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Re: Yawas : new Web annotation system

From: Ron Zalman <ronron@techunix.technion.ac.il>
Date: Sat, 20 Mar 1999 10:39:11 +0200
Message-ID: <36F35EAE.71596509@tx.technion.ac.il>
To: Ka-Ping Yee <ping@lfw.org>
CC: Laurent Denoue <Laurent.Denoue@univ-savoie.fr>, www <www-annotation@w3.org>, Critters Project List <critters@crit.org>
> | Several Web annotation systems have been proposed (see Davis
> | "Annotation Systems").  Like Yawas, many of them use the
> | concept of intermediary or interceptor, explained in [Zalman
> | 99] and [Vasudevan 99].
> These references are predated by my introduction of the concept
> of "mediator" in 1995 (http://www.lfw.org/ping/mediator.html).

The notion of intermediator used in my paper, is an adaptation of the term
defined by Barrett,R., and Maglio, P of IBM. It is similar to the mediator term
you had suggested, but is much more general. For details, refer to:
[BM98] Barrett,R., and Maglio, P., "Intermediaries: New Places for Producing and
Manipulating Web Content", in Proceedings of the Seventh International World Wide
Web Conference, 1998, URL:

> | [Zalman 99] has noted several limitations of proxy-based
> | intermediaries.  Here we list them and add others:
> |
> | - They have poor GUI support: most of them add buttons in the
> |   document so that creation of new annotations are possible.
> |   The GUI is then dependent of the HTML language.  We think it
> |   also tends to disturb the user which may not want to see
> |   added information on the page.
> The above complaints are completely irrelevant to the type of
> proxy or mediator being used.  These are choices made in the
> user interface, which certainly deserves discussion, but the
> issues do not belong here.

This is incorrect.
proxy based annotation system (like crit.org) have inherent HMI limitations:
The HMI is totally limited by the HTML\JAVA languages. Since these languages were
tended to be
platform independent, they have poor HMI support. It is obvious that with native
(e.g. Visual C++ on 95x/NT platforms) one can achieve much more effective HMI.
client-intermediators don't suffer from this limitation. To see what can be
achieved by client-intermediation,
as far as HMI is concerned, refer to:
[Alexa] Alexa Home Page, URL:  http://www.alexa.com
[Sideware] " Sideware Home Page" , The Net Notions Product, URL:

I believe you'll be convinced that such HMI capabilities are not achievable by

Ron Zohar-Zalman.
Received on Saturday, 20 March 1999 03:31:05 UTC

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