#PRISOM Makes the 2014 WA Premier’s Book Awards Shortlist [#w00T] [#geekgirl]
On the good news front for today: the Shortlist of the Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards has just been announced. Check out the “Digital Narrative” category – excited to see #PRISOM listed as a Finalist alongside some fabulous Aussie works: “State Library of Western Australia CEO and State Librarian, Margaret Allen today announced the shortlist for the 2014 Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards.
552 books were entered into the Awards over nine categories and it is the first year for the WA emerging writer’s category. The Awards had strong entries from WA publishing houses including Fremantle Press, Magabala Books and UWA Publishing and titles from notable authors Tim Winton and Shaun Tan.
“From emerging writer Sally-Ann Jones’s book Stella’s Sea set at Cottesloe beach, David Whish-Wilson’s book Perth describing life by the Swan River and Sarah Drummond’s Salt Story about life as a fisherwoman in Western Australia, the Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards continue to attract the finest literary works created in Australia today,” Margaret Allen said.
“The State Library of Western Australia is proud to provide a cultural environment that stimulates the human imagination. We are delighted to once again manage the prestigious Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards, which highlight the importance of literacy in Australia and showcase the abundance of talent in this country.”
The shortlist includes Amanda Curtin’s Elemental, which delves into the complexity of you don’t know who you are until you know where you come from, and Tim Winton’s latest novel, Eyrie, asks how, in an impossibly compromised world, we can ever hope to do the right thing.
Another contender is Kristina Olsson’s third title Boy, Lost: A family memoir which won the 2014 NSW Premier’s Literary Award and is shortlisted for the 2014 Kibble Literary Award. Three shortlisted titles Richard Flanagan’s The narrow road to the deep north, Tim Winton’s Eyrie and Evie Wyld’s All the birds, singing are also contenders for the 2014 Miles Franklin Award.”
“U.S. No Longer An Actual Democracy…” [#geekgirl]
[From this article at TPM] “A new study from Princeton spells bad news for American democracy—namely, that it no longer exists.
Asking “[w]ho really rules?” researchers Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page argue that over the past few decades America’s political system has slowly transformed from a democracy into an oligarchy, where wealthy elites wield most power.
Using data drawn from over 1,800 different policy initiatives from 1981 to 2002, the two conclude that rich, well-connected individuals on the political scene now steer the direction of the country, regardless of or even against the will of the majority of voters.”
“Millennials 101, with Paul Taylor…” [#geekgirl]
“An Iranian developer’s entrancing game about his culture…” [#geekgirl]
[From an article by Tracey Lien at Polygon]: “Projected onto a large screen to a crowd of hundreds of people, Bahrami showed solutions to his geometric, ancient Iranian art-influenced puzzle game. “So you have an object on a table,” he said to the audience, pointing to a screen where a rectangle sat on the edge of a desk. “Now if you draw a point somewhere on that object, what kind of line would it make if it fell?” He placed a dot on the corner of the rectangle. He hit “play.” The rectangle tumbled off the table, leaving behind a squiggly line.
In the early build of Engare Bahrami showed, at the start of each level players were shown a line they had to replicate by placing a dot on a moving object. Perhaps it was a hook-like curve they had to recreate. Perhaps it was something that resembled the McDonald’s golden arches. Each of these puzzles was mind boggling on their own. Then Bahrami got meta: what if you drew a dot on the game’s menu tab so when you pulled up the menu, it created a line? And then what if you got rid of the menu and the table and the moving objects and just allowed the line to replicate itself again and again and again?”
The New Who vs Oldskool Timey-Wimey Whovians [#geekgirl] [#DrWho]
—–[“The Time of The Doctor” SPOILERS (Sweetie) Alert]—–
On the 25th December 2013, Doctor Who received 12 new lives. In the episode “The Time of The Doctor”, the current series showrunner, producer and lead writer Steven Moffat imbued the once-labelled as 11th [and now redubbed the 12th, or even 13th] Doctor a new regeneration cycle. In this episode filled with heavy-duty retconned plot threads, we see the New [old] Who emerge.
From a traditional Whovian perspective, there’s been substantial trouble with Moffat’s version of a character who, like his regenerations, has undergone substantial re-jigging as part of the entire franchise reboot, many of which have been largely controversial. When Moffat plucked the Doctor Who writing mantle from Russell T Davis, there was substantial concern that his [then] largely episodic inflected story style wouldn’t be able to adequately extend beyond flashy emotion-inducing viewer bait, complete with thrill laden plot segments and incomplete long arc shifts where foregrounding, consistent character development and plots worthy of the previous writers were/are [mostly] abandoned.
In this pivotal episode, Moffat attempts to disassemble and reassemble elements of the Who Canon in an effort to extend the longevity of the franchise beyond the Doctor’s accepted and restricted Regeneration cycle. The episode contains all the benchmarks we’ve come to expect from Moffat: companions posited as disposable tools or eye-candy mannequins, story gaps you could drive a TARDIS through and plot-hole-construction-gloss thrown about almost randomly by the shiny bucketful. The result creates a type of standard willing Suspension of Disbelief that only just lightly grips the edges of believability. Emotional key points fall cheaply and wantonly [like the death of his handy Cyberman-head-pal “Handles”, or the Doctor's promise to Clara that he'll never abandon her again]. The rushed passage-of-time markers rub the viewer in any manner of annoying ways, and flimsy self-referential exposition becomes paramount when the contrived CGI effects fail to impress.
And yet, given all of the failings of this crucial episode, the emotional reefing that Moffat does best still manages to evoke a type of stretched wonder-thrall. Moffat discards [and has now for many, many episodes] conventions that traditional Dr Who fans hold dear: Joseph Campbellesque hero variables and crucial sci-fi story elements are bypassed in order to cater for more incrementally-oriented audience members used to absorbing their story snippets through 2 minute YouTube blipverts or Tumblr-emulating focals. Moffat knits together these contemporary absorption points via a method that, instead of catering for narratives comprising sequential beginning, middle and ends, seeks to harness the power of discrete narrative units. These units merge techniques drawn from graphic novel variable truncation to story-board framing, resulting in staggered story-time acceleration and retconned plot explosions designed for nonlinear attention spans.
Moffat may not be the great grand hope for old-timey-whiney Whovians [ahem] who yearn for believable extensions to Who chronology beyond an established and pre-mapped regenerative timeline. But through the New Who incarnation, Moffat instead offers us an extension of a well-worn and much-loved character, one that at least utilises the very methods that a contemporary audience regularly deploys to maintain narratives beyond standard story knitting.
All Known Manuscripts of #Frankenstein in Digital Form [#geekgirl]
[Amazing] “We present here for the first time in digital form all the known manuscripts of Frankenstein, perhaps the most famous and widely reproduced work of British Romanticism. These manuscripts consist of the now disbound pages from five notebooks once the property of Mary Shelley, purchased by the Bodleian Library, Oxford, in 2004, from her descendant, Lord Abinger.”
Announcing “#PRISOM”, A Synthetic Reality Surveillance Game [#geekgirl]
So we (meaning Mez Breeze Design) can finally let the (Schrödinger’s?) cat out of the very tightly zipped bag: we’re *extremely* excited to officially announce our latest co-production with Dreaming Methods: “#PRISOM“. #PRISOM is a Synthetic Reality Game where a player is set loose in a Glass City under infinite surveillance. Will you be brave enough to enter?
The project is making its début at (and is funded by) the “MARart4 Transreal Topologies Exhibition” as part of #ISMAR2013, the International Symposium on Mixed and Augmented Reality in conjunction with SA Uni’s Wearable Computer Lab. So if you’re keen to don a HMD (Head-Mounted Display) and throw yourself into #PRISOM, head to the Adelaide City East Campus of the University of South Australia on October 1-4th.
Networked Art Forms and Tactical Magick Faerie Circuits [#geekgirl] [#misshack]
Big day today: it’s the opening of our “Networked Art Forms and Tactical Magick Faerie Circuits (NAF:TMFC)” which is a “…durational event including symposia, exhibition, performances, workshops and social gatherings that will take place in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia 31 May – 30 June 2013 at Contemporary Art Spaces Tasmania (CAST) and on the Internet.” See the schedule here – of note are Florian Cramer’s keynote, contribs by Josephine Bosma and Matthew Fuller plus workshops by Julian Oliver + Danja Vasiliev [oh + some weird "txtual coding sheete" by someone called netwurker?;)]
City Talks 2013 – What Creative Life do You Want for #Sydney? [#geekgirl]
What creative life do you want for Sydney?
Great cities’ reputations are built on their cultural life and Sydney is no exception.
From the museums, galleries, theatres and concert halls to street art, small bars, shops and hole-in-the-wall venues – some of the best things about Sydney are bound up in its cultural life.
How can we inspire an even richer creative culture? How do we support creative people to live and work here? And how can we encourage people to go out to shows or invest in local work?
Hear from Carol Coletta, CEO, Artplace America, about how Artplace changed culture and creative communities across the US and what Sydney could learn from the experience.
A panel of creative leaders and innovators will debate the opportunities and practical steps we could take to inspire a more creative Sydney.
Tell us what creative life you want for Sydney.
MC: Adam Spencer
SMH INTRODUCTION: Sherrill Nixon, Director, Sydney Newsroom Operations, Fairfax Media
GUEST INTRODUCTION: Richard Roxburgh
WELCOME: Lord Mayor Clover Moore
KEYNOTE: Carol Coletta, CEO, ArtPlace America
Marcus Westbury, Founder and Director, Renew Australia
Nicole Durling, Senior Curator, Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)
Katherine Hough, Director, Arts Tasmania
Louise O’Donnell, Digital Director, Seed Production
Charles Firth, CEO, Manic Studios and co-founder,The Roast
Wednesday, 10 April 2013
State Theatre, 49 Market Street, Sydney
Rail: Town Hall Station or St James Station
Bus: George, Druitt and York Streets
Bike: Valet bike parking located on Pitt Street near the corner of Market Street from 5.30–9pm
Auslan interpreter services and live captioning for this event can be arranged on request. For these or other access enquiries please contact the City of Sydney on 9265 9333. This venue is wheelchair accessible.
You can also watch a podcast of the event soon after here.
Visit sydney2030.com.au for information on our sustainability projects.
The Perils of #Doublethink [#geekgirl]
“How are you to imagine anything if the images are always provided for you?
Who here read ’1984′ last year?…[Doublethink is] …to deliberately believe in lies while knowing they’re false. Examples of this in everyday life: “Oh I need to be pretty to be happy. I need surgery to be pretty. I need to be thin, famous, fashionable.
Our young men today are being told that women are whores, bitches, things to be screwed, beaten, shit on and shamed.
This is a marketing holocaust. 24-hours a day, for the rest of our lives, the powers that be are hard at work dumbing us to death. So, to defend ourselves and fight against assimilating this dullness into our though processes we must learn to read: to stimulate our own imaginations, to cultivate our own consciousness, our own belief-systems. We all need these skills – to defend, to preserve, our own minds.”