Hypertext Paradigm

The hypertext paradigm is the key foundational paradigm for the WEB, and is what gives the WEB its the power and potential. Its nonlinear, nonhierarchial, borderless, and object-oriented nature have profound implications for both the Internet and society.

 Although Vannevar Bush and Ted Nelson are widely viewed, respectively, as the grandfather and father of hypertext, the concept has been use in ancient literature, such as the Talmud; with its commentary on commentary on the main text, and its annotations, and references to other passages within the Talmud, and outside in the Torah and Tenach. It is a very biological form of presenting information that models how our minds processes, organizes, and retrieves information. It creates very organic information space, as opposed to the artificial linear format imposed by the print paradigm.

 Conceptually, hypertext forms associations called links, between chunks of information called nodes. The resulting structure is commonly referred to as a web, hence the name World Wide WEB for the CERN project. These basic characteristics, coupled with hypertext's other characteristics allows the production is extremely rich, flexible documents and metadocuments, especially when combined with multimedia to form the fusion referred to as hypermedia.

 Hypertext is an information representation system, that provides a nonlinear semantic network with multiple paths though, and hence multiple experiences of the information. Thus in implementing hypertext, navigational layout is crucial. Related to navigational layout, is the degree of control the author gives the reader over the information, and the integration of the information into the WEB as a whole.

 When its all said and done, hypertext works best when its nonlinear, borderless characteristics are taken full advantage of, as well as when the information is presented in an adaptive fashion.

 Click here, for a list of further reading on the subject.


WEB Paradigm Why. Media Theory. History and Prehistory Print Paradigm.
Multimedia Paradigm. Hypertext Paradigm. Docuverse Paradigm. Interactive Paradigm. Conclusions
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