Frank Mitchell

Various models for annotated spaces

This line, from headmap, is one that I find thought provoking:

“there are notes in boxes that are empty”

What could we do with location aware devices? More importantly, what models can we use to write the notes we leave in those boxes?

Model 1: Moleskine

The journal is the simplest example of an annotated space. Chronological entries that don’t change. Simple. Easy to add to. Hard to link related ideas. For that, you must rely upon either your memory or your computer’s ability to find patterns.

Model 2: Hipster PDA

It’s a journal where you can reorder the pages. Entries are still static, in that they can’t be changed once written, but it’s a lot easier to link related ideas. However, once again multi-linking of ideas is possible without the aid of either your brain or a computer. Ideas, not time, becomes the major organizing principle here.

Model 3: Post-It Notes

Now we’ve got a journal that spatially organized. Ideas are tied to concrete locations in space. They may or may not be tied to time as well. Linking between ideas becomes harder (they’re separated by physical distance). But because humans tend to organize things spatially anyway, we’re more likely to remember what, where, and when our notes are.


Can we merge these ideas? What kinds of links do we want between entries, two-way links, one-way links, multidimensional links? Do we want to tag information, and thus automagically form relationships between entries?