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Kaj Grønbæk

Webvise: Browser and Proxy support for open hypermedia structuring mechanisms on the WWW

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  • Kaj Grønbæk
  • Lennard Sloth, Denmark
  • Peter Ørbæk, Selvstændig, ejer af Meldgaard-Ørbæk Software I/S, Denmark
  • Department of Computer Science

This paper discusses how to augment the World Wide Web with an open hypermedia service (Webvise) that provides structures such as contexts, links, annotations, and guided tours stored in hypermedia databases external to the Web pages. This includes the ability for users collaboratively to create links from parts of HTML Web pages they do not own and support for creating links to parts of Web pages without writing HTML target tags. The method for locating parts of Web pages can locate parts of pages across frame hierarchies and it also supports certain repairs of links that break due to modified Web pages. Support for providing links to/from parts of non-HTML data, such as sound and movie, will be possible via interfaces to plug-ins and Java-based media players.

The hypermedia structures are stored in a hypermedia database, developed from the Devise Hypermedia framework, and the service is available on the Web via an ordinary URL. The best user interface for creating and manipulating the structures is currently provided for the Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.x browser through COM integration that utilizes the Explorer's DOM representation of Web-pages. But the structures can also be manipulated and used via special Java applets and a pure proxy server solution is provided for users who only need to browse the structures. A user can create and use the external structures as ‘transparency' layers on top of arbitrary Web pages, the user can switch between viewing pages with one or more layers (contexts) of structures or without any external structures imposed on them.

Original languageEnglish
JournalComputer Networks
Pages (from-to)1331-1345
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 1999

    Research areas

  • Open hypermedia, Information structuring, Navigation, Collaboration, DOM

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