i am mariam .com



H

ello.

I'm currently a first year Ph.D. student in the Digital Media program at Georgia Tech. I wrote my MSc thesis on videogames and poetry, which is available upon request.

I'm a designer, researcher, and critic. I have been a corporate lackey, laboratory assistant, private school teacher, private tutor, sales clerk, administrative assistant, and web journalist. My Master's research looked at rhetorical and formal qualities of modernist poetry and how they might be used in game design to make videogames more meaningful. My current research is not as well defined (yet), but focuses on how to co-design technologies to address the self-defined values, needs, and goals of local Atlanta communities.

Feel free to contact me:

miss.asad | at | gmail.com
Mariam Asad
@mimib0t
848-naught-0

Master's Thesis


In my thesis, I explore literary and rhetorical devices in modernist poetry and analyze how parallel existing videogame mechanics. I also look at ways in which these mechanics might lend themselves to different forms of creative expression. It includes analyses of games like VVVVVV, Braid, and Limbo. My thesis will be available on this site soon.

Newsgames


I spent three semesters with the Newsgames research project at Georgia Tech. I wrote articles on various games for the project blog: news literacy tools, an educational game on civic rights, a dystopian web narrative (Part I, Part II), and a CNN quiz game.

Miscellaneous


One of my most well known pieces is an analysis of Heavy Rain that I wrote for an (now defunct) independent publication. I examined the game's use of camera angles and how they contribute to gameplay. It is also available here as a PDF.
I also have various essays from my academic career, which cover subjects including literary theory, science and technology studies (STS), and communication studies.
Inside our installation space

The Living Room


This was an installation piece where a participant interacted with the space through a head-mounted display. Our design included tape art, projected video, live camera feed, and custom Flash UI. I worked on the project design and assisted with production.

More detail and images can be found here. (opens in new window)




The Vaudevilloscope in action

Vaudevilloscope


This group project digitally remediates a zoopraxiscope and evokes the golden age of Vaudeville. It features original footage, video editing, and AS3 back-end. More details can be found on our poster.

Project can be viewed here. (opens in new window, beware long load times, requires repeated viewings)



I've made a huge mistake.

Arrested Development Anti-Map


One of my first experiences working in Flash, the assignment was to map something ‘un-mappable.’ I chose to visualize the running jokes from my favorite television series Arrested Development. Each quadrant is a season and each dot represents an instance of the joke.

The work-in-progress can be seen here. (opens in new window)



Example of UI

Prototype: Temporal Jigsaw Puzzle


I wanted to create a digital jigsaw puzzle that best used the affordances of the digital medium. Each puzzle piece represents a point in time. The player can shift through time, which changes the shape of each piece.

More details on my prototype can be found here. (opens in new window)

Ghost Checkers


Inspired by White Chess, my friend Brian and I came up with Ghost Checkers. The game is essentially paper-and-pencil checkers, except we didn't erase any of the pieces. Each position of each piece, past or present, was available to jump and be jumped. An elaborate series of jump chains ensued. The winner was decided when there were no more available moves. The game got really messy really quickly, if our game board is any indication (e.g. jumps that wrap around the board).




Undergrad Bingo


I wrote this during my undergrad, the night before the final draft of my undergrad thesis was due. The bingo card is, of course, just for funsies. It's meant for professors and instructors who have to grade endless amounts of undergraduate papers and inevitably encounter the same tropes and clichés. I won a game while proofreading my work later that night.
Also available as a DOC or a PDF. (opens in a new window)

Education



Georgia Institute of Technology (2009-2011)
Master of Science, Digital Media
Master’s Thesis: “Making It Difficult: Modernist Poetry and Game Design”

York University (2005-2009)
Bachelor of Arts (Honours), English Literature and Communications
Summa Cum Laude; Dean’s List; Final GPA: 8.1/9.0

Experience



Graduate Student Researcher, Georgia Institute of Technology (2009-2011)
Virtual ethnography in Second Life. Fastidious attention to detail, working under constant pressure and deadlines. Self-motivated and self-reliant, collaborating with academic and corporate teams.

Project Assistant, Clearstone Central Laboratories (2007-2009)
Technical support (phone), equipment troubleshooting, solely responsible for Sunday operations, coordinated clinical trials internationally, miscellaneous administrative skills.

Prior jobs include private school teacher, specimen preparation specialist, private student tutor, sales clerk in an art supplies store, administrative assistant, web journalist.

Skills



Knowledgeable in Photoshop CS3+, Illustrator CS3+, Flash CS3+, Dreamweaver CS3+, MSOffice 2008+, HTML5, CSS3, jQuery, both OSX and Windows platforms.
Experience with Premiere CS5, Actionscript 3, Processing, JavaScript, XML, PHP.
Game design (rule sets, game mechanics, level design).
UI basics (wireframes and layout design for web, devices, print).
Principles of visual design (prototyping, typography, interface design).
Ethnographic methods (participant observation, field notes, data analysis).
Writing (academic, web, editorial).





I've lived in Toronto, Canada for most of my life before moving to Atlanta for grad school. I completed my undergrad at York University and received a BA (Honours) in English Literature and Communications.

I speak a little French, a little Tagalog, a little Arabic, and fluent Arrested Development.

My other interests include Drop7, rollercoasters, Lego, shawarmas, Clone High, VVVVVV, Korean BBQ, and public transit systems.