An Effective Hypertext

1 10 2007

After a lot of thought and looking at many hyper-texts on-line I believe I have figured out the criteria for a successful hypertext. First the hypertext must meet all the required fields of just a normal text. First the writing must be readable. This is obvious enough, but after making my hypertext annotation I discovered just how difficult this can truly be. Once the font is worked out hypertext truly begins to step away from traditional textual media. Hyper-texts MUST use the resources they have available to them. This can include videos, links, movies, pictures, changing word fonts, almost anything. The reason a hypertext must include these tools is because if it does not than the hypertext is simply a normal text that you read off a website.

Once the hypertext includes the media that are available to it, the next step is incorporating the media to the message. If the hypertext is meant to give the viewer a scary or dark mood, having the tetris theme song playing in the background is not exactly using the media correctly. A hypertext must make sure that every movie, sound, animation, link, or anything else included adds a certain aspect to the hypertext. This aspect could be to surprise the reader, or to continue to deepen the mood, or simply give more information on the topic being discussed, but whatever the reason, the media must add to the hypertext, and not take away from what is being expressed.

-Dan Cinalli



One response

1 10 2007

OK–all of the elements must serve a purpose. This was Edgar Allen’s Poe’s definition of good literature, too (his “single effect” theory), so (as you note) hypertext simply follows the rules of all good literature.

But then you make an even better point–hypertext must use the means at its disposal. Fonts, sounds, colors, etc.

But does a good hypertext have to use all of the elements? I hope not, since I’d hate to have every webpage out there greet me with music and animation. . .

–dr t

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