Conserving Hypertext Art

    Bill Bly's We Descend
  • Translated from Storyspace 2.0 for the Web with HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript
  • 2023

We Descend is an "artifactual novel presented as an archive of writings gathered and transmitted over a vast span of time." Volume 1 was published by Eastgate Systems, Inc. in 1997 on the Storyspace platform. Volume 2, released in 2014, and Volume 3 in 2023, were both produced with Tinderbox for the Web. The story spans four timelines, beginning with a future post-apocalyptic storyline of Egderus who digs down through eons of data to reconstruct cultural history, encountering, along the way, Writings by an ancient who calls himself the Last One. The metaphor of the "archaeological dig" serves "to visualize time" (Bly, Traversals). The 2023 Complete Edition featured in the exhibition is the collection of all three volumes brought together and redesigned for the Web.

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