David Benqué's Infinite Adventure Machine creates random folk-tales, and is itself an adventure in what he describes as an unsolved computer science problem: automatic story generation.
Tales and myths; the core narratives of human culture, have been transmitted for generations through various technologies and media. What new forms might they take through digital formats and Artificial Intelligence?
Based on the work of Vladimir Propp, who reduced the structure of russian folk-tales to 31 basic functions, TIAM aims to question the limitations and implications of attempts at programming language and narrative.
Because the program is unable to deliver a finished story, rather only a crude synopsis and illustrations, users have to improvise, filling the gaps with their imagination and making up for the technology's shortcomings.
Wikipedia's article on Propp has a lengthy description of his typology of narrative structures.
I've always been fascinated by the subtle movement these devices make, whereby a description of universal narrative elements is turned into a prescription for writing new stories. Every few years there seems to be another bestseller book, for example, telling you how to succeed in Hollywood with Joseph Campbell. Campbell seems mostly good for turning every hero into Jesus but with Vedic mysticism.
But I love these random generators all the same (and make my own). The bite-size mind-meld between culture and software they embody has a strange magic to it.
The Infinite Adventure Machine [Glitch Fiction via Creative Applications]
The Sketchboard Pro wouldn’t look like much if you didn’t know what it was: a stand for the iPad Pro designed for digital artists, holding it at a perfect angle and providing more ample arm-resting space around the display. It’s fifty dollars on Indiegogo and ships in March. [via Digital Arts] The Sketchboard Pro features […]
Akai’s MPC One is a beat-making box that fits in a backpack (unlike the MPC X) and costs less than a grand (unlike the MPC Live), has a 7-inch touchscreen display, and offers a full bank of pads, knobs and dials for standalone action, and outputs and ports for hooking it up to other audio […]
The rack-mounted version of the expensive and handsome new Mac Pro is now available, starting at $6499. You can configure yourself a model up to $54,547.98, rack not included.
Going to the beach is almost always an enjoyable experience, but trekking back through your house on the way to the shower can leave a trail of sand the quickly saps the day of its sunny fun. Thankfully this BeachBox: Portable Shower & Storage unit has you covered the next time you hit the beach. […]
When it comes to immediately grabbing a reader’s attention in any medium, few things are more important than picking the perfect font—regardless of whether you’re advertising your brand online or in print. The MyFonts Monotype Fresh Font Bundle offers over 50 handcrafted fonts from one of the world’s most revered typeface companies, and it’s available […]
We’re all guilty of constantly staring at a variety of screens throughout the day. The only problem is that the blue light that’s emitted by most electronics — and even energy-efficient lightbulbs — is notoriously bad for our eyes and, subsequently, our health. Here are three glasses that offer superior protection for your eyes both […]