on linking interfaces and interfacing links..
the need of the dance.
The people who invented the link saw it as a tool for relating ideas in illuminating ways — for making conceptual leaps and connecting disparate thoughts. If these visionaries had achieved their aim, the kind of tech-cultural amnesia represented by the recycling of the term “deep links” shouldn’t have been possible, two decades into the Web era.
Today, though, Web links are mostly navigation and footnotes. Instead of sharing linked trails of knowledge that we’ve blazed, we leave piles of data around that service providers mine for value.
“They buried their links mid-sentence, like riddles, like clues,” Steven Johnson wrote in his 1999 book Interface Culture. “You had to trek out after them to make the sentence cohere.”
I asked David Weinberger, the Cluetrain co-author who has written beautifully over the years about the Web’s meaning.
“The existence of links as a network of semantic relations is an awesome development in human history, and I don’t think we’re going to lose that,” he said. “I do worry that ordinary people without big design and production companies behind them will forget that they are able to do this as well. At which point links still have all the old qualities — except the sense that they are ours. And that would be a big loss.”
Tools like Cunningham’s and Michalski’s demand that we actively tend our“gardens of hypertext” (to borrow a phrase from Tinderbox creator Mark Bernstein). That takes work, work that a lot of us are never going to do. Yet there’s another kind of idea-trail that requires no effort at all.
talking of clicks gathered by ad companies et al.. but what about one that requires no effort at all.. other than talking to self..
Meanwhile, there’s another kind of loss happening that we’re less in touch with: a cultural erasure, a mass abandonment of intellectual value, which takes place as our data contrails, their monetizable details extracted, vaporize into the ether. The contexts we assemble in our online existences each day never get a chance to enlighten us over time; instead, we throw them away, or hand them over to Facebook or Google, Apple or Amazon.
Here’s how Michalski puts it: “It’s like we’re leaving a ticker tape of neurons that fired at different points in different ways, and yet from that ticker tape you cannot reconstruct the brain and all the relationships it knows and holds. And nobody seems concerned. We’re all like, ‘Yeah, there’s tons of ticker tape around, look at this — we can hold a parade!’ And we’re drowning in it. There are so few tools that allow us to make context that matters.”
It won’t change at all if the only kind of “deep link” we find in our apps is the kind that connects us with stuff to buy and services to employ.
library as hub ness
small world network ness
Also read “Death of Hyperlink: The Aftermath”, if you read my recent @guardian piece. https://t.co/u6noF0k9qz
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/h0d3r/status/682175121793150976
Nearly every social network now treats a link as just the same as it treats any other object – the same as a photo, or a piece of text. You’re encouraged to post one single hyperlink and expose it to a quasi-democratic process of liking and plussing and hearting. But links are not objects, they are relations between objects. This objectivisation has stripped hyperlinks of their immense powers.hyperlinks aren’t just the skeleton of the web: they are its eyes, a path to its soul. And a blind webpage, one without hyperlinks, can’t look or gaze at another webpage – and this has serious consequences for the dynamics of power on the web.