Robyn Miller is entirely cool

Friday 25 March 2005

The coolest thing to happen as a result of our Myst cake is that Robyn Miller sent me an email about it. Robyn (along with his brother Rand) created the Myst world (including the games) which inspired the cake. In his email, he pronounced the cake "entirely cool".

My son and I were thrilled and flabbergasted. It was as if I'd mentioned Star Wars in a blog posting and got an email out of the blue from George Lucas about it. I wrote back to Robyn about my son's interest in his work, and in video games, movies and their intersection in general, and asked Robyn if he had any advice for a budding auteur. Robyn wrote back:

Firstly, tell your son to have many more happy birthdays. Secondly, tell him that it's not the tools, but the ideas behind them. An author isn't concentrating on "technology" when approaching that next book. Instead he's thinking story, ideas, content. Because technology as a medium is boring. But great ideas, conveyed through even the most low-tech media, can come alive.

Hmph. Very highbrow sounding. Don't I sound just-wow? Professor of Interactivity?

Sincerely,

Robyn Miller, PhD

P.S. You can visit me at me at my new, online-university (I've accredited myself, by the way): http://www.robynmillersamazingschoolofmultimediawhereyouwilleventuallylearntobeagenius.com

Entirely cool.

Comments

[gravatar]
andrew 8:57 AM on 27 Mar 2005

I am flabbergasted that Boudreau hasn't weighed in on this yet. It *is* very cool to hear from a rockstar of video games (BTW, that link in his email doesn't work).

Could you elaborate on why the Little Debbie brownies are your new favorite building material? I seem to remember a fondness for them growing up, but it was for more culinary reasons.

[gravatar]
Ned Batchelder 10:12 AM on 27 Mar 2005

Little Debbie Fudge Brownies are dense enough that you can carve them into tiny shapes, yet they hold their shape, and they are edible (a fundamental ground rule of the cakes is that everything must be edible). For example, one of the buildings has a roof that is just a triangular wedge of brownie.

(The URL was a joke, of course..)

[gravatar]
andrew 6:56 PM on 27 Mar 2005

"duh" on the URL. I am dense, but not plutonium.

[gravatar]
David Boudreau 9:49 PM on 27 Mar 2005

Indeed, that is awesome! I'm not a Myst fan particularly but to have such contact from the author of one of your favorite games is truly great. And just last week I mentioned "inspring". Like Ned said about George Lukas, or- if it were some LOTR cake and you got a voicemail from J.R. and he said "hey Ned and the fam, THAT's what I'm Tolkien about!" (if he were still alive, that is).

Let's remember though, that if his url link was real, the required reading of Mr. Miller's school would have to link right back to Ned's site. First to the writings on Form vs. Content, then advanced studies of Nat's World, which is basically a customizable/freeverse Myst, am I wrong? Ironic about how thrilling it is for your son... I guess when it's your own parents telling you about the difference between form vs. content, ie the same people that always talk up a big storm about eating your vegetables, it's passe. Oh but when Mr. Myst comes along, whoopdee doo, look at the cake, of all things. Sort of like in Strange Encounters, when Richard Dreyfus is playing with his mashed potatoes and his wife is just complaining and fussing about it, oblivious to what's about to REALLY go down. Forget about the mashed potatoes, folks- while Nat's World didn't sell a million units, we should remember that Ned is the true professor at Robyn Miller's school when it comes to recognizing the distinction between form vs. content.

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