I will submit my latest research paper to a web journal, so I thought I could just as well make it a stretchtext. You know, a text that will be longer or shorter on demand, as suggested by Ted Nelson in 1967.
Here's what I'm thinking: I'll have three, maybe four set lengths, what I call "levels." The top level will be a longish abstract, about 200 words. The second level will be of short-paper length, and the third level will be as long as a full paper.
Don't you think that could be practical? We read paper abstracts all the time, and some of them are interesting. If this works, you could skim the paper, expand a paragraph or two, and (most likely) leave the paper when you are satisfied.
I may have to add another level (or two) for consistency.
Learning from earlier experiments, we know that stretchtext requires a certain writing style, so the paper will need editing.
As I let you peek at yesterday, I have sketched some of the linking design.
It will need user testing (volunteers?).
Why go through this trouble? I was reading this linky-messy hypertext essay and just feeling the old "lost in hypertext" fatigue. Not really lost as in not finding the way out, but tired of both reading the text and figuring out how it works at the same time.
I want to test a friendly hypertext with no fuss, tailor-made for busy people.