24 JUNE 1997
inside




The description I posted to the Blast forum of my living/working space is lacking in detail. It is interesting more for what I left out than what I described but it does show that I carry with me some concept of "home" where ever I go but it will always be incomplete because a full description would encompass, like a Borgesian map of the world, the universe.

If I had described that space a year ago it would have been different. The functions of the space flowed into each other more then. There was less diferentiation between the rooms. At some point within the past year I felt it necessary to categorize my activities more and to create a separate "living" area from the "working" area though in my daily life the two are basically the same.

If you want to write about a building and don't know where to start you start with a description of one brick in the wall, then describe the brick next to it, then the wall, then the adjoining wall and so on until you've described the building.

If I wanted to more fully describe my home I could start anywhere but the results would differ depending on where I started. If someone tried to reconstruct my home from any of those descriptions they would have quite of few description sets to chose from and then each individual would reconstruct their own version depending upon their own perceptions of the words.

The lack of this kind of variety is what I understand to be Ted Nelson's complaint about how the Web has developed. It's not multidimensional enough.

Dave Winer just posted a message about how boring Web browsers are, how they waste so much time on text graphics when we have the ability using programing languages to create flashy graphics that load quickly, like text. Instead Netscape and Microsoft are giving us overblown plug-ins for stuff no one wants. We need a browser that understands concepts like the turtle graphics used by Logo or Macromedia's Lingo.

VRML does this but on too complex a level and with too much empasis on images. Javascript does, too, but with too much empasis on reproducing server-side functions. I want to be able to draw a square and put some text in it for a button icon. I can do this with tables now but I should be able to do a lot more of it. I should have been able to draw you a fairly accurate map of my apartment using only HTML.