During the shooting of the GET LAMP documentary, I generated what appears to be my stylistic mass of footage – over 120 hours of people talking about text adventures, early home computer software industry, inter-company politics, and a range of things about writing interactively. It was a huge range of subjects and of course only a tiny sliver got into anything on the GET LAMP DVDs – probably 3-4 hours in total.
My hope is to release almost all of it on archive.org, with a Creative Commons license, so people can listen to them, learn some additional stuff, and provide a direct-source historical record of events happening – after all, these are testimonials as well as discussions.
Just to set expectations for people waiting for specific folks from the interview list – some people had final approval of what was put in the film (they couldn’t change it, mind you – they just had a yes or no to finally appearing) and as such, I can’t exactly go ahead and just drop all their answers out in the wild, unless I check with them first. I’ll do my best to provide them with the proposed collection of clips and get a sign-off, but for now I’ll go for the low-hanging fruit and just go for people of direct historical interest who were fine with all of it going up.
As I learned the hard way with the BBS Documentary raw footage, people don’t exactly want the actual, full, unbroken interviews – my questions are repetitive across multiple sessions, I sometimes launch into stories or other tricks to bring out statements, and you generally get 20 minutes of “the good stuff” out of an hour-long tape. So, I’m doing an experiment this time – providing “cooked” interviews, where you are ONLY getting a set of clips consisting of 1. the subject’s answers 2. which at the time of editing I thought complete and relevant to the final work. This cuts things down dramatically. I have also applied some minimal noise reduction against the footage so that it compresses better and plays well, which should help as well.
So here’s the first in what I hope will be nearly all of them: Chuck Benton, late of On-Line Systems/Sierra On-line, creator of Softporn Adventure, which was later remixed into the Leisure Suit Larry franchise, and who also did a couple other great ports/works, like Frogger and B.C.’s Quest for Tires.
You’ll hear small bits of my voice, but otherwise I’m absent. The whole thing runs 30 minutes, less than the hour I ran with him originally. This was my first interview conducted with the new equipment, and the waterfall in the back, I decided, was too much to use the footage. (It turns out I could have included it, because I got MUCH better at post-processing.)
So here we go, check it out, and here’s hoping I can get many more to you this year.
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