WWW/Mosaic for Saturnites

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#1 Sun, 1994-11-13 03:00
Dr. Anton J. Ku...
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WWW/Mosaic for Saturnites

Due to the recent appearance of some new "buzz-words" here on Saturn, I thought to give some short introduction and explanation on them, so that everybody here get a sense of what those people are talking about... And I will relate this to some possible future application to Sun Ra/Saturn...

World-Wide Web, what is this?

World-Wide Web (WWW) is a wide-area hypermedia information retrieval initiative aiming to give universal access to a large universe of documents. WWW is the first true global hypermedia network. It inter- connects information available at different places.

What is hypertext and hypermedia?

Hypertext is regular text - it can be stored, read, searched, or edited - with an important addition: hypertext contains connections within the text to other documents.

And hypermedia? Hypermedia is more than hypertext: hypermedia documents contain links not only to other pieces of text, but also to other forms of media, such as sounds, images, and movies.

What is Mosaic?

Mosaic is the most popular and versatile software interface to the Web, and allows exploiting what the Web offers.

Now, mapping this to a possible future application for our common interest in Sun Ra and related things, how could this look like:

Well, imagine we would be offered to access via our networked PC or workstation terminal, an initial, home page which contains entries for eg. rlc's disco- /tapeography (that is, an electronic, on-line copy of the Cadence book), another to the Omniverse book (again, its electronic, on-line copy), yet another to the archives of SATURN, etc. (Of course, "copy" means more than a sheer copy, - an enriched version with all those interconnections and links etc. put in behind, which the user only will realize somehow when later browsing through the information).

Then, somebody would choose to look at a specific concert tape entry in the cadence book, then would like to see what pieces were on the concert, would choose to see the musicians list, would like to see a photo of one of the performer, would like to see on what record the concert tape appears, would like to see the record jacket, would like to hear a specific piece from the concert, would like to hear the same piece from a recent CD, would like to see a picture of a specific instrument, would like to read the text of the poetry behind the piece, would like to ask a question in SATURN, would like to give feedback, etc. etc.

Of course, all this would need very elaborated data stores, - usually for initial start more simplified representations are used, which then are enhanced over time by the people behind the scene, that is the owner of the data stores.

We certainly should watch this technology and possibly see what some volunteers will offer on Sun Ra. It is true that so far there is already Jazz on WWW, via a few different servers, with information on various artists (it will never be complete of course), no Sun Ra yet.