Vinyl player

The neglected history of videogames for the blind

The game starts with a black screen. A woman’s voice, speaking in Japanese: “Real Sound. Kaze no Regret. This software brought to you by WARP Inc.” A string quartet, swelling and romantic, begins to play—press the start button, and the music stops suddenly with the sound of a bell. A light hiss of static. An acoustic guitar picking up the same theme as before is quickly joined by a ticking clock. A deep male voice starts to narrate: “Every so often, when you meet someone else, you have a feeling that it’s not for the first time.” The screen remains…


Cat++ turns our feline obsession into a coding language

Cat++ is a code developed by Nora O’ Murchú, an Irish new media art curator, designer, and academic. Oh, and a cat lover, of course. Created during a residency at Access Space in the UK, Cat++ is thought of as a one-of-a-kind “cat simulator.” The coding alternates cat interactions with random and uncontrollable events that are translated through a series of 8-bit-esque animations. The code is based on real cat characteristics and assigns different dynamic visuals to user input. What’s even more wonderful is that O’ Murchú invites others to expand on the code with more cats and behaviors for new and unexpected…


A closer look at the audio game console from 1980

Did you know there were such things as audio-only game consoles? We’re going way back to 1978 for the first of these, Mego’s 2XL Robot, which had you insert 8-track cassettes that told jokes, hosted quizzes, and gave you mathematical problems to solve. But that’s not what classic game enthusiast zadoc recently shone a light on. They, instead, give us a closer look at Milton Bradley’s Omni Entertainment System, originally released in 1980, and that replaced those 8-track cassettes with 8-track cartridges. This was a time prior to Nintendo’s entry into the console world, when the likes of the Magnavox Odyssey, the Atari 2600, and…