Hamlet on the Holodeck: The Future of Narrative in Cyberspace (Updated Edition)

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Skip to main content. Murray , Paperback Be the first to write a review. About this product. Stock photo. Brand new: lowest price The lowest-priced brand-new, unused, unopened, undamaged item in its original packaging where packaging is applicable. Janet Murray'sHamlet on the Holodeck was instantly influential and controversial when it was first published in But sinceHamlet on the Holodeck 's publication, a practice that was largely speculative has been validated by academia, artistic practice, and the marketplace.

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Inventing the Medium: Approaching Design as a Collective Cultural Task — Talk by Dr. Janet Murray

Buy It Now. Add to cart. Murray , Paperback. Be the first to write a review About this product. About this product Product Information "I want to say to all the hacker-bards from every field -- gamers, researchers, journalists, artists, programmers, scriptwriters, creators of authoring systems Ahead of its time, it takes for granted the convergence of media forms and computing that today is part of our everyday experience. Yet "the future of narrative" Murray envisions is framed in terms of change that might take multiple decades, even centuries: the development of artistic traditions of practice, the growth of new audiences, the realization of then science fiction-like technology as consumer products.

This updated edition of a book the New Yorker called a "cult classic" offers a new introduction by Murray and her chapter-by-chapter commentary bringing each topic up to date. Stories define how we think, play, and understand our lives. Murray shows that computation offers a powerful new set of expressive affordances for the ancient human activity of storytelling. She discusses the unique properties and pleasures of digital environments and connects them with the traditional satisfactions of narrative.

She analyzes the dramatic satisfaction of participatory stories and considers what would be necessary for interactive fiction to become a mature and compelling art form. Murray's argument met with some resistance from print loyalists, postmodern hypertext enthusiasts, and "ludologists" who objected to Murray's emphasis on narrative in games.

My copy is now signed and will never leave my possession again :. Apr 23, Casey Ryan rated it really liked it. Incredible subject matter with some amazing predictions about the future of storytelling. Many of the predictions she made in have came true or are on their way to coming true.

Not 5 stars because it reads alot like a university textbook at times it is one and she gets super nerdy MUDs and role playing games and loses her practicality at times. Jan 14, Emily rated it really liked it Shelves: winter Jul 09, Mark Poulsen rated it it was amazing Shelves: favorites. Essential reading for anyone interested in the contemporary landscape of storytelling, where the digital medium is increasingly prevalent.

Apr 18, Britta rated it it was amazing.

Hamlet on the Holodeck

A very interesting view on the future of narrative, written a few years ago. Accurate views with updates from Very interesting to see how far we've already come. Aug 29, Joe Nelis rated it liked it. An exploration of the evolution of narrative as it crosses into digital media. Murray's approach covers a wide range of media platforms through which narrative can be experienced, but, as many of her critics have pointed out, does so without much regard for the specific functionality of the media she addresses; for example, she claims that Tetris is an apt metaphor for the hectic rat-race of American life in the late 20th century, side-stepping an analysis of the gameplay and ignoring the fact t An exploration of the evolution of narrative as it crosses into digital media.


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Murray's approach covers a wide range of media platforms through which narrative can be experienced, but, as many of her critics have pointed out, does so without much regard for the specific functionality of the media she addresses; for example, she claims that Tetris is an apt metaphor for the hectic rat-race of American life in the late 20th century, side-stepping an analysis of the gameplay and ignoring the fact that the game was created by a Russian programmer. Despite some of the shortcomings, this still works as a foundational text for anyone beginning their journey into new media studies or video game criticism, though Murray's own ideas have evolved as the fields have grown.

Aug 28, Kyle rated it it was amazing Shelves: phd-studies. Written at a time when developments in digital and virtual spaces was relatively new, it can almost be said Murray rides on the first VR wave while her thoughts tend towards the third wave, symbolized by the holodeck still centuries in the making.

As the second wave of virtual reality now seems to be reaching its crest, computer scientists and especially literacy scholars will have to keep their surfing skills at the ready, using his excellent resource as a guide. Outstanding at parts, particularly in the meatier sections in the middle of the book that deal with emergence, agency and the possibilities of kaleidoscopic progression in digital narrative.

This is certainly a must for anyone who wants to work with story-telling on digital formats. The only issue I would have would be in the slightly shallow handling of the first and last couple of chapters, which wind the book up and round it down a little poorly. Either way, I would still recommend this as a Outstanding at parts, particularly in the meatier sections in the middle of the book that deal with emergence, agency and the possibilities of kaleidoscopic progression in digital narrative.

Either way, I would still recommend this as a fascinating and in-depth study that draws many interesting conclusions. Jan 27, Timothy rated it liked it Shelves: information-media. This book is still cited often despite its age, and it is still a good introduction to the subject of narrative in new media. Murray's predictions are generally correct in their basic principles and way off the mark on specific details.

Hamlet on the Holodeck: The Future of Narrative in Cyberspace by Janet H. Murray

It is a relatively well-written book that presents its ideas clearly, but I think it is rapidly nearing the end of its life span. I might suggest skipping to Ian Bogost, who covers most of the same points. Jul 30, Greg Howard rated it really liked it. If you've ever wondered where print technology will go in the next phase of its evolution, this is a very interesting read. While I still believe there will always be a place in our world for tangible paper books you may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one , the author makes a convincing case for emerging technologies like virtual reality and hypertext.

May 02, John McLaughlin rated it it was amazing. Given Star Trek's "holodeck," if a new Shakespeare arrived on the scene, would we have technology that would serve him well in cyber or other space? See my longer review on The Digital Folk website. Oct 29, Joycer rated it liked it Shelves: professional-things. Obviously the specific examples and predictions are pretty dated at this point, but her ideas about what it means to tell stories in procedural and adaptive environments are still quite relevant and useful.

Apr 22, Julie rated it really liked it Shelves: own , shelved-for-the-moment. This was a textbook for the immersion semester at the Entertainment Technology Center. I think I made it more than halfway through, but then the semester got intense and I never finished it.

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One of these days, when it isn't in storage, I'd like to finish it. Jan 03, Bob rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Oh yeah! This is one of my three favorite books. I really enjoyed the perspective it provided. Helped me think about narrative in hypertexted environments which coincided with my growing interest in storytelling and marketing.


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Was an interesting look at non-linear narratives. Some of it was literature, but most was in the context of new and at the point of publication, new mediums. I read it as part of a free MIT Graduate writing course, and was not disappointed for having done so. Jan 01, Sheri rated it it was amazing Shelves: gradschool , game-design. This is the first book I've read that talks about video games in the way that I tend to think about them. I would very much like to read a follow up or updated edition, as it was written over ten years ago. However it is interesting to see how many of the predictions Murray laid out came to be.

May 24, David Blanar rated it really liked it. I found Murray's concept of the kaleidoscope compelling and useful as a new framework for digital narratives and her predictions around mobile storytelling experiences are finally coming into reality. Essential reading for anyone interested in interactive storytelling.

May 13, Diana added it Shelves: read Mar 17, Ryan rated it really liked it Shelves: main. A fun and thoughtful read. Mar 31, Vilis rated it liked it. Jul 07, Victoria rated it it was amazing.

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