Projects using SVS.
spring_alpha is a networked game system based on Chad McCail's drawing "Spring" and the series "Evolution is Not Over Yet". This narrates the attempts of a small, urban community to create its own "utopian" society. The narrative is used as a metaphor for the real-world issues that the project explores and a focus around which speculative and critical ideas can develop. The software system serves as a "sketch pad" for testing out ideas for alternative forms of social practice at both the "narrative" level, in terms of the game story, and at a "code" level, in terms of working with the actual data and communication structures that support the game. It is an exploration of software and social governance in relation to Free Open Source Software practice. The project combines the development of an open software system along with workshop events that seek to broaden Free Open Source Software development principles into areas outside of programming.
The spring_alpha game takes place inside a simulated world that is based on that in Chad's drawings but expanded by the players. The original stories and images become a framework that is fleshed-out by people's own ideas and experiences.
The basic aim of the game is to change the rules by which the society in that world runs. This is done through hacking and altering the code that simulates that world, creating new types of behaviour and social interaction. How effective this becomes depends on the players' ability to spread these new ideas into the society.