Janet H. Murray

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Janet H. Murray is the Ivan Allen College Professor of Digital Media and Associate Dean for Research in the Ivan College of Liberal Arts at Georgia Tech and an internationally recognized interaction designer, specializing in digital narrative and digital humanities. She directs Georgia Tech’s Prototyping eNarrative (PeN Lab) which creates prototypes of new narrative genres on emerging platforms including experimental television, virtual reality, and augmented reality, and she is a member of the Steering Committee and Project Director of the Mellon Foundation grant for Georgia Tech’s Digital Integrated Liberal Arts Center.
Murray is a first-generation college graduate, who benefitted from excellent public education at the Bronx High School of Science, City College of New York, and SUNY Binghamton where she received her B.A., After graduating early from college she was trained by IBM as a systems programmer, before earning a PhD in English Literature from Harvard, where she specialized in the English novel. In the early 1980s she was teaching Humanities at MIT when her students showed her Eliza and Zork, and she recognized the possibilities for storytelling in the new digital medium. Building on these explorations and on early Media Lab experiments with interactive video, Murray led humanities archival and serious games projects at MIT in the 1980s and 1990s where she established the pioneering Laboratory for Advanced Technology in the Humanities. While at MIT she also created the first university course in interactive narrative, which was also one of the earliest courses to take games seriously as a genre of representation. Since 1999 Murray has been at Georgia Tech, where she served as Director of the Graduate Program in Digital Media from 2000 to 2010, providing leadership for curriculum revision, including pioneering game studies courses and a laboratory structure for integrated education and research, and for the establishment of one of the world's first PhD programs in the field (2004).
Murray is the author of a seminal work for digital media and game studies, Hamlet on the Holodeck: The Future of Narrative in Cyberspace (Free Press, 1997; MIT Press 1998; updated edition 2017), which has been translated into 5 languages, and is widely used as a roadmap to emerging art, information, and entertainment environments. Her textbook Inventing the Medium: Principles of Interaction Design as a Cultural Practice (MIT Press, 2011) has been hailed by Henry Jenkins as "an epic accomplishment, one which we will all be mining for years to come." Her projects have been funded by IBM, Apple Computer, Intel Corporation, Motorola Research, Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco/Scientific Atlanta, the Annenberg-CPB Project, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the National Science Foundation.


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