Newsletter 6/2002
4.Jg. / Nr. 26 - ISSN 1617-6901
earlier newsletter

ed. by Karin Wenz and Uwe Wirth (Guesteditors)

Content Newsletter:
Multiplayer Role-Playing Games / Novel as Computer Game / Autonomous Avatars / Virtual Bodies of Real People / Cyberspace als Cartesian Project / Descendents of Frankenstein / Avatar as Interface / Link and Performance

Bodies and Technologies in Multiplayer Role-Playing Games [English]

Role-playing games create fictional spaces within which imaginary, exotic, and often heroic identities can be acted out. MMORPGs, Massive Multiplayer Role-Playing Games, offer increasingly complex and complicated networks of player interaction - here playing becomes especially time-consuming and at times even boring. Randi Gunzenhäuser compares Diablo II and Dark Age of Camelot and concludes that MMORPGs do not form a homogeneous genre but offer very diversified, even oppositional playing experiences.

Nika Bertram's Der Kahuna Modus as Novel and as Computer Game [German]

Bernd Hartmann analyses the Kahuna Modus following the question what governs a transcription of a linear printed novel into an interactive computer game. The computer game is a medium of its own but supports ways of reading and interpreting the novel under new perspectives.

Autonomous Avatars. Hybris of virtuell Sign Bodies?[German]

Mela Kocher presents a semiotic analysis of the avatar and its function as an electronic representative of the human being. Her analysis is situated in the context of the discussion on materiality/immateriality of sign bodies in digital media. Her starting point is an etymological approach to the term "avatar".

An Essay on Virtual Bodies of Real People in the Internet [German]

Judith Mathez focuses on the transfer of a physical person into her virtual embodiment by naming 3 main aspects which are related to this transfer: 1. the body as communicative sign vehicle; 2. the relation between physical body and online body; 3. the de-embodiment and embodiment which results in the interaction between physical body and online body.

Shattered embodiment. Cyberspace as Cartesian Project [English]

The Cartesian worldview is objectified in Virtual Reality technologies. Elke Müller compares Descartes’ philosophy with the phenomenological critique and alternative of Merleau-Ponty and distinguishes three kinds of virtual spaces, of which the CAVE seems to arouse the strongest kind of Cartesian ruptures, the experiences of ‘shattered embodiment’.

Artificial Life. Frankensteins Descendants [German]

Maria Teresa Santoro and Rejane Cantoni promise horrible reports about monsters and other supernatural creatures, reports about creatures composed by artificially constructed organism, about insects, androids, and humanids.

Der Avatar als Schnittstelle [German]

Karin Wenz explains the different functions of an avatar inMMORPG's (Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games) which can be highlighted by the metaphoric uses of cut and interface. Her example is the Role-Playing Game Ragnarok Online.

Link und Performanz [German]

Uwe Wirth undertakes a semiotic and performative definition of the term "sign body in the web". He focuses on the indexicality and performativity of the link in hypertext.

Newsletter 2002:

current - 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5

Newsletter 2001:

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6

Newsletter 2000:

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7

Newsletter 1999:

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7