Brenda Laurel

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Brenda Laurel
Known for Human-computer interaction
Interactive narrative
Cultural aspects of technology
Movement Interactive storytelling
Game development research
Game development for Girls

Brenda Laurel, Ph.D. is an advocate for girl video game development, a "pioneer in developing virtual reality",[1] a public speaker, a consultant, and on the board of several companies and organizations.[2] She is currently a chair and professor at the California College of the Arts Graduate Program of Design.[2] Aside from co-founding Purple Moon, she has served as an interaction design consultant for multiple companies including Sony Pictures, Apple, and Citibank.[2]


Laurel received a Bachelor of Arts from DePauw University. She received her Masters of Fine Arts as well as her Ph.D. from Ohio State University.[2]

Purple Moon[edit]

Brenda founded Purple Moon in 1996, which was the first American software company to cater games to young girls between the ages of 8 and 14.[3] Brenda's vision was to create games for girls that focused more on real life decision making rather than creating games that focused on appearances and materiality.[4] The company was eventually bought by Mattel in 1999.

Virtual reality[edit]

In Laurel's work regarding interface design, she is well known for her support of the theory of interactivity, the "degree to which users of a medium can influence the form or content of the mediated environment."[5]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Beato, G. "Girl Games". Wired. Retrieved 7 March 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Brenda Laurel". California College of the Arts. Retrieved 7 March 2013. 
  3. ^ Cassell and Jenkins, Justine and Henry (2000). From Barbie to Mortal Kombat. MIT Press. ISBN 0262531682. 
  4. ^ Moggridge, Bill, "Chapter 5 Play-Interviews with Bing Gordon, Brendan Boyle, Brenda Laurel, and Will Wright" Designing Interactions, The MIT Press 2014.
  5. ^ Steuer, Jonathan (2006). "Defining virtual reality: Dimensions determining telepresence". Journal of communication 42 (4): 73–93. doi:10.1111/j.1460-2466.1992.tb00812.x. 

External links[edit]