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Re: [ba-ohs-talk] new version of graph model paper posted

Eric Armstrong wrote:    (01)

> Alex Shapiro wrote:
>>Not even a 2-D projection.  Written text is really a 1-Dimensional
>>construction.  As I've written before, http://qwer.org/tglt.html , the
>>experience of reading a document would not be much compromised if one had
>>read the same information on a ticker tape.  (And a ticker tape is 1D)
> The analogy given in the remainder of your post is an excellent thought
> experiment. I agree that it aptly represents the *process* of reading.
> (To make it even more accurate, I would imagine drawing with a tool
> that was being followed by an eraser one inch away. Then the reader
> would be trying to "build up" the picture as they go.
> A document consists of a linear sequence of words, and it also captures
> notions of "containment" or "togetherness". The notion of hierarchy is
> arguably another "dimension" captured by the document. Other relationships
> exist, as well. For example, "a reference". If part of document A references
> part of document B, then the "reference dimension" has a partial ordering
> of A->B. (It's a full ordering if no references from B lead back to A,a
> partial ordering otherwise.)
> Again, I don't know that it makes it a lot of difference. But it seems clear
> that the act of reading and the act of seeing are both one-dimensional
> actions. But the things being viewed clearly have several dimensions.
> Since color and time are dimensions, we are always looking at a 5
> dimensional world, at a minimum.)    (02)

I think this simplifies the reading process quite a bit. We may be
*able* to read in one dimension (ie., via a tickertape or DOW Jones
scrolling text) but a typical reading of a document includes a lot
more presentational information that provides context to the reader,
regardless of whether there is font size, weight, face or color
information present. For example, placement on the page and white
space is very important in delineating content types. Titles,
headers and footers, indenting and paragraph breaks, all these
things are included in almost any document type in order to assist
the reader in maintaining continuity, scannability, etc.    (03)

For example, if I were to normalize the whitespace of this message
(including the mail header) and remove the paragraph breaks, the
ability to understand the flow of my ideas, where one subject ended
and the next began, would be compromised. I don't think of even
plain text documents as one dimensional, and really don't think
n-dimensional characterizations of media are particularly accurate
or useful, except in a relative sense (ie., this one is richer than
that one, etc.)    (04)

Murray ............................................................
.......... Murray Altheim <mailto:m.altheim @ open.ac.uk> Knowledge
Media Institute The Open University, Milton Keynes, Bucks, MK7 6AA,
UK In the evening The rice leaves in the garden Rustle in the autumn
wind That blows through my reed hut. -- Minamoto no Tsunenobu    (05)