©1985 Jane Veeder

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VIZGAME is an interactive computer animation and sound synthesis installation.  The player interacts with graphical menus to draw figures and other graphic processes on the system’s 16 screens to build up a cyclical real-time animation.  The player is in control of composing the visual/temporal relationships within the animation as it evolves.

SIGGRAPH ‘85 Artshow, ACM/SIGGRAPH Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques, San Francisco, 1985.
4th Annual Pacific Northwest Computer Graphics Conference, Eugene, OR, 1985



Datamax UV-1 Graphics System
Zgrass Graphics Language
Custom VIZGAME software environment
Custom cabinet with buttons and joystick.

The medium of the computer is a particularly complex one incorporating many levels of invested intelligence.  Likewise, creative development in a digital medium is notably process oriented, with many generations of software tool development, and perception and design goal evolution behind the finalized work.  How then is an average “viewer” to apprehend a digital work of art?  My current strategy is to turn the “viewer” into a “player” who, by interacting with control structures and visual devices, has a means to explore and perceive the actual character of the work.

VIZGAME is based on the final sequence from FLOATER (1983), my animated work that featured simultaneous program control of sound and visuals and real-time graphic processes merged with the cycling of the system’s 16 screens.  Through interactivity, I have extended a range of FLOATER’s creative development phase to viewer control.  FLOATER’s animated components are generalized into player-controlled cyclical animations featuring variable placement in screen space and animated time. 

VIZGAME, as well as my 1982 installation, WARPITOUT, runs on the Datamax UV-1 Graphics System.  First marketed in late 1980, the UV-1’s resident programming interface is ZGRASS, a language interpreter designed specifically for interactive graphics, real-time animation, user evolution, and optimized for custom videogame hardware.  This affordable, Z-80 based sports car of a graphics system spawned a subculture of creative users who developed their own applications toward a diverse range of goals, including animation, installations, commercial applications e.g. paint and title programs, and custom language commands.