Hypertext Introduction | History | Theory & Research | Bibliographies


Hypertext is text that joins to other data. By clicking on a interface in a hypertext record, a client can rapidly hop to diverse substance. In spite of the fact that hypertext is ordinarily related with Web pages, the innovation has been around since the 1960s.

Software programs that incorporate word references and reference books have long utilized hypertext in their definitions so that perusers can rapidly discover out more approximately particular words or subjects

Introductions to Hypertext


Deemer, Charles

[1994] What is Hypertext?



Hypertext Courses
A compendium of hypertext courses for students and instructors.


Unit HT

What is Hypertext?



Hypertext | HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) | HTML5 | XML (Extensible Markup Language) | Markup language | Cascading Style Sheets | JavaScript | Appication programming interface (API) | Timeline of hypertext technology

World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)

HTML Home Page
Pointer to the W3C specification for HTML, guidelines on how to use HTML to the best effect, and pointers to related work at W3C.

Hypertext Terms
A glossary of terms used in hypertext.

History of Hypertext

Barger, Jorn

[1996] HyperTerrorist’s Timeline of Hypertext History

A history that begins in the age of writing (3000 BCE) and that travels through the age of printing, the age of electricity and the age of the first computers, and ends in the micro era, the WYSIWYG era and the hypertext era, the WWWeb and Netscape era. The final stage is called the age of hype.

Barnet, Belinda - Swineburne University of Technology, Australia

[2010] Crafting the User-Centered Document Interface: The Hypertext Editing System (HES) and the File Retrieval and Editing System (FRESS)
Barnet traces the development of two important hypertext systems in the history of computing, and the new paradigms they created: the Hypertext Editing System (HES) and the File Retrieval and Editing System (FRESS). HES was the world’s first word processor to run on commercial equipment. It was also the first hypertext system that beginners could use, and pioneered many modern hypertext concepts for personal use. Although the idea of hypertext predates HES and FRESS, Barnet argues that these two systems were successful because they demonstrated hypertext to a sceptical public; they were both working prototypes.

[2013] Memory Machines: The Evolution of Hypertext
A study on the history of hypertext. It tells both the human and the technological story by weaving together contemporary literature and exclusive interviews with those at the forefront of hypertext innovation, tracing its evolutionary roots back to the analogue machine imagined by Vannevar Bush in 1945.

Bush, Vannevar

Vannevar Bush was the inventor and public entrepreneur who launched the Manhattan Project, helped to create the military-industrial complex, conceived of a permanent system of government support for science and engineering and anticipated the personal computer and the Internet. At MIT, during the Depression, he built what were then the most powerful computers in the world. During World War II, he was Roosevelt’s adviser and chief contact on all matters of military technology, including the atomic bomb. He launched the Manhattan Project and oversaw a collection of 6,000 civilian scientists who designed scores of new weapons. When an Allied victory seemed inevitable, his attention turned to the future. In July 1945 he published his legendary essay, As We May Think, widely cited as the inspiration for the personal computer and the World Wide Web.

[1945] As We May Think
In: Atlantic Monthly, July 1945.
This article is the starting point for hypertext and literary theory.

[1995] Bush Symposium, MIT, Oct. 12-13, 1995.

[2009] Memex animation - Vannevar Bush’s diagrams made real [2:33]
A recording of a Macromedia Director application that was built to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Bush’s 1945 "As we may think" paper. The application was built by Dynamic Diagrams and was distributed at the ACM SIGIR conference in 1995.

Dam, Andries van

[1976] FRESS - File Retrieval and Editing System
Information on a pioneering hypertext document system, developed in the late 1960s, that allowed authors to create links within any text document or among any number of text documents. FRESS was the first hypertext system that worked.

[1987] Hypertext '87 Keynote Address
In: Communications of the ACM 31(7).

Engelbart, Douglas C.

[1962] Augmenting Human Intellect: A Conceptual Framework
Standford Resear Institute, Summary Report AFOSR-3223

[1968] Mother of All Demos
On December 9th, 1968 Doug Engelbart appeared on stage at the Fall Joint Computer Conference in San Francisco to give his slated presentation, titled A Research Center for Augmenting Human Intellect, where he spent the next 90 minutes not only telling about his work, but demonstrating it live to a spellbound audience that filled the hall. It was the first exhibition of integrated point-and-click, windows, hypertext, hyperlinking, word processing display editing and collaborative computing nearly three decades before such cyber-environments became the norm.

[1995] Toward augmenting the human intellect and boosting our collective IQ
In: Communications of the ACM 38(8):30-61.

[2004] Augmenting Society’s Collective IQ [21:45]

[2013] A New Paradigm for Humanity’s Collective IQ [5:58]
Tour the highlights of Doug’s driving vision for humanity and early implementations of that vision 3 from augmenting human intellect to boosting collective IQ, from the friendly computer mouse to hypertext, from online collaboration to the mother of all demos, from navigating with precision to networked communities, from digital libraries to the ARPAnet to discovery of a capability frontier to be mapped out and explored — Doug Engelbart revolutionized the way we think and work together. This video was produced by Logitech with the Computer History Museum and Friday Films (c) 2013 as a tribute to the late Doug Engelbart on the 45th Anniversary of his Mother of All Demos.

[2015] Internet Hall of Fame: Internet Pioneer’s Greatest Contribution May Not Be Technological

Computer History Museum: Douglas C. Engelbart

Doug Engelbart Institute

Landow, George P. 

Landow has brought together the worlds of literary theory and computer technology. Landow was one of the first scholars to explore the implications of giving readers instant, easy access to a virtual library of sources as well as unprecedented control of what and how they read. He saw hypermedia as a strikingly literal embodiment of many major points of contemporary literary theory, particularly Derrida's idea of "de-centering" and Barthes's conception of the "readerly" versus "writerly" text.

Hypertext at Brown
Since the work of Ted Nelson and Andries van Dam in the 1960s, Brown University (USA) has played a major rol in the design and development of both hypertext systems and materials. Landow leads us to some highlights of hypertext at Brown.

[1992/5] Hypertext: The Convergence of Contemporary Literary Theory and Technology
In this amplified and updated version of chapter one Landow discusses the history of the concept of hypertext. Like many others who write on hypertext and literary theory, he argues we must abandon conceptual systems founded upon ideas of center, margin, hierarchy, and linearity and replace them by ones of multilinearity, nodes, links and networks. This paradigm shift marks a revolution in human thought which has profound implications for literarute, education, and politics. 
Baltimore & London: John Hopkins University Press.

[1994] Hyper/Text/Theory
Landow has brought together a distinguished group of authorities to explore more fully the implications of hypertextual reading for contemporary literary theory. 
John Hopkins University Press

[2003] Hypertext 3.0 - Critical Theory and New Media in an Era of Globalization
From Intermedia to Microcosm, Storyspace, and the World Wide Web, Landow offers specific information about the kinds of hypertext, different modes of linking, attitudes toward technology, and the proliferation of pornography and gambling on the Internet. 
John Hopkins University Press

Nelson, Ted

[1960-1988] Project Xanadu 
Some facts and dates.

Project Xanadu: History


[2015] Grundlagen/Hypertext

Rosenzweig, Roy

[2001] The Road to Xanadu: Public and Private Pathways on the History Web

Simpson, Rosemary

Memex and Beyond

Index for the history of hypertext research. An important site that integrates historical records of and current research in hypermedia. The name of the site honors the 1945 publication of Vannevar Bush ‘As We May Think’ in which he proposed a hypertext engine called the Memex.

Wolf, Gary

The Curse of Xanadu
In: Wired, Jun 1995

Zachary, Pascal G.

[1997] Endless Frontier: Vannevar Bush, Engineer of the American Century
Free Press.

Hypertext Theory & Research

Aarseth, Espen J. - Center for Computer Game Research, University of Copenhagen, Norway

[1997] Introduction: Ergodic Literature
A sample chapter from the book Cybertext: Perspectives on Ergodic Literature. Published by the Johns Hopkins University Press.

Barry, Jeff - University of Tennessee Libraries, USA

[1999] The Hypertext Markup Language (HTML): Raising ASCII Text to a New Level of Usability

In: Electronic Journal of Sociology 1(2).
A tutorial on HTML tags with examples of their use and guidelines for organizing hypertext documents. Barry suggests what types of documents are suitable for the Web and explores the future of HTML.

Bellamy, Craig - University of Melbourne, Australia

[1999] The Web, Hypertext and History: A Critical Introduction
In: Electronic Journal of Australian and New Zealand History. A paper presented at the symposium ‘Virtual Histories, Real Time Challenges’, July 1999.
Information technology impacts upon every profession, from accounting, to law, to teaching, to publishing. It also plays a major role in how historians research and communicate history. Bellamy shows what hypertext can mean for a historian. Hypertext can provide the historian with a whole new set of tools to explore, explain, and understand the past.

Benschop, Albert - University of Amsterdam, Netherlands

[1997-2012] Lineaire en Hypertekst
Article on the difference of writing/reading linear and hypertext, the history of hypertext, and some navigational problems. It's a chapter of an electronic book on the Peculiarities of Cyberspace, Building Blocks for an Internet Sociology.

Bernstein, Mark

[1995] Hypertexts with Characters

Linear texts speak with a single voice and present a single viewpoint. Hypertexts introduce a dramatic multiplicity of voices and perspectives that engage the reader and each other. In this paper Bernstein proposes a framework for creating and discussing dramatic hypertexts in which separate characters participate fully and directly. The most interesting issues arise when characters are permitted to respond to other characters and to urge the reader to follow different trajectories through the hypertext.

[1999] Patterns of Hypertext
The complexity and unruliness of the complex webs of links we create has frequently led to calls for structured or otherwise disciplined hypertext. The problem is not that the hypertexts lack structure but rather that we lack words to describe it. Therefore it’s time to develop a vocabulary of concepts and structures that will let us understand the way today’s hypertexts and Web sites work. Progress in the craft of writing depends, in part, on analysis and discussion of the best existing work. An appropriate vocabulary will allow us both to discern and to discuss patterns in hypertexts that may otherwise seem an impenetrable tangle or arbitrary morass.

[2002] A Romantic View of Weblogs

A review of The Weblog Handbook by Rebecca Blood.

[2002] Electronic Reading

Skeptics complain that hypertexts are hard to read in bed or in the bathtub. Bernstein argues that they're all wet.

[2002] Span of Attention

Pundits fear that hypertexts, like television, shorten our attention span. They overlook an important fact: we are witnessing a spectacular renaissance of large-scale narrative. Throughout the world and throughout the media, very large stories are succeeding - articitaclly and commercially - as never before.

Bevilacqua, Ann F. - New York University’s Bobst Library, USA

Hypertext: Behind the Hype
In: ERIC Digest. 
A condensed version of the original article which appeared in American Libraries 20(2), February 1989, pp. 158-162.

Birkerts, Sven

[2005] Interview
In: PIF Magazine, 1.5.2005

[2006] The Gutenberg Elegies: The Fate of Reading in An Electronic Age.
Boston/London: Faber & Faber.
Will hypertext ever be accepted by a mass readership as something more than a sophisticated Nintendo game played with language? What will readers do when they are faced with the choice between univocal and polyvocal, linear and open texts? It could be that they will opt for the more traditional package and “that the reading act will remain rooted in the original giver-receiver premise because this offers readers something they want: a chance to subject the anarchic subjectivity to another's disciplined imagination, a chance to be taken in unsuspected directions under the guidance of some singular sensibility.” But the stable hierarchies of the printed page —one of the defining norms of the conventional local world— are being superseded by the rush of impulses through freshly minted circuits. “The displacement of the page by the screen is not yet total ...but the large scale tendency in that direction has to be obvious to anyone who looks.”

[2006] Hypertext: Of Mouse and Man

Bolter, Jay David

[2001] Writing Space: The Computer, Hypertext, and the History of Writing 
Hypertext edition, on disc. Cambridge, MA: Estgate Systems. Book editie: Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbauam. 
The hypertext-pioneer Bolter examines the technology of reading and writing. He traces the history of writing from papyrus roll, to codex book, to print text, and finally to electronic text. The print text can be regarded as the last stage in the development of linear, hierarchical presentation of material. "Through printing, we have come more and more to anthropomorphize books, to regard each book as a little person with a name, a place (in the library), and a bibliographic life of its own" [p.86]. The rise of print text in Europe was accompanied by other developments in experience as well as representations of the world which reflected changed concepts of space and time. Bolter examines the computer as a new medium for symbolic communication. "What is unnatural in print, becomes natural in the electronic medium and will soon no longer need saying at all, because it can be shown" [p.143].

Bolter, Jay David / Grusin, Richard

Remediation - Understandig New Media

New digital media refashion or "remediate" older visual and verbal forms. In this electronic book the authors analyse how the WWW refashions graphic design, printing, radio, film, and television. It includes a video on remediation.

Bos, Carolien van den

[2000] Een zwervende draad

Analysis of the narrative peculiarities of hyperfiction. Hyperfiction is a narrative form that make use of the characteristics of the internet to tell a story. The story is divided into segments that arre connected to each other by hyperlinks. Readers have a choice between multile links, and thereby between multiple fragments — this gives them influence on the sequnece in which they read the story. The text of the story loses its 'fixed finality'. Includes an English abstract.

Burnett, Kathleen

[1993] Toward a Theory of Hypertextual Design

In: Postmodern Culture, 2(3), January 1993.
“Hypertext is rhizomorphic in all its characteristics. Its power derives from its flexibility and variability; from its ability to incorporate, transmute and transcend any traditional tool or structure. Like the rhizome, it is frightening because it is amorphous. The hierarchical systems we are accustomed to are definitional--they are centers of power. Knowledge of the hierarchy engenders authority; corrupted authority breeds despotism. Knowledge of the rhizome as a totality is impossible, precisely because "totality" and other absolutes have no meaning in a rhizome. The rhizome is as individual as the individual in contact with it. It is that individual's perception, that individual’s map, that individual’s understanding. It is also, and at the same time, a completely different something--another individual’s perception, another individual's map, another individual's understanding. It provides no structure for common understanding.”

Davison, Graeme - Department of History, Monash University, Australia

[1997] History and Hypertext

In: The Electronic Journal of Australian and New Zealand History.
An analysis of the history and meaning of hypertext from the perspective of a historian. Narrative is a form of thinking deeply bound up with the technology of print and the experience of reading. Will hypertext and the internet erode that sense of time as a continuous deposit of incribed memory which underlines our sense of history? Birkerts suggested that our perception of history inevitably will alter as more and more of our communications involve us in network processes: “Changes in information storage and access are bound to impinge on our historical memory” [Birkerts 1994:129]. For Birkerts historical time is a kind of archaeological deposit of books on a library shelf. For Davison it is only a bibliophile —even a bibliomaniac— who could seriously argue that without a book or a library we would lose all sense of historical time. He argues that for centuries historians have been using a primitive form of hypertext — the footnote. If we could track the eye movements and mental processes of a historian reading a history book —from text to notes, from introduction to index, to text again— we would observe that the process of reading even a narrative history has never been linear. Davison argues against the evangelists of hypertext who think that hypertext will free the reader to construct knowledge for him/herself. Hypertexts may permit the user to search the text in diverse ways, the paths they follow are nonetheless built into the design of the hypertext, and freedom they allow may be less real than it seems. “Indeed, being hidden and inexplicit, the design of the hypertext may arguably be more coercive than the more explicitly didactic text of the book.” The most important advantage of hypertext for historians is that it offers the potential for thinking about historical relationships in new configurations: “we can think of multiple beginnings and endings, and exploit the labyrinthine linkages of the hypertext to represent them.” But in the end, what counts, is not the machine that allows us to make connections, but the power of mind to know which connnections are meaningful and which are not.

Dillon, George L.

[2003] Writing with Images: Toward a Semiotics of the Web

Drexler, K. Eric

[1995/6] Hypertext Publishing and the Evolution of Knowledge
In: Social Intelligence 1(2): 87-120. 
Knowledge is valuable and grows by an evolutionary process. The evolution of knowledge in society is affected by the media. A suitable hypertext publishing medium can speed the evolution of knowledge by aiding the expression, transmission, and evaluation of ideas. The direct benefits of using a hypertextual medium should bring emergent benefits, helping to form intellectual communities, to build consensus, and to extend the range and efficiency of intellectual effort.

[2007] The Network of Knowledge
Chapter 14 of Engines of Creation: The Coming Era of Nanotechnology 2.0

Eastgate Systems

Commercial offerings of Storyspace hypertext resources. Storyspace is a hypertext writing environment that is especially well suited to large, complex, and challenging hypertexts. Eastgate creates new hypertext technologies and publishes serious hypertext (fiction and non-fiction).

Emigholz, Heinz - European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland

[2002] Interaktive Narration - ein Widerspruch in sich selbst?
A lecture on interactive narration as a productive example of a contradictio in adjecto.


Fox, Nicholas J. - Univerity of Sheffield, UK

[1995] Intertextuality and the Writing of Social Research.
In: Electronic Journal of Sociology 1(2).

Formaro, Tom

Argumentation on the World Wide Web

Exploration of the ways hypertext and the internet change our style of writing.

Glushko, Robert - University of California, USA

[2014] Collaborative Authoring, Use, and Maintenance of a Multidisciplinary “E-Textbook”
In: Joournal of Electronic Publishing 12(1), Winter 2014 
A multidisciplinary textbook faces the challenge of satisfying the need for breadth, to represent all the disciplines that contribute to it, without compromising the need for depth, to treat each contributing discipline in a substantive way. Glushko has met this challenge in a text called The Discipline of Organizing with several innovations in book design. The key idea was to write the book as a “core” text with hundreds of supplemental endnotes tagged by discipline, effectively creating a family of related texts suitable for different courses and perspectives. This book architecture lends itself to implementation in ebook formats, and it also implies a clear path for evolving the book and ebooks over time. Glushko describes the processes and principles needed to create, deploy, and maintain it.

Have, Paul ten - University of Amsterdam, Netherlands

[1999] Structuring writing for reading: hypertext and the reading body

Paper for the International conference: Ethnomethodology: East and West. Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan, August 21-23. In: Human Studies 22: 273-98.
An examination of some textual devices that writers may use to pre-structure the activities of their readers. HTML is used as an 'explicating device' to explore how writers can provide reading instruction, and how these can be experienced by readers. Structuring devices like paragraphs and sections, and hypertextual elements like notes and references are investigated in detail. Ten Have aspires to contribute to an ethnomethodology of textual practices.

Heibach, Christiane

[2000] Literatur im Internet: Theorie und Praxis einer kooperativen Ästhetik
The computer is a mighty instrument, because it can be a production, storage and distribution platform at the same time. Therefore is is’nt simply a medium. It also includes the generation of text, image and sound bases on corresponding programming. The multimedial potential of the computer has the status of a metamedium that can integrate all other media. The computer only becomes a medium in the original mediating sense when it functions in a network that facilitates the distribution of data and the communication between people. In the beginning literature that has been written on the computer is only available in elektronic impulses that can be changed and manipulated at will. The complexity of computers and their operating systems allows multiple variation in handling of text: new structural forms in connected hypertext, the embedding of multimedial elements and the procdurality based on extended and flexible presentation. This leads to fundamental transformations both in the production and in the reception of text.

Heim, Michael

[1999] Transmogrification

Discusses design issues as cyberspace becomes visualized data, and meaning arrives in spatial as well as in verbal expressions. It concentrates on the design of avatars (animated graphics by which humans 'incarnate' themselves in real-time #D computer worlds on the internet).

[1999] Electric Language: A Philosophical Study of Word Processing
All changes in writing technology tend to change the wat we percieve the world. Heim ponders how the word processor has affected language use and our ideas about it. “Word-processing has a real philosophical edge. It has implications for traditional questions in ontology and epistemology. If the technology of the word-processor percolates, through some electronic medium, from the author to reader, philosophers may have to think again about the ways we do things with words and the method by which language conveys content” [Adam Hodgkin, Times Literary Supplement]. 
New Have & London: Yale University Press

[2001] The Feng Shui of Virtual Worlds

[2012] Naviguer entre les livres, les ordinateurs et la discussion

[2012] Encyclopedia of Aesthetics (Oxford University Press)
Cyberspace | Multimedia | Virtual Reality

[2014] The Reduction of the Book
Digital text does not replace the book, nor is the book required to re-assert its traditional territory in the ecology of reading and writing. Rather, the book undergoes a reduction in which its niche is clarified and strengthened, and at the same time, the digital text settles into its role in an expanding evolution of the cultural environment.

Ivanow, Kristo - Umeå University, Sweden

[1995] The Search for a Theory of Hypermedia
In: D. Dahlbom et.al. (eds.) [1995] Proceedings of the Information Systems Research Seminar in Scandinavia IRIS'18, pp. 283-293. Gothenburg Studies in Informatics, Report 7.

Journals and Magazines

Journal of Electronic Publishing (JEP)
A forum for research and discussion about contemporary publishing practices, and the impact of those practices upon users. The contributors and readers are publishers, scholars, librarians, journalists, students, technologists, attorneys, and others with an interest in the methods and means of contemporary publishing. At its inception in January 1995, JEP carved out an important niche by recognizing that print communication was in the throes of significant change, and that digital communication would become an important—and in some cases predominant—means for transmitting published information.

A journal for teachers of writing in webbed environments. Many of the papers it publishes are interesting hypertexts, albeit the limitations of the Web -- latency, absence of dynamic links, featuritis -- are often evident.

TEKKAlogue is a weblog supplement to TEKKA, a subscription-based Web magazine about enjoying new media and software aesthetics. TEKKA is a Web magazine about enjoying new media and software aesthetics; it offers its readers in-depth articles on art and technology. TEKKAlogue offers tidbits of fresh and interesting news on hypertext, new media, art and technology.

Kaplan, Nancy - University of Baltimore, USA

[1995-1997] E-Literacies: Politexts, Hypertexts and Other Cultural Formations in the Late Age of Print or mirror

Computer-Mediated Communication Magazine, 2(3), March 1995.
An exploration of the reading and writing process specific to electronic texts and an examination of the academic debates over the issue. Kaplan is Professor and Director of the School of Information Arts and Technologies at the University of Baltimore, USA.

[2001] Knowing Practice: A More Complex View of New Media Literacy

Kaplan examines the pervasive quest for invisible computers, applications, and interfaces in order toe mae a case for resisting the presure of standardize platforms for delivering on-line courses and other Web-based applications. She argues that too great a reduction of the cognitive challenge in the present may prevent people from developing effective learning strategies they can apply to future technologies. Seen from a constructivist perspective on learning the applications and interfaces must remain visible and accessible to knowledge workers if the are to develop new media literacies.

Keep, Christopher/McLaughlin, Tim / Parmer, Robin

[1993-2001] The Electronic Labyrinth

Investigation on the history of hypertext systems. It includes an introduction in the non-linear tradition in literature.

Kendall, Robert

[1995] Writing for the New Millennium: The Birth of Electronic Literature

Poets & Writers Magazine, Nov./Dec. 1995. 
The impact of hypertext and multimedia literature on the future of writing. “The computer —that remakable melting pot of all communication— has become another medium for expressing the incomparable beauty and power of the word.” Poetry and technology are supposed not to mix, until we remember that writing itself is a technology. The technology of writing is changing in an age of electronic media, and literature is changing with it. How to stretch the boundaries of the written tradition using hypertext?

[1996] Hypertextual Dynamics in A Life Set for Two

Proceedings of the Seventh ACM Conference on Hypertext (Washington, DC, 1996).
In most hypertexts the contents of nodes and the positions of links are fixed. Making these elements dynamic can help writers solve structural problems and help prevent navigational dilemmas for readers. Kendell's hypertext poem A Life Set for Two demonstrates several techniques for doing this. Floating links are positioned dynamically in response to the reader's progress. Variable nodes change their texts according to factors such as their context within the current reading. The texts of individual nodes are also influenced by global states: setttings that can be changed manually by the reader or automatically by the program. A compelling combination of poetry and programming.

[1999] Tales from the Hard Disk
Reflections on the appeal of electronic literature and the inherent relationships between poetry and computer code.

[2003] The Editor as Technician
media editors of the nontraditional roles they must take on in preparing new media literature for publication ( In: Proceedings of 5th International Digital Arts and Culture Conference, Melbourne, 2003.
A discussion of the nontraditional roles media editors must take on in preparing new media literature for publication.

Kendall, Robert / Réty, Jean-Hugues

[2000] Toward an Organic Hypertext
In: Proceedings of the Eleventh ACM Conference on Hypertext and Hypermedia, San Antonio, Texas. 
Discussion of Connection Muse, an adaptive hypertext system for poetry and fiction.

Kircz, Joost - University of Amsterdam, Netherlands

[1997] Modularity: the next form of scientific information presentation?
A discussion of the various characteristics of print on paper in the light of the foreseeable changes to a more modular form of communication in an electronic environment. The conclusion is that the electronic information transfer wil be a transfer of well-defined, cognitive information modules.

[1997] Scientific communication as an object of science

[2014] From print to what?

Kircz, Joost / Harmsze, Frédérique

[2000] Modular scenarios in the electronic age
The scientific community is confronted with a manifest information overload. Due to the great advances in electronic communication, the fear of a massive information infarct only becomes more real. However, as all new technologies strongly influence the way information is created, organised and presented, we might rescue the situation by taking the intrinsic properties of the new electronic technology as a starting point for a novel communication framework. In an electronic environment, information is stored according to schemes independent of the consecutive space or time order of the original information and is therefore randomly accessible. The authors discuss the consequences of these essential characteristics of distributed storage and random retrieval for information handling in a bottom-up approach.

Manovich, Lev

[2003] New Media from Borges to HTML
In: Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Nick Montfort (eds.) [2003] The New Media Reader. Cambridge / London: MIT Press.

McAdams, Mindy / Berger, Stephanie

[2001] Hypertext

In: Journal of Electronic Publishing (JEP) 6(3)
Almost all journalistic stories and academic writings are single, one-dimensional pieces, articles that would be exactly the same were they built out of ink and paper instead of zeros and ones. The individual articles themselves rarely offer any navigational options at all. The authors believe it is not only desirable but also necessary to move journalistic, nonfiction, and even scholarly writing in a direction made possible by hypertext. They argue that hypertext forms improve the reader’s experience of reading, and therefore, hypertext is better for telling particular nonfiction stories.

McGann, Jerome

[1995] The Rationale of Hypertext 
Examination of the relation between hypertextuality and paper-based textuality in the context of literary documents, and especially the editing of literary documents.

[1996] Radiant Textuality 
“Has any of you written research in hypertext format? Would you accept a dissertation written in hypertext?” These questions reflected an anxiety that is common because of the startling impact of technological change on humanities and literary study. In McGann's vision, the anxiety grows from certain unhelpful and erroneous assumptions about the nature of the technology, on the one hand, and the traditional work of critical research and study on the other.

McHoul, Alec / Roe, Phil

[1966] Hypertext and reading cognition

Morgan, Wendy

[1997] Re-placing authority by desire: Novices reading and writing literary hypertext

A paper on the experiences of students with reading and writing hypertext. Students show strong emotional reactions on hypertext, both positive and negative: "I hate reading jumped things, but I love writing them". The story is based on a small pilot study that concentrated on the question whether and if so how the reading and writing of literary hypertexts would prompts students to a reconception of the nature of text and the practices of reading and writing.

[1999] Heterotopics: Towards a Grammer of Hyperlinks

Moulthrop, Stuart

[1991] You Say You Want a Revolution? Hypertext and the Laws of Media
In Stuart Moulthrop’s view the essential qualities of a new medium must be subjected to scrutiny. By placing the new medium against others, and considering how it might function in the extreme, certain assumptions previously taken for granted are upset. He thinks hypertext does not replace the book — it’s more likely a replacement for TV.

Murray, Janet H.

[2003] Inventing the Medium
In: Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Nick Montfort (eds.) [2003] The New Media Reader. Cambridge / London: MIT Press.

Nelson, Ted

[1970-1974] Computer Lib / Dream Machines
Some call it the most important book in the history of new media. That might be overrated, but it is probable the first personal computer book, probably it arrived shortly before the first personal computer kit (the Altair) and was later recognized to have predicted the effects of its coming. He depicted the personal-computer revolution, captivated readers, informed them, and set them debating and eventually marching, rallying around a common cause many of them hadn’t realized was so worthy or even a cause before. His enemy was Central Processing, in all its commercial, philosophical, political, and socio-economic manifestations. Nelson’s book raised the cry: Down with Cybercrud! He exhorted his readers to defy the computer priesthood, and its then-leader IBM, and to never accept, The computer doesn’t work that way as an answer again. The book was literary artifact that destabilized the existing computer order, that brought about a conception of the computer as a personal device.

[1993] The Xanadu Ideal 
Nelson explains why the Xanadu system is "completely different" from any other plan for multimedia and electronic literature. Nelson c.s. are striving to create "a unified, universal literature, available to everyone both as readers and contributors, instantly available everywhere, with the ability to publish connections freely. That is, anyone may publish footnotes, comments, disagreements, and anyone may quote, republish, anthologise and otherwise re-use everthing in the system -- provided that the republication stays within the Xanadu world.

Phelps, Katherine

[1996/8] Story Shapes for Digital Media

Project Xanadu

The original hypertext project, founded in 1960. Many people talk about "eliminating paper", but Ted Nelson has always meant it. He doesn't want to imitate paper on the screen (which has become the current interface), but going beyond paper to represent the connections which are present in the data.

Raisch, Marylin J.

[2008] Codes and Hypertext: the Intertextuality of International and Comparative Law 
Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. Paper 291.
Religious law texts, civil law codes, treaties and constitutional texts may provide a means to reveal the nature of hypertext as the new format for commentary. Margins used to be used for commentary, and now this can be done with hypertext and links in footnotes. Scholarly communication in general is now intertextual, and texts derive value and meaning from being related to other texts.


Rosenberg, Jim

[1994] Navigating Nowhere / Hypertext Infrawhere

Siglink Newsletter 3, December 1994, pp. 16-19. 
A discussion of various non-linear methods of structuring the lexia, including simultaneities and polylinearity. A distinction is drawn between the typical disjunctivity of the hypertext link and conjunctivity of simultaneities and relations.

Ryder, Martin - School of Education, University of Colorado at Denver, USA

[1995] Production and Consumption of Meaning: The interplay between subject and object in open hypertext representation
Paper submitted to the conference: Semiotics as a Bridge between the Humanities and the Sciences, Victoria College, University of Toronto, November 2-5, 1995.
The use of external references connects our thoughts to the work of others. These links add value to our own utterances by elaborating upon the meaning behind our own expression. The thoughts we express are artifacts synthesized from the texts of other mindes. Ryder traces the technology of text from pre-history to the present, with a special focus oncurrent capabilities. The paper offers an analysis of constructed representations of meaning within the digital medium of hypertext and investigates the nature of value in an age of information.

Taylor, Mark C. / Saarinen, Esa

[1993] Imagologies: Media Philosophy. New York: Routledge.
See also the review of Bas Raijmakers in Mediamatic.

Unsworth, John

[1994] Electronic Scholarship or, Scholarly Publishing and the Public

In: Richard Finneran (ed.) [1994] The Literary Text in the Digital Age, Univ. of Michigan Press.

Google Groupsalt.hypertext

Bibliographies on Hypertext


Hypertext Resources
An actual and comprehensive catalogue of links to resources on hypertext theory and design. Eastgate is the publisher of some of the best known hypertext fiction.

Harpold, Terence [1991/6]

Hypertext and hypermedia: a selected bibliography

Ryder, Martin [1998]

Bibliography on Hypertext

Shumate, Michael

Hyperizons: The Hypertext Fiction Homepage

An annotated link collection that hasn't been updated lately.

Simpson, Rosemary


Stebelman, Scott (George Washington University, USA)

Hypertext and Hypermedia: A Select Bibliography

Last updates December 1997.

Voice of the Shuttle

Technology of Writing

Non-Linear Learning

Now the computers migrate from the office and home into the classroom, they bring with them many opportunities for educators. The conventional linear learning practices have been challenged by new ways of learning: non-linear learning or — as Ted Nelson would have it — non-sequential learning. Vannevar Bush has given us some idea on 'as we may think'. The human mind operates by association: "With one item in its grasp, it snaps instantly to the next that is suggested by the association of thoughts, in accordance with some intricate web of trails carried by the cells of the brain." The hypertextual and multimedial repertoire allows us to duplicate this mental process artificially. In educational settings we can use the internet for instructional delivery, communications and searching. This section contains resources that explain the idea of non-linear modes of learning in virtual environments: 'As We May Learn'. It also informs on the problems with non-linear learning sites: user disorientation ('Lost in Cyberspace') and cognitive overload.

Carroll, Ken [2007]
Linear and non-linear learning

Center for Evaluation, Development, and Research (CEDR)

Educational Research

Cronin, P. [1997]

Learning and Assessment of Instruction
Unpublished report. Edinburgh: Univ. of Edinburgh, Center for Cognitive Science.

Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) - Washington D.C., USA


New Visions of Human-Computer Interaction.

Jacobson, Michael J. et. al. [1995]

Learning with Hypertext Learning Environments: Theory, Design, and Research

Jan, Jana
Linear vs Non-linear learning design
An explanation of the difference between linear and non-linear design from the perspective of the cognitive theory.

Journal of Technology Education (JTE) [Full text and Free]

MENO - Multimedia, Education and Narrative Organisation

An empirical study of the design features of interactive multimedia products for education and their effects on learner perception and performance. This project is part of the ESRS Research Programma in Cognitive Engineering (UK).

Miller, Susan M. / Miller, Kenneth L.

[1999] Using Instructional Theory to Facilitate Communication in Web-based Courses
Educational Technology & Society 2(3).

Peach, Andrea - Georgetown College

[1999] Learning with the WWW: What does the research show?

Schank, Roger /Cleary, Chip

Engines for Educators

Siegel, Marcelle / Derry, Sharon et al. [2000]

Promoting Teachers' Flexible Use of the Learning Sciences through Case-Based Problem Solving on the WWW

Spiro, Rand J. / Feltovich, Paul J. / Jacobson, Michael 1. / Coulson, Richard L. [1991]

Educational Technology May 1991, pp 243-33.
Cognitive Flexibility, Constructivism, and Hypertext: Random Access Instruction for Advanced Knowledge Acquisition in Ill-Structured Domains
The central argument of this paper is that there is a common basis for the failure of many instructional systems. The claim is that these deficiencies in the outcomes of learning, are strongly influenced by underlying biases and assumptions in the design of instruction. As alternative a constructivist theory of learning and instruction is presented that emphasizes the real world complexity and ill-structuredness of many knowledge domains. The authors develop a set of principal recommendations for the development of instructional hypertext systems to promote succesfull learning of difficult subject matter.

Tam, Maureen [2000] (Lingnan University, China)

Constructivism, Instructional Design, and Technology: Implications for Transforming Distance Learning
Educational Technolgy & Society 3(2). ISSN 1436-4522.
An examination of the characteristics and value of designed instruction grounded in the constructivist theory. The author tries to establish an alignment between pedagogical and technological considerations in support of the assumptions arising from constructivism.

Ambler, Scott W.

[2001] Designing Web-Based User Interfaces

[2014] User Interface Design Tips, Techniques, and Principles

Bernstein, Mark

[1998] Hypertext Gardens: Delightful Vistas
A wonderful site that goes beyond the Navigation Problem. Hypertext writers and researchers used to be concerned that hypertexts would enmesh readers in a confusing tangle of links. They call it the ‘Navigation Problem’. To solve this problem many roads were travelled: by keeping links simple; by using fewer links; by organizing the links very rigidly (hierarchically); by providing many navigational tools (navigation bars and menus everywhere). “In time, experience with actual hypertext and the development of the Web suggested that the Navigation Problem is less forbidding than it had seemed.” Readers/learners weren’t getting lost in cyberspace. Occasional disorientation is common in all kinds of serious writing, reading and learning. Bernstein argues against rigid designers who consider irregularity a mistake to be corrected. “Each place should behave exactly as expected, each path should be clearly marked, and a few familiar paths should suffice for all.” Bernstein emphasizes the virtue of irregularity. “Today’s Web designers are taught to avoid irregularity, but in a hypertext, as in a garden, it is the artful combination of regularity and irregularity that awakens interest and maintains attention.” In ‘Seven Lessons from Gardening’ he explains how we can offer the promise of the unexpected without the threat of the wilderness.


A free public service web-based tool that analyzes web pages for their accessibility to people with disabilities. Bobby is offered by CAST, Center for Applied Special Technology,

Boling, Elizabeth  - Indiana University, USA

[1997] Web Site Design Profiles: Guidelines that Make Sense for You
A review of guidelines pages that yields many redundant point, but also a bewildering array of general, specific and sometimes contradictory bits of advice for the designer.

[1997] Interview: Elizabeth Boling

[2011] Portfolio Talk [34:16]
Professor Boling talks to students in the Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing about how to build an online portfolio.

Center for Information Technology Accomodation (CITA)

Usability and Accessibility
Suggestions for sites to test your webpage or website for accessibility.


CNET tracks all the latest consumer technology breakthroughs and shows you what’s new, what matters, and how technology can enrich or endanger your life

Distance Education Clearinghouse

Instructional Design for Distance Education
A collection of links to sites and articles on instructional desing in distance education.

Flanders, Vincent

Web Pages That Suck

The purpose of the site is to help people design effective and aesthetically pleasing web pages. The method is somwhat different. Flanders believes that if someone is exposed to bad web page design they’ll be less likely to use these techniques in the pages they create.

Flavell, Alan - Glasgow University, UK

Appropriate use of ALT texts in IMGs


Future Lines of User Interface Decision Support Group
Fluids is a project in the Telematic Engineering sector of the Telematics Application Programme managed by the European Commission (DGXIII). The project provides a software environment for building intelligent interfaces for decision support systems by using reusable building blocks and a metholodolgy for designing and developing interface models.


A very comprehensive html resource that in depth information on HTML5, Perl & CGI, ASP, JavaScript and SQL.

Karp, Tony

Art and the Zen of Web Sites
Some wisdom for designers and some good advice. For instance: “If you really believe that it’s okay to change the meaning of interface elements, then it’s a good thing you’re designing web pages and not airplane cockpits” [Vincent Van Gui].

Lynch, Patrick / Horton, Sarah

[2008] Web Style Guide Online - 3rd Edition
A style guide for the interface showing deep principles of design rather than simply fashion and technology. In plain language it tells you what you need to know about the design of websites. It covers graphic and information design, pay lay-out, graphics, site navigation, and multimedia content.

Nielsen, Jakob

[2005] Reviving Advanced Hypertext
To manage a huge, worldwide information space, users need proven features like fat links (that point to more than one page), typed links, integrated search and browsing, overview maps, big-screen designs, and physical hypertext.

[2011] Top Ten Mistakes in Web Design

[2015] Banish the Hamburger Menu, Adopt Pizza Menus

Nielsen Norman Group

Writing for the web

Writing for the web is very different from writing for print because most users scan the page instead of reading word-for-word. A collection informative articles about webwriting.

Peterson, Constance J.

[2000] Seven Steps to Easier Web Navigation

Siegel, David

Creating Killer Web Sites


Internet for Designers
Resources for professional web builders.

Timerlake, Sean

The Basics of Navigation
You can have all kinds of great attractions on your site, but if your visitors don’t know how to get to them, they’ll just collect dust on the server. Worse yet, if visitors find your site’s navigation confusing or convoluted, they’ll simply give up and head off to explore the rest of the Web, never to return. Good navigation design is an essential ingredient for any successful Web site.

Web Design Guide Tutorials

Tutorial voor beginners and professionals, on design, speed, style, content, coding, navigation, and promotion.



Introduction to Web Accessibility

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines
Guidelines that explain how to make Web content accessible to people with disabilities.

Yale University Library

Web Design Guidelines

Google Scholar - Stand on the shoulders of giants

Start a Blog 123

A comprehensive, step-by-step guide on creating a successful blog..

If you think your blog, home page or social media representation should be included on this listing, please don’t hesitate to inform us.