Jack Sondergaard: hi
Verena Messmer: Hi
Verena Messmer: What's the plan?
Jack Sondergaard: we will be real informal, talk about Xanadu, software design, questions
Jack Sondergaard: have you read anthing about it?
Verena Messmer: I just know that it's a Hypertext project.
Jack Sondergaard: yes, conceived of decades ago, but perhaps not completed for several years in the future
Jack Sondergaard: I use hundreds of different programs, and while using them think of what could be added to link their capabilities together
Verena Messmer: What is the difference to the Internet?
Jack Sondergaard: back when I used the Amiga computer, there was a language called ARexx that was used to tie together many programs
Jack Sondergaard: on the Internet (the Web), links go from a point to a document (sometimes a point in a document)
Jack Sondergaard: in Xanadu, the links could go from any length of span to any other length of a span
Jack Sondergaard: this could be in text, audio, and video
Jack Sondergaard: hi Yahumbe
Verena Messmer: Hello.
Yahumbe Watanabe: Hello
Jack Sondergaard: I'm describing Xanadu
Yahumbe Watanabe: So I gathered from the event description :)
Jack Sondergaard: all documents would have a fixed address, that would not change
Verena Messmer: could you give some examples of programs (and their function) taht you have linked together?
Jack Sondergaard: if you wanted to create a new version, it would have a slightly different address, so links to the previous version would not break
Yahumbe Watanabe: nice
Yahumbe Watanabe: but what if you didn't want people to see the previous version? Redirect?
Jack Sondergaard: so far, a complete Xanadu program hasn't been written, just some partial implementations
Jack Sondergaard: yes, software could redirect to the newest version, but all versions could be compared side by side to see changes made
Jack Sondergaard: usually, you would just compare 2 versions at a time
Yahumbe Watanabe: cool
Jack Sondergaard: links would be visible, not just jumping from one page to the next
Jack Sondergaard: so you could see the relationships
Yahumbe Watanabe: interesting - a 3D model, or has an implementation been decided on yet?
Jack Sondergaard: there is a 3D version in progress, but it's not very usable yet
Jack Sondergaard: in most ebooks I read, there are no capabilities to add your own links
Jack Sondergaard: some allow annotations and highlighting, but not much else
Yahumbe Watanabe: Still, intriguing possibilities for the future
Jack Sondergaard: what Xanadu will do when completed is allow linking between anything
Yahumbe Watanabe: Not unlike the futuristic computer featured in Minority Report
Jack Sondergaard: yes, that movie has many ideas that could be in Xanadu
Verena Messmer: So you could read an e-book and directly connect passages to passages in other books?
Jack Sondergaard: content would be stored separate from links, so you could choose different sets of links
Jack Sondergaard: and they could overlap
Jack Sondergaard: yes, and also audiobooks, music, movies
Jack Sondergaard: so you could link a movie to it's novel, script, drawings, special effects, etc.
Jack Sondergaard: some DVD's do this in a way, having different audio tracks, commentary, and subtitles
Jack Sondergaard: but only the producer gets to create these tracks
Jack Sondergaard: you can't add links between different movies, reviews, and your own notes
Verena Messmer: O. k. thanks for all the information. I have to leave now. Bye
Jack Sondergaard: the newest Mac OS has complete versioning of all documents, so we are starting to see some of the ideas there
Jack Sondergaard: thanks for coming
Jack Sondergaard: as I use various programs, I think of how it would be to overlay my own drawings, audio, links, and notes over the top of them
Yahumbe Watanabe: Microsoft Word is already sort of like that
Jack Sondergaard: connecting everything on my computer and the Internet
Jack Sondergaard: yes, there are now many programs that allow different types of media to be imbedded in them
Jack Sondergaard: one of my favorites is Personal Brain
Jack Sondergaard: it is a dynamic mindmapper
Jack Sondergaard: as you bring a node into focus, the view changes to show the lines connecting it to other nodes
Jack Sondergaard: and each node can contain text, links to websites, calendar information, project planning
Yahumbe Watanabe: So, more basically, what is Xanadu? A new protocol like http, an implementation of a programming language like XML, or something else?
Jack Sondergaard: it is an advanced hypertext program first designed in the 1960's but still more advanced than the web
Jack Sondergaard: it could use XML in parts of it
Jack Sondergaard: but one of the important concepts of it is that links, formatting, and viewing modes are kept separate, and combined in various ways
Yahumbe Watanabe: So if I wanted to program a "Web site" in Xanadu, what would it look like?
Jack Sondergaard: by keeping them separate, you can edit just the basic text without having to redo every format of it
Yahumbe Watanabe: ah - like CSS
Jack Sondergaard: it could look like anything you wanted it to
Jack Sondergaard: similar to CSS, but even more separate
Jack Sondergaard: CSS still has some embedded markup, Xanadu would keep all markup separate from the content
Yahumbe Watanabe: That's what makes me wonder - how much control would a developer have over the end product of what the user sees?
Jack Sondergaard: in Xanadu, the original document would always be linked to from any composite document that has made changes
Yahumbe Watanabe: So it's more like a collaboration tool than a medium for expression? Or it just makes collaboration more possible
Jack Sondergaard: so if you create a book of movie reviews with segments of movies in the reviews, those segments would link to the original movie
Jack Sondergaard: the amount of collaboration is for the users to decide
Yahumbe Watanabe: that example makes sense - but who decides what content is original in that case?
Yahumbe Watanabe: I can imagine for movies, studios would want to have some input
Jack Sondergaard: all quotations would also be links to the source
Jack Sondergaard: some studios might not like it, because anything can be quoted anywhere, but there are some advantages to doing this as well
Jack Sondergaard: the quotations are called transclusions, they pull content from the source
Yahumbe Watanabe: So who makes the decision of what is the original? Is it voted on Wiki-style or tabulated Google-style or inputted by some outside actor?
Jack Sondergaard: and documents are sold piecemeal, not as wholes (for ones that aren't free)
Yahumbe Watanabe: If I quote John Maynard Keynes, does the quote link to the Keynes library, Library of Congress, Wikiquote, or all of the above?
Yahumbe Watanabe: (assuming a Keynes library exists)
Jack Sondergaard: when a document is published, the creator of it has ownership, and all reuse links back to that
Jack Sondergaard: for existing documents, they would be published by whoever has the copyright
Yahumbe Watanabe: I guess my question then is who decides the link - if it is separate from formatting and viewing, is it programmed by the developer or decided on by some other process?
Jack Sondergaard: but the copyright owner would have to agree to the Xanadu agreement to allow unlimited reuse
Yahumbe Watanabe: I see, so it would be a sort of Creative Commons
Jack Sondergaard: the original author could create a set of links, like footnotes and annotations
Jack Sondergaard: but any reader could add links of their own, which they could keep private or publish for anyone else to use
Yahumbe Watanabe: Nice - can the document owner delete any links he doesn't like?
Jack Sondergaard: you could publish public domain, cc, gpl, and other licensed documents on it
Jack Sondergaard: no, the owner agrees before publishing to allow anyone to add links
Yahumbe Watanabe: wow
Yahumbe Watanabe: brave new world
Jack Sondergaard: there might be certain exceptions for legal documents, commercial transactions, where changes would have to be restricted
Jack Sondergaard: hi Cecil
Cecil Leominster: H
Jack Sondergaard: I have a document on a notecard about it, would you like a copy?
Yahumbe Watanabe: sure
Yahumbe Watanabe accepted your inventory offer.
Jack Sondergaard: a basic concept of it is that the entire set of all documents (the docuverse) is treated as if it were one document
Yahumbe Watanabe: interesting
Jack Sondergaard: and when you are creating a new document, you are pointing to segments of the docuverse (also called the permascroll)
Jack Sondergaard: and your document, when published, is appended to the end of the permascroll
Jack Sondergaard: it contains bytes, some of which are text, some audio, video, vector drawings, etc.
Yahumbe Watanabe: Well thanks for the overview; it definitely opens up new possibilities for computing, and especially on the Internet
Jack Sondergaard: you could then write something like a magazine, and quote anything in the docuverse to any length
Yahumbe Watanabe: How would people send e-mail attachments?
Jack Sondergaard: yes, I would recommend trying out Personal Brain to get some idea of a program that has some of it's ideas
Jack Sondergaard: as for email, that's a tough one
Jack Sondergaard: right now, they are so disconnected and insecure
Jack Sondergaard: RSS is replacing it for some things
Yahumbe Watanabe: Perhaps an e-mail program for Xanadu would act as mediator, translating snippets into files that could be shared between computers
Yahumbe Watanabe: RSS presents an interesting possibility for sharing between computers - podcasts come to mind
Jack Sondergaard: there would be agents to notify someone when a document is modified
Jack Sondergaard: yes, today I have been watching a video course about using Garage Band to make podcasts
Yahumbe Watanabe: I need to upgrade - I'm still on iLife '05
Jack Sondergaard: I plan on trying to make some enhanced podcasts describing these ideas
Jack Sondergaard: me too
Jack Sondergaard: I'm using GB 2 and the course is on GB 3
Yahumbe Watanabe: Yeah - though ideally instead of upgrading iLife I'd rather get the latest version on a new Mac :)
Jack Sondergaard: I just got a video iPod recently
Jack Sondergaard: yes, I plan on getting a new Mac soon
Yahumbe Watanabe: I had to replace my iPod nano this summer - portable video is still a foreign concept to me for now
Yahumbe Watanabe: I hope to get a 16GB iPhone when it comes out though
Jack Sondergaard: I carry reading glasses with me
Jack Sondergaard: yes, I like the Touch, but I needed the bigger hard drive for all my audiobooks and podcasts
Jack Sondergaard: so I got the 160GB
Yahumbe Watanabe: Fortunately my music library is still under 8 GB, though that could change quickly with iTunes Plus
Yahumbe Watanabe: ha - 160GB is the standard space on the MacBook
Yahumbe Watanabe: My current laptop is 80GB, and I thought it vast at the time (my previous laptop was 40)
Yahumbe Watanabe: It's almost full
Jack Sondergaard: 500 GB USB drives are now $150
Yahumbe Watanabe: lol I know, I saw that at Target and I almost died
Yahumbe Watanabe: And now with Time Machine even 1TB no longer seems so large
Jack Sondergaard: I have a 500 and a 250 plugged into my Mac Mini
Jack Sondergaard: I will get at least 2 500 GB drives when I upgrade
Yahumbe Watanabe: Yeah, I'm thinking 1TB desktop, 250GB laptop, and 500GB backup drive (for now)
Yahumbe Watanabe: Well thanks for the chat - I need to head out to Chipotle before they close (my first life body needs food)
Jack Sondergaard: I know what you mean, thanks for coming
Yahumbe Watanabe: :) bye