More Map Grammar
The original idea for a map grammar – and really the start of spatial hypertext – can be found in "Searching for the Missing Link: Discovering Implicit Structure in Spatial Hypertext," Marshall and Shipman’s Hypertext ’93 classic. It’s interesting to observe how sophisticated and mature this work already is, remembering how feeble our computers (and our programming environments) were back then.
Of course, Marshall and Shipman were working in PARC paradise then, and Dandelions were nicer than Think C. Still, it was an era of stone knives and bearskins.
I’d forgotten that adornments — drawing on the background of the map — go all the way back to NoteCards. The idea didn’t get much traction for a long time; Tinderbox adopted it via Dan Bricklin’s Trellix, in which adornments seemed to be a sort of chartjunk for executive summaries but actually were capable of better things. One unexpected effect of Tinderbox adornments has been the design pattern above: it's easy to use OnAdd actions to assign instrumental or declarative meanings to particular areas. Instead of deducing a note’s type from its position and neighbors, we can declare that some regions will contain one kind of note and others will contain another kind.