ELO Electronic Literature Organization

The Winners!

Fiction short list:
Caitlin Fisher
Shelley Jackson
Talan Memmott
Noah Wardrip-Fruin
judge's comments

Poetry short list


Judging criteria

2001 Awards Ceremony


By Paul Chan


Alternumerics explores the intimate relationship between language and interactivity by transforming the simple computer font into an art form that explores the fissure between what we type and what we mean.

By replacing the individual letters and numbers (known as alphanumerics) with textual and graphic fragments that signify what is typed in radically different ways, Alternumerics transforms the act of typing into a digital performance and any computer connected to a standard printer into an interactive artmaking installation.

Alternumeric fonts are Macintosh and Windows compatible and work with any application that uses fonts. Each font is accompanied by an art-piece that uses the font to explore the relationship between what is typed, what is translated—and fundamentally—what is communicated when we use language to describe the slipperiness of the self, the friction of desire, the pleasures of utopia, or the poetry of silence.



This work is readable on the web at nationalphilistine.com/alternumerics, and requires the Flash 5 plug-in to be fully experienced.

Paul Chan lives in New York City.


ELO acknowledges the support of our global sponsor, the Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation for their generous support of the Electronic Literature Directory project. We also thank our hosts at UCLA: the Center for Digital Humanities, the English Department, the Design| Media Arts Department, the School of the Arts and Architecture, and SINAPSE. We thank also the Illinois Humanities Council and the Illinois Arts Council, who supported the 2001-2002 Interactions program, 2001 Awards and founding sponsor ZDNet and founding sponsor NBCi.