Friday, February 3, 2012

Cruisin' fast or slow...

I have viewed/listened to/read both Cruise and These Waves of Girls.  

Cruising  seems more linear to me as there is a beginning to the poem and it follows a straight path. I was engaged by the multi-modality of the presentation – by the music and by the fact that I could alter the speed of the text and the size of the images with the mouse.  By the time I had it figured out, (because I wanted to read the text at the same time she was saying the words) it was part way done so at the end I waited to see what would happen and eventually it started again.

The voice of the narrator was also captivating and I could see the teenagers hanging out in the parking lot.  Maybe because when I was growing up we lived in a house on one of the main ‘drags’  in a small town. We used to sit on the front porch and watch the same cars go back and forth.  Out of sight, I imagine many did ‘hook up’ and talk in one of the town parking lots.

In fact, reading this particular piece of writing in this manner probably caught my attention much more than if I had read the poem in a magazine or book.  The feelings she was trying to capture of this moment of time in a small town teen’s life were conveyed with the combination of her voice, the music and the black and while scrolling images.  

The multi-modality also helps tell the story. If you chose to speed up the images and the text, there is another message here about time and how fast it moves – something you don’t realize when you are a teen who had not left the borders of the town yet.

I found These Waves of Girls was multi-linear. It engages the reader who must help determine the story path by selecting which hyperlink to follow.  As I made more choices and read more selections, I began to get a sense of the story line and was able to put what I was reading into context. It made me work a little more to get to that point and I can see how that might be more engaging for some.  It made reading the story ‘more interesting’.

I realize also I am a chronological thinker…what comes first, comes first, then second etc. I am not sure how long I would stay with a story like this or want to read too many like it.  It does require patience from the reader, but I admit it held a level of intrigue, as in, I wonder where this link will take me?

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