Context : MindTrafficGeometry

TedNelson's data-structure at the heart of his HyperText conception.

Ted Nelson Explains Zig-Zag

It sounds here more or less like linked-lists of linked-lists. Is it a 'tensor'?

Discussed here :

roughly TuringMachine + SpreadSheet

The GZigZag implementation had cells that were connected to each other in arbitrary ways. You could have a standard spreadsheet, or you could have a cube, a ring, strips that stuck out away from everything else, or whatever.

It seems like the point is to have a bundle of nodes which can be hooked up in different ways to make all the different kinds of data-structures and applications you might want. Kind of like "Lego"

BUT ... zzstructure does not have a canonical string representation, as is usual. It is essentially spatial. It is based on criss-crossed lists of cells which are assigned to dimensions. Along these dimensions the cells are viewable, traversible, and subject to operations.

It's also meant to be SpatialComputing

Maybe a bit like some things I'm always thinking about - why not build the entire operating system / applications on top of wiki pages rather than a conventional file-sytem? WikiAnnotadedDataStore / WikiAsUltimateUserConfigurableApplication.

Software made of a flexibly, reconfigurable set of pages. WhyIsntEverythingWiki.

Maybe both ideas come from wanting to see computers as a SystemEvolvingTowardsMoreSmallerSpecialistComponents

(SmallTalk objects is rather like ZigZag cells?

I just realized that the WikiTourBus is a zig-zag structure. Each "route" is like a dimension, with a previous / next in the list. But every wiki can participate in as many tours as it likes.

Compare :

  • The MUMPS database. Which you can also add arbitrary dimensions to. Though only in a hypercube. Not ragged, like zig-zag
  • WarrenAbstractMachine Prolog's relations are a way to have the benefits of a relational database without squashing everything into the same shape. It's the finest grained BangTheRocksTogether way of storing data.

Contrast :