Loss of Hover: Recreating Shockwave Vniverse as an App for iPad

Stephanie Strickland,

Ian Hatcher

V appeared in 2002, distributed across an invertible two-in-one print book from Penguin, V: WaveSon.nets / Losing L’una, and two online locations: the first, V: Vniverse, a Director project with Cynthia Lawson, and the second, Errand Upon Which We Came, a Flash piece with M.D. Coverley. The print book contained at its center the url for the Vniverse site.
This print book was re-issued February 2014 in a new edition by SpringGun Press as V: WaveTercets / Losing L’una. The truncation from Son.nets to Tercets was driven by limitations and affordances that we encountered as we set out to modify the Vniverse Director project to run as an app on iPad. The original Vniverse was created, not using Director’s timeline, but all in one frame. This choice took advantage of the speed of imaging Lingo to control both animation and interaction, permitting swift gestural command of the appearance of language emerging without lag from “the sky.” Since mobile devices support an entirely different suite of gestures, we needed to re-implement Vniverse as an app for a smaller screen and a different gestural repertoire.
The re-education of hand and mind, the gestural translation, that such a project entails is our focus in this article which addresses the loss of hover as gesture, the loss of location—a point is no longer a place—and the loss of overview, or revelation, as sweeping gestures no longer reveal, but re-scale. Emotional coloring is shifted when exchanging a click for a tap imposes a required time-delay, when an expansive swing-sweep of mouse is substituted by contractive pinch-zoom, or when legibility can be gained only through granulation (losing the sense of fades between whole poems against which active sky stars can be activated), or through text compression and/or suppression (son.nets to tercets). These losses are in part compensated by other gains.
Słowa kluczowe: re-implementation, migrating e-lit, gestural interface, gestural translation, platforms

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