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May 30, 2012

It's a new e-book format that changes the story based on your idiosyncratic reading habits

Which sounds super annoying to me. But the real question--as with any new narrative technology--is whether the stories told with this will be any good. TREEbook, a New Time-Triggered E-book Format | The Passive Voice
“The TREEbook is a time sensitive e-book with multiple story branches,” Mock said, “and the beauty is the passivity of the technology. There aren’t active decisions to be made—its not a choose your own ending approach—you can read the book without being aware that the story is changing. The time triggers are not in your face.” . . . . Mock describes the TREEbook technology as creating “branches,” and said a TREEbook is “alive and wants you to engage with it.” Once downloaded to a device with TREEbook compatible e-reader software, the book essentially learns your reading style, measuring the reader’s individual reading pace, time of day reading and length of reading sessions and uses this personalized data as the basis for triggering new narrative events in the book. While each TREEbook novel has a main narrative, the format allows an unlimited number of storylines to be introduced based on these triggers. If a passage says the hero has 5 minutes to stop a bomb from going off, if the reader does not keep reading for the 5 minutes, they will likely either miss the bomb or miss a chance to stop the bombing and arrive in its aftermath. “If you stop reading or forget to pick up the book, the book knows and will continue on and you might miss something. TREEbooks can include all kinds of easter eggs and side stories, its all up to the creativity of the author to come up with new playful options.” Mock said the publisher can even send out notifications to the book alerting readers that they may be missing new events if they don’t pick the book up within a certain time frame. While Mock emphasized that the books still have “one standard reading experience,” he said, in fact, two friends reading the same book will likely confront different narrative events based on the pacing and quirks of their individual reading habits.

May 25, 2012

The National "The Rains of Castamere"

The Rains of Castamere is a song from the Game of Thrones books. It celebrates Tywin Lannister's bloody victory over the rebellious House Castamere. It was Tywin's utter ruthlessness in the victory that convinced Mad King Aerys to make him his Hand. And this is indie darling The National covering it. Your argument is invalid.
And who are you, the proud lord said, that I must bow so low? Only a cat of a different coat, that's all the truth I know. In a coat of gold or a coat of red, a lion still has claws, And mine are long and sharp, my lord, as long and sharp as yours. And so he spoke, and so he spoke, that lord of Castamere, But now the rains weep o'er his hall, with no one there to hear. Yes now the rains weep o'er his hall, and not a soul to hear.