I never get to participate in Open Learning as much as I want to. Mostly it’s because I’m so slow to get my thoughts together in any coherent format, I think. But a simple activity came up today, So I’m dipping a toe in.
The suggestion was to annotate Barbara Fister’s article on the 30th anniversary of the Web. She’s in my pantheon, so I always watch for her work. I can’t really add anything meaningful to it, but I did throw in a couple annotations as a way of adding connections, which may inspire others to try the same.
Hypothesis lets you add your thoughts on a web page. That by itself is cool, but you can also add tags and hyperlinks in your annotations, building a web within the web. And each of those annotations has a web address, so they can become nodes. As an example of the latter, I annotated a Berners-Lee Wikiquote and hyperlinked that in my annotation of one of his quotes in the article. Another line in the article reminded me of an old saying, so I annotated it with a link to an article about the saying.
I don’t know my little associative trails will do much for anyone, but I thought it might be useful to provide the examples. Fister mentions Maria Popova and Brain Pickings as an example of trailblazing. Like cross-references in an encyclopedia, the links and connections we make on the Web give us and others way to expand our knowledge. Tools like blogs and Hypothesis give us ways to make the web our own. The way it was meant to be all along.