Hypertext cards can live on the web

Today, Fred Wilson blogs on Hypercard’s having been “way too early”.  Perhaps not too surprisingly, Fred’s focus is on the card format of Hypercard; after all, that’s the most common link from Hypercard to today’s software world.  As he notes, Google to Twitter to Kik are embracing the card format.

He also insightfully mentions the limiting nature of native applications on the functionality of the cards used in them:

“The problem with the native app environment is that there are things you cannot do inside of a card without violating Apple’s and Google’s terms of service….On the mobile web, that is different.” -avc.com

tree-exampleI mention this because Oneslate’s nodes apper essentially as cards on a private web layer, friendly to mobile devices and not friendly to sources of information overload.  You can input text or embed linked media or documents in the cards.  You can rate the cards on a 5-bin scale, and update that heatmapped rating over time (with an optional cognitive bias survey for contextual logging after a rating update).  You can also link the cards together in directed acyclic graphs.  Though most browsing can take place in the familiar Tree layout, the Grid view permits creating and navigating to multiple parent cards (“conclusions” in logic trees).

Since you can hover or tap a card to see the number of support and conclusion cards linked to each card in the Oneslate system, and you can navigate up or down each link in the graph structure, the links are “bidirectional”.  Since a card can be linked to any number of supports or conclusions, the application supports “n-way” linking.  And since a card can be linked into any number of contexts (via autosuggest) without actually replicating the card, the system supports “transclusion”.grid-example

Hypercard supported unidirectional links, like most web pages and applications today, including card formatted ones.  Another predecessor to the web, ENQUIRE, by Tim Berners Lee, did support bidirectional links, but it was too complicated and we got the Web instead.  But, advances in web technologies are making it easier for people to make use of card systems with more attributes of earlier web visions–attributes like the transclusion, n-way linking, and visible, bidirectionally navigable links, as in Oneslate.

detail-example And, Oneslate instances are as collaborative as their scope demands. People who you choose to credential can also view, search, browse, add, rate, and link together cards on a private instance.  This is because the primary intent for Oneslate cards is to permit infinite logic tree development, for the encoding, retrieval, and updating of knowledge structures over time in a way that can be useful in immediate and future cases of decision making and analysis.

Oh, and the “show me this as one card” view in the Oneslate system is known as the Detail view, which displays the following attributes:

  • the card’s title (text or media/document link location)
  • a way to show the history of the card’s title
  • the ability to edit the card’s title (if you created it)
  • the card’s current 5-bin rating status (as border color)
  • charts of the instance-wide instantaneous and temporal rating data for the card
  • if one exists, the explanation provided at time of initial card creation
  • any sources that have been added to the card, with the ability for any instance user to add sources
  • the IBIS type, if one exists, which can be updated at any time by any user on the instance
  • the date that the card was created
  • the pseudo-random user id of the card’s creator, with a link to that user’s profile on the instance