Re: [-empyre-] Post from firstname.lastname@example.org/ forward
At 11:09 PM +1000 13/1/04, Ashley Holmes wrote:
Certainly, "hypermedia" is a term that I prefer to "New Media".
That's interesting. "Hypermedia" is a specific
term coined by Ted Nelson, and more narrow than
"new media." Hypermedia was first used by Ted
Nelson in 1965, in the same article in which he
coined the term "hypertext."
These initial coinages were offered in passing,
almost, toward the end of an article. Then, in
1970, Nelson published another article in which
both were described in more detail. You can
download the 1970 article, as reprinted in
Nelson's 1974 _Computer Lib / Dream Machines_,
from the NMR excerpts page
I'll paste in a few excerpts from both articles
here as well.
The 1965 definition of hypertext:
Let me introduce a word "hypertext"* to
mean a body of written or pictorial material
interconnected in such a complex way that it
could not conveniently be presented or
represented on paper. (NMR p.144)
The asterisk note after "hypertext" reads:
* The sense of "hyper-" used here
connotes extension and generality; cf.
"hyperspace." The criterion for this prefix is
the inability of these objects to be comprised
sensibly into linear media? (ibid)
Then hypermedia is coined:
The hyperfilm - a browsable or
vari-sequenced movie - is only one of the
possible hypermedia that require our attention.
In 1970 we get a lot more detail. In this
article, as the title ("No More Teachers' Dirty
Looks") indicates, Nelson is writing about
education, and particularly in opposition to
AI-based "Computer-Aided Instruction." He writes
of "hyper-media" (the term's concatenation
Hyper-media are branching or performing
presentations which respond to user actions,
systems of prearranged words and pictures (for
example) which may be explored freely or queried
in stylized ways. They will not be "programmed,"
but rather designed, written, drawn and edited,
by authors, artists, designers, and editors. (To
call them "programmed" would suggest spurious
technicality. Computer systems to present them
will be "programmed.") Like ordinary prose and
pictures, they will be media; and because they
are in some sense "multi-dimensional," we may
call them hyper-media, following mathematical use
of the term "hyper-." (NMR p.313)
Nelson then goes on to give a number of examples,
including two kinds of hypertext (one of which is
the "chunk style" we have on the web) and several
types of hypermedia. I won't cut and paste much
more from this article right now, because I'd be
tempted to reproduce the whole PDF.
I, too, like the term hypermedia, and Nelson's
work in general, and would be happy to discuss
them more here.
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