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HyperCard what is it it's not hyper it's not even a card it's not quite system software it's not quite application software there must be at least one guy who knows what hypercard is danny Goodman he just wrote a 700 page book
about it and there's one other guy who knows what hyper card is he developed it Bill Atkinson they'll both be on our show today we unravel the mystery of hypercard on this edition of the computer
chronicles the computer chronicles is
made possible in part by mcgraw-hill publishers of byte magazine and fix the byte information exchange in print and online byte and fix serve computer professionals worldwide with detailed
information on new hardware software and technologies welcome to the computer Chronicles I'm stewardship a and this is gary kildall Gary I haven't totally lost my mind here and reverted to my childhood and playing
with this erector set what I'm trying to do is understand HyperCard because the guy who developed hypercard says it's like an erector set to help me build applications on my Macintosh people are having trouble understanding this concept of hyper card what's the
background what's the derivation of it well HyperCard is based upon hypertext it's a concept that was introduced by Ted Nelson and Doug Engelbart in the 60s the basic idea is this if we're trying to research on a complicated only complicated just to any kind of a subject the subject matter really exists
in all sorts of different places it can be books magazines videos tape recordings CompuServe and if we can sub downlink all the stuff electronically so that we click on Beethoven and then we all of a sudden can jump from one of the
next collect up the information that you want put in as a document listen to the music do some word processing and so forth that's what hypertext is all about or hypermedia and this is supposed to be the foundation for HyperCard well we're
gonna find out about hypercar today we're gonna meet the two guys who developed at at Apple Bill Atkinson and Dan Winkler and we're going to see several applications already being developed using hypercard we begin by going to San Jose California to meet a
man who's using HyperCard to develop something called the complete car cost guide shopping for a new car can be a bewildering experience making the wrong choice among look-alike models at
breathtaking prices can turn a simple purchase into a lifelong mistake but Peter levy thinks he can take some of the risk out of car buying with the help of a Macintosh and a hyper card Peter
has written a program to construct a model car according to specific choices entered by the buyer the hyper card version of the complete car cost guide was spawned by the original book of the
same name the guide uses HyperCard visual cues to prompt even a first-time user to enter the kind of information that affects the cost of ownership like optional equipment yearly mileage and
geographical location the screen presents notebook pages that flip and turn and commands are entered by either placing the cursor over a menu are a HyperCard button or by simply
pointing and clicking on the appropriate part of the vehicle the complete car cost guide doesn't promise to turn a shopping chore into a happy experience but the hypercard stacks make it easy to
personalize several choices and then compare them side-by-side two vehicles may cost the same but differs our plea in the long term because of depreciation and operating costs but in spite of
individual differences owning any vehicle is expensive the opening screen contains a reminder that the first four years of ownership will cost more than
the original price of the car joining us in the studio now is Bill Atkinson bill as an Apple fellow the creator of HyperCard also the creator of a
quick-draw and macpaint next to Bill is Dan Winkler dan is the senior engineer at Apple working on the hyper car project Eric Stewart a hypercard sounds like a hardware board you'd put in your computer system but this particular hyper car hypercard comes in four floppy
disks would you tell us what type of cards all about though well really simply put hyper card as a software erector set and let's non-programmers put together interactive information to
us I actually do this bill you use cards that contain graphics and text and buttons here I've got a stack of cards and I can press on this button and will take me to another card okay that
buttons particular function is get to the next card right can have lots of buttons to do different things buttons can do things like dialing the phone and taking you to cards and lots of difficult to do yeah okay the cards are
grouped together into stacks that you put on a floppy disk and can share with somebody else and you can organize it so that the any card can jump to any other card oh is this where you get that notion of hypertext and built into the
hyper card system yeah it's it's kind of the the freedom to organize the information according to how things are associated with each other not just according to the next car in the list okay
the buttons as I said can do lots of things here's one that makes a noise and sounds and you can have lots of different kinds of cards the the standard three by five card is a little weak metaphor but you can include things
like an expense report or maybe a appointment book things like that lots of different kinds of things can be on cards even little interactions here's here's a little keyboard that you could
click on and it makes sounds and Muhsin otic so you can do things within a card itself a card is just not summarization what's real important is that cards contain both information and interaction
right that's sort of what's new here one particular card that we use a lot is the home card which serves as sort of a home base of leading out to all the other stacks of cards that I use frequently
for example if I touch here on the home card I can go to my address list here I've got cards that have names and addresses of people so can you make up your own stacks of cards and also write
hypercard comes with a set of stacks that you can use as they are but also make your own okay some people start they'll start by making small changes to the stacks and then they'll actually make their own fresh ones and people
have already developed quite a few stacks using hyper card ever that we write there are several hundred on the on the public networks okay what other things can you do here bill so I might say find Jim and quickly get to a card
containing that all right wait I know that's a real new element you just introduced you can actually just write a natural language phrase in here and ask HyperCard to deliver it to do something fine Jim yeah it'll find it I could go
to a calendar and see a yearly calendar here or touch on a particular day and go out to a weekly that opens up to opens up these are different stacks of information here I've got a stack that
has my to-do list in it and I could select something there and then touch on the address icon and that would that button will take me to the address stack and look up when I had just selected there
so I can have the information in these stacks tied together with an example yes and following a hypertext link in that case right right and only that ones that was actually computed and not only went there but then did a search once I got
there I could have other stacks here let's go back to the home here's a stack that contains more graphical information here I might say find a horse and get to
a card that has a horse or I could branch around to other cards that had horses just by clicking on them there's nothing real magic here okay so you wouldn't find horse it pulled up all the horse cards and you now have a horse card stack is that it no no it's just
shown me the next card that had the word horse in it okay what that's what I meant uh-huh I could say show me here's a button on this wheel so if I touch on that it's see it's going to other wheels
so these buttons or links can be used to express the matic threads running through information here touch on a hat to get the things that have hats and this way you can organize information in
multiple ways you can also scan through images rather quickly to just see show me what's there even if you don't know what you're looking for yeah and you were involved in the hyper talk part of hyper card which is I guess the highest
level here could you explain that a little bit hyper talk is the language that tells the buttons what to do when you look inside a button you can see it's script which is its brains this message box here where we've been typing commands like fine you can do a lot more
it can do calculations there you can it knows about the value of pi' it knows all the math functions it knows what the date is or what the long date is oops
along we could give it little commands like go to next card like that it will and if you look inside one of these little buttons you'll see that it's
brains actually say go to next card that's how that button knows how to drill for that button this is how a customer or user would actually program the buttons themselves that's right like let's make a new button for example
let's let's go back to their first card here supposing we wanted I to tie in some other place you could take the button tool stretch out a button here and say link that to say
find an eye and say link it to this card that's all it takes to make a new link between that eye and that was super eyes so that you can go there to do that much doesn't require any knowledge of scripting but once you learn about
scripting you can progress to modifying buttons like that outside this button will see that what link to really did was it wrote a little script for us okay which is your little program telling the button what to do right right and now you can go in by hand and modify that
for example we could add a visual effect we could say visual effect dissolve for example and now that very same button when you touch on it will dissolve that nod or you could go a step father and
say well I want a sound effect in there too so you could say well play me a sound like this my boy and maybe make it visual effect is all slowly I want a slow dissolve and now when you touch
there it plays a sound and dissolves slowly alright so that the scripting language lets you customize buttons and make new buttons that weren't already there okay this is really a
multi-dimensional erector set that we're going forever I mean right it comes with boxes of parts already there's lots of art ideas that you can cut and paste if you're slow with the painting tools you can copy and paste any of these things
it has comes complete with libraries of buttons and stacks for example if you're gonna make a new stack you might go through a list of templates here and say now I like that one a new stack say
we're gonna make a stack for incoming messages we choose new stack from the file menu we name it messages that's all it takes to make a new stack we've got our own stack now we
can type into it call Ted camera and maybe his number was 3 5 6 1 2 3 4 something like that he'll then we could spend all day here with this this really looks great we're gonna have
we're gonna have to move along we're gonna be back in just a minute with another guy who probably knows more about HyperCard than anybody except for these two guys and that's Danny Goodman
so stay with us joining us in the studio now is Danny Goodman author of the complete hypercard handbook called the
Bible of HyperCard and back with us of course Bill Atkinson the developer HyperCard Danny I'd be interested what was your first reaction the first time you looked at hypercard I've been covering the computer industry for several years and the only three things
that ever made me tingle when I saw something new and HyperCard was definitely one of them and it's like my brain expanded because I saw so much opportunity you got to tell me what the other two were by the way well they happen to be the Macintosh and output
from the first from prototype laserwriter huh now you're not a programmer I know I'm a writer but you've already developed some things using hyper card and focal point is one of them and tell us what that is and why
you developed it my focal point is is stack where he'll be and it's published by Activision and it's a collection of stacks that help you manage the things in your business I actually wrote it for myself to manage the things in my business things I don't like to have to worry about I don't like to retype I
don't like to remember things so it comes up to something like a daily appointment book and you can navigate by day week month or a year just by clicking there and on the arrows there is a an intelligent to-do list that lets
you list items that you need to do you can also type in like priorities like that and let's let hypercard sort them for me so that are there in my order and
when I check off an item is being done that's fine I don't know Gary your steward when you I don't always finish everything every day on my list and when that happens I just click on this carry over button down here and all
unchecked items get carried in actly to tomorrow and their other there's a telephone management system here there is a document launcher which lets you create little mini finders or group
documents from within here the way you like to group them the way there that makes sense to you and you go straight out to the application and then come back afterwards for more client and vendor that kind of
management we have a number of buttons on there on the right side and you can look at a that your client records and also then also on your projects and to enter information about your clients I'd give you a little pop-up list and you
just click and the name gets put in there automatically no retyping and the one application here that ties everything together is the deadlines and it goes into all your cards pulls out all your little milestones and
follow-ups organizes them sorts and chronologically and gives you at a glance you know where you stand what's late what's today what's coming up let's turn it around the bill how did you react when you saw how a non programmer
Danny was actually able to use Ike Ricard well it was very rewarding to me to see somebody really building stuff with its that the software erector set approach was actually working for people
putting together interactive information now now Apple is handling HyperCard in a kind of unusual way I mean how do you get hypercard if you buy a Macintosh it comes free with it if you have an emetic
Macintosh already you can buy it for $49 so you're really trying to get people out there like Danny we we want it to be there for everybody who makes stacks to be able to share them and everybody should have the program to be able to
access those stacks I mean what do you think this is gonna go in terms of you know the first looks like the Mac came out as a sort of a successor of the Apple two and got in the games and drawings and things like that and sort of become a business computer now do you
see that that the hyper card also is gonna be very powerful business tool oh what'd you see I think what its gonna do is to open up the software architecture of the Mac and let the nature of
information on a computer go from text and graphics to text and graphics and interaction sort of the rest of the world's kind of catching up to the graphics part well we're moving on to the interaction part as the programmers
are actually gonna be coming from some of the vertical markets and so forth themselves rather than being the traditional fervor a whole new body of people that have creative ideas but aren't programmers and I will be able to express their their ideas or their expertise in a
certain we have another example of that right now matter of fact the ability of HyperCard to organize not only text but but sounds and pictures has led to one company taking its mail-order catalogue and turning that into stock where Wendy
woods as a report from Sausalito the Whole Earth Catalog has been published here in Sausalito since 1969 it's basically a listing of useful and hard-to-find products and some two and a
half million copies of this catalogue have been sold worldwide but for the first time people here are opting for a new publishing method they're putting the entire catalogue on Apple's
HyperCard software hyper card in fact solved a problem with which they'd been struggling how to make locating tracking even expanding upon information in the catalogue fast and more efficient part
of the problem was not a software that we'd ever looked in terms of accessing a lot of information was ever very visual and the whole worth catalog is if nothing else a very graphic medium and hyper card because it dealt with
graphics was able to meet those requirements for one thing the second was was it was easy to build none of us are hackers we don't we aren't programmers and this was something that
we could do without having to learn a new language text and pictures were captured with an optical scanner or a video camera hypercard also allowed sound effects to be added and to hear
them all you do is click a mouse button this is considered the largest HyperCard project ever undertaken its output the equivalent of more than 80 diskettes this project is expected to reach final
form as a cd-rom or optical disc in Sausalito California for the computer chronicles I'm Wendy woods joining us now in the studio is Robert Stein he's with the Voyager company in Los Angeles and they're working with
hypercard and the laser discs Gary Stewart is we were talking about earlier the HyperCard concept really is based on hypertext hypermedia involves text graphics sound video and so forth and Roberts got a product here that he's working with and involves a full-size
video disc as most of yours know this is a rather old technology involves a about 30 minutes of rolling video or 54,000 still frames Robert can you tell us how you've used this sure we've taken the National Gallery of Art video disc which
has on it photographs of the entire standing collection of the National Gallery of Art everything that's on display there and we tried to make it possible for the user to look at these pictures in different ways for example you can press on a chronological and
you'll get an index that lets you press on 16th for example and see all the works from the 16th century or I can go in by nationality in which case I can press on this and show me all the Russian works or French works or Belgian
works or I go in by style or period and in which case let's say cubism gives me a definition of the Cubist style and these are representative works that I can click on and go to see them or I also have a complete artist index and I
can press on this and you can see you can essentially create your own exhibits or rooms in the museum exactly exactly here I could press on mine a it'll take me to the gallery and it will find the first Monday chronologically in the
gallery for me and comes up on the screen gives me definite gives me information about this particular painting and the painting is on the screen let's say I'm interested in Monday I can ask for more of this artist in which case press on that button it'll
find me the next painting by Monday or let's say I we just did in this in this style of impressionist painters I can ask for more freshness painters it'll find Monet do it again it will find
Renoir for me sometimes a magnifying glass comes up on the screen and this means that I have a detail on the video disc of this particular painting and sometimes a motion picture projector comes up and this tells me I have a motion picture sequence on the video
disc about this particular painting grandma's little girl with a watering can is a scene from every control that from here every day life you see and also this icon up here it's our
marginalia and icon lets me put a note in here I can say for example reminds me of my daughter Katie and no card will go away and this will change from empty to full and then a year from now I don't
have to remember the name of this painting or who did it I can simply just ask it to find Katie and a little bit of luck it'll go and find that painting for me so I can really personalize a very
large scale database this is our serendipity button it takes me randomly somewhere in the gallery don't know why where the the searching is very powerful we have keywords for everything in here so for example I can ask for all
impressionist landscapes with boats and the system will find it for me and I can press again it'll find another one and then another and let's suppose I find this to be an interesting subject
and I wonder how that was treated during a different period so I'll change the word impressionist to the word romantic and it will find romantic landscapes with boats and then using one of hyper
cards most important features it'll remember the last 42 things that I've looked at so I can press retrace and we'll go back and find the last picture and the last picture and I can retrace from both directions so what I always pretty much have everything available
for me all the time what do you think I preferred means to interact a video I mean waiting around for five minutes business for seven years and we've been concentrating on what they call level one discs that don't have a computer
because we didn't get was a computer powerful enough I think the the hypercard and Macintosh together I mean this is your want of interactive video Robert thank you very much that's an impressive use of hyper card that's it for HyperCard we hope you enjoyed it
hope you'll see us again next week on the computer Chronicles in the random-access filed this week Kund eggs dominates the news here at the Las Vegas Convention Center it was the tenth annual fall context and the
biggest one ever 100,000 attendees more than 1700 exhibitors on the hardware side the major issue was still the battle over bus architecture between Issa and mca and there was no clear consensus as to who the winner would be
at a keynote session compaq's rod Kenyon said the main issue was compatibility with the installed base of PCs but IBM's Terry Laughlin vac said the old 80 bus had simply run out of gas and could not support advanced applications analyst
Tim baharon said he thought microchannel architecture would prevail in the end but only after a difficult struggle color printers were hot now that color has taken over the monitor business with over half the CRTs and use being color displays the next logical step is color
printers the increased use of desktop publishing and desktop presentations also appears to be driving a new interest in transferring the color on the screen to color print optical storage was warm though not quite hot sony was demonstrating and taking orders
for its new erasable optical disk drives Microsoft was pushing their cd-rom products and Intel which recently acquired digital video interactive technology was showing prototypes of new DVI optical disk products Apple returned
to Comdex with a major push for the Macintosh 2 and Commodore and Atari were here very visible each pushing graphics music animation and desktop video on the software side the buzzword was group wear group wear is more than just
network software it's software which primarily supports groups and group work activities rather than individuals analyst amy wall who chaired the Comdex session on group wear said the hot topic is procedural processing software that
can track the movement of paper through an organization other hot software topics were PIMs personal information managers with lotus reporting good sales of agenda many marketers eyes at this context were focused more on Europe than
on the United States in 1992 Europe is scheduled to unify and move to one common set of computer standards that means a new unified Europe would represent a larger market than the United States indeed the standards issue may be simpler there
than here at home IBM took some heat from analysts had come decks one characterized os/2 as yesterday's software tomorrow saying UNIX can do everything os/2 can and more but the issue was at what price and ease of use IBM itself
put on quite a show saying os/2 and ps2 we're doing very well thank you and business land exec Enzo teresi said IBM's MCA computers now make up more than 50 percent of its business and 286
and 386 machines bike magazine ran a survey on operating systems asking conducts attendees which operating system would dominate in the 1990s the winner was extended to us in second place with standard DOS os/2 came in
third followed by graphic interface UNIX standard command-line UNIX and last among the context voters was the Macintosh operating system finally zurko unveiled its new laptop car seat it's a laptop platform that fits onto the
passenger seat of your car turning it into a computer workstation get stuck at a red light just turn around and start computing that's it for this week's Chronicles we'll see you next time the computer chronicles is
made possible in part by mcgraw-hill publishers of byte magazine and Bix the byte information exchange in print and online bite and Bix serve computer professionals worldwide with detailed
information on new hardware software and technologies for a transcript of this week's computer Chronicles send four dollars to PTV publications post office
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