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Re: Fuzzy Hypertext?

On Thu, 19 Dec 1996, Paul Newton wrote:

> When an author creates a link, I would like them to be able to give the
> link a fuzzy level, so that they can express uncertainty eg links which are
> definite, sometimes useful, only useful to the dedicated reader
> etc. 

Perhaps this is best implemented by some sort of user modeling.
Otherwise, it could be very hard for a hypertext author to decide that
"this text is only 50% relevent" while "this text is 74% relevent."

> Further, I find it very restricting that anchors exist as such
> discrete objects. It can be quite natural to link specific words
> (dictionaries, indexes, tables of contents etc), but there must be cases
> when hypertext would benefit from a more fuzzy definition of anchors. For
> example, when I discuss a concept, I can rarely identify precise points
> where the discussion starts then ends - there is a build up to the ideas,
> then a discussion of consequences etc. This is a much more fuzzy definition
> of an anchor, where instead of discrete boundaries, we instead have more
> fuzzy, blurred edges.

Yes, I agree.  However, it could be almost impossible to implement because
one person may find the first part of the information relevent while
another may find the last part of the information relevent.  It is
probably better to link to a span between two anchors and call it good,
letting the user to sort it all out.


Art Pollard <PollardA@xxxxxxxxxx>
Moderator for Comp.Theory.Info-Retrieval
List Maintainer for the Hyper-Theory (Hypertext Theory) mailing list.