (which I already have, love, and used much before I started writing into Eastgate’s Tinderbox instead). I’ll play a bit with this in the next week and post my thoughts on it here.



May 3rd, 2012 by susan

Well I bought a guitar, tuned it myself using this online tuner, plinked a few strings, tried to hold a chord, and once again came face to face with my own inadequacies.

So while I learned much about introducing audio into hypertext via Audacity and Garage Band, and, I learned how to transfer hypertext onto removable drives and installation on PC or Mac hard drives, this project is going back on the shelf again.

HYPERTEXT PROJECT 3: The multitalent needed for multimedia

May 1st, 2012 by susan

Still searching for a better instrument than the harmonica. Went antiquing yesterday and found three guitars, two autoharps, and a dulcimer. The dulcimer looked like something I could handle but it only had three strings out of five. One of the autoharps looked really promising but it was $95. Of the three guitars, the cheapest really didn’t have a great sound and when something’s marked “as is” and I don’t know what’s wrong with it, I’ll back off. Strummed a bit, but had to face facts that I really don’t know how to play a guitar and would likely be more disappointed with the plinking and strumming I’d be capable of doing in comparison to the original professional piece than with my harmonica-playing.

What new media does teach is that it is rare for one artist to be able to handle all three elements–words, images, and audio–well. New media, to be at its best, is unfortunately, a team effort. With my poem Recycling it was difficult to do the voiceover since my voice sounds like a munchkin when recorded. With the visuals, I ended up drawing each image that I couldn’t photograph (i.e., the earth, Mars, Poe, and Jesus Christ) and none is at its best.

And so my harmonica playing, well, it leaves much to be desired and am depending heavily on sound effects (like echo, which is how I “masked” my Recycling voice).

Tough to keep things original and strive for non-hokey.

HYPERTEXT PROJECT 3: Update on Audio

April 27th, 2012 by susan

Well, never heard back from the composer/guitarist as far as permission on the piece I originally nabbed off a music site so I’m taking the snippets off the pages though I will post a link to the piece on his site once I find something else I’m happy enough with. It’s certainly going to be hard to measure up to this piece, but being a writer, I understand copyright and artist control so there’s no way I’ll use it without express permission, nor come up with another original piece based on it.

And a friend who I did ask because I know he’s a musician and is a brilliant computer expert is unable timewise to help me out on this.

So it’s back to the harmonica for now.


April 26th, 2012 by susan

Will burn the CD with the Windows C:\Program Files\abobWin\ and made another one with D:\abobWinD\ and will burn that one as well and see how they work on my PC.

Tried the CD with both versions on my PC with Windows XP an they both work with Internet Explorer. Not with Opera.

I suppose that means I’ve succeeded in my goal of putting working hypertext pieces on a CD for playing on Mac or PC, without the necessity of actually putting them into Program files (Windows) or the Application folder (Mac), as well as being able to do that, and run from a thumbdrive too.

However, there is much cleaning up to do on tidying up the paths, coming up with a more simple and universal path (may not need the double folder nor the “Program Files” or “Application” in the path, nor the drive designation). Also, need a method of opening the hypertext without all the other files there as a distraction, or an icon that’s obvious as the opening page–maybe the first page outside the folder, linked to the next page which is in a folder along with all the other pages and necessary images, jQuery files and folders, css sheet, etc.


April 26th, 2012 by susan

Got a working CD made of A Bottle of Beer hypertext, but it won’t work yet in Windows, only Mac. PC needs a drive letter…or, I can burn the Windows version using the C:\path to try to fool it. Right now, it will open any of the pages, but using a browser, and calling it “D:/abob/etc.”

The other thing I have to figure out (besides how to make a harmonica sound like a soulful guitar) is a way to make an icon of some sort rather than all the files to start the program.

And, while I have the audio on hold for a couple days, I happened to notice the work I did on jQuery animation and may pick up on that again. I’m pretty sure I had the banner of flowers on one of the pages moving at one point. Tough when you haven’t worked with something for a while to try to get back into it. Particularly when the concept wasn’t perfected. As I recall, I couldn’t get the “banner” to remain behind the text box and move. That’s likely a case of setting up the css sheet.


April 25th, 2012 by susan

I’ve been on a Mac for about 5 years now and have never used Garage Band. It’s coming in handy now.

Will eventually delete all files using the professional piece that I’ve worked with so far, because obviously, without permission, I will not be able to use it anyway. It has taught me much in adding audio to text and visuals in html which should make it easier to incorporate a new original audio background. My harmonica playing will have to do for now and I’m about to record a longer playing session so that I can cut it up into tracks that suit the pages.

Also, after playing with the tune for a week, I need to get the original song out of my head so that I inadvertently don’t “lift” parts of it because it’s become embedded in my head!

Still not sure if I’ll post a link to the artist’s site and the piece I’ve been playing with; it’s beautiful and I’d like to share it for your enjoyment but then it might be harder to accept my harmonica as a replacement if I can’t get an original guitar audio. Sent out a request today and I’m crossing fingers it can be done.

HYPERTEXT PROJECT3: Slowing Down Before I Hit the Wall

April 24th, 2012 by susan

Well, my harmonica-playing has suffered through a few years of neglect.

Before I go around begging other nice folk to make up a musical selection for me on a guitar, I’ve learned to record (in Garage Band) a string of nothingness as played by me on a harmonica. Can’t hold a candle to the piece I wanted to use, in fact, is an embarrassment, but at least it’s original.

What it has done, at least, is force me to learn Garage Band (record in), learn how to manipulate the sound a bit (effects), and export as an mp3 (Share–Export to disc–save on Desktop or to file then pickup up with Audacity) so that with Audacity, I can manipulate it a bit further (toning down, changing speed), to at least have something to play with. Sort of disheartening, compared to guitar, but at least I happen to have a harmonica.