[unrev-II] Pandora's Mailbox -- Intertwingularity

From: Jack Park (jackpark@thinkalong.com)
Date: Tue Sep 25 2001 - 16:00:23 PDT

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    "Our intent is to design and implement a basic, organization-oriented
    (pop3?) email client that is targeted to assist persons who receive
    relatively large quantities of email. In other words, this is for people
    who receive more email than God. For further reference, we shall call this
    program "Pandora", daring any to test the experimental implementation by
    telling this foolish person, "Open this." Pandora will echo Jamie
    Zawinski's theoretical "Intertwingle", which can be viewed here."

    Found by backlinking the term Interwingle at www.memes.net (Gawd! I love
    Lucid :)

    That led to a page at mozilla about a paper which, itself can also be found
    at the "here" link: http://cs.eou.edu/~pandora/intertwingle.html "The
    Theoretical 'Interwingle'"
    and that's where things get interesting. Here's a Ted Nelson Quote from
    that paper:

    ``Intertwingularity is not generally acknowledged -- people keep pretending
    they can make things deeply hierarchical, categorizable and sequential when
    they can't. Everything is deeply intertwingled.''

     From the paper:
    "Intertwingle can be seen as a unification of a search tool and an address
    book. It is not, however, a mail reader. The presentation of query results
    could be done through a mail reader, but the intention is that ones choice
    of mail reader should be orthogonal to the use of this tool. The two kinds
    of tools just happen to operate on the same data.
    The design philosophy is that any time there is a visual representation of
    an object, the corresponding object should be accessible with a gesture:
    That chasing links is easier than composing search terms (but both are
    needed.) "

    The paper is largely a design discussion for a link database, one which the
    author thinks will best be implemented using RDF.

    Thanks to google, the Ted Nelson quote was found elsewhere, as for example:
    which is about clustering web pages
    http://www.wordcircuits.com/htww/morgan1.htm a page in which the quote is
    actually not present (probably somewhere on the page source), but is

    In the end, I was unable to find the original quotation. However, all is
    not lost. Keep snooping around on that quote and you land on
    http://www.jwz.org/bbdb/ which appears to be the same Jamie Zawinski who
    used the quote that everybody else eventually used. This web page is about
    "The Insidious Big Brother Database"

    "BBDB is a rolodex-like database program for GNU Emacs which is tightly
    integrated with the Emacs mail and news readers (GNUS, VM, MH-E, and RMAIL.)
    If you don't read mail and/or news with Emacs, this is likely of no
    interest to you.
    The main feature of BBDB is that it sits in the background and ``notices''
    things about whatever messages you read (whether those messages are mail or
    news.) A window displaying the address-book entry corresponding to the
    sender of the current message is always on the screen, unobtrusively. So as
    you are reading a message, any additional annotations you have made
    (including ones which occurred automatically) will be readily visible as well.
    For example, BBDB can automatically keep track of what other topics the
    sender has corresponded with you about; when you last read a message from
    the sender; what mailing lists their messages came through; and any other
    details or automatic annotations you care to add. It also does a good job
    of noting when someone's email address has changed.
    In practice, you never add an entry to your address book by hand; BBDB does
    it for you. What you do is instruct BBDB when and how to annotate things:
    ``when you see a message like this, annotate the sender like this.'' "

    "BBDB embodies that property known as ``intertwingularity.'' If you're
    interested in this sort of thing, you might want to read my design for a
    program I've called Intertwingle. Intertwingle has yet to actually be
    implemented, but the ideas outlined in that design are largely derived from
    my experiences with BBDB, so you can think of it as one of BBDB's
    hypothetical descendants. "

    That project can be found at http://bbdb.sourceforge.net/

    In the end, I suspect that Intertwingularity is found in the ZigZag
    papers. I'll have to check.

    Intertwingularity. It's all about links.


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