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#020: A ruby red slipper heist, a gown that can read the room, and a ghost story just for you

#020: A ruby red slipper heist, a gown that can read the room, and a ghost story just for you

No Place Like Home

Calling all true crime fans, Wizard of Oz buffs, art lovers, and fans of great storytelling. No Place Like Home is a true crime podcast centered around the famous ruby red slippers of the Wizard of Oz that went missing in 2005, produced by award-winning podcast studio Cadence13. Take a deep dive into the world of the art heist.

They were supposed to be silver—silver slippers on a golden road. That’s how Dorothy’s shoes are described in L. Frank Baum’s 1900 book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. But in the film version, the color changed. A screenwriter hastily crossed out “silver.” Technicolor was about thinking brighter. The shoes would be ruby instead.

A library for the future

Every year from 2014 to 2114, an author will contribute a text, that is otherwise kept secret and unpublished, to The Future Library project by Katie Paterson. At the same time, a forest has been planted in Norway that will supply the paper for the text submitted to the project over a hundred years, culminating in a printed version in 2114. Writers to date include Margaret Atwood (2014), David Mitchell (2015), Sjón (2016), Elif Shafak (2017), Han Kang (2018), Karl Ove Knausgård (2019), and Ocean Vuong (2020).

The gown that literally read the room

After Shay Rose's green screen dress blew up on social media this week, I thought of another gown made of magic: "The Cognitive Dress", a collaboration by design house Marchesa and IBC, and worn by Karolina Kurkova at the 2016 Met Gala, year of Manus x Machina: Fashion in An Age of Technology. The flowers on the dress change colour in real time, based on the emotional sentiment of tweets tagged with #MetGala and #CognitiveDress.

A data-driven ghost story

Breathe is a mobile browser-based book (aka digital fiction) by Kate Pullinger that leverages data—place, weather, and time, for example—to create a story shaped around you. What could be more spooky?

Inanimate Alice's next chapter, in VR

Part of the Inanimate Alice series, an award-winning interactive digital novel told in episodes starting with chapter one in 2005, this chapter by Mez Breeze is the first to be set in virtual reality. The ongoing series follows the story of aspiring game designer Alice Field starting from eight years old to today: in the latest chapter called Perpetual Nomads, where she's now a college student on a broken bus in the middle of nowhere. With a transmedia approach that not only spans time but also media, the series is even being used in the classroom as a way to deepen the literary experience.