Interactive Multimedia
Instructor: Judd Morrissey (
Monday 9-4, MI 819


This course will be focused on creating interactive art for web, cd-rom and installation/performance. We will be responding to a wide range of digital work as well as critical and theoretical readings, and our weekly excercises will examine some of the strategies and techniques implemented by practitioners of new media art and literature.


The course requires a high level of engagement. Students will be consistently responding to readings and experiences in the form of short writings, experiments and presentations, and will present their work for group critique at mid-term and at the end of the course. Failure to present a mid-term or final project, absence from either of the two major critiques without justifying this first with the instructor, or neglecting weekly assignments are all grounds for a possible failure or incomplete. A preliminary conception of the final project will be presented mid-way through the semester; projects may be individual or collaborative. The goal of the course is for each student to develop an approach to interactive art that is considered and meaningful within the context of an individual artistic practice or collaboration.


Students will be required to present research and works in progress periodically throughout the semester in addition to mid-term and final showings.

Knowledge Share

From time to time, students may volunteer or be asked to demonstrate a technique or approach learned outside of class (this may be an expansion of something touched on in class) or invented via the student's engagement with a particular project. Students may also use this time to present a problem they are having to the rest of the group for feedback.


More than three absences will result in failure. There is a great deal to cover each week and unwarranted lateness and absences are unwelcome as they will inhibit the progress of the class as a group. Three latenesses will be recorded as an absence.

recommended resources: Advanced Lingo For Games.

The Work

Students must provide a url containing links to weekly assignments and projects throughout the semester. I also highly encourage the exchange of source files in order to learn from techniques developed by other students within the course.

Please keep in mind that this outline is not static and will be revised throughout the semester.

1.29: Week One: Course Introduction
discussion of terms "interactive" and "multimedia"
tools and languages for multimedia production
environment of director
Score and stage, cast members and sprites, basic navigation, buttons, behaviors, sprite properties.
Time-Frame Sequencing: Muybridge demo #1
download images for exercise
assignment: image/text sketch

Manovich, Post-media Aesthetics

Eliterature Collection

2.05: Week Two: Fundamentals of a scripting language: variables, arrays, conditionals
presentations of sketches from previous week
assignment: Collect and compose a body of text to work with on week 03. The text you bring should represent at least three sources. It is suggested that at least one of these should be written by yourself, and at least one of these should be foreign material.

2.12: Week Three: code and language, reading & writing, strings, lists, FileIO Xtra, xml, web as source
screenings of hypertext/hypermedia works:
Afternoon: a story, Immemory, Patchwork Girl

assignment: interactive/programmatic text sketch for 2.20

Goldsmith, Soliloquy , Goldsmith, Fidget
Sapner, Pushkin Translation
reading: The Work of Art in the Age of Digital Reproduction
John Cayley's Translation
Loss Glazier
get a google poem

2.19: Week Four: controlling and manipulating video
Media Deconstruction Kit
Jason Salavon
screening of Cornell films

assignment: mid-term project proposals

2.26: Week Five: working with external sound
Laetitia Sonami
sound and interactivity: physical bits xtra

3.05: Week Six: Game Lab: global variables, repeat loops, and intersections
art & literary games, Natalie Bookchin, The Intruder, Jim Andrews, Arteroids, beige records
related demos: bouncing letters
afternoon: individual meetings

3.12: Week Seven: work week

3.19: Week Eight: critiques

3.26: Week Nine: Realtime data-acquisition
using processing libraries for web crawling and visualization

4.02: Week Ten: introduction to the EZIO board
Interactive installation/physical computing/performance art:
David Rokeby, The Giver of Names
Stelarc: Ping Body: layout diagram
Haque Design + Research
Tiffany Holmes: Floating Point
Kac, Genesis
George LeGrady: Pocket Full of Memories
Stephen Wilson's Art and Technology database

4.09: Week Eleven: EZIO board continued
ezio and sensors:
download keyspan adapter
download ezio Xtra and sample files
Michael Rodemer's (EZIO creator) documentation
kinds of sensors

4.16: Week Twelve: introduction to Video Tracking
interactive installation: Camille Utterback
presentations on kinetic artists, group one

smoothware demos
open source webcamxtra

4.23: Week Thirteen: alternative interfaces lab
work day for final projects

4.30:critique week : no class
-- finish projects --

5.07: Week Fifteen: final critique