Liquid Information Environment


The Liquid Information Environment is a suite of software for macOS to augment your interactions with your text and your thoughts to write, cite and author academic documents:



Author Word Processor | Reader PDF Viewer | Liquid Actions



Symbol Manipulation


The work is in pursuit of what my friend and mentor Doug Engelbart called ‘symbol manipulation’:


“We need to become better at being humans. Learning to use symbols and knowledge in new ways, across groups, across cultures, is a powerful, valuable, and very human goal. And it is also one that is obtainable, if we only begin to open our minds to full, complete use of computers to augment our most human of capabilities.”

Doug Engelbart


A More ‘Liquid’ Symbol Manipulation Environment


No single tool or software system, nor any single designer or team can deliver on the dream. It is therefore necessary to build interoperable systems to give the user a rich choice of tools so that the tool systems can to compete to provide ever richer opportunities and for the user to developer a deeper literacy in how they use the tools. Feel free to watch the Full Systems Demo.  The aim is to enable building of ever more powerful interactive text interactions to enable a deeper literacy.


I urge you to look at other independent software developers of text-tools, including Scholarcy for advanced document analysis and word processors such as ByWord, iA Writer, Gingko, Scrivener, Ulysses, WriteRoom, and LiquidText (by Craig Tashman, no direct relation with our own Liquid products), as well as to read about the work of Ted Nelson, who is helping us see the world of literature in new ways and of course, Doug Engelbart.




In order to enable a more liquid information environment we have implemented what we call Visual-Meta which enables, among other things, copying of text from a PDF in Reader and pasting it into Author as a full citation. Visual-Meta is entirely open for any developer to use since it's simply an extension of BibTeX with optional JSON.


Future of Text Initiative


The software is part of the 'Future of Text Initiative' which also includes the annual Future of Text Symposium, the book The Future of Text and the Visual-Meta approach.




If you have any questions or comments, please email me at


Frode Hegland & Team



– Proud to have sponsored the Electronic Literature Festival in Cork #ELOcork

– 5 min presentation video –