98.10.20 ( d10
To Ted Nelson Home
ZigZag(tm) page for my Students at Keio SFC
You would probably like DIRECTIONS
Or maybe you'd like Directions
for Zigzag in NIHONGO, written by Soko Aoki (requires Japanese
character-set in browser).
ZIGZAG NOW SEEMS TO BE WORKING WELL AT KEIO (so far it still only
works under Unix).
While apparently you can edit separate files with zigzag at the same
time, don't try to edit the same file twice at the same time.
Whichever copy of the program saves its data last will win, and the other
data will be lost.
NAMING AND BACKUP: still a problem for some people
Remember the naming logic: in the versions so far,
ZigZag always works on a dataset called "zigzag.data" unless you call
it with a filename.
Example: if you type
and you have a file called zigzag.data, it will open it; if you don't have
a file with that name, it will create it.
If you type
and you have a file called mickey.mouse, it will open it; if you don't
have a file with that name, it will create it.
Back up your data frequently. This is still a prototype
I find that a good practice is to work with files with different names
for different purposes, like "book.zz" and "classwork.zig". That
way you can back up the data with a command like
cp book.zz book.zz.981020am1030
and the next time you want to back it up, you can just hit up-arrow, which
puts the same command on the screen--
cp book.zz book.zz.981020am1030
which you can now change easily to
cp book.zz book.zz.981020am11
for the next backup.
Datasets (better read below first)
The ZigZag system is an unusual new kind of software
on a new basis.
What is it?
Highly principled, no exceptions-- understand it rather than memorizing
No 'Applications' (disconnected zones where you can only do certain things)
No Hierarchies (except where you build them)
No 'Metaphors' (scraps of resemblance to familiar objects)
"Why? Why did you create this, Ted?"
A hypertext system with a different kind of connectivity.
An extensible software world (you may add to it easily with new functions
Lots of other stuff...
Where can I read about it?
article (my talk at the first Wearable Computer Conference, May 98)
Source page at www.xanadu.net,
where you can get a boot disk
I want to show the world that software can be very different, and today's
familiar software environment is only one possible software universe--
and a very restrictive one.
I do not like today's computer software.
I want an all-purpose personal environment to my own tastes.
I believe that software one person designs for himself/herself is inherently
better than committee designs, and that software designed for oneself is
more likely to please others than software designed for unimaginable users
who are not like oneself.
HOW DO WE USE IT AT KEIO?
1. Where to Run It
The excellent staff of CNS have kindly set up ZigZag to run on most
of the systems at Keio. However, you must log in to one of the correct
machines. This is because CNS has different machines with different
properties, and the ZigZag datasets currently only run on Suns. If
you log in from another machine (such as an IBM or SGI), you must then
remotely log onto one of the machines listed below.
1a. Particular machines
We think the current ZigZag works on the following SFC machines:
1b. Particular computer rooms at SFC Campus
zNNN (3 digits) in professors' offices
zz000 to zz159
2. Downloading a ZigZag Dataset
First, go to ZigZag
Datasets (you can also click above) and save the dataset you want to
You are supposed to be able to download a file with a right-click.
Unfortunately some versions of Netscape do not do this correctly, so you
may have to use Internet Explorer or some other method.
Then open it in either either an xterm window, a kterm window or a telnet
window-- as below.
3. Particular Windowing programs
The basic problems are:
ZigZag currently uses line-drawing characters, and not all programs
draw them as we want
Some windows don't resize right
To solve these and other matters, we recommend:
If in an xterm window: Just type "zigzag" on xterm window.
% xterm & [opens xterm window and
keeps it running]
zigzag filename [open zigzag
and keeps it running]
If in a kterm window (for kanji 2-byte characters), you must change
character sets. You do this by typing:
% set term=xterm [switches to xterm mode]
3c. Telnet programs
[magic of some sort
% zigzag filename [opens
zigzag and keeps it running]
Telnet programs run a program on another machine.
We have had varying results with different Telnet programs. The
ones that seem to work best are:
CRT Telnet (downloadable from the Telnet section at tucows.com
(good from USA) or http://www.tucows.marinemwr.or.jp/
(good from Japan)
Good luck and have fun, TN
Tera term (I'm not sure where that's available, but it seems to be on
a number of machines at Keio)