[Serge Bouchardon|A Web Odyssey]

The interactive narrative “A Web Odyssey” deals with the navigation on the Web. It is based on the figure of Ulysses trying to navigate back to Ithaca and reconnect with his island, kingdom and home. It features the different episodes of The Odyssey (the Cyclops, Circe, the Sirens, Calypso…).

The goal of the user is to reconnect to the e-thaca network. Parallels are then drawn between the oblivion caused by the lotos flowers and the infinite scrolling of social networks, the eye of the Cyclops and the webcam which monitors the Internet user (and which must be blinded or disabled), the Underworld and the Dark Web… The ecological question is also addressed through the Sirens, who feed on human flesh, and the streaming platforms which consume a lot of energy and data and feed on the resources of our environment.

Here are the themes covered in the different episodes:
– Lotos-eaters: social networks and addiction
– Polyphemus the Cyclops: webcam and surveillance
– Circe: social media and cyberbullying
– The Underworld: Dark Web, transparency and opacity
– Sirens: streaming platforms and energy consumption
– Charybdis and Scylla: ransomware and dilemma
– Helios: General Terms and Conditions (GTC) and awareness
– Calypso: online video gaming (clicker) and dopamine loop
– Back to Ithaca: connection, password, captcha and identity

In this story, like Ulysses, the user needs to have a good understanding of the (connected) environment to interact effectively and complete their journey.

This interactive narrative, which articulates literary, educational and recreational dimensions, invites us to reflect on digital technologies, social media, platforms, and our will and (dis)ability to disconnect and reconnect.