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Individual works

Title: Welcome to Pine Point

Description: Amongst the shortlisted entries for the 2011 New Media Writing Prize (http://www.newmediawritingprize.co.uk) was this, a mixture of documentary and reminiscence about a mining town in Canada which simply closed down and vanished when the mine itself was shut down. Long on atmosphere and nostalgia, sense of history and sense of place, and reminiscent of both Garrison Keillor and Twin Peaks, it's beautifully written, beautifully assembled, unshowy and completely absorbing.

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Title: Occupy London - with Cartoons

Description: This project was set up by the cartoonist Dave Miller as an online expression of solidarity with the anti-capitalist tented occupation at St Paul's Cathedral in the autumn of 2011. Dave explains: "At the Occupy London Stock Exchange site at St Pauls, London, there are many drawings and paintings sellotaped to the walls; the area has become a public Art gallery. Works full of slogans and messages, full of passion. While visiting the site, it occurred to me that many people want to express their views in this way, and contribute their own art work to share with Occupy London, to express their support and solidarity; but they can't physically be at St Pauls." He has therefore set up a project which allows you to select from a range of characters and backgrounds, then add your own text. It's rough-and-ready but well worth having a go, and it has attracted contributions from The Guardian's Martin Rowson, amongst many others.

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Title: Every Day the Same Dream

Description: Excellent little game from Molleindustria, an Italy-based collective which devotes itself to creating games with a political edge. Some of them are a bit top-heavy with meaning, but this one really works; you find yourself in the shoes of an office-worker who has nothing in his life except the same dull routine over and over; so you start trying to break out of the routine, and that's when the game comes alive. Designed in tones of grey, with little touches of colour to draw your attention to significant aspects of the game, and with a really simple interface (arrow-keys to move your character, space-bar to make things happen), this is a little triumph.

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Title: The Lost Shoe (video)

Description: This was originally designed as a trailer for a book of poems, and the masterstroke is that it doesn't attempt to present any of the poetry in video form, but introduces us instead to the thematic territory of the collection. To an extent what it leaves us with is two questions - firstly "Is this appropriate territory for poetry?" and secondly "Can her poems on this subject possibly match the strength of this video?" - which makes it a pretty good advert, because you have to buy the book to get the answers. As a piece of work in its own right, it keeps us slightly off-balance because the angle of approach seems to change slightly as the video unfolds. It starts with a really shocking, documentary, raw-footage feel: a 911 telephone conversation from a man who has harmed his children, with the really telling this-is-real-life detail that the woman who takes the call thinks she's talking to another female, and only realises that it's actually a man when he tells her that his name is David; then a terrible moment when she asks him what happened to his children and he breaks into hysterical tears and says "They got stabbed", as if somebody else might have done it. Then there are some quotes about poetry, which seem out of place at first, raising the question of whether this kind of material is appropriate for poetry, what poetry's got to do with it, whether poetry is the right medium in which to deal with it; and which also move the video away from raw documentary, raw shock, and onto a more controlled and philosophical plane; and then, in the third section, Martha reads out some notes for defending counsels about how to get their clients off even if it's obvious that they have committed terrible acts of violence on their own family. At this point, the question about whether poetry (or, to put it more generally, any artistic response) is appropriate to this kind of subject matter is already being answered, because along with the really withering sense of irony which comes through there also emerges both a sense of Martha's own voice and viewpoint, and a vicelike feeling of artistic control, restraint, an understanding that irony is a more powerful weapon here than any outspoken denunciation of the justice system. It's strong stuff.

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Title: I Love You

Description: From the Brazilian artist Regina Pinto, this is a short piece about feminine beauty. It's extremely accomplished riff on female icons: glossy and glamorous, nostalgic but not drippy, with design values reminiscent of Art Deco and pre-war Hollywood, and just a hint of feminist subversion here and there.

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Title: AlphaAlpha, an animated notebook of letters

Description: Again from the Brazilian artist Regina Pinto, this is a collection of 366 pictorial variations on the letter A (one for each day of the year, plus one for the leap-year), contributed by various different artists from all over the world (myself included) and put together, with music and animations, by Regina. The end result is simply eye-popping. There's some really extraordinary stuff in here: you can lose yourself in it for hours.

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Title: Cleikit

Description: Another collaborative work, this is a spinoff from Peter McCarey's monumental "The Syllabary" (http://www.thesyllabary.com/), which has long been one of my favourite works of hyperliterature. "The Syllabary" is McCarey's attempt to write a poem for every single-syllable word in the Scots/English language, and "Cleikit" is an attempt to get other people to have a go at the same thing. If you feel like trying yourself, there's an e-mail by which you can contact McCarey and offer your services. In the meantime, although mostly empty, "Cleikit" (a Scots dialect-word meaning "grabbed") is worth a visit as a new media sound poem in its own right, automated and randomised, exploring the hundreds of single-syllable words in the language: it's a quite hypnotic experience.

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Title: The Gateless Gate

Description: Joel Weishaus's work is very much at the low-profile literary end of the hyperliterature spectrum, and "The Gateless Gate" is one of his most low-tech and literary projects to date - no animated images, no pop-ups on mouseover, no sound-effects, no words or images floating around the page. It takes the form of a sequence of "double-page spreads": in each case, a "page" of text is displayed opposite a "full-page" image. The simplicity of the schema perhaps masks the fact that this is a tour-de-force of HTML design: many of the full-page images are stunning, layered photographic "palimpsests", as Weishaus calls them, luminous and symbolic, and often suggesting prehistoric daubings on rock or bark. The text shows the same concern with prehistory and nature, not to mention layering: it blends philosophy, poetry, erudition, dream-fragments and autobiography into something which is both difficult to grasp and profound in its cumulative effect. You have to read quite a bit of Weishaus before you start to "get" him, but it's well worth the effort. There's nobody else like him.

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Title: Dreary Ride

Description: Everything Millie does has her quirky, funny, observant, opinionated personality stamped all over it, and this is no exception, although it's also one of her most focussed and controlled pieces of work. Basically a number of video-loops playing alongside one another, all showing a car-journey as seen from inside the vehicle. It's an object-lesson in design, and it also demonstrates how to make a visual poem out of a well-chosen snippet of material.

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Title: The Angel of History, Lost in East London

Description: This is a big download (117mb), but it's well worth the wait. As the streets of East London flow past, a silver angel flies slowly from one side of the screen to the other, apparently unconnected to the urban landscape, yet somehow acting as both a comment and a reproach. Nobody captures that sense of watching the outside world through the side-window of a moving vehicle quite like Michael; nobody endows it with quite the same poignancy; and this has also got several other dimensions to it which are very characteristic of his work - the sense of layered time, the sense of place, the grainy half-light, the enigmatic poetry, and a really wonderful audio track.

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Title: Lullaby

Description: Poetry International Org recently ran a "Bits of Poetry" exhibition online, featuring various pieces of digital poetry. All of them are worth looking at, but for me the outstanding one is "Lullaby" by Tonnus Oosterhoff, a Dutch poet. Essentially it's a surrealist poem set to piano-music by J S Bach, where the words appear on-screen pretty much in time with the notes, but not slavishly so - and there's one exquisite passage which comes up in silence. If new media is used simply as a means of presenting text on-screen, I'm one of those people who tends to think that the new media approach is superfluous and the text would probably be better off in print - but this piece has forced me to re-think. Above all, it's beautifully written and translated.

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Title: Consensus Trance

Description: The latest piece from Andy Campbell/Dreaming Methods (formerly known as Author X and Digital Fiction) is actually the first instalment of a series. The narrator goes to a school reunion and tries to find out about an old schoolfriend called Alex. The inquiry sends him on a mysterious journey into the depths of his own past and/or imagination. Typically moody, atmospheric, and technically super-accomplished, this is more approachable, more structured and built on a larger scale than any of Andy's previous work. It could make big waves in the world of hyperfiction.

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Title: Flight Paths

Description: Another work in progress: this time a project sparked by a news story about a dead body found in a supermarket car-park. The body belonged to an aircraft stowaway, who boarded the plane by jumping onto the undercarriage as it was about to take off, and fell to earth when the undercarriage came out again as the plane prepared to land. The project is written by Kate Pullinger and designed by Chris Joseph, and although it labours under a burden of policital correctness it does include some really arresting sequences.

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Title: The Syllabary, Version 3

Description: This is the latest incarnation of Peter McCarey's long-running project to write a short poem for every one-syllable word in the English/Scottish language. Rather baffling at first sight, but you can now download an interactive version, which allows you to "dial up" any syllable you like. This gives it more of a fully-fledged new media feel than the previous versions, although the design remains gratifyingly un-slick. Its strength, however, has always been and remains the sheer quality of McCarey's poetry.

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Title: Map of a Future War

Description: Published in "The New River", an online magazine devoted to digital art, this suffers from many of the familiar drawbacks of "old-school" hyperliterature: it's confusing to navigate, you're never sure how much more you need to view before you've seen it all, or which bits you've seen already. But, built up out of short text-snippets layered on top of each other, which fade or come into focus as you move your mouse, it's well-enough written and well-enough designed to be absorbing in spite of these problems.

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Title: Science for Idiots

Description: The latest piece to appear on Alan Bigelow's "Web Yarns" site, and it has all his usual hallmarks - good graphic design, clarity of navigation, unpretentious writing, sense of humour - plus one or two more profound undertones which make it all the more interesting. Well worth a look.

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Title: The 9th Allegro

Description: All of Doran Golan's videos are worth seeing, but this is one of the most outstanding, and contains many of his most important themes: a sense of place, a sense of character, a sense of culture and history, a really complex, stereotype-free attitude towards politically explosive material, and above all tremendous qualities of composition, structure and control.

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Title: Inaugurationanimation

Description: Television coverage of the US Presidential Inauguration, slowed down and processed until it acquires a rich painterly texture. Imparts a tremendous sense, not just of American history and American politics, but the history of American art too. The slowness of the action seems to bring out the patrician, studied aspect of the ceremony: the intensely aspirational quality, the feeling that individuals can make a difference, that the human spirit is inherently noble, and that the world can be made a better place if we just make a sufficient effort - along with the intense theatricality, the self-regard, the sense that these gestures are being made with the whole world for an audience, and that if you can just get the gestures right it almost doesn't matter what you actually do.

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Title: OK Charlie

Description: A portrait of the video artist Doron Golan by his fellow-artist Brian Gibson. Golan chinks his coffee-cup and says "OK Charlie"; the sequence is looped; and suddenly we're listening to a tune. Manages to be fingerclickin' funky and toe-curlingly clever at the same time.

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Title: Journey

Description: Commuters on a tube train: profiles, the backs of heads, shoulders, sliding doors. About halfway through this video there's an extremely subtle transition from observational realism to something symbolic and metaphysical, leading up to a magical moment at the end.

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Title: Her Morning Elegance

Description: A video, co-directed by singer-songwriter Oren Lavie, to go with his song of the same name. The song is pretty good, but the video is really lovely, a supremely inventive piece of stop-motion animation featuring a girl on a bed and a lot of pillows and laundry.

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Title: U cant hold me down

Description: The dancer and artist Donna Kuhn has gradually been evolving her own completely individual style of experimental video, and this is one of the best examples. Glimpses of dance, glimpses of sea-shore, and glimpses of Donna's spiky, Klee-style drawings combine into something mysterious, tense, sad and poetic.

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Title: Wordscapes

Description: Made in Processing, which is Java-based open-source image-processing software, this is a sequence of 26 animated words - one for each letter of the alphabet. As there are a lot of them some are naturally more interesting than others, but the best are very witty and inventive: I particularly like "restless", for example, where whichever part of the word you point at with your mouse stays still, while the rest of it jiggles nervously about.

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Title: Clearance

Description: The latest project from Dreaming Methods (Andy Campbell, Author X). "A protagonist experiences frightening apocalyptic visions whilst trapped in a hypnagogic state." Throughout most of this work we are finding our way through parts of the British countryside, which is littered with the evidence of some kind of disaster, and studded with mysterious stone or wooden heads. The text is almost disposable: the pictures and soundtrack might well have been enough by themselves in this instance. But there is a genuinely heart-stopping moment at the end, involving a hooded figure in a shed.

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Title: "Passage" and "Gravitation"

Description: Jason Rohrer, the designer/programmer, refers to these as "autobiographical" games. "Passage" is a kind of maze-game in which the maze represents life, and "Gravitation" is about Rohrer playing with his son and getting inspiration from him, but needing to stop playing with him in order to work. The startling thing about both is the emotional punch they pack, and the economy of means with which this is achieved.

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Title: Fundamentals

Description: An introduction to the fundamentals of hyperliterature. This is intended as a teaching aid, and it's not just for students of the genre but for those who are interested in producing hyperliterature themselves. As such, it provides a relatively jargon-free approach with lots of practical exercises and examples of work from here and there around the Web. It seems a trifle oldfashioned in its assumption that hyperliterary texts should generally have mazeliks structures of multiple links and nodes, in the style popularised by Eastgate, but it remains a thoroughly useful primer all the same.

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Title: http://www.realitycpu.com

Description: As described by Rhizome (www.rhizome.org), this is "like stumbling upon a scrambled memory bank of images captured sometime around 1993: a dream-arcade of faux vector graphics, neon color schemes, Uzi-blasting last action heroes and gratuitous drop-shadows". I'll go along with that. The same writeup goes on to attempt to ascribe some deeper meaning to the piece, which I'm not so sure about - but it's an absolute blast anyway.

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Title: Netpoetic.com

Description: A number of video presentations by Jason Nelson on the subject of digital poetics. There are three of them so far, and so far they all deal with the creation of digital poetry using Flash. By turns fascinating, funny, inspirational and infuriating: Jason is a very engaging presenter, obviously completely at his ease in front of the camera, but there are times when he seems so determined not to take himself too seriously that he almost winds up saying nothing at all. A bit more critical analysis and hard-edged technical information would have been helpful; but this remains a quirky and absorbing introduction to digital poetry of the Flash variety, with incidental sidelights on Jason's own working methods.

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Title: The Graveyard

Description: Tale of Tales is a game-design studio aimed at people who find ordinary games unsatisfying. Their work often contains mythic/poetic material. In this one, an old lady stands at the gates of a cemetery: you have to guide her through the gates and along a path until she comes to a bench in front of a chapel; then you have to sit her down. When she sits, you hear a song; and after the song, you get her up and guide her out of the cemetery again. The pace is slow, the possibilities for interaction strictly limited, and the end result makes you wonder where games end and works of art begin. A "full" version can be downloaded for $5, which "adds only one feature, the possibility of death".

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Title: Distant

Description: A series of black-and-white photographs with bits cut out of them, to reveal a fizzy-looking, slightly-shifting network of criss-crossed black lines beyond and beneath them. All the human figures have been removed. Each picture is accompanied by a sound file: the wind blowing, doors opening and closing, a river gurgling, and so forth. Very simple and effective: to me, it suggests the way in which technology is eating into our lives.

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Title: Cyber Birds Dance

Description: The interface for this work is the silhouette of a hummingbird, composed of little squares. Each square, when clicked, triggers an animation. There are about 260 animations altogether, all of them based on birds: wheeling, twittering, flocking, disappearing off-screen and returning. Different animations can be combined with each other. There are fragments of text; the colours are beautiful; and the piece as a whole combines state-of-the-art digital effects with acute observation of the natural world.

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Title: http://www.simonschofield.net/

Description: A sequence of pictures created using "new software tools that assemble the images over time, using many thousands of repeated operations, according to sets of rules". They combine mathematical precision and formal control with intense observation, especially of the natural world.

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Title: alarmingly these are not l@vesick zombies

Description: Another good one from Jason Nelson: an absurdist satire on computer games and game theory. Basically it's a series of pointless and bizarre shoot-'em-up levels, overcrowded with ugly-looking graphics and ear-jangling sound-effects. Sandwiched between these levels are instructional videos of Jason "explaining" the finer points of game theory - but all of his "explanations" are deliberately nonsensical. Very funny in places, but also - despite the fact that it deliberately avoids saying anything at all explicit - a shrewd dig at new media theorists' fascination with games.

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Title: Billy Collins - Action Poetry

Description: A series of twelve short Quicktime movies, by various hands, based on poems by the Canadian Billy Collins. Some are better than others, and you have to keep asking yourself if they really add anything or if the poems would have been better left as poems - but the best ones take flight from the text and achieve some genuinely arresting images.

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Title: f.wishes

Description: A Japanese-style picture of bells hanging from the bough of a tree. Each bell represents a wish, and if you click on a bell the wish will appear as a line of text at the bottom of the screen. You can type in your own wish, and drag a line upwards from it to the bough of the tree, whereupon it will become a bell alongside all the others. This draws you in. You find yourself clicking on one bell after another to find out what people have wished for, and thinking about what you wish for yourself. Like some of the best interactive new media art, it takes a simple concept and uses it as a means of exploring the shared humanity of its viewers.

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Title: The Cantoos

Description: A series of very short poems - some of them only a word or two long - in a very plain typeface on a white background - but they change in various ways as you view them. Sometimes new words are added, or the wording of the poem is rewritten, or the text becomes creatively misspelt. Eventually, after a number of variation, the poem will find its way back to its original form. The possibilities of this fairly simple format are explored with great ingenuity; and whereas a lot of new media poetry tends to distract attention, in one way or the other, from the writing itself, in the Cantoos project the writing is very much to the fore.

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Title: Between Treacherous Objects

Description: Jason Nelson's work is always worth looking at, and this is one of the most absorbing of his recent pieces. The basic idea is to take seemingly-disparate pairs of objects and put them together on the same page. This is accomplished with the vertiginous, user-responsive graphics and bizarre semi-musical sound-effects which are typical of Jason, but with a more stripped-down, simplified feel than usual, partly because many of the pages are in black, white and red.

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Title: LiveZine

Description: A one-off virtual magazine put together by two Scandinavian students as an art project. There's nothing revolutionary about the end product, but it's an extremely engaging piece of work making use of some well-chosen snippets of text.

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Title: Bus Root

Description: A young professional woman gets her car towed and is forced to catch the bus to work. She soon finds herself surrounded by a seething scrum of schoolkids, all talking at once, bitching about each other and getting on each other's nerves. By the end of the journey, despite her disdain, she seems considerably less self-obsessed than she was at the beginning, and we've had a glimpse into one of the undercurrents of English life. The performances in this short film are astonishingly natural, and the editing, use of camera-angles within a confined space, and choice of music are all spot-on. I don't know anything at all about Hannah Holland, the director, and was unable to discover anything from the Web, but this is a must-see.

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Title: First Screening

Description: Curated by Jim Andrews, who was also involved in re-engineering it, this is a loving recreation of a suite of animated-text poems from the Canadian poet bpNichol, created in 1983-4 using an Apple IIe computer and the Apple BASIC programming language, both of which became obsolete within the space of a few years. As Andrews points out, this is "some of the earliest programmed, kinetic poetry" ever created, which makes it extremely interesting from the literary-history point of view: but it's also lively and witty in its own right, perfectly capable of standing alongside today's more technically-advanced work. bpNichol unfortunately died whilst undergoing an operation in 1988.

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Title: Interdependency

Description: Eight pictures taken inside a forest, accompanied by eight short texts. The texts take the form of e-mails to different individuals, but written in densely poetic language, and all on the theme of man's relationship with the natural environment. The pictures are big and intricate, crowded with detail, wet, chilly-looking, full of growth and decomposition. A sense of profundity and otherness emerges.

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Title: Capped

Description: Another enigmatic production from the Digital Fiction/Dreaming Methods stable. This one is about fragmentary memories of a childhood encounter with aliens - at least I think that's what it's about. We find ourselves drawn through a series of multi-layered black-and-white wastelands, with text-snippets drifting amongst the weeds, brickwork and rust, hinting at a half-vanished back-story. Repays close attention and more than one visit.

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Title: Lee Worden's Cutup Machine 2.0

Description: Hosted on Jim Andrews' Vispo site, this is a piece of software which cuts up text and reassembles the chunks in a random sequence. There are a number of these on the Web, but this is one of the most user-friendly I've seen. Very useful if you want to produce something surreal, or replicate the effects of a disordered consciousness, or just get a new perspective on your own prose. Or, to put it another way, Very up text and reassembles surreal, or replicate the effects There are a number of these number of these on the the effects of a disordered random sequence. There useful if you the effects of a disordered of software which cuts up own prose.

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Title: A Book of Graffiti Art

Description: A virtual book composed of graffiti photos taken in Rio de Janeiro by the new media artist and curator Regina Celia Pinto. Most of the graffiti depict faces. Simple, well-made and striking.

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Title: The Art of Sleep/The Art of Silence

Description: The Tate Online site (www.tate.org.uk) is currently playing host a small collection of net art, and has commissioned a new piece from Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries, the Korean-American duo. What they have produced in response to this commission is "The Art of Sleep": "Employing their usual mix of animated black and white typography, jazzy music and humour, the work explores the international contemporary art market from the artists' perspective." The real treat, however, is an accompanying "Interview" with Young-Hae Chang called "The Art of Silence", which is just hilarious.

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Title: The Flat

Description: One of the best pieces to appear on the Dreaming Methods/Digital Fiction site so far, this is a typically accomplished piece of Flash work, a brooding supernatural mystery story set within the confines of a flat. Visitors/readers need to search each room of the flat in turn for clues, while a timer counts them down in one corner of the screen. When the timer reaches zero there is a crash, a shadow crosses the outside of a window, someone rattles the handle of the flat's back door, and it opens to reveal a white hooded figure in an overgrown garden. Compelling.

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Title: Samarost 2

Description: I'm not a games fanatic, but you've just got to give this one a try. It's a puzzle/story. Two aliens arrive on a planet where a little man lives, steal some pears from his pear-orchard, then steal his dog too and fly off in their spaceship. The little man jumps into his own spaceship and gives chase. When he gets to their world you have to help him through a series of interactive puzzles to get his dog back. It's funny and challenging, the artwork has got a really textured feel to it, and there's a story too: eventually you find out exactly why the two aliens wanted to steal pears and a dog. It comes in two chapters: you can play right through the first chapter for free, but you have to pay $6.99 if you want to try the second chapter as well.

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Title: Le Parc

Description: A funny, subversive and beautifully realised Flash animation about a naughty man who sneaks into a park because he can't resist the flowers, and then starts to alter the behaviour of everyone else on the premises. I found this on the Anima Mundi website (http://www.animamundi.com.br/) which was mentioned by Regina Pinto in one of her circular e-mails.

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Title: Logozoa

Description: Logozoa are "word animals" or "textual organisms" which Robert Kendall, the proprietor of this site, wants to release into the world in order to mess up our certainties about life. It's a beautifully playful-but-serious project, and you can participate by sticking a Logozoa text somewhere appropriate, and sending Robert a photograph of it to keep in his "zoo". The Logozoa site also includes, as a subsection, "Soothcircuit", which is an elegant I-Ching style online oracle. Ask it a question (or just give it a click) and it will produce some profound (or sometimes frivolous) comments about your life.

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Title: World of Awe

Description: The story of "a traveler in search of a lost treasure" ranging from "the lament over the absence of a lover to a comical declaration of loyalty to a floppy disk." I've only just started exploring this: at first I was put off by the complexity and size of the website, but then I found myself being drawn in by the tongue-in-cheek cleverness of some of the writing. Start with the Love Letters, which are brief and often very witty.

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Title: Yantra

Description: A series of brilliantly-coloured geometric animations, accompanied by science-fiction music. Intensely mesmerising. If the almighty were to choose a screensaver, this would probably be it. Make sure you visit it more than once.

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Title: Urbanalities

Description: "A cross between a short story, a poem, an animated comic and a musical." An audio track to die for and some of the hippest graphics a browser can browse: geometric, dynamic, with funky lettering. The texts may not be all that profound but for sheer pizazz this takes some beating.

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Title: Scenes of Provincial Life (vlog)

Description: This isn't exactly an individual work, but I'm listing it in that category, as well as under personal websites, because it does have real unity as a collection. Michael Szpakowski has been making short quicktime movies since 2003 and there are now nearly 100 of them - so he's setting up this vlog to collect them in one place. Unassuming and often very personal, full of humour and detail. The music is often especially striking.

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Title: Story Machine

Description: My thanks to Jim Andrews (http://vispo.com/) for posting a link to this. It's a fascinating experiment in nonlinear story, halfway between an animation and a comic. In the end, I think, it's unsatisfactory because the back-story doesn't come through strongly or coherently enough to really pull you in: but there are some brilliant effects.

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Title: For All Seasons

Description: Four short texts about childhood memories, one for each season of the year. Click on each text and it comes alive. The words on the screen turn into fish, flowers, dead leaves or snowflakes, which drift, swirl or swim around the screen as you move your mouse. Beautifully designed and crafted.

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Title: Fresco

Description: A "generative movie" accompanied by a generative soundtrack - in other words it never plays the same twice, so look at it more than once. In a letterbox-shaped panel, flickering abstract shapes dance, or sometimes freeze, against a vague grey background, to the accompaniment of haunting music. The result is fascinating, multi-textured and somehow profound: abstract art with soul.

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Title: Moving Toward Haiga

Description: Undemonstrative and comparatively low-tech, these pieces are beautifully designed, meditative, filled with glowing colours and a sense of stillness.

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Title: Dawn

Description: Text, photography and sound by Alan Sondheim, put together by Reiner Strasser. Typically of Sondheim, the text mixes a profound sense of wonder at the beauties of nature with a restless consciousness of the miseries life can bring. In the same way, the piece itself mixes ravishing images with a restlessly crackling soundtrack. The result is a masterpiece.

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Title: Interwoven

Description: The idea behind this is beautifully simple - to merge different pictures into each other through a kind of weaving. The way this idea has been realised is fantastically clever, subtle and well-controlled. It's about "time and space, nature and seasons".

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Title: Humans

Description: It's probably wrong to describe this as an "individual work" because it's so huge. David Daniels has asked fellow-artists, family-members and friends a series of questions about their lives, feelings and beliefs and fashioned their answers into prose-poems, text-pictures, text-sculptures and text-animations of fantastic inventiveness. It's a hymn to humanity on a colossal scale. If (like me) you thought the PDF format was a waste of time, look at some of these and think again.

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Title: This is how you will die

Description: Wavering between black humour and just plain black, this is a text fruit-machine which serves up fragmented narratives purporting to tell you how you will die. Doomy soundtrack, grungy graphics and some unexpectedly funny moments .

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Title: Forest Park, A Journal

Description: Combining poetry, prose and narrative; personal impressions, autobiography, philosophy and quotations from other authors; this is new media writing in the tradition of Thoreau. It's an acquired taste, but it has a rhythm all of its own, the stopping-and-starting, determined rhythm of someone climbing a rugged path up a mountain - which is entirely appropriate, since pathways and mountains are thematically central to the work.

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Title: News from Erewhon

Description: A sequence of parallel narratives produced by Millie Niss and Martha Deed, both of them using a free-association technique and starting from the same randomly-selected keywords. The results are surreal, poetic, sharply-observed and funny; the quality of the writing is extremely high; and the work as a whole is a beautifully-designed piece of new media.

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Title: Black Holes

Description: A black screen, across which fragments of text in various different colours, fonts and sizes come and go as you move your mouse; plus photographic images, some of them stretched and slanted, some not; while bleepy squiggly music plays, punctuated by muffled explosions as if from a video game in an arcade. Most of this is generated at random, prompted by the movements of your mouse. Visit it more than once. Despite all the random juxtapositions it's got an off-the-wall unity of tone and design.

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Title: The Lexicon of Krechers

Description: A virtual-reality book about fantasy-creatures who are supposed to live inside human beings. Beautifully designed, genuinely insightful about the human condition at times, with some haunting combinations of word, image and sound.

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Title: Road Movie

Description: The graphic for this is a simple video loop of a car driving into a rural landscape. The music is piano and a plangent, wistful horn. Beneath the picture is a series of coloured lines: mouse over the lines, and the music changes subtly. Utterly mesmerising.

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Title: 391-37: Zinhar

Description: Edited by babel, "391-37: Zinhar is a collaboration between Zinhar.com and 391.org in Turkish and English that represents a bioscan in slow motion..." A bioscan is a process of "DNA bar-coding" every living thing. This is a wonderful piece of design, but also a very thought-provoking work about modern science, information technology and the stuff of life.

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Title: rsstango

Description: A magnificently lush track by The Divine Comedy is reworked into a fable about our times.

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Title: >>oh<<

Description: "A short poem by Jennifer Hill-Kaucher became a visual poem by Dan Waber which then became an interactive audio-visual poem (in Flash) by Reiner Strasser." Like everything by Strasser, this is beautifully designed: controlled, restrained, simple and contemplative.

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Title: undirection

Description: Brilliant topographical work by Jason Nelson, which cleverly exploits our instinctive feeling that web pages must have spatial relationships with each other - B is below A, C is to the left of B and so on - to create a dark, spiky and poetic world, folded over on itself and with unexpected holes in it.

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Title: Jewel of the Erie Canal

Description: Martha Deed and Millie Niss are mother and daughter, and this is a picture-portrait of North Tonawanda, a derelict area near where they live. Sharply-observed and ironic, both socially aware and aesthetically beautiful, with a very precisely-judged relationship between the images and the Wurlitzer organ soundtrack.

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Title: On Lionel Kearns

Description: Jim Andrews' homage to Lionel Kearns, a pioneering Canadian poet who in the 1960s started producing work which now seems uncannily prescient about the digital age. Contains reproductions of poems, videos and commentaries - but although many of these reproductions look like straight text at first glance, Jim presents them in ways which cleverly draw attention to the difference between text and the digital medium. Approachable but subtle.

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Title: Return to my native city

Description: Michael Spakowski's short movie about his feelings when he returned to Sheffield to help look after his father, who was dying and is now dead. Intensely personal, deeply-felt and poetic.

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Title: The Sense of City Road

Description: A collage of poetry, photographic images, historic titbits etc. about City Road in Cardiff. A fascinatingly ramshackle site: I love it.

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Title: Girl/Birth/Water/Death

Description: The short story which converted me to hyperliterature. Technically primitive, but very well-written and (to me) highly suggestive of the possibilities of nonlinear fiction.

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