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On Turtles and Dragons - and the dangerous quest for media art notation systems

Authors: Adam Hyde, Heather Kelley, Marta Peirano, Elisabeth Schimana, Simone Boria, Rachel O'Reilly, Andreas Dekrout, Marc Downie , Robert Rotenberg

This book arose as an attempt to collect and collate various ideas and problems around notation that many of us have been dealing with on several levels. We have processes of varying complexity, and we would like to work out ways to discuss them that move beyond handwaving to looking at the deepest level of code. For example: How do we remember the structures of the facilitation systems that we have developed and pass them on to others? How to discuss the possibilities for interaction, and the way a media should be playing, given the actions of possible visitors? How to investigate the inner workings of an experience to see whether it makes sense, without building it completely in advance?

We want to think of notation as an abstraction, a simplification, and intuitive or studied way of writing something down that succinctly summarises the important points of a given situation, process, object or system.

The first release of this book, electronically, is available now.


On October 11th, 2012 we will release the printed version 1.1.

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