In Brief

Christian Swinehart has created a fantastic website that visualizes the different possible reader paths of interactive fiction (sometimes better known as Choose your Own Adventure stories).

Christian Swinehart has created a fantastic website that visualizes and explains the different possible reader paths of interactive fiction (sometimes better known as Choose your Own Adventure stories). It’s a fascinating exploration of the medium that looks at how the navigation works and how it parallels modern software.

He explains:

It is less surprising that this kind of interactive, hypertextual book happened at all than that it happened so late in the life of the book as a medium. One of the fundamental properties of books as objects is their ability to be dealt with in a random access fashion. All those loose paper edges let you jump to a page more or less directly, without having to go through all the intervening material as you would with an ancient scroll (or ancient audiotape).

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