HT03 Hyperfilm Experiment - Please Bring a Laptop!

During Thursday's afternoon session (28th August) two films will be shown: Minority Report and Sliding Doors. The former makes use of an intriguing user interface for information handling, the latter promotes hypertext to a part of the story. We hope that both films will stimulate discussion amongst (arguably) the most hypertext-literate audience on the planet.

Bring your laptops - we want to give you the opportunity to discuss the films while you watch - to co-operatively create a hypertext commentary.

The apparent focus of the film "Sliding Doors" is a simple hypertext structure - a single moment of choice which leads to a split, a bilinear story. What role does hypertext play in the film? Are the outcomes of the split credible stories in their own right? Does Gwyneth Paltrow carry off the role convincingly? Are other films more deserving examples of hypertext story-telling? Why is there only one decision point?

We'll provide a wireless network, an IRC server. There will also be an auxilliary screen that can be used for the shared display of Web pages.

Could we make a "Minority Report" user interface? If so, would it be useful? Has anyone done anything similar?

The use of SMS messages and chat has been commented on in meetings and lectures. At last year's Hypertext Conference, many people were interacting through backchannels on the wireless network during the Hypertext Readings performances. This year they are available as an official conference facility.

We also encourage those who cannot make it to the conference but may wish to participate to watch the films along with us from home. We'll post the start times so you can sync your viewing with ours.

People love to compare notes about films, to discuss their insights and opinions. Normally this happens after the event. The hyperfilm activity is an experiment in social hypertext authoring. Can we make sense - can we make hypertext - during a shared experience?


Les Carr, monica schraefel, Mark Bernstein

Further information and instructions to follow, including performance timing and details of how to use IRC...