Re-imagining Stranger Things as an interactive 1983 video game collection
For my recent Netflix Hack Day project, I wanted to create something based on Stranger Things, an original TV show that debuted last year and quickly appealed to my interest in 80’s nostalgia. Having seen a few fan-basedvideo games following its popular release, I felt equally inspired to make some kind of video game contribution as well. It also interested me to design something in the process that was more era-appropriate. Since our Stranger Things story begins in 1983, it seemed logical to aim for an Atari 2600 aesthetic. Even the show itself referenced Atari, so that was all the convincing I needed 🙂
In the end I decided to borrow game-play elements from Frogger and Pacman ( though the demon slugs were loosely inspired by the Brain enemy’s cruise missiles from Robotron ) Projecting the game screen onto the various TV sets was a bit of an afterthought ( I had recently noticed that the television set makes numerous appearances throughout the episodes, so I figured including them would improve the immersion. )
Just as I experienced with My80sTV, this project was an absolute joy to work on. And I’m very grateful for the recent attention it’s received.
Just released my latest project, SongBranch. It’s basically an interactive song lyric visualization app. The edges are colorized as a heat map based on the word/phrase frequency. There are three different graph views: The default Normal view uses a custom algorithm to display a graph the song lyrics in the fewest nodes possible. The Simple view displays each song verse as an individual node, whereas the Detailed view is a graph of each individual word. You get interesting results from songs based on how the words are structured and repeated. Here are a few of my favorite findings:
For my latest excursion in nostalgia, I decided to scan in an old (1981) city directory from my home town (Paris, Texas) and create a interactive map of all of the local businesses listed from back then.
An RxJS library wrapper that lets you execute Rx operators directly using marble-diagram ASCII string arguments.
rxify was mainly created as an educational tool to guide those ramping up on Reactive Extensions for the first time by presenting an alternative way to visualize and experiment on its asynchronous features. However, some folks may find it useful for other purposes such as general problem-solving or simplifying unit tests.
Say Whaaat!!! provides a more convenient way to to catch missed dialogue as you watch Netflix by displaying subtitles when you pause playback. It also provides the ability to navigate a film’s timeline, caption by caption.
Now that My70sTV.com is released, I decided it was time to put together a meta-site to combine all of the TV’s into one portal. Also, I’ve written a user guide to make it the channel-surfing a bit more intuitive.