group annotation server

Nathan Torkington (
Thu, 17 Jun 1993 09:31:06 +1200

Anyone remember the `Maps in a Mirror' book by Orson Scott Card where
he wrote a prequel short-story to the `Foundation' series by Isaac
Asimov? The nifty part of the story was the cross-referencing room in
the Imperial Library, where the ultimate privilege for librarians was
to work in the room.

What happened in the room? Books, articles, papers, and similar
things were displayed on the librarians computers, and they got to
annotate them. Phrases that set off associations in their minds were
linked, and the end result was a new set of possible directions for
the documents to be explored in.

I hope the Annotation server can be like this (despite the need for a
wide pipe into the backbone :). It seems like a good start, at any

Has anyone considered setting up WAN annotation servers, and those
servers exchanging annotations a-la NNTP?