Hypertext galore

My friend just sent me this site to look at, and I haven’t been able to tear myself away. Hypertext is hypnotizing.

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2 Responses

  1. This site is AMAZING. I feel like I could get lost for days just exploring. I particularly enjoyed three of the sections I saw. One was of a hand which would close and open with a new word on it each time you clicked. The physicality of this image of a fist opening into a word or phrase made the message much more forceful than if it had been on a blank page. The second was a series of hearts that slowly crumbled as you drug your mouse across them. By the third run, a letter would appear. It finally spelled “I break my heart as a precaution.” I really liked this because different people would discover the words and letters in varying orders; this flows well with the emotional confusion and personal sorting/reevaluation that comes with a broken heart. The third was a screen with two sets of changing words on it. When you clicked on either set, the other would remain the same. The “reader” rests in control of forming the phrases. In all writing, the writer provides the words and the reader discovers the meaning. The interactive process of that concept is intriguing. I’m starting to appreciate hypertext more, but it’s still difficult for me to be at ease when I feel trapped in a maze of endless webpages . . .

  2. Thanks for posting this, Mikaela! I’ll admit, I spent a good half hour clicking around on this Web site today in the library; this was probably not the best use of my time. At first, I assumed the whole thing was simply that home page, with the typing. “Cool,” I thought. I liked the sound of the typing, the jumble of words that didn’t really make sense. It took me a LONG time to figure out I could navigate away from that.

    And when I did, I was so absolutely overwhelmed. A lot of this was very clever and beautiful or intriguing, but the scale was unfathomable. Something Laura said helped me focus a little, even if it was just on myself. “It’s still difficult for me to be at ease when I feel trapped in a maze of endless webpages…” I realized I was feeling incredibly anxious — there was a knot in my stomach. I’d agree that I’m starting to appreciate hypertext more as well; in fact, I think I’m growing fonder of it even than digital stories. But unlike Laura, I don’t feel trapped — I feel lost. There are just too many options, and links, and pages and sounds and images. It’s terrifying.

    Perhaps this is the author’s intent: that sense of being overwhelmed. Or maybe I’m just hypertext illiterate?

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