Animation competition to bring to life Hitchhiker’s Guide author’s ideas

Douglas Adams, creator and author of cult sci-fi radio-series and novel The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, made a prophetic audio recording on the future of the book in 1993 which is now the subject of an animation design competition.

Getting The Book Invented Properly was recorded by Adams for his then publisher Bob Stein of Voyager Expanded Books.

Charting the evolution of stone tablets which produced ‘hardware problems’ through to scrolls and bound books, Douglas then talks about ‘powerbooks’ or ‘software’ where ‘pictures, text, scrolling, page turning could be modeled in software and you could take as many books as you wanted anywhere you like.’ Remember he said this in 1993.

Douglas Adams
Douglas Adams

The Literary Platform, an organisation which brings together projects involving technology and literature, is now asking animators to upload their interpretation where public vote will decide a longlist, put before a panel of judges which includes Stephen Fry, Stein – who donated the recording to the Literary Platform – and design studio ATYP. 

The winner will be announced on Towel Day, an annual Doouglas Adams celebration held on 25 May. It will be exhibited at a concurrent launch event and hosted on the Literary Platform site. Entries must be uploaded by 15 April.

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