Will Luer’s “Plotting the Database”

Will Luer’s “Plotting the Database”, published in 2012, discusses the features of database narrative including entry points, collecting data, relations and attention. Through 8 separate sections, Luer explains how all of these elements tie together to create an engaging and interesting piece of work.

An idea I found the most interesting was Luer’s discussion of ‘Entry Points’, and how it can relate to our work this semester. Luer discusses how entry points can set the tone for the whole database narrative. Because of the randomness of the Korsakow program, the user and the program determines “when and where to exit a database narrative” (Luer 2012, p.2), as opposed to a traditional narrative, where the author determines the entry point. With Korsakow, you can select the any of the clips your film can start on (by selecting, or not, the start SNU), and this still allows the creator some control over the users entry point into the work.

Another interesting point, which I found in Luer’s writing, was the discussion surrounding ‘Distributed Attention’, and how a user can understand, draw meaning from, and interact with an interface. Luer discusses how the “spatial juxtaposition of media – text, links, image, video and audio” (Luers 2012, p.4) allows the user to become more engaged in the work and draw meaning out of it. This is relevant to our final assessment for this subject, as an interesting and engaging interface can often make or break a Korsakow film, as we have seen in the work viewed this semester.

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