Smithsonian to exhibit videogames as art. Jason Scott Completes GET LAMP. Can this day be any better?
August 19, 2010 3:08 PM   Subscribe

The Art of Videogames, a Smithsonian American Art Museum exhibit set to open in March 2012, has been featured on CNN today. But you don't have to wait until 2012 to get your fix of gaming history. CNN has let the cat out of the scanner: our very own Jason Scott (jscott) has finished GET LAMP. It's now shipping!

This is a great moment: MeFites have featured and funded Jason's work previously:

- Jason Scott's BBS Documentary (July 2004)
- GET LAMP is a documentary about Text Adventures (2008)
- MC Frontalot "It is Pitch Dark" (Sep 2009)
- BBS documentary author raises funds to work fulltime on Computer history (Nov 2009)
- BBS Documentary now online to watch for free

Oh, yeah: the Smithsonian exhibit has been covered in Kotaku, MTV, and elsewhere. According to the American Art museum, this will be:

"the first [museum exhibit] to examine comprehensively the evolution of video games themselves as an artistic medium. [....] It will include multimedia presentations of game footage, video interviews with developers and artists, large prints of in-game screen shots, historic game consoles, and a selection of working game systems for visitors to play."

Those of you interested in a more academic viewpoint may wish to start with the work of Nick Montfort at MIT, who has published the Electronic Literature Collection, Racing The Beam: a history of the Atari, and Twisty Little Passages.
posted by honest knave (17 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
I only now notice that there is a related Metatalk thread.
posted by honest knave at 3:16 PM on August 19, 2010

That's all good. I was wondering why there hadn't been a FPP about it, was thinking of making one once I got back from the store, and lo and behold!

Definitely FPP worthy.
posted by hippybear at 3:20 PM on August 19, 2010

As hippybear said, definitely FPP worthy AND a worthy FPP!

(Most MeFites won't know about the MetaTalk post. Wretched hive of... well, you get the picture.)
posted by m@f at 3:26 PM on August 19, 2010

Well at least I have something to look forward to before I die on 12/21.
posted by lauratheexplorer at 3:26 PM on August 19, 2010

I only now notice that there is a related Metatalk thread.

I think this is a good addition as it provides more context for the MeTa post and a couple of other discussions that I didn't know about.
posted by SpacemanStix at 3:45 PM on August 19, 2010

I kept thinking about making a FPP about it. My take was going to be on how an advance screening of "Get Lamp" was the stone in the stone soup of Interactive Fiction programming at PAX East. The panel following the screening (video, audio) had Dave Lebling, Don Woods, Brian Moriarty, Andrew Plotkin, Nick Montfort, Steve Meretzky, and jscott himself.

Here's two accounts of the Storytelling in Interactive Fiction panel with Emily Short, J. Robinson Wheeler, Andrew Plotkin, Aaron Reed, Robb Sherwin.

You can play hundreds of games online courtesy of Parchment, a zcode interpreter in javascript.

Don't know where or how to start with IF? Read the People's Republic of Interactive Fiction s primer on a card and Brass Lantern's beginners guide, and see suggested games to start with here, here, and here.
posted by Zed at 3:50 PM on August 19, 2010 [5 favorites]

Oh cool. Thanks Zed!
posted by honest knave at 3:53 PM on August 19, 2010

And those interested in the Infocom canon should check out the Infocom Documentation Project (down at the moment; not for good, I hope), the Infocom Gallery (which also replicates the documentation, but in individual jpegs, not pdfs), and this old thread.
posted by Zed at 4:06 PM on August 19, 2010 [2 favorites]

Congratulations, Jscott! If I had any disposable income I'd buy the DVD. Will it ever be available on Netflix?
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 5:53 PM on August 19, 2010

No, it will never be available on Netflix, at least, not within the next year at least. Or probably five.
posted by jscott at 6:04 PM on August 19, 2010

The Art of Videogames, a Smithsonian American Art Museum exhibit

Heh. Take that, Ebert!
posted by Gator at 6:04 PM on August 19, 2010

Yeah, I came here to post "suck it, Ebert!"

Also Jscott owns and I'm going to have to GET "GET LAMP" AND PUT IT IN THE DVD PLAYER.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:14 PM on August 19, 2010

DVD Player (now unplugged from the wall): Taken.

You try to eject the DVD player tray, but the unit is unplugged.

Oh no! It's late and you've fallen asleep on the couch. Unfortunately, you just had to light that last cigar before bedtime.

*** You have died ***
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:53 PM on August 19, 2010 [3 favorites]

It's not quite a play about a couch, but this rocks like fricken' mad.
posted by Joey Michaels at 7:40 PM on August 19, 2010

Jscott, are you planning any public screenings?
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 7:49 PM on August 19, 2010

Apparently, if JetBlue flies into your city, you can help him schedule his public screening tour.
posted by hippybear at 9:12 PM on August 19, 2010

Shoot, I hope's ok. I've put my mirror of the Infocom Documentation Project back online, in case it's down for good.
posted by hades at 12:49 AM on August 20, 2010 [2 favorites]

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