Blogging through Hypercard
September 16, 2013 1:08 PM Subscribe
posted by codacorolla (13 comments total)
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I would probably describe Archipelago as a group blog. It was a computer-based system that allowed about a dozen members to regularly post short essays and whimsical observations. Each member had his or her own icon which appeared next to timestamped postings which contained pictures, sounds, and hyperlinks. All pretty standard except for one thing: the year was 1988." The archives of Archipelago
show a glimmer of what the social web was to become over the next two decades.
... how could you operate a group blog under these conditions? Easy. Just assemble a quarterly volume of postings on two or three diskettes, make a dozen copies, put them in manilla envelopes, slap on some postage stamps, and mail 'em!
The unlikely combination of 21st century hyperlinked multi-media with 19th century envelopes and postage stamps gave Archipelago a ponderous, magical quality, like a steam-powered Babbage engine full of bytes and pixels and polished brass. The software was created using an innovative but now defunct Macintosh program called HyperCard[previously]; it took more than a year to create and seven more years to perfect.
The site's author has collected all 33 volumes of Archipelago, and converted them to HTML.
The interface is slightly confusing, but in general each post (called a voice card) has a link to the item it's replying to. Each author has their own main posts for each month, and then subsequent sub-posts which serve as new topics or replies to topics in previous issues (often a personal story
, or question
). The "up" button in the top-left corner of the screen will always move to the next highest level of the site (a good way to get from a specific card back to the issue index, or the main index).
Cartania has been featured on Metafilter twice previously