Category: Essays

  • Videogame visions of a post-climate change future

    I wrote an essay on the way games have depicted climate change for Memory Insufficient. I was pretty happy with how this turned out, and the plan is to whip it up into a more fleshed out paper later in the year. I haven’t had a chance to read the other essays but if prior […]

  • Gone Home: Jump Scares and Ludonarative Harmony

    So there’s a new game out called Gone Home and I don’t have the superlatives to describe it adequately so just take my word for it and go play. It’s some trifling amount of money on steam. If you haven’t finished playing it, I advise you to stop reading this essay now and just spend […]

  • [talk] Flarf ‘poetry’ and the Facebook tagging algorithm

    So I gave a short paper at CODE last week entitled ‘Flarf ‘poetry’ and the Facebook tagging algorithm’ and got lots of positive comments and questions afterwards. Here’s an embed of the audio, and here’s a direct download. The slides to accompany the talk can be found here.

  • Some comments on, and two reservations about, #AltLit

    I’ve recently joined (found?) the massively distributed online (sub?)culture that calls itself (is called?) Alt.Lit. My journey of discovery is not so important, but it started on twitter, moved to Facebook and now I see it everywhere. And let’s be honest, it’s not really a literature movement anymore; it’s become a cultural juggernaut steamrolling everything […]

  • Jon McCalmont on Prometheus, Myths and Calvinball stories

    At his consistently exceptional ‘Ruthless Culture’ blog Jonathan McCalmont has a great meta-review of Prometheus, in which he locates the film within the broader constellation of ‘myth-making’ in films and modern popular culture that is so prevalent right now. Having not seen Prometheus yet, I can’t really agree or disagree, but his analysis of wider […]

  • Attention and Immersion

    A video essay about the term ‘immersion’ and why I think it should be replaced. While video of Richard Lemarchand’s GDC talk is behind the GDC Vault paywall, his slides and text from the talk are online here. I’ve received a few very nice replies and comments – Shawn Trautman wrote out some of his reservations and emailed […]

  • Audio: Neuroscience, Technospectacularism and the Mind

    On Wednesday the 9th of November I presented a paper to the Knowledge/Culture/Social Change International Conference at UWS Parramatta. The title of my paper was “Neuroscience, Technospectacularism and the Mind” and I recorded my talk which you can listen to below. The 29 minute recording includes some questions asked by the audience at the end […]

  • The New Situationist International

    I read the introductory few pages of McKenzie Wark’s The Beach Beneath The Street and was immediately inspired to organise or join an artist/philosophical collective like the Situationist International. I don’t have a great understanding of them, their goals and practices, having learnt virtually everything about them everything through reading Wikipedia, a couple of chapters […]

  • A response to Dan Cook’s “blunt critique of game criticism”

    NB: Since posting this piece the original post in question has been edited to remove many of the phrases I initially took aim at. As such I now feel like the fool flailing away at thin air, so thanks for doing that to me, Dan. It is, as always, his prerogative, but it’s also exactly […]

  • Phonogram

    I’m suffering from a hangover. A hangover induced by Phonogram – it’s actually a comic, and not the latest alcoholic beverage with an overly generous marketing budget. But a hangover is what I’ve got. My head hurts. My body hurts, and worst of all my heart hurts. Phonogram I love you, but you’re bringing me […]