Static Media

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Static media

“Media which does not support internal logic to alter its contents.”

Examples:

– Written media. The order of the words is set at the time of writing. The medium itself cannot rearrange these words upon reading.

– Video media. Similar observations apply as in written media. The order of frames is fixed by the author and there is no internal logic available to change them at runtime.

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Linear media

“Media which does not, by design, support internal or external logic to alter its contents.”

In other words:

“Media the contents of which aren’t designed to be altered by the user or the by act of using/playing”

Examples:

-Linear stories in written or video form. You can skip pages of a book or read them in any order you want, but that will break the original design. The same goes for the frames of a video.

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Story/Narrative

“A predefined sequence of events structured together to relay specific information”

Although historically stories have been linear, non-linear stories do exists. For instance interactive fiction, specifically the choose your own adventure (CYOA) genre, allows the player to make choices in following the narrative. In the case of CYOA books these stories are still predefined. Books are static media and as such the links between story events are defined by the author at the time of writing. This does not apply to digital interactive fiction as internal logic can be used to create a non-predefined interaction space.

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Story telling media

“Media which narrate stories.”

Story telling media gives you the same story every time, when used in the same way.

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Story creating media/ Experience creating media

“Media which creates new sequences of events based on internal or external logic”

Personal note: I don’t much care to use the term “Story creating media”. It’s a transition term for those people who are stuck with the idea that media can only tell stories, that there has to be an author in charge of everything and that digital media is no better.

Experience creating media alludes to the ability of interactive digital media to change the contents of the work based on both internal and external logic. With the use of simulation, randomization and other logic tools unique experiences can be created for each player. These sequences of events can be retold as stories by the player, in which case the player is doing the story telling, not the medium.

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