Kreitzberg, C., Shneiderman, B.
Proc. International Ergonomics Association 10th Congress 31, vol. 2, (Sydney, Australia, Aug. 1-5, 1988) 615-620. Also Sparks of Innovation in Human-Computer Interaction, Shneiderman, B., Ed. , Ablex (June 1993) 123-131.
Hyperties is a powerful, yet simple, new software tool for organizing and presenting information. It has been developed over the past five years at the University of Maryland's Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory and has been used for more than 50 projects (Shneidernan 1987a, 1987b). Hyperties authors can create databases consisting of articles that contain text and illustrations. Without the need for programming, authors can link these articles together so readers can easily browse through them. Hyperties can be used for a wide variety of applications, including:
  • On-line encyclopedias
  • Newletters
  • On-line help
  • Instruction and dynamic glossaries
  • Reference manuals
  • Corporate policy manuals
  • Summaries of products and services
  • Employee orientation
  • Biographies
  • Regulations and procedures
  • Museum exhibits
The strategies for gaining the benefits of paper texts are well understood, but there is a great need for study of how knowledge must be restructured to take advantage of hypertext environments (Yankelovich, Meyrowitz & Van Dam, 1985; Conklin, 1987; Marchionini & Shneiderman, 1988). This paper provides some guidance for designing Hyperties databases and reports on an exploratory study of comprehension tasks when article length was varied.
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