glyph 450: hypertext software . Ted Nelson . deep interconnection, transclusion, rights management ... breaking the paper barrier


Project Xanadu - Back to the Future

Hypertext the Way It Used To Be

BACK TO THE FUTURE: Hypertext the Way It Used To Be
Theodor Holm Nelson and Robert Adamson Smith
Project Xanadu

ABSTRACT. Others imitate paper (Word, Acrobat) and the constant 3D world we live in ("Virtual Reality").
Our system instead tries to create documents better than paper in a space better than reality.

Intellectual property notice: The following are trademarks of Project Xanadu, registered or claimed:
Xanadu, ZigZag, XanaduSpace

Under development since 1960.

The following was copied from aken from on 7 Dec 08.

Available Now: XANADUSPACETM 1.0

A spatial viewer for hypertext in 3D based on the open transliterary standard.

"Back to the Future,"

DOWNLOAD NOW (Windows only)



Since 1960, we have fought for a world of deep electronic documents-- with side-by-side intercomparison and frictionless re-use of copyrighted material.

We have an exact and simple structure. The Xanadu model handles automatic version management and rights management through deep connection.

Today's popular software simulates paper. The World Wide Web (another imitation of paper) trivializes our original hypertext model with one-way ever-breaking links and no management of version or contents.


For a story of amazing persistence in pursuit of a transforming vision see: — fascinating list of people who have helped Xanadu — author, The Curse of Xanadu
December 7, 2008; edited/updated November 26, 2015

a list of all glyphs