Hypertext is defined as “A computer-based text retrieval system that enables a user to access particular locations in web pages or other electronic documents by clicking on links within specific web pages or documents.” In simpler terms, hypertext is a non-linear form of writing, shown on a computer, where links are available to instantly access. This form of access has a tendency to stray away from the usual ‘linear reading’ where you progress through a piece from beginning to end, with little or no ability to stray from the designated flight path. Some people find the traditional linear form to be the most structured way of learning, but it does not leave room for extrapolation after the final publication. With the introduction of hypertext, the final product may never be complete. It can be edited, re-written, and tied to other topics in which the reader can gain more knowledge or information. “Hypertext documents can either be static (prepared and stored in advance) or dynamic (continually changing in response to user input). Static hypertext can be used to cross-reference collections of data in documents, software applications, or books on CDs.” The easiest way to see hypertext in action is through the use of links. Also known as hyperlinks, these are the gateways through which the reader can jump from one topic from the next simply by clicking the link or entering in a certain keystroke combination. George P. Landow said that, “The link plays the most important role in hypertext.” In using this ‘gateway’ system, the reader is able to jump from topic to topic and only get as much information as he/she wants or needs.
With this new form of learning in a non-linear fashion, it has opened the doors to retrieving lots of information in only a short amount of time.












George P. Landow – Hypertext as Collage Writing.

Answers.com, ‘Hypertext Defined’

Wikipedia.org, ‘Hypertext’