ELCs

The Electronic Literature Collection, Volume 3

I am pleased to announce that I have been elected by the ELO Board to be part of the Editorial Collective that will produce the new volume of the Electronic Literature Collection.

The Electronic Literature Organization (ELO) has published two Electronic Literature Collections: Volume 1 in 2006 and Volume 2 in 2011 (see http://collection.eliterature.org). Both Collections have proven to be highly influential: the works they publish are among the most taught, studied, and referenced in the field.

Volume 3 (ELC3) is scheduled for publication early in 2016. I will be collaborating with a talented team of artists and scholars: Stephanie Boluk, Jacob Garbe, and Anastasia Salter. We will also have a team of prestigious international consultants who will help us create a truly global ELC3.

For more details, read the official Press Release and Call for Submissions.

Internship

Welcome 2014 English Majors

 

Welcome to the English Department at UPRM!

You are in a rich environment to cultivate yourselves into the professionals you will eventually become. Our faculty and curriculum will provide you with access to knowledge you will need to become a professional and leader in whatever career path you choose.

During your development as English Majors you will begin to make choices that shape your trajectory and unlock opportunities unique to each career path. Some of these choices are within the curriculum, such as track (literature, linguistics, and professional writing) and some are add-ons, such as Teaching or Film Certificates.

Think about opportunities beyond your coursework and what they can do for your development by enhancing your skill set. I’m talking about internships, research opportunities, and travel.

There are four important opportunities for English Majors to aim and apply for.

There are also local internship opportunities that may provide you with valuable skills and experience. While these are unpaid, you can earn credit by taking INTD 4995 for 3 credits, which would fulfill a free or recommended elective. This course allows you to take from 1-9 credits and each credit hour would entail 3 hours of work per week, so 3 credits would be 9 hours per week. These opportunities will be announced as they arise and can involve editorial work, research, digital humanities work, and more.

More importantly, these unpaid internships enhance your opportunity of getting scholarships, paid internships, admission into graduate programs, and jobs.

But that’s in your future. For now, focus on building a solid foundation for your future accomplishments. Get to know your university and department, and allow yourselves to discover your path– here with us and beyond.

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Recent Interviews

In the past few months, I’ve been interviewed several times about e-literature and bots. Here are links to recently published interviews:

And here are some recent publications in which I’ve been quoted:

 

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Building a Community of Bot Makers

This is an open invitation to everyone interested in the art and craft of bots to join a new community space called Bot Forum.

Its goal is to have a free and open space, moderately moderated to facilitate the sharing of tips, techniques, code, ideas, and bots.

If you encounter any issues with accessing or sharing this Bot Forum, it’s because its URL was apparently once used for evil (spam) and was blacklisted long ago. We are reclaiming it from its previously well-deserved oblivion to create a community of artistic and literary bot makers and enthusiasts.

Upon these condemned ruins of the Web we shall raise a Forum. And unlike the previous bot community I built, it won’t be in territory belonging to our Web’s Roman Empire.

Join us!

Update: the first attempt at this forum was powered by Simple Machines Forum software and it broke after two days. The bot forum is now remade using WordPress and Commons-in-a-Box.

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New Digital Genres: Writing for Social Media

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On Saturday, May 24, 2014 I’ll be offering a workshop at the Southern PR TESOL conference titled “New Digital Genres: Writing for Social Media.”

This workshop will focus on teaching writing in genres developed in and for social media, such as memes, micro-narratives, Twitter fictions, netprov, and others. Participants should have Twitter accounts set up before the workshop to dedicate time to creating works in these new digital genres that favor wit, compression, and are designed for sharing.

Access the workshop document here.

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Recruiting for Fall 2014 Digital Humanities Internship

I am seeking to recruit up to 15 interns to help me develop some digital humanities and Web development projects I am currently developing. These unpaid internships count as 3 credits of an elective course (a recommended elective for English majors): INTD 4995, section 001#. The projects are:

Part of the work will involve developing and tagging files with metadata, working on link structures, describing born-digital materials, learning how to use open-source software like WordPress, Drupal, and Omeka to build collections, knowledge bases, and resources, preparing data sets for visualizations using Gephi, and other related Digital Humanities activities. Another part will focus on developing resources for several websites, including I ♥ E-Poetry, the English Department website, Fulbright @ UPRM, and others.

After completing the course, students should be able to:

  1. use software like WordPress, Drupal, Omeka, and Gephi
  2. encode files according to standardized metadata schema
  3. analyze the structure of collections and knowledge bases
  4. become conversant in the discourse of Digital Humanities
  5. develop resources to contribute to the research projects

Students will need to dedicate 8 hours per week to the project, but you’ll be able to do the work wherever you like, as long as you have a computer and Internet access. We will have weekly 60 minute-long team meetings to report on progress and assign tasks.

You can take this course twice for up to 6 credits during your studies at UPRM. For more information, such as the activities being done this semester, visit my internship website.

If you’re interested, contact me (leonardo.flores@upr.edu) and enroll in INTD 4995, section 001#.

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Digital Studies Courses

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I am pleased to announce the launching of a series of courses I will be teaching around a framework I’m developing on campus called digital studies. My short term goal is to develop and adapt existing courses that help develop students’ proficiency and critical thinking about the impact of digital media and technologies. My long-term goal is to develop an interdisciplinary minor that incorporates disciplines such as computer and social sciences, the arts and humanities, engineering, and business administration  to better prepare students for a world that increasingly requires academics and professionals with sophisticated digital media skills.

In order to train a cohort of digital media savvy students, I have offered the following courses this academic year:

Here’s a list of my offerings over the summer and next academic year:

  • Summer 2014:
    • Digital Writing for the Media (ENGL 3268) (see flyer)
    • This course will explore the Web as a platform for organizations to publish information, news, press releases, and other kinds of professional writing. The course will use several UPRM based organizations as case studies, and the students will develop content, Web resources, and shape their online presence as part of their class projects.
  • Fall 2014:
  • Spring 2015:

As writing courses, their goals can be easily achieved with a focus on the impact of digital media on these kinds of writing and expanding their focus to explore emergent genres.

Students interested in following me in this curricular trail should contact me, enroll in the courses, and I’ll show you how deep the rabbit hole goes…

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E-Poetry 2014 Intensive: The Poetics of It

I am pleased to announce that on March 20 – 22, 2014, the UPRM will be hosting the E-Poetry 2014 Intensive, titled “The Poetics of It.” This is the second mini-conference of its kind, organized by Loss Pequeño Glazier, to bring together a small, hand-picked group of participants to have a productive and intensive conversation on their proposed research topics.

Having participated in the first Intensive (May 2012 in Buffalo), I can attest to the benefits of sharing your research with a group of experts in the field and receiving their feedback in a format that is less rushed than the traditional academic conference.

Members of the UPRM community are invited to join us and participate in the event, especially in the public opening, which will feature lightning talks from the participants, providing a sampler of the ideas to be presented more expansively in the Intensive.

“Making Digital: The Poetics of It”

Thursday, March 20, 2014 – 10:30 – 12:00 – Celis 010

Here’s a copy of the complete program. Hope to see you there!

E-Poetry 2014 Intensive PROGRAM

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Scripting the Reader in Electronic Literature – An ASA Roundtable

I’m pleased to announce that they have accepted our proposal to present at the next American Studies Association (ASA) Convention, which will take place on November 6-9, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. Here’s some information.

  • Title: Digital Humanities Caucus: Scripting the Reader in Electronic Literature
  • Format: Roundtable Discussion
  • Keywords: digital humanities, electronic literature
  • Participants: Leonardo Flores (chair), Mauro Carassai, Jeff Knowlton, Jeremy Hight, Brian Kim Stefans, Jody Zellen, Samantha Gorman, A. J. Patrick Liszkiewicz.

How do writers of electronic literature design, control, cast, or otherwise shape their readers’ experience and interaction? Do they reward certain choices and punish others? Do they design virtual environments with a psychogeography that influences their readers’ dérive? Is fun used as a mechanism for control in a scripted interaction?

This scholar and artist roundtable will examine multiple approaches to constructing, scripting, and controlling ideal readers of works of electronic literature. In Cybertext (1997), Espen Aarseth coined the terms cybertext to refer to works with feedback loops that allowed them to respond to reader input and ergodic to refer to works that required “non-trivial interaction to traverse.” This panel is concerned with ways in which writers, artists, programmers cast the reader’s role in their cybertexts and their strategies for creating meaningfully ergodic e-literature.

  • Leonardo Flores will begin the panel by providing an overview of the reader’s role in e-literary genres, using concepts from Espen Aarseth, Guy Debord, and others as key components in a theoretical framework for interaction.
  • Samantha Gorman’s talk will be about “Rhythms of Attention” in crafting reader/writer edits in cinematic works of expanded textuality. What is the balance between how the reader directs “cuts” vs. the illusion of control established by the author. The novel Pry (http://prynovella.com) will be presented as her practice-based research model for integrating and exploring reader vs. author rhythms of attention.
  • Brian Kim Stefans’ talk is titled “Establishing and Dispelling Ground in E-literature.” The concept of “ground” is important to many fields, including linguistics, philosophy, cognitive studies, film studies, graphic design, poetics and of course the visual arts. After describing “ground,” he’ll discuss his work “Scriptor,” an environment that enables the animation of every element of an individually crafted letterform (as opposed the manipulation of standard fonts).
  • A. J. Patrick Liszkiewicz – This talk will explore the “lusory attitudes” (i.e. playfulness) of electronic literature readers. While Bernard Suits used this concept specifically to discuss games, A. J. will apply it more broadly to his own work, to argue that readers of electronic literature only ever abdicate some control, and only need to follow the rules insofar as those rules facilitate playful experiences.
  • Jody Zellen will talk about the relationship between the public and private viewing experiences of installation based works vs net art and mobile apps using personal projects as well as curatorial ideas as examples. The projects she will discuss include web projects “Spine Sonnet” and “Without A Trace” and mobile apps “4 Square,” “Urban Rhythms,” and “Spine Sonnet.”
  • Jeremy Hight’s talk will be about the history of experimental digital literature in relation to space in physical and textual spaces and will range from 34 north 118 west to his work in augmented reality poetry and upcoming narratives running on quantum mechanics.
  • Jeff Knowlton – “Writing in Langue vs. Parole,” or, scripting space and the reader’s movement as they construct meaning in the urban landscape while retaining agency in a structure not of their own making.
  • Mauro Carassai will address reading in digital environments from a philosophical perspective and illustrate how, from the point of view of Ordinary Language Philosophy, e-literary works often encourage users to engage in unusual “language-games” that recast reading into aspect-seeing, critical play, or full body gesturing.

Each panelist will present in 5-7 minutes. For brief bios on the participants, read the complete proposal document.

Thank you Susan Garfinkel for encouraging us to apply as part of the Digital Humanities Caucus.

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Call for International Fulbright Student Researchers

I am interested in attracting one or several international graduate students to conduct research in electronic literature with me at the University of Puerto Rico: Mayagüez Campus. My research in electronic literature is best known through I ♥ E-Poetry, though I am also conducting research in digital preservation of born-digital literature, most urgently with works created in Macromedia and Adobe Flash and Director.

I am especially interested in students who wish to work with me on one or several of the following areas:

  • Representing their country’s electronic / digital literature to English-speaking audiences via I ♥ E-Poetry, under my tutelage, learning conduct media-specific analyses using frameworks such as, critical code studies, platform studies, etc.
  • Developing electronic literature archives using Omeka, which would include learning about, developing, and using taxonomies for born-digital materials to describe the resources in the collections.
  • Researching and experimenting with technologies and frameworks for the creation of electronic editions of born-digital literature, including virtualization, porting, documentation, and other strategies.
  • Developing digital pedagogy materials, including research in teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL) and STEM with electronic literature and born-digital technologies. Students in this area may wish to enroll in one of our graduate programs, including my English Department’s Master of Arts in English Education program.

The Fulbright Program offers opportunities for international students to apply and receive funding to pursue graduate studies and/or conduct research in accredited U.S. Institutions. Each country has its own Fulbright commissions with slightly different programs and deadlines for its student programs. Please explore the Fulbright programs offered in your country and contact me if there’s an opportunity you’d like to explore.

Atención España: la convocatoria para el programa de Ampliación de Estudios para el curso 2015-16 esta abierto hasta el 10 de marzo de 2014.