Annotations are an easy way to Show Your Work

Journalists are increasingly being asked to show their work. Politifact does it like this. This is great! The more citation of sources, the better. If I want to check those sources, though, I often wind up spending a lot of time searching with cited articles to find passages cited implicitly but not explicitly. If those passages are marked using annotations, the method I’ll describe here can streamline the reader’s experience. Continue reading “Annotations are an easy way to Show Your Work”

TechBlog: eLife replaces commenting system with Hypothesis annotations

The next time you feel moved to comment on an article in the open-access online journal eLife, be prepared for a different user experience. On 31 January, eLife announced it had adopted the open-source annotation service, Hypothesis, replacing its traditional commenting system. That’s the result of a year-long effort between the two services to make Hypothesis more amenable to the scholarly publishing community.

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How to improve Wikipedia citations with Hypothesis direct links

Wikipedia aims to be verifiable. Every statement of fact should be supported by a reliable source that the reader can check. Citations in Wikipedia typically refer to online documents accessible at URLs. But with the advent of standard web annotation we can do better. We can add citations to Wikipedia that refer precisely to statements that support Wikipedia articles. Continue reading “How to improve Wikipedia citations with Hypothesis direct links”

Thoughts on Audrey Watters’ “Thoughts on Annotation”

Back in April, Audrey Watters’ decided to block annotation on her website. I understand why. When we project our identities online, our personal sites become extensions of our homes. To some online writers, annotation overlays can feel like graffiti. How can we respect their wishes while enabling conversations about their writing, particularly conversations that are intimately connected to the writing? At the New Media Consortium conference recently, I was finally able to meet Audrey in person, and we talked about how to balance these interests. Yesterday Audrey posted her thoughts about that conversation, and clarified a key point: Continue reading “Thoughts on Audrey Watters’ “Thoughts on Annotation””

Weaving the annotated web

In 1997, at the first Perl Conference, which became OSCON the following year, my friend Andrew Schulman and I both gave talks on how the web was becoming a platform not only for publishing, but also for networked software.

Here’s the slide I remember from Andrew’s talk:

http://wwwapps.ups.com/tracking/tracking.cgi?tracknum=1Z742E220310270799

The only thing on it was a UPS tracking URL. Andrew asked us to stare at it for a while and think about what it really meant. “This is amazing!” he kept saying, over and over. “Every UPS package now has its own home page on the world wide web!” Continue reading “Weaving the annotated web”

How shared vocabularies tie the annotated web together

I’m fired up about the work I want to share at Domains 2017 this summer. The tagline for the conference is Indie Tech and Other Curiosities, and I plan to be one of the curiosities!

I’ve long been a cheerleader for the Domain of One’s Own movement. In Reclaiming Innovation, Jim Groom wrote about the need to “understand technologies as ‘potentiality’ (to graft a concept by Anton Chekov from a literary to a technical context).” He continued:

This is the idea that within the use of every technical tool there is more than just the consciousness of that tool, there is also the possibility to spark something beyond those predefined uses. The only real way to galvanize that potentiality is to provide the conditions of possibility — that is, a toolkit for user innovation.

Continue reading “How shared vocabularies tie the annotated web together”

Birkbeck Centre for Technology and Publishing unveils open-source translation tool based on Hypothesis

The Open Library of Humanities is pleased to reveal the first of its software initiatives, funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to Birkbeck, University of London: Annotran. Developed by Dr Marija Katic and Professor Martin Paul Eve in the Centre for Technology and Publishing at Birkbeck, University of London, the tool is based on the Hypothesis annotation framework and allows users to write and view translations of any web pages. Although the tool is designed to be integrated with the Open Library of Humanities platform, it can actually be run on any web page, by any publisher. Continue reading “Birkbeck Centre for Technology and Publishing unveils open-source translation tool based on Hypothesis”

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