As I ♥ E-Poetry continues to develop as a collaborative resource, it is important to recognize those who work behind the scenes to keep this site current. This semester, I had 6 UPRM students enrolled in my Digital Humanities Internship course who brought I ♥ E-Poetry to Pinterest, redesigned the blog using the GeneratePress theme, and have written entries, which will be published this week. Who are these remarkable interns who have cared for I ♥ E-Poetry’s health?
I ♥ E-Poetry @ the ASA Conference. Leonardo Flores will be presenting and handing out I ♥ E-Poetry brochures at the following ASA events: Game Over: The Fun and Fury of Electronic Literature Thursday, November 6, 8-9:30 pm, Doheny Library, USC Caucus: Digital Humanities: Digital Shorts: The Fun and the Fury Friday, November 7, 8:00 to 9:45am, Westin Bonaventure, Level 1, Beaudry A (L1) Caucus: Digital Humanities: Scripting the Reader in Electronic Literature
"Takei, George" by Mark Sample: This generative poem uses Nick Montfort’s Taroko Gorge engine to produce a poem about Japanese American Hollywood actor, public figure, and gay-rights activist George Takei. Sample selects words for the generator that represent three aspects of Takei’s life: his time in a Japanese internment camp as a child, his role as Hikaru Sulu in Star Trek, and his work as a gay-rights activist.
"Rememori" by Christine Wilks: This poem about dementia through Alzheimer’s disease is structured through the use of a memory game. There’s a series of tiles with question marks that flip when selected, displaying an iconic image, text, or brief animation, accompanied by a question, usually about the person’s identity. Whenever you match a counter with the right one, it disappears until you complete the level.
“Spine Sonnet” by Jody Zellen: This conceptual generative poem draws lines randomly from a set of 2500 images of book spines, all in the areas of art, theory, and architecture. The result is a stack of 14 books with titles that can be read as lines in a sonnet. The image above is from the Web version, which contains much more information than simply what appears in the titles: color, width, varied typography, author, press, logos, and other pictorial information.
“Blue Hyacinth,” by Pauline Masurel: Slightly modifying the “cut-up” technique of Dadaist and Modernist writers in her digital work, “Blue Hyacinth,” Pauline Masurel encourages her readers not to destroy the original four poems, but rather jumble them together, stir them up, and weave them in a way that shares in the creative process of generating an individualized text.
"abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz" by Jörg Piringer: As researchers like Johanna Drucker and Jerome McGann, Concrete and Letterist poets, typeface designers and typographers have long known, letters have great expressive power and statuesque complexity. And in digital media, fonts aren’t just pretty shapes for letters: they are software with programmed behaviors, seen in the algorithms that determine kerning, for example.
About Kyle Brett Kyle Brett is a current M.A. student at Lehigh University and is a lover of history, coffee, and urban spelunking. Kyle's current research interests include, celebrity in 19th century American literature, inhabitance and geographies of writing, Lovecraftian mythos and popular cultural representations of Cthulhu, and spatial and mapping projects in the digital humanities.
"Konsonant" by Jörg Piringer: This suite of Letterist sound poems for the iOS platform offers several environments and behaviors for the letters that inhabit them.The interfaces go from simple to complex, and Piringer uses phrases with the verbs “draw, control, build, create, and connect” to guide the reader to interact and play with the letters and tools offered.
"10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10 " by Anonymous (by way of Nick Montfort): This one-line code poem for the Commodore 64 produces the output you see in the screen capture above, though this short video documentation will show it in action. When executed, it randomly generates one of two characters that look like, / or (the actual codes are pure diagonal lines used as drawing elements), repeating the operation forever unless interrupted.
"Bembo's Zoo" by Roberto de Vicq de Cumptich: Based on Roberto de Vicq de Cumptich’s delightful book of typographical animals, this website enhances the experience by providing beautifully produced animations (by Mucca design) that transition from the word for the animal to the animal figure built out of those letters. The sounds by Federico Chieli help breathe life into the animals, bringing us into their world and throwing in the occasional...
“Zig and Zag” by Sérgio Capparelli and Ana Cláudia Gruszynskiis: “Zig and Zag” is one of ten ciberpoems created by the writer Sérgio Capparelli and the graphic designer Ana Cláudia Gruszynski for “Ciberpoesia” website that features a series of 28 visual poems created by the Brazilian duo. Like “Bembo’s Zoo,” this is more than just digital versions for visual poems also published in a printed book...
"a as in dog" by Dan Waber and Marko Niemi: This delightful sequence of minimalist concrete poetry is an homage to Bembo’s Zoo and Anipoemas is the result of a creative collaboration in which the technical and the conceptual become truly interconnected. Its minimalist aesthetic includes technical aspects like producing it with animated GIFs—
I <3 Bots by Leonardo Flores: If you have been reading my daily entries on bots, and have explored the resource that compiles them, you may have noticed the great variety, sophistication, and artistry that characterizes this emergent genre. With these daily postings, I have tried to take a snapshot of a vibrant moment for this artistic and literary practice, knowing all along that it is growing too quickly to fully capture.
“Save the Humanities (@SaveHumanities)” by Mark Sample: At face value this bot seeks solutions to what many call “the crisis of the Humanities” by offering “tips on how to stop the crisis in the humanities. Real solutions!” Its operation is conceptually straightforward: it completes a sentence template that begins with “To save the humanities, we need to” and then completes the sentence, I imagine with the results of a search in Twitter for tweets that contain “we need to” or “we must.”
“Snowclone-a-Minute (@snowcloneminute)” by Bradley Momberger and “Pizza Clones (@pizzaclones)” by Allison Parrish: These two bots are based on the concept of snowclones, which are a linguistic phenomenon best described by Erin O’Connor in her wonderful blog and resource “The Snowclones Database.” A snowclone is a particular kind of cliche, popularly originated by Geoff Pullum. The name comes from Dr. Pullum’s much-maligned “If Eskimos have N words for snow, X surely have Y words for Z”.
"Cantoos" by Dan Waber: This generative sequence of poems are based on a carefully scheduled sequence of changes: words fade in and out, letters fade in and out to transform words, spacing changes in words to produce different meanings or direct our attention to the etymology of words, alternate spellings, homophones, and puns replace words to subvert traditional meanings, and much more happens in this sequence of 105 poems.
"Sestinas" by Dan Waber: Perhaps one never reaches all the possible combinations of possibilities in a situation or relationship, but patterns emerge, and one gets a sense of what is going on. The sestina is a poetic form that is built upon repetition: a set of words that are going to repeat themselves in a very meticulous pattern which can produce a sense of obsession or claustrophobia, produced by being in a space where there is little change...
Juxtaposition Bots: @TwoHeadlines, @oneiropoiesis, and @AndNowImagine: The three bots reviewed in this entry all carry out essentially the same technique-- they create a tweet based on the juxtaposition of material from two different sources-- yet produce output that feels quite different. The reasons for this are partly thematic, partly due to the data source, and partly because of the way the join the juxtaposed elements.
"Five by Five" by Dan Waber and Jason Pimble: This series of spatially combinatorial poems are built by arranging words on a five by five three-dimensional grid, using the same engine as in “I, You, We.” Readers can manipulate the object in several ways, zooming in and out and rotating the cube to allow certain phrases to come to the foreground and be read.
“#FalseFlag Bot (@FalseFlagBot_)” by Ben Abraham: The concept of the false flag is born from mistrust of the government and lends itself to elaborate conspiracy theories about covert operations on its own soil which are then blamed on terrorists. During the Bot Summit, Ben Abraham discussed this concept and explained some of his interest in redoing the original @FalseFlagBot, as seen in this video. Some of the conspiracy theory hashtags he mentions and a few others were conveniently listed...
"Superstitious Appliances" by Jason Nelson: This set of six thematically linked poems revolve around appliances and obsessions about the body. From the outset, the Nelson seeks to unsettle the reader by taking a medieval, religious kind of image and placing it over a layer of what seems to be digital static, while a couple of soft audio tracks play: one a barely audible person speaking, and a throaty voice repeating “I will eat you.”
“Real Human Praise (@RealHumanPraise)” by Rob Dubbin and Leonard Richardson: This bot takes Tweet-sized snippets of text from movie reviews aggregated in Rotten Tomatoes, identifies nouns in the subject position, and replaces those with the names of right-wing pundits who appear regularly on the Fox News Channel, attaching the ironically intended hashtag #PraiseFOX. The bot was created essentially as joke for the politically charged comedy show The Colbert Report, as a reaction to the news...