Exploring new forms and functions of storytelling

This is a collaborative sandbox for Columbia DSL

A Social Sandbox

Welcome to the Columbia DSL prototyping community, an international collective of thinkers and doers exploring future forms and functions of storytelling. 

WANTED: storytellers, game designers, makers, hackers, producers, directors, writers, designers, activists, academics, students and those who are interested in how creativity and the arts can tackle complex challenges. 

Current Prototypes

Frankenstein AI: a monster made by many reimagines Shelley’s seminal work through the lens of a naive, emotional, and highly intelligent “life form” - an AI. This project prioritizes the needs of humanity within the larger conversation around the trajectory of AI, and invites the public into the process in an immersive, highly collaborative, theatrical format. http://frankenstein.ai 

(de)escalation room - What if we built an environment that modeled negative conversations and behaviors found on social media platforms and in the real world? Inside of this environment, situations quickly escalate. But this time, we would be able to do something about it. Imagine a space where a diversity of participants work together through story, play, design and collaboration to de-escalate situations that stem from misunderstanding and polarization. To create this “De-Escalation Room” we’ll harness emerging technologies, collaborative methodologies and field research to design and build an innovative empathic simulation that is a learning environment that can scale.

Sherlock Holmes & the Internet of Things - Over the last 2 1/2 years Sherlock Holmes & the Internet of Things has grown to over 2,600 collaborators in 60+ countries. The project has forked numerous times as participants have built upon its foundation in an effort to create projects, programs and prototypes. From immersive storytelling experiences to escape the room games to VR and AR apps to enchanted objects powered by IoT to educational programs — Sherlock Holmes and the Internet of Things has helped to establish the space for a massive online/offline collaboration. Since 2015 there have been more than 170 self-organized events around the world. http://sherlockholmes.io 

About Us

The Columbia University School of the Arts’ Digital Storytelling Lab (aka Columbia DSL) designs stories for the 21st Century. We build on a diverse range of creative and research practices originating in fields from the arts, humanities, and technology. But we never lose sight of the power of a good story. Technology, as a creative partner, has always shaped the ways in which stories are found and told. In the 21st Century, for example, the mass democratization of creative tools — code, data, and algorithms — have changed the relationship between creator and audience. The Columbia DSL, therefore, is a place of speculation, of creativity, and of collaboration between students and faculty from across the University. New stories are told here in new and unexpected ways.

Join Columbia faculty and industry innovators as we explore the current and future landscape of digital storytelling.

The work of the Columbia DSL is released under a creative commons license for all to remix and share.  

More details

Visit our site http://digitalstorytellinglab.com and for those in and around the NYC area we hold monthly meetups at Lincoln Center. For more details please visit https://www.meetup.com/columbia-dsl/