The Electronic Labyrinth

Node Types

Nodes may be typed to convey useful information to the reader. Hypertext products vary widely in their support of this feature. Node types may be pre-defined or user-defined.

One simple scheme divides nodes into two types: one for organizational information and the other for content. NoteCards is such a system; here, the organizing nodes are called FileBoxes. In Textnet, nodes are either "chunks" or "tocs." This last term derives from "table of contents."

Hypertext products designed for specialized applications (eg. IBIS) may have very specific node types. In this way, the reader can understand immediately the context of one node among many. By regimenting node and link types, however, authors are forced to structure their writing to a degree that may hinder free thought and organization.

© 1993-2000 Christopher Keep, Tim McLaughlin, Robin Parmar.
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