Doug Engelbart's  I N V I S I B L E    R E V O L U T I O N

Doug's HyperScope, as described is a web-based intermediary intended to move advanced NLS functionality onto thee web, gradually. The Liquid Information @ UCLIC Research Project is implementing one type of Hyperscope, calling it Hyperwords.

 For more on Doug Engelbart, please visit his official site at or go to the main page of this site, Invisible Revolution.

HyperScope compared with the HyperBlog

How the Hyper Blog project maps on to the real HyperScope project, currently and in the future.


Draft OHS-Project Plan

Doug Engelbart, 23-Oct-2000 <BI,2120,>


Hyper Blog Stage 2

Current, the stage actively worked on now.


Hyper Blog Stage 3 & beyond


Introduction 1        
Large-scale challenges are best served if there are appropriately scaled strategic principles to guide their pursuit. And special value results if the launch plan of a long-term and large-scale strategy produces significant payoff accrual early in the pursuit. 1A  

The work on what we are currently calling the Hyper Blog is simply as a prototype, trying out some of the HyperScope ideas. It is not designed to be an evolving tool-set. All programming will be thrown away.

This document sets out so see how well the Hyper Blog maps on to the real HyperScope Spec. 

We are addressing the large-scale, pervasive challenge of improving the collective development and application of knowledge. Many years of focused experience and conceptual development underlie the strategic framework guiding this proposal. 1B        
Phase-1: OHS Launch Project: HyperScope enhancement of Legacy Systems: 2        
Special Note: Implementation of the HyperScope and all of the later stages of the OHS are committed to being done as Open-Source development. There are clear and compelling reasons for this, stemming from the scale and rate of evolution which needs be accommodated, and from the number of collaborative communities which need to be involved, PRO-ACTIVELY. 2A   The Hyper Blog is not Open-Source initially simply as the code will not be robust enough.   The Hyper Blog will be Open-Source when it is re-coded.
The HyperScope will be a lightly modified web browser supported by an "Intermediary Processor" (IP) which operates between the browser and the files or data bases holding existing working knowledge of a collaborative community. The HyperScope is not an editor. 2B   The Hyper Blog works as an in "Intermediary Processor" (IP) which operates between the browser and the Blog database, though it controls all aspects of the Blog data. The Hyper Blog is an editor in that it directly supports blog posts written only for the Hyper Blog. This is a major difference between the real HyperScope and the Hyper Blog, the Hyper Blog is not operating on many kinds of data or even any remote data, only on local Blog data, so it works in a much smaller universe.   This is not due to change.
A HyperScope user will be able to follow links into and between these "legacy" files in a manner similar to using a browser with web-based HTML files. And more, there will be numerous new capabilities and features which will give a HyperScope user considerable more flexibility and working power than users limited to standard browsers and "legacy" editors. 2B1   The Blogs will support any valid URL in the blog post and will also allow URL's to point to any blog post.    
Brief Functional Description of Phase-1 HyperScope -- new capabilities provided to HyperScope users operating within legacy environments: 2C        
1. In response to what may be an ordinary HTTP link, the targeted file will be (a) retrieved from its server and (b) dynamically "translated" into an Intermediary file (I-File) with special structure and format implemented with XML+. 2C1   The Hyper Blog will serve blog entries from the internal server, nothing else. Translation happens in the Blog HyperScope world when emails (which are how blogs are posted to the system) enter the system. They are parsed to extract meaningful information like date, attachments (images) links etc.    
For any community seriously interested in applying HyperScope (and the follow-on, full OHS), it is assumed that appropriate "translator modules" will be developed for every file/db type of significance to their collaborative efforts. It is expected that an increasing list of customized translators will be developed as different application communities extend the range of legacy files to be brought into integrated HyperScope use. 2C1A   Not needed for the Hyper Blog.    
2. High-Resolution Addressability: Translation into the I-File's special structure and format creates, among other things, new label tags attached to many objects (e.g. each paragraph), so that links serviced by the HyperScope can explicitly target many objects in the file which were not addressable in their "legacy" form. Ideally, every object in a file should be targetable by a link whose author wants to comment specifically about that object. 2C2   Hyper Blogs support links to a single blog entry. There are internal functions which support links within Hyper Blogs but they have no user interface yet.   The ability to link to blog posts internally will be supported, for paragraphs and attributes like links.
E. g., here "" targets a specific object, assumedly not labeled in the legacy file, but given the "aaa" label by the Translator any time that it translates that targeted file into the I-File format. 2C2A
3. View-Specifications: The HyperScope will offer a set of "transcoded viewing options" which a user can selectively employ to examine that file. Simple example: just show me the first line of each paragraph. 2C3   Hyper Blog views are accessed though the 'Edit' link on the lower left hand corner of the page. First sentence per blog is supported, not first line per paragraph, not line, as we cannot know how long the line would be.   First line per paragraph (or sentence) will be supported.
From past experience it is expected that users will invent many variations of the ways they would like to view portions of their files, under different circumstances, often shifting rapidly between views just as one might rotate a physical object, or shift its distance, to get a better understanding of what is there. 2C3A    Views can only be changed through the 'Edit' link which is a bit cumbersome but it gives the user a lot of space to access commends.   A contextual pop-up menu will be able to carry out dynamic actions modifying the view of the page.
It is planned to enable the option of incorporating a "view specification" (viewspec) to a link so that a subsequent user will not only have execution of that link take him to the desired specific file location, but will also show the contents there with the specified view. 2C3B   This is supported, by adding the 'Edit' page and by having the full viewspec coded in the end of the URL.    
Considerable evolution is expected to take place here. In the "open-source" mode, many groups would be experimenting and tuning, contributing to the evolution. 2C3C        
4. Expanded set of HyperScope accessible "Legacy File Types:" In principle, this manner of HyperScope access can be implemented for any standard type of file or data base. The Project will establish the basic implementation conventions, and proceed to develop the translation and special I-File properties appropriate for a selected sequence of file/db types -- planning tentatively for those to be used by: 2C4   Not relevant to the blog specific Hyper Blog.    
4a. the OHS-dev community (including open-source participants); 2C4A
4b. the Software Productivity Consortium's member community: 2C4B
4c. communities selected with NIH (and possibly cooperatively with DARPA) for strategic progression of co-evolving tool- and community-development processes. 2C4C
Note: Here again, it is planned to facilitate Open-Source development so that many individuals and application communities can pursue specialty application needs and possibilities. (Facilitating this evolution is planned.) 2C4D   The Hyper Blog is a prototype test only, intended to be used to learn about some of the issues of making posts easier to acess and read.    
5. Copying-Pasting HyperScope Links: When viewing a legacy file via his HyperScope, a user will easily be able to install a HyperScope link (HS-Link) in any legacy file, targeting an explicit location in the file being viewed on his HyperScope. Clicking on the desired target object in a HyperScope "Copy mode," he can subsequently turn to the "legacy editor" and "Paste" the appropriate link into the legacy file. Later execution of that link will take any subsequent HyperScope user to the desired, specific location and with the specified view. 2C5    Fully supported for any supported view specification supported, such as whose blogs are to be seen and which one is at the top. The URL remembers alll the variables the system supports.    
6. Back-Link Management: Provision will be made to capture information about links pointing through the HyperScopes into a specified collection of files, to establish a "Back-Link Data Base" (BLDB). For each such link, information to be captured would be such as: 2C6   Not directly supported, yet, though blogs can refer to other blogs for linked commenting.   Can be supported.
6a. Explicit target object being cited; 2C6A
6b. The "foreign" location of the link; 2C6B
NOTE: both 6a and 6b being very much more usefully explicit if exercised via HyperScope use. 2C6B1
6c. The author of that other-file citation link. 2C6C
6d. The "Type" of link citation, as per the vocabulary of "link typing" adopted by the usage community, and provided for inclusion in "link syntax" by appropriate standardization processes. 2C6D
NOTE: Link Typing has been advocated and discussed for many years. With the above HyperScope-facilitated LDB, link-type utilization within appropriately developed community conventions and practices, would offer very important enhanced capability for collective knowledge development. 2C6D1
AND, in a larger sense, it would enable a practical way to improve on the established academic convention of only publishing AFTER appropriate peer review (with attendant time delays in the cycle of knowledge evolution). 2C6D2
HERE, a promising alternative is offered: Publish now, let Peer Review and "evolving attribution" take place after. I.e., much more than just counting citations can here provide effectively attributed peer evaluation: explicit back-link assessment of trails can operate in many complex knowledge-evolution environments to isolate the key contributions (and also the key misleading entries). 2C6D3
7. Extended addressing conventions to improve linking power: 2C7        
7a. Relative Addressing: A conventional URL with a "#label" extension can position the HyperScope at a given object in the target file. Extended conventions will enable the link to point to subordinate objects -- e.g., to a word in a paragraph, to an expression in an equation, ... 2C7A
      Possible and interesting.
7b. Indirect Linking: A very powerful extension to the relative addressing is a convention which directs the HyperScope to go to a specific location and then follow the link at that position -- and perhaps at the link's destination to do further relative positioning and "link following." This indirect linking provides very powerful functionality when users learn to harness it. 2C7B
      Very interesting and very possible, though the UI for this has not been discussed yet.
7c. Implicit Linking: Example -- every word is implicitly linked to its definition in a dictionary; every special term is implicitly linked to its definition in that discipline's glossary; every instance of an object's name in a source-code file is implicitly linked to its imlementation code; ...; every pronoun is implicitly linked to its antecedent. Special "jump" commands can be provided which can operate as though the term in question is explicitly linked to the "implicitly linked" object. (Jump to Definition, ...) 2C7C
      We will be employing a glossary for this purpose.
8. Same file in multiple windows -- no real limit there -- simultaneously allowing different positioning and differ net viewing portrayals of a given file. 2C8   Menu is served in a frame on the right. This is not directly controllable by the end user. This may be enhanced with single window views.    
Later, when editing of the Intermediary File will be offered, any legal edit operation executed in one window is reflected accurately and immediately in all other of that file's portrayal windows. 2C8A   Not supportable in a non-modified (ie, not Java running etc.) browser within the scope of what we are trying to do.    
This flexibility in utilizing multiple windows has surprising value when users learn to make effective use of it. 2C8B        
9. Non-Link Jumps; Options offered via simple selection means -- E.g.: 2C9        
A click in a given paragraph, not on an embedded link, would hoist that paragraph to the top of the window. 2C9A   Supported.    
Click-select a given paragraph, then Jump Next, Last, First, Origin, ... 2C9B        
10. Double-click Jumps offer surprisingly flexible options: 2C10   Not supportable through a regular browser, as far as I understand. I have not been able to find out how it could be done.    
First click indicates what jump is desired; second click can be in any other window, indicating where the jump-result view is to be portrayed. Whatever viewing spec already established in the target window will also prevail when the jumped-to file/location is portrayed there. 2C10A        
Also, in the interval between window clicks, icon or menu clicks, or character input, can indicate the new viewing spec if the user desires something different from what is currently set for the target window. 2C10B        
For instance: Window 1 could be relatively narrow, with view spec set for small font and only first line of each paragraph portrayed; Window 2 wider, with larger, more-readable font and full-paragraph portrayal. 2C10C        
We assume that the above capabilities would be useful to almost any collaborative community, essentially as soon as adequate HyperScope-application support services could be provided. (NOTE that a qualified SRI group is explicitly set now to establish and operate such services. Optional whether arrangements for this are pre-established at outset of the "OHS-dev Project", or later when support of a particular community choose to become involved. In any event, suitable lead time needs be allowed.) 2C11        
Phase-2: Maturing/Evolving the HyperScope into full-feature OHS: 3        
Evolution of the Intermediary File format will be given careful attention since it is destined to become the format for the full Open Hyperdocument System (which will continue its evolution). 3A   We hope to contribute to this, both in terms of its use and by generating some experience with this project which could help its definition.    
An OHS "User Interface System" (UIS) will be developed to provide a basic range of functions for moving, viewing and editing. 3B      
Provision for archiving, version control, etc. will be developed so that it becomes possible to develop and maintain an evolving knowledge base solely within an OHS environment -- with integrated flexibility and power accumulated from the best that was accomplished via HyperScope usage among the legacy files. 3C   Versioning is very important to blogging. Currently users cannot edit old blogs, only delete them. This will become more sophisticated.    
Now the VERY important feature of this approach to OHS development comes into play: task by task, or person by person, in almost any order and rate, users can start to keep their files entirely within the OHS environment. All the working material is still interlinkable, whether in OHS or legacy files. 3D   The Hyper Blog environment is all internal.    
And the critical community-development processes will become VERY important here -- to start the active "co-evolution" of the "Human System" and the OHS "Tool System" (as discussed at length in the "Bootstrap Publications"). 3E   Users are constantly changing and contributing to the Hyper Blog test prototype.    
For the scale of utilization that will be necessary, in number of inter-operating groups, in the diversity of inter-operable knowledge domains, and in the continuing changes in tools and skills, processes, etc. -- it will be absolutely critical that 3F        
(a) the Tool System be as open to continuing evolution as can be managed, and 3F1
  Absolutely, but this is just a prototype, an exploration.    
(b) the application communities be specifically organized to participate pro-actively in the Human-Tool co-evolution. 3F2
It is sincerely hoped that organizations investing in the Stage-1 HyperScope development and use will do so with clear intent to be simultaneously readying their targeted application communities for becoming pro-active, "evolutionary participants." 3G   Yes, though through dialog at this early stage, where there is little actual HyperScope specs to follow.    
Phase-3: Special Evolutionary Provision: Multi-class UIS Architecture and High-Performance Teams. 4        
The OHS Interface Architecture will be set up explicitly to provide for multiple UIS options, with a common, full-feature Application Program Interface (API). To support extensive capability evolution, it will be necessary to provide for a range of UIS options, varying in complexity, potential competency level, difficulty to learn, types of interface devices and modalities, etc. 4A   With our tiny budget, this is not possible yet. We are however, quickly changing the interface based on what we learn when we use the system, documenting why we are doing this and keeping earlier versions.   The UI will continue to become more flexible and explicitly support different levels and styles of user.
Being able effectively to support web-connected mobile phones is one example. 4A1   Posting of blogs by any device is supported.    
But a VERY IMPORTANT purpose here is to enable individuals, or special-role support teams, to experiment with interface equipment, functionality, and control options, together with optional special attributes of the standard Intermediary File, to pursue especially high performance at important parts of their knowledge processes. 4B   We see this as one such team, on the frontier, to find high-performance use of the HyperScope philosophy for blogging.    
Having this kind of exploration in any event will be necessary. Doing it with special extensions to the widely used OHS will be very important in enabling feasible migration of these tools and skills out into the rest of the communities. Moreover, doing this exploratory high-performance activity over the SAME WORKING domains amplifies that benefit immensely; motivated individuals can optionally acquire special interface equipment, take some special training, and move up to a "new class of user proficiency" (e.g. becoming a certified Class-4B Knowledge Integrator). 4C   Sure, though we are playing widely and quickly before the real HyperScope formats and conventions are established. We hope to contribute to this work, and we will use and adhere to what is available, when it is available.    
There are support roles anticipated in developing and maintaining a community's Dynamic Knowledge Repository (DKR) which could very well be taken on by specially trained High-Performance Support Teams. Such a team could for instance be fielded in a university (as a research project into High-Performance Collective Knowledge Work), and take on the "Knowledge Integrator" role for a professional society's DKR. And competitive exercises could be conducted among teams from different universities -- or companies, or agencies, or countries -- as part of an explicit processes to facilitate improvement in "Collective IQ." 4D   Absolutely vital. We hope to be a part of this.    
 hyperblog only   Easy text entry via email. Complete blog posts are entered into the system with simple emails.  
 hyperblog only   Easy attachment of pictures and video. Multimedia is supported as attachments in the email.They will automatically scale down in the web version of the blog and will automatically scale up when clicked on.    
 hyperblog only   MultiBlog view specifications. The user can specify whose blogs are to be seen at a time.    
 hyperblog only   Keyword specification of what blogs are to show up.    
 hyperblog only   Inter-linked comment system; all comments are also blogs.    
 hyperblog only      
 hyperblog only        The pop-up menu will allow the user to anotate and mark up any blog.