SpamHeart
Introduce/Situate
David Johnson?
Generative poetry built out of spam code, thesis work and “a little bit of language’s heart”

Dimensions/affordances
Play begins by entering (clicking on) the “Infinity Box”
White letters on black background scroll endlessly without further prompting from reader/player

Analysis/Interpretation
Has the feel of operating a Vegas slot machine (the one-arm bandit), except that there is no agency required of the reader here. Instead of hitting jackpot with three oranges or pears, the reader is presented with timed waves of new word groupings.
-some hierarchy is suggested by the variation in font size: larger font words usually render some meaning, but smaller font words (or numerals) appear random and nonsensical
-continuous looping which seems to speed up at some points while scrolling larger chunks of lexia(?)
-detected repetition in larger font words, but my own senses can’t be trusted at this point
-the closet I hope to come to EST (electro shock therapy)



Connection to discussion/Pedagogy
-Useful in establishing parameters for what poetry is or is not. Should generate, interrupt, complicate long-held ideas about writing and poetry in general
-Useful for discussions of developing poetic genres as well as the concept of human agency (or lack thereof) in meaning-making activity


Angry Words

Introduce and situate

-David Johnson

These games are unfinished.



These games are not games.



These games are word-games..

“My intervention has been to convert the default games … into 2 art-poem-game spaces.”



“In one game, the player is always alone, weaponless. The next level is reached by leaping off, going down.”

Dimensions/Affordances

-A lone figure moves through a futuristic space where words are displayed on every surface
-player is able to direct movement of figure by manipulating the arrow keys, cursor and space bar
-player is able to change the perspective in the game, allowing player to experience the setting from the figure’s POV
-The words on display have dark connotations and nihilistic quality
-Much repetition in design and in display of words
-red lettering on black background
-not sure what the figures goal is beyond observation
-end or way out

Analysis/Interpretation

-designer uses a space usually reserved for games to create this piece
-a museum exhibition-like experience from alternating points of view
-use of the colors red and black effective in supporting the theme of anger (blood) as well as the dark, futuristic setting
-lone figure suggests isolation/alienation; Space suit necessary in this alien environment (also red and black?) Yellow firefly light on suit helps player locate figure in environment


Connect to discussion/Pedagogy
-a testament to the creative potential of digital spaces
-this piece lends itself to lessons on the use of digital spaces as alternative to the written page in the presentation of text (lexia)
-gallery for written pieces (electronic portfolio); gallery for artwork; storage space for artifacts