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Unfiction.com: Alternate Reality Gaming  12/1/04 - Website by

Unfiction.com isn't terribly interesting in itself as a site, but reading it I can feel the earth crumbling under my feet as I slide toward The Rabbit Hole. The site is a portal for Alternate Reality Gaming (ARG) and that seems interesting as hypertext. Besides being, you know, all about fascinating and absorbing games.

There's a good bit of thought about games as hypertexts, and some about online communities and their archives as hypertexts (yes?), and discussion of the difference between digital narratives and "true" or literary hypertext. I'm fascinated by ARGs because they seem to sit in between.

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hypertextuality of ARGs

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Memex and Beyond Web Site  3/15/05 - Website by Rosemary Simpson

The Memex and Beyond Web Site seems to be closed but valuable. It's a snapshot, circa 1996, of the key people, institutions, papers, and conferences in the field of (academic?) hypertext at that point. It's very much what this site would aspire to be-- a thorough index of the field. Based on what's there and the stated goals, it would be lovely to see it finished, but its structure is well-done even by current standards, an internet geologic age after it went quiet.

It's interesting because it shows very vividly what I call projections of a hypertext. Every page of the site is a multidimensional structure flattened into linear form, and each item on the page is a vertex, a link which allows you to see that same item in another projection. Each link serves to highlight the multidimensional structure of the text by serving as the corner between facets, the juncture of flattened images. The way you navigate the site keeps the structure in mind.

I have to post about it now as I keep finding myself coming back to it, sometimes for material and sometimes to consider its form. As I dig through the site I find myself frustrated by the web, wishing that the links would yield two or three destinations each: that item in each of the other planes of the site and as an item by itself.

Aha! Hypertext Systems  4/20/05 - Website by George Landow

Finally, I found a good quick reference page for a bunch of the early hypertext systems. Eventually I hope that my own "Tools" index will cover those systems and more.

The Five-Paragraph Essay  4/23/05 - Website by Marla DeSoto

In the process of writing that last entry, I found a site that exemplifies several principles of good hypertext. Marla's site on the Structure of the Five Paragraph Essay takes a fairly simple topic and shows it from a variety of angles. With the same text as examples, you can see an outline of the essay, the marked up full text of the essay, or detailed explanations of each element of the essay. This multifaceted, prismatic view of a text, where the reader can switch between the raw text or a structural view, with multiple depths of engagement in the form of linked definitions and contextual expansions, is exactly what hypertext can and should do.

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Citation

The Great Lettuce Head on Hypertext  5/2/05 - Website by Steve Ersinghaus

Steve Ersinghaus' Great Lettuce Head touches (as advertised) on: fiction, English Literature, New Media, Writing, and technology in education. And it has a hypertext category.

URLGREYHOT on Information work and Education  5/2/05 - Website by Michael Angeles

Michael Angeles confusingly lists URLGREYHOT's categories as separate blogs. Regardless, the content is interesting and the topics closest to the heart of t.org are the information work blog, Education, and the Education blog. Even if he is into homeschooling.

It looks like "Education" is separate from the "Education Blog" in that, like t.org, the site contains things which are outside the blog and exist in a broader hypertext.

Something Different on Tinderbox and Blogging  5/2/05 - Website by Doug Miller

Doug Miller doesn't have a hypertext category in his blog per se, but his Tinderbox, blogging, and education categories are all relevant to t.org's interests.

Kottke on Web technology  5/2/05 - Website by Jason Kottke

Kottke.org doesn't have a category on hypertext exactly, but does have a section on web technology, and that seems to be where the hypertext issues that I'm interested in fall. I need to write about "hypertext" vs. "the web" since that's such an FAQ whenever I mention the term.

NoCategories on Hypertext  5/2/05 - Website by Dylan Kinnet

Dylan Kinnet's NoCategories' largest or second largest ... category ... is on hypertext.

surftrail  5/19/05 - Website by Anders Fagerjord

surftrail is Anders Fagerjord's personal blog, and it made a bit of a splash among weblogs in August of 2003 when Anders made each blog entry its own webpage rather than taking the standard approach of collecting many entries onto a single web page.

Most blogs allow the reader to read an entry only in the context (a page) of other entries, whether the context is a chronological archive, a category or subject grouping, or a search result.

When each entry (or thought/topic in an entry) has its own page, several things can happen:

  • style is more flexible - each entry can more easily have its own visual tone through framing and typography
  • more hypertext structures become possible - forks and cycles among your entries become more apparent
  • overlapping structures don't collide - so the chronological nature of a blog can more easily coexist with categories, idea hubs, and non-categorical trails
  • if you buy into the "golden age of hypertext" rhetoric, you get to write 'more like the hypertext novelists'. and if you don't buy into the nostalgia, you still get to take advantage of the features which made the novelists choose the medium in the first place.

This is different enough that folks have started to call such blogs Fagerjordian.

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Finally, a page per topic

EdTechPost  3/1/06 - Website by Scott Leslie

EdTechPost is not a pretty site, but neither is what he writes about: life in the trenches of educational technology, which he helpfully narrows down to "tools for learning, thinking, and collaborating". Scott Leslie knows his stuff, writes about it well, and links extensively. He's not just looking at media delivery, nor just at glorified word processors (though that could be interesting too), he examines the nitty-gritty details of how these tools work in educational settings while (seemingly) using the blog to step back and get some perspective on his daily work from the broad view of where the field is. It's a good example of why blogging is good for your career.

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when educational technology is hypertext