6 minutes read at slow text-to-speech rate
In my regular role as a self-appointed long distance technology scout, my secret weapon and antidote to any hype has always been to do a Google Search “X sucks” or “Why X sucks”.
I understand that our goal here is to find better ways to do what blogging wanted to be. So I leave the task of providing an overview of the subject for another time.
Here I have 2 hours tops to do a brain dump on the topic, and use this opportunity to articulate long held beliefs on the subject.
Together with my colleagues at Easysoft we had been blogging and writing our own personal wiki and blog before these concept got much traction. We were all doing this, and keeping a true blog of all our work and associated knowledge, so we knew, and the best boss I ever worked for, knew what’s going on and could best work together. We had en-massed an in house knowledge base, “the simplest possible that one can have”, and strived to “Always finish the day on a success” as my closest colleague Martin Evans phrased it (who is still blogging under that by-line today).
The sheer value of gathering and sharing information is at the heart of not just the blogosphere but the Web itself. Our goal, to quote Maria Popova, is to understand and to be understood so that we can all can be “Cartographers of [our] meanings in the digital age”. That’s what blogging should be, but really falls short.
Wikis, Blogs or even Blikis have been “invented” as the poor man’s Knowledge Management tool.
Alas, as Stephan put it so aptly put it :
The web wasn’t designed as a hypertext capability infrastructure
That is the core reason why Blogging, and practically every authoring, reading and publishing system on the Web sucks, really.
Frode has been writing eloquently about the missing capabilities in here
I could not vote for it, last time I looked at it, but now I could, and add some more there.
Engelbart’s NLS later Augment really had it all.
With recent advances in Web technologies I would like to propose that it is now possible to turn the Web into a Hypertext capability infrastructure with all that Augment did offer in terms of:
authorship, structure and collaboration (and more).
While NLS was a one machine World Wide Web we can turn the Web Itself into a distributed, peer to peer and even federated Collective Intelligence platform capable of building a Web of Knowledge through interoperability of Personal and community Knowledge work and federation.
- Decentralized Collaboration technologies IPFS, DAT, HoloChain
- Personal Knowledge Interoperability Hubs
- Hyper Knowledge Media technology supporting Augment like Deep authoring capabilites
All these technologies are now in alpha or pre alpha stage.
The Personal Knowledge Interoperability Hub, even in its current state, screenshot below, let’s me do my web research and writing on any of my devices that are synchronised without data loss.
Beyond interoperability and collaboration, we need better ways to consume and create knowledge. Instead of linear text need to see a Map first of what we encounter. What that needs is a way to turn texts into knowledge graphs.
The screenshot below show the beginnings of the technology needed to turn any HTML content into a Knowledge Graph (or nodes in Augment parlance), and back, so that any statement becomes globally addressable, expanded upon, identified with keywords, linked bidirectionally in meaningful ways, deeply re-arrangeable for creating narrative trails. This will help us to see the meaning of content at a glance, and do our own cartography of it. Five years ago I had a round trip like that working with Google Docs that contained some special markup. Now it is becoming possible to to mark any part of any Google Doc document, turn it into grahp-based Knowledge Media and collaborate on it in real time in a truly “serverless” way. Thanks to IPFS the collaborators’ browsers act as peer to peer servers.
Anything in that knowledge graph can be portrayed and shared, in whole, or in parts as Knowledge Media (i.e. HTML containing custom tags with user defined/personalized capabilities)
This kind of Knowledge Media can be created as easily as writing into a google doc or any other online Rich Text Editor, but it would act as a Rich Thought Editor. We do not want to process text, we want to process our Thoughts using a Thought Processor, a true Tool for Thought. This way we can turn the Universal Turing Machines into “Universal Meaning Machines” and “bicycles for the mind” (computers for the mind).
Within a month I hope to be able to replace this post with a Hyper Knowledge Media version using core capabilities of the personal Knowledge Hub.
PS: WordPress really sucks. I lost some edits while changing tabs. I registered https://hyperblog.co/ two years ago and the full technology stack to drive it on the distributed web will be there to do my future blogging in a month or so.
Your quote about understanding and being understood is beautiful.