Editorial dichtung-digital No. 36

Dear Readers

Dichtung-Digital has taken a break much longer than expected… However, now it is back with a collection of very interesting articles - and the next issue, a guest-edition by Astrid Ensslin (University of Manchester) and Alice Bell (University of Sheffield), is already scheduled for Fall 2007.

A main focus of this issue is interactive installation as Scott Snibbe and Camille Utterback create it. Scott Snibbe tells in an interview how he came to create interactive art, how he collaborates with his art production company and what he expects his audience to get out of his pieces. Roberto Simanowski shows in a close reading of Scott's pieces "Deep Walls" what deeper meaning one can find in such an installation. Lisa Dorin, who curated Camille Utterback's installations Animated Gestures, discusses the relation she sees between Utterback's work and art history, Roberto Simanowski ventured a further interpretation of Utterback's work. Richard Rinehart finally talks about interactive art from the perspective of a curator and discusses the aspect of documenting and preserving it.

Another major subject of this issue is computer games. Marie-Laure Ryan investigates the relationship between games and narratives and assembles some strong argument against the perspective of the ludologists. Fotis Jannidis supports Ryan's position arguing that there is a narrative aspect in computer games by undertaking a closer analysis of two sequences, taken from the MMORPG Everquest II and the adventure game Black Mirror.

Rita Raley does not search for narratives in games but for the role of code in digital literature. Her interest lies in the use of metaphors of software engineering in art and in the manifestation of underlying systematics by code. Astrid Ensslin goes back to hypertext and wonders what role it can play in the class room and what chances such alternative form of literature has to become part of the canon and subsequently of the curriculum.

As always, we hope you enjoy the collection and find interesting ideas worth further consideration.

Roberto Simanowski, Providence, May 2007