Category: Digital stories

Coach of the year

This is an early experiment in css animations – my idea is to make small story vignettes exploring the technical and multimedia possibilities of the web: The aim is to make a series of these, over time, making them increasingly

Sherwood Rise – the Augmented Book

Sherwood Rise is the world’s first augmented novel.

It’s an Augmented Reality (AR) transmedia interactive graphic novel/ game, told over four days through a range of (trans)media and formats: printed newspapers, AR on mobile phones, emails, hacker websites, blogs, sound, music, graphic novels and illustrations.

Inspired by the current financial crisis, and the Occupy movement, the story is based on the traditional Robin Hood tale. The peasant revolt and dissent is brought up to date, and adapted for AR and transmedia. In our adaptation, austerity is imposed on the poor by a privileged elite, but resisted by a gang of hacker outlaw terrorists called the ‘Merry Men’.

Bankers bonuses

This work is my response to a public debate at St Paul’s Cathedral (London) where the question was “Ethics and the role morality should play in the Marketplace”.

One quote from the debate, came from Lord Griffiths, the Vice Chairman of Goldman Sachs: “We have to tolerate the inequality as a way to achieve greater prosperity and opportunity for all” and this mindset was my main motivator for the project.

I wanted to explore further and enlarge the debate through this project. There’s been lots of news and discussion on the subject, so I’ve had plenty of source material to work with. My initial idea was to explain the subject of bankers bonuses and bailouts to the general public – in a fun, informative accessible way.

Buddy Rivers Live (the automatic comedian)

‘Buddy Rivers Live’ was a live networked performance. The first performance took place on 26 April 2008 at 55 Leroy Street, London SE1, and was simultaneously webcast. This project used live internet searches converted into voice via a text to speech synthesiser.

I wrote a background story for the project: the Leroy Club was a legendary venue in the 1950’s comedy circuit, where many famous comedians started out. One of these was Buddy Rivers, who returned for this benefit gig to help save the venue. He hadn’t done standup for years and feared he’d lost his edge, so in an attempt to modernise his act, he used computer programs and Internet searches to generate his jokes. But how would the audience react?

A walk in the park with Joseph Paxton

This is an interactive conversation and visual story combined. It deals with a controversial, topical and emotive local issue, concerning the development of Crystal Palace park after many years of neglect. It occurred to me that one voice is missing from the consultation, that of the master architect and plannner Joseph Paxton, who conceived the original design for the park.

I thought it would be interesting to imagine his point of view. What would he think? I tried to make the online interactive story unfold as a conversation, which is often considered the highest form of interactivity. The work is inspired by the ‘Eliza’ therapist simulator.

Shirley Bassey Mixed Up

Shirley Bassey Mixed Up is an experimental illustrated 14-page networked; generative biography, following Shirley Bassey’s career. The illustrations are network generated, built dynamically from Yahoo searches. Through specifying different searches and playing with the customisation options, readers create an illustration for each page of the story.

By pulling in data from the Internet and manipulating/ transforming it within a story, this work can be described as a networked narrative. The structure is basically a traditional (linear) 14-page story built on top of a generative composition tool, that uses Internet search data as its input.


Newscomic recycles the news, re-mixes it, subverts and distorts it.

This was an early generative satire, digital/ networked project that takes live news feeds from major popular sources, chops them up at random and puts the resultant text into speech bubbles in a comic.

The comic illustrations reflect the current latest news, and are regularly updated to keep up with the news.

Corrugation St

Corrugation Street is an experiment in collectively authored and networked generated stories. It’s an online soap opera that you, me and the Internet write together. A communally created soap opera.

The ideas for this project came from my desire to tell my own stories online. I realised that presenting stories in a traditional manner, with a strong separation between the author and the reader, doesn’t work well on the Internet which is an increasingly open, participative, sharing and community-driven medium. In this Project I decided to approach my storytelling in the same way, and let other authors help me write the stories.

The Chinese Cocklepickers

The subject of this interactive story is the tragedy of the chinese migrant workers who died in Morecambe Bay, Lancashire, in 2004.

There are many separate and interconnected strands to this story: the experience of the workers who drowned, the bosses exploiting their cheap work, the reactions and feelings of the local people, the families in China and their reactions, and the media/ political reactions and economics behind the story. The interactive approach offers a non-linear way of exploring all of the issues, and each person has a different experience/ creates their own story.

The Picture of Dorian Blair

Tony Blair has done a deal with the devil. His portrait is locked in the attic.

Each day a news story appears on the website.

Based on Blair’s behaviour within the news story, the public vote on his actions, and the portrait in the attic changes accordingly.