Announcing the Interactive Fiction Technology Foundation (IFTF)

Dear everyone,

I admit it: I haven’t been absent just because my day job has been busy. I’ve also been working on an exciting new project with Jason McIntosh, Andrew Plotkin, Chris Klimas, and Flourish Klink, and I’m delighted that today is the day we can unveil it to you all.

The Interactive Fiction Technology Foundation is a nonprofit organization that will support interactive fiction players, authors, and communities. We’re carrying out that mission through technology: we want to maintain, preserve, and improve the tools and services that people use to create and distribute IF. We’ll also develop new projects to foster the continued growth of IF. (More mission details here!)

Our first project, already underway, is assuming stewardship of IFComp. There’s an official IFComp blog post discussing this, but in essence – IFComp now owns its own code and copyrights, which is important for legal reasons.

Other projects on the horizon:

Twine stewardship. We’re going to explore ways to provide legal and financial support to the Twine project and its community infrastructure.

IF accessibility. We want to create a programs that will identify ways to bring popular IF platforms up to modern accessibility standards. We will assist projects in implementing these improvements, and we will create permanent accessibility guidelines for future work.

(More project and program details here!)

You can sign up for IFTF news via Twitter, Facebook, or our announcements-only mailing list. We also accept grants and donations from the public, if you would like to donate.

On a personal note….

I believe fervently that self-expression is a human right, and art is a core aspect of self-expression, and game development is a form of art. In IFTF, I see not only a way to improve the tech underlying various IF communities, but an opportunity to celebrate the sheer variety and wonder of modern IF. It’s no accident that one of our first programs focuses on accessibility – we recognize the diversity of IF players and authors, and we want IF to be open to everybody.

I’m very proud to be part of this effort, and I believe we can make a real difference. Down the road, there will be many ways to get involved, both by joining committees and through volunteering for various programs. If you love IF too, I hope you’ll spread the word and let people know we exist.


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