[ A document which accompanied an early demo version of the Palace which ran on AppleTalk networks. One of a few documents used to sell the Palace to the management at Time Warner Interactive. The "Palace Precepts" section, which is shared by other documents in this collection was a result of my reading of Scott McCloud.

circa 11/94

- jim ]

Palace Authoring

The Palace is a demo for a multi-user chat & game environment intended for use on the FSN [ full service network (interactive tv) - jim ]. It also works well on local area networks, such as we have in our office.

The Palace uses an authoring system which shares many features with ArcAngel [ a Hypercard-like Authoring system I had created for Time Warner Interactive, originally called "Idaho"- jbum ]:

Applications created with the Palace differ from ArcAngel in many respects, however.

Palace Precepts

The Palace will undoubtedly go through many changes in its transition from a Demo to a working application on a FSN. There are some basic characteristics I would prefer to maintain, if at all possible.


The Palace is fundamentally a social environment. Any changes which are made to it should be for the purpose of enhancing and encouraging group behavior.


Although the Palace is a "new" way of interacting with other people. It is very easy to identify with and use, because it uses familiar icons and design from the world of Comics. I believe this should be maintained because it enhances ease-of-use. New Features should be introduced in a manner consistent with Comics.

MASKING (Anonymity)

The Palace provides a measure of anonymity over normal social interactions. This is because each user is hidden behind a generic smiley face icon. I believe this should be maintained, as it has a definite (positive) effect on participants behavior. People tend to behave more "loosely" in this environment.

The (eventual) addition of voice communications will adversely affect the level of anonymity, and probably cause people to be more inhibited in the Palace. A suggested enhancement is to use digital signal processing to make each voice sound like a cartoon voice. In addition to being "fun", this will help maintain the anonymity level.