What is Hypertext and Hypermedia?
Anyone using any sort of online help system (like Macintosh
HyperCard or Microsoft Windows Help) will already be familiar with a
fundamental component of the Web - Hypertext.
The idea here is that instead of following text in a liner fashion
(like a book), you can at many points skip from one place to another, go
forward or back, get much more detail on the current topic, change
direction and navigate in any way that you desire.
- Hypertext - Hypertext is basically the same as regular text
- it can be stored, read, searched, or edited - with an important
exception: hypertext is text with pointers to other text. The browsers
let you deal with the pointers in a transparent way -- select the
pointer, and you are presented with the text that is pointed to.
- Hypermedia - Hypermedia is a superset of hypertext.
Hypermedia documents contain links not only to other pieces of text, but
also to other forms of media - sounds, images, and movies. Images
themselves can be selected to link to sounds or documents. This means
that browsers might not display a text file, but might display images or
sound or animations. Hypermedia simply combines hypertext and
Some examples of Hypermedia might be:
- You are reading a text on the Japanese language. You select a
Japanese phrase, then hear the phrase as spoken in the native tongue.
- You are viewing a company's floor plan, you select an office by
clicking on a room. The employee's name and picture appears with a list
of their current projects.
- You are a law student studying the California Revised Statutes. By
selecting a passage, you find precedents from a 1920 Supreme Court
ruling stored at Cornell. Cross-referenced hyperlinks allow you to view
any one of 500 related cases with audio annotations.
Electronic Commerce on the Internet - WWW (World Wide Web)
- the "Glossy Brochure"
1995 Telstra Corporation.
Last modified: Sun May 7 15:51:03 1995