1996 Manifesto




The Liquid Information Environment is where the connection, the flow, between people, information and tools becomes fluid.


Its where you can access anything in any way, through any media, and manipulate it freely.


The Liquid Information Environment is an environment created by media coming together seamlessly. Letting you check your e-mail or faxes by voice over the phone as well as from your computer or your PDA. It's where you can fax your computer and tell it what documents need to be forwarded or call it on the phone and ask it how the 3D rendering it's working on is going.


It's where computers don't just conform to people, but to you as an individual. You tell it how to behave, how to present your information to you. You tell it. You don't have to program it.


It's where text become Hypertext without programming. All text is always Hypertext.


It's not the old "anything, anywhere" tsunami, it's where you decide what's important and how you want to see it/experience it because the information is intelligently hierarchical and transparently previewed.


It's where you can drag information from the Web over to a scrap area on the right hand of your screen, as though you were shopping. Then you could organize it- edit it fluidly, giving the words total freedom to move around the screen. Kinda like Newton on acid. Paragraphs collapse for easy overview, images show up as small preview icons. You could take any information from anywhere, edit it any way you want, do anything with it.


It's the end of isolated information. Is that note you just jotted down on your Newton really less lost than the one on that Post-it? The Liquid Information Environment is where notes and events from your Newton are intelligently synchronized with your desktop machine. It's where when you have to run, you can drag a document to your Newton for later reading and editing and then drag it back to your desktop machine when you come back.


It's where you don't learn to use "the computer" you learn to use tools that happen to live in the medium of the computer.


It's where we recognize that we don't interface with computers, but with information, ideas and people, through computers.



Frode Hegland & Sarah Walton