Rebooting Electronic Literature: Documenting Pre-Web Born Digital Media Volume 4

Critical Writing
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Abstract (in English): 

This fourth volume of Rebooting Electronic Literature (REL) continues with the Electronic Literature Lab's mission to document born-digital literary works published on floppy disks, CD-ROMs, and other media formats held among the 300 in Dene Grigar's personal collection in the Electronic Literature Lab at Washington State University Vancouver. 

In Volume 4, readers will find these Eastgate Systems, Inc.'s titles:

Eric Steinhart's Fragments of a Dionysian Body (1997)
Michael Joyce, Twilight, A Symphony (1996)
Deena Larsen's Marble Springs 1.0 (1993)
Carolyn Guyer's Quibbling (1992)
Mark Bernstein and Erin Sweeny's The Election of 1912 (1988)
Robert DiChiara's A Sucker in Spades (1988)
Richard Smyth's Genetis: A Rhizography (1996)
Kathy Mac's Unnatural Habitats (1994)

At the heart of our project is the impetus to make fragile and inaccessible works freely accessible to scholars. Because works published by Eastgate Systems, Inc. are covered by copyright, they cannot legally be made available as emulations. The Pathfinders methodology that Grigar and Moulthrop developed [1] follows Fair Use rules. It also introduces the notion of "human-centered" experiences by providing video documentation of play-throughs of the work by authors and readers on hardware and software on which the work was created or intended to be originally read—a process called a "Traversal"—along with photos of the physical media, interviews with authors, author bios, and other useful information that helps scholars and readers experience the works and understand their contributions to literary and cultural history.

Pull Quotes: 

The eight works included in this volume of Rebooting Electronic Literature represent a diverse sample of what Eastgate Systems Inc. published from the late 1980s through the late 1990s. The eight works also represent three different authoring softwares—HyperCard (Marble Springs 1.0), Hypergate (The Election of 1912, A Sucker in Spades) and Eastgate's more popular Storyspace software (Fragments of the Dionysian Body, Unnatural Habitats, Quibbling, Genetis: A Rhizography, and Twilight, A Symphony.)

splash page for Rebooting Electronic Literature Volume 4

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Dene Grigar