At the end of the first year of development, a specific workflow will be possible.
Taking a cue from Doug Engelbart’s seminal 1962 paper ‘Augmenting Human Intellect’, which features a walkthrough of his proposed system by a character named Joe, I here introduce you to Jane, a knowledge worker who needs to do some research and produce a document to inform others of her findings, either in academia or industry.
She starts working with legacy ‘flattened’ PDF documents as she finds them, uses the advanced LiquidSpace and Author to organise her material and thoughts and publishes a resulting document in augmented form; as a Rich PDF, a Journal Article Tag Suite or as a blog post. The resulting document supports high-resolution addressing as well as embedded rich interactivity from her LiquidView layouts:
Research / Literature Review
Jane reads legacy PDF documents in her favourite PDF reader application and highlights interesting sections. This could be on a Mac, on Windows, on a tablet or eReader, whatever medium she feels most comfortable reading in.
She then launches Liquid | Reader on her Mac to go through what she has read. She remembers reading something about ‘hypertext’ so she decides that Reader should only open PDF documents with the word ‘hypertext’. This results in several documents opening to the first occurrence of the word ‘hypertext’. She closes the ones which are not relevant and goes over the one she found interesting. There is some terminology she is not familiar with so she selects the words and instantly gets definitions and other searches through Liquid | Author.
Once she has found a sufficient amount of information she fires up her LiquidView in her web browser.
Here she can see all of her literature review documents, her notes and anything else she finds pertinent.
First she sorts the literature review by what she found interesting, then she puts a few keywords out on the screen and she can see where they keyword text appears and to what degreed, simply by lines appearing from the keyword to the documents where the keyword appears. She chooses to change the appearance of the documents to show what she has highlighted in each document.
She then opens Author and starts to type her thoughts. When she is on the go she also dictates into the document using her smartphone and the dictated text appears visually distinct from the rest so that she knows she’ll have to do a basic edit of the transcribed text.
After a while of working in Author she opens her Author document in the LiquidView as an outline. Here she can drag her outline headings anywhere she chooses, to better cluster her document. She chooses to have any glossary terms used in her document show up under the headings so that she has a better overview. From this she looks at relationships, hides and shows connecting lines and moves items around at will. She opens trails of thought (quite literally) and does further research. She then annotates some of her layout, collapses it into a Quine and puts it into her main Author document.
In Author she decides that a few terms should not be explained all the time and she is concerned about where to introduce the terms so she quickly and easily turns them into glossary terms with connections to other glossary terms.
Integrating the Resulting Document : Publishing
When she is ready to integrate her new work into the web of knowledge, she publishes to established formats but with additional information to help the next user find her document and to more effectively grasp her thinking and check her citations. The publishing process includes such basics as plagiarism checks as well as an automatic summary so that she can check if the ML gets the right ‘gist’ of the–and if it does not–she can click on any page of the summary to see what constituted the summary section she was not satisfied with.
The Next Link
When someone searches for the kind of information she has published they will have an easier time to find it since the document will be published in such as way as to make servers more aware of the content and hence make it easier for a reader to find it.
The reader who comes across her augmented document will be able to read it in a transitional, legacy PDF reader but would also be able to open it in an advanced reader such as what Jane used to author the document.
When reading the document in a modern reader, he or she will be able to change the view of the document much more flexibly, to find what they are really looking for and to evaluate the document. Citations will be available in a single click, including to documents, books web and video.
Any included views from the LiquidView workspace will remain interactive so that the sources are still attached and the reader can look at the flow and configurations.
Finally, if the reader chooses to cite this document all that needs to be done is to copy any text to be cited and when pasting into any word processor all the citation information will follow along automatically, including the location of the cited text.
When publishing into a liquid information environment the information flows and credibility is increased since the documents are easier to read, citations easier to verify and the information easier to contextualise.