Timeline of hypertext technology

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This article presents a timeline of hypertext technology, including "hypermedia" and related human–computer interaction projects and developments from 1945 on. The term hypertext is credited to the author and philosopher Ted Nelson.


See also Graphical user interface, Multimedia; also Paul Otlet and Henri La Fontaine's Mundaneum, a massively cross-referenced card index system established in 1910.







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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hypertext</span> Text with references (links) to other text that the reader can immediately access

Hypertext is text displayed on a computer display or other electronic devices with references (hyperlinks) to other text that the reader can immediately access. Hypertext documents are interconnected by hyperlinks, which are typically activated by a mouse click, keypress set, or screen touch. Apart from text, the term "hypertext" is also sometimes used to describe tables, images, and other presentational content formats with integrated hyperlinks. Hypertext is one of the key underlying concepts of the World Wide Web, where Web pages are often written in the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). As implemented on the Web, hypertext enables the easy-to-use publication of information over the Internet.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Transclusion</span> Including one data set inside another automatically

In computer science, transclusion is the inclusion of part or all of an electronic document into one or more other documents by reference via hypertext. Transclusion is usually performed when the referencing document is displayed, and is normally automatic and transparent to the end user. The result of transclusion is a single integrated document made of parts assembled dynamically from separate sources, possibly stored on different computers in disparate places.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">HyperCard</span> Hypermedia system for Apple Macintosh and Apple IIGS computers

HyperCard is a software application and development kit for Apple Macintosh and Apple IIGS computers. It is among the first successful hypermedia systems predating the World Wide Web.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ted Nelson</span> American pioneer of information technology, philosopher, and sociologist

Theodor Holm Nelson is an American pioneer of information technology, philosopher, and sociologist. He coined the terms hypertext and hypermedia in 1963 and published them in 1965. Nelson coined the terms transclusion, virtuality, and intertwingularity. According to a 1997 Forbes profile, Nelson "sees himself as a literary romantic, like a Cyrano de Bergerac, or 'the Orson Welles of software'."

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hyperlink</span> Method of referencing visual computer data

In computing, a hyperlink, or simply a link, is a reference to data that the user can follow by clicking or tapping. A hyperlink points to a whole document or to a specific element within a document. Hypertext is text with hyperlinks. The text that is linked from is called anchor text. A software system that is used for viewing and creating hypertext is a hypertext system, and to create a hyperlink is to hyperlink. A user following hyperlinks is said to navigate or browse the hypertext.

Project Xanadu was the first hypertext project, founded in 1960 by Ted Nelson. Administrators of Project Xanadu have declared it superior to the World Wide Web, with the mission statement: "Today's popular software simulates paper. The World Wide Web trivialises our original hypertext model with one-way ever-breaking links and no management of version or contents."

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hypertext Editing System</span>

The Hypertext Editing System, or HES, was an early hypertext research project conducted at Brown University in 1967 by Andries van Dam, Ted Nelson, and several Brown students. It was the first hypertext system available on commercial equipment that novices could use.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">ZOG (hypertext)</span> Hypertext system

ZOG was an early hypertext system developed at Carnegie Mellon University during the 1970s by Donald McCracken and Robert Akscyn. ZOG was first developed by Allen Newell and George G. Robertson to serve as the front end for AI and Cognitive Science programs brought together at CMU for a summer workshop. The ZOG project was as an outgrowth of long-term artificial intelligence research led by Allen Newell and funded by the Office of Naval Research. A second version of ZOG was installed as the key interface between users and logistics on the Nimitz class carrier USS Carl Vinson in 1983.

Hypermedia, an extension of the term hypertext, is a nonlinear medium of information that includes graphics, audio, video, plain text and hyperlinks. This designation contrasts with the broader term multimedia, which may include non-interactive linear presentations as well as hypermedia. It is also related to the field of electronic literature. The term was first used in a 1965 article written by Ted Nelson.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Desktop metaphor</span> Concept used on desktop computer graphical user interfaces

In computing, the desktop metaphor is an interface metaphor which is a set of unifying concepts used by graphical user interfaces to help users interact more easily with the computer. The desktop metaphor treats the computer monitor as if it is the top of the user's desk, upon which objects such as documents and folders of documents can be placed. A document can be opened into a window, which represents a paper copy of the document placed on the desktop. Small applications called desk accessories are also available, such as a desk calculator or notepad, etc.

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to human–computer interaction:

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tab (interface)</span> Interface component

In interface design, a tab is a graphical user interface object that allows multiple documents or panels to be contained within a single window, using tabs as a navigational widget for switching between sets of documents. It is an interface style most commonly associated with web browsers, web applications, text editors, and preference panes, with window managers, especially tiling window managers, being lesser known examples.

NLS, or the "oN-Line System", was a revolutionary computer collaboration system developed in the 1960s. Designed by Douglas Engelbart and implemented by researchers at the Augmentation Research Center (ARC) at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI), the NLS system was the first to employ the practical use of hypertext links, the mouse, raster-scan video monitors, information organized by relevance, screen windowing, presentation programs, and other modern computing concepts. It was funded by ARPA, NASA, and the US Air Force.

Intermedia was the third notable hypertext project to emerge from Brown University, after HES (1967) and FRESS (1969). Intermedia was started in 1985 by Norman Meyrowitz, who had been associated with earlier hypertext research at Brown. The Intermedia project coincided with the establishment of the Institute for Research in Information and Scholarship (IRIS). Some of the materials that came from Intermedia, authored by Meyrowitz, Nancy Garrett, and Karen Catlin were used in the development of HTML.

Hyperland is a 50-minute-long documentary film about hypertext and surrounding technologies. It was written by Douglas Adams and produced and directed by Max Whitby for BBC Two in 1990. It stars Douglas Adams as a computer user and Tom Baker, with whom Adams had already worked on Doctor Who, as a personification of a software agent.

Enfilades are a class of tree data structures invented by computer scientist Ted Nelson and used in Project Xanadu "Green" designs of the 1970s and 1980s. Enfilades allow quick editing, versioning, retrieval and inter-comparison operations in a large, cross-linked hypertext database. The Xanadu "Gold" design starting in the 1990s used a related data structure called the Ent.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Electronic Document System</span>

The Electronic Document System (EDS) was an early hypertext system – also known as the Interactive Graphical Documents (IGD) hypermedia system – focused on creation of interactive documents such as equipment repair manuals or computer-aided instruction texts with embedded links and graphics. EDS was a 1978–1981 research project at Brown University by Steven Feiner, Sandor Nagy and Andries van Dam.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">History of hypertext</span>

Hypertext is text displayed on a computer or other electronic device with references (hyperlinks) to other text that the reader can immediately access, usually by a mouse click or keypress sequence. Early conceptions of hypertext defined it as text that could be connected by a linking system to a range of other documents that were stored outside that text. In 1934 Belgian bibliographer, Paul Otlet, developed a blueprint for links that telescoped out from hypertext electrically to allow readers to access documents, books, photographs, and so on, stored anywhere in the world.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">File Retrieval and Editing System</span>

The File Retrieval and Editing SyStem, or FRESS, was a hypertext system developed at Brown University starting in 1968 by Andries van Dam and his students, including Bob Wallace. It was the first hypertext system to run on readily available commercial hardware and OS. It is also possibly the first computer-based system to have had an "undo" feature for quickly correcting small editing or navigational mistakes.

Microcosm was a hypermedia system, originally developed in 1988 by the Department of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton, with a small team of researchers in the Computer Science group: Wendy Hall, Andrew Fountain, Hugh Davis and Ian Heath. The system pre-dates the web and builds on early hypermedia systems, such as Ted Nelson's Project Xanadu and work of Douglas Engelbart. And like Intermedia or Hyper-G, which were other hypermedia systems created around the same time, Microcosm stores links between documents in a separate database.