Click the link above to read my final paper about Text in the Digital world.
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#DigitalText Paper in “blog” form:
When I first heard the term “Digital Text” I assumed it referred only to actual text and how people are developing more text for digital use than for written use. Digital Text just described how people interact with the written word in a digital setting. It turns out that Digital Text is more than just text on a screen. It is the combination of different forms of written words in different sizes and fonts that can not only be read but also seen and heard. Digital Text has also replaced the concept of an original piece of work because the text can be copied, edited, and pasted elsewhere.
Through creating a portfolio of four different types of digital objects provided the opportunity to explore the ways various forms of digital media can be combined and co-exist to make more elaborate works. This concept of Digital Text leads me to a deeper understanding and application with other media creation tools. One such tool is Inklewriter, a platform that was free to use to tell an interactive story with multiple versions and endings of how the story played out.
Inklewriter is one tool that opens up the discussion of how text has evolved from more than just words on a printed page. Text now includes more than it did before the digital age. The role of the author has changed. During class we discussed the important of the role of the author in text. There is a major difference between an Author and an author. The capitalized Author has authority and power to influence the reader with their written word. The lower-case author simply describes anyone who writes and they may not have any power or influence over readers. Because of this idea, I can consider myself an author after having written blog posts and academic papers. All I need is to be considered and accepted as an author by a reader (pg 3 What is an Author?). I do not hold direct influence over my readers because I am not a proper Author. When a written piece of work lacks a proper Author it becomes “a piece of literature that can be read several different ways – none predetermined by an “author” – which will provide distinctive, compelling reading experiences each time [for the reader]” (pg 7 Language as Gameplay). When the author is removed, the text itself almost becomes alive and has the ability to influence in many different ways. Inklewriter removes the intent of the author and allows readers to choose how the story unfolds.
Not only has the role of the author changed, but the way text is displayed has changed as well. Text can be used in visual forms like a still image or movie Digital Text can even include hearing a person sing or speak the written word. Text is used to reinforce the message of audio and visual media. When text is accompanied by sound it may be difficult to determine if the viewer is first reading or hearing the message. The destination is what is important when reviewing digital text.
“The reader is the space on which all the quotations that make up a writing are inscribed without any of them being lost; a text’s unity lies not in its origin but in its destination. …The reader is without history, biography, psychology; he is simply that someone who holds together in a single field all the traces by which the written text is constituted.”(pg 9 The Death of the Author)
Watching “The Art of Creative Coding” I became the reader, but reading was not what I was doing. I was watching the object of text became visual; only in the world of digital could text be something more than written words that needed to be read. We are living a world where “people think in visual code.” (The art of Creative Coding)
Text has evolved from just words on a page. In the digital age, the message and influence of the author has changed greatly. Now, an Author can hold power over the influence of the written word or the author can give power to the reader. Not only has the role of the author changed but the way text is traditionally displayed has changed. Text can accompany and reinforce sound and visual objects, as well. Digital Text is more than just words on a screen.
The Art of Creative Coding. Prod. Kornhaber Brown. Perf. Jonathan Minard and James George. http://www.youtube.com
/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=eBV14-3LT-gYouTube. http://www.youtube.com/user/PBSoffbook?feature=watch, 3 Jan. 2013. Web. 06 May 2013.
Barthes, Roland. “The Death of the Author.” THE DEATH OF THE AUTHOR. Trans. Richard Howard. N.p., 1967. Web. 06 May 2013.
Foucault, Michel. “What Is an Author?” Scribd. Scribd, 1998. Web. 06 May 2013.
Stefans, Brian Kim. “Language as Gameplay: Toward a Vocabulary for Describing Works of Electronic Literature.” EBR. Electronic Book Review, 03 Sept. 2012. Web. 06 May 2013.