“Interactive Fiction” has been on a lot of people’s minds lately.
Neal Stephenson has recently launched an ambitious novel/app project called The Mongoliad that is explicitly interactive in many ways, from social media interaction to possible side stories being generated by participants.
The broader subject was examined in the Guardian’s Games Blog last week, where new technology and ideas about how to make novels more engaging were assessed.
And author Paul Jessup responded to the topic of the Guardian piece with a history lesson rant.
The latter two point out that Interactive Fiction (which good ol’ Wikipedia, the interactive encyclopedia, says is abbreviated “IF“) is nothing new: from Choose Your Own Adventure books to Tom Disch’s groundbreaking Amnesia, IF has a deep history. IF as found on the Internet is mostly about text-based computer games, but endeavors such as Stephenson’s and IDEO’s go beyond this in an attempt to make fiction itself more interactive. New technology and modes of connectivity make interactivity more possible, perhaps allowing for IF to be more fully merged with traditional fiction.