Re: "Mapping Hypertext": book and results

Subject: Re: "Mapping Hypertext": book and results
From: Chet Ensign <Chet_Ensign%LDS -at- NOTES -dot- WORLDCOM -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 24 Jan 1995 18:12:09 EDT

Harv Millman writes:

<-- Robert Horn ... claimed that Information
Mapping (IM) was the ideal vehicle for creating hypertext
documents.
-->

Harv,

To answer your question, I don't know of any cases, successful or not. I'd
agree that the *structure* of information mapping would lend itself very well
to many types of online documentation. By the question of whether or not IM is
useful for online delivery requires scrutiny from two angles: the structure,
and how that structure is most often achieved in word processors.

The *format* of information mapped documents can make the process of actually
putting the document in hypertext akin to being flogged at the mast. That's
because information mapping looks like a table. I'll bet most people who create
IM documents create them as tables. The examples I have dealt with were just
that.

We worked on a couple of documents done in an IM-like style. That means that
the original authors mistook wide left margins and small chunks of text for
"information mapping." The resulting docs were enormous, two column tables with
lots of three and four (and five!!) column tables embedded inside them. The
hours spent reprocessing those documents for other uses resulted in arterial
bleeding for my budget.

Information mapping done with SGML, where the structure itself is described in
the source document would lend itself extremely well to online delivery, I'll
bet. It's something I'd actually like to play with one of these days.

Best regards,

/chet

---
Chet Ensign Phone: (908) 771-9221
Director, Electronic Publishing Email: chet -at- lds -dot- com
Logical Design Solutions, Inc. Email(home): censign -at- interserv -dot- com
---


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