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WHAT IS HYPERTEXT?

Shalom Solomon

First off, as usual, let us determine what hypertext is not. Hypertext is defined in the mathematical syntax where "hyper" means extended or generality as in the case of hyperspace and hypercube.

It is not defined in the medical sense of excessive as in the word hyperactive. So, in essence, "hyper" in computing and mathematical sense points at structure.

The term hypertext was developed quite recently (compared to other ancient words like thee and thine). Hypertext was coined by Ted Nelson, in 1963. Ted Nelson is is an American Pioneer of information technology and also a sociologist. He did not only coin the term hypertext but also coined the term hypermedia. 

THE DEFINITION OF HYPERTEXT

Hypertext as a term is defined as text displayed on a computer or an electronic device with references or links to other text that a reader can immediately access. The world wide web is a project exists today mainly because of hypertext. Hypertext enables the linking of web pages or websites which make up the web we see today.

The world wide web which was released on the internet in 1991, is said to be the most advanced form or application of the concept of hypertext.

Hypertext is activated by a clicking with a mouse, using keys on a keyboard to press, or most recently, with a touch on a screen.

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HYPERTEXT AND HYPERMEDIA

Hypertext as stated above simply refers to texts on a computer or an electronic device that links to other resources on the web or sometimes, locally. Hypermedia on the other hand refers to tables, images, graphics and the likes integrated with hyperlinks that enable users to access resources on the web.

Mostly though, it is a common occurrence for people use the term hypertext to also describe hypermedia. Much to the chagrin of the author of both terms.

Hyperlinks are references to data that a user can follow to a whole other document, website, resource or even a specific element on the same document or webpage. When a user follows a hyperlink, the user is navigating or browsing the hypertext. 

Photo Credit: iStock Photos

TYPES OF HYPERTEXT

Hypertext is categorized in to two forms:

  1. Static hypertext
  2. Dynamic hypertext

STATIC HYPERTEXT

Static hypertext refers to hypertext documents that are prepared and stored in advance. They can be used to cross-reference collections of data in a document, software application or a book. 

DYNAMIC HYPERTEXT

Dynamic hypertext on the other hand clearly refers and describes hypertext that are continually changing in response to user input such as dynamic web pages. 

Finally,

Hypertext can be used to support very complex and dynamic systems of linking and cross-referencing. Hypertext is the major building block of the world wide web which is why html (hypertext markup language) is a very vital tool for the development of webpages.

Thanks for reading ; -)

Comments

Jhon Doe

- 20 October, 2018

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Jhon Doe

- 20 October, 2018

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