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As We May Think

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Citation Edit

Vannevar Bush, "As We May Think," Atlantic Monthly, July 1945, at 101-08 (full-text).

Overview Edit

In this essay, Bush expresses his concern for the direction of scientific efforts towards destruction, rather than understanding, and explicates a desire for a sort of collective memory machine with his concept of the memex that would make knowledge more accessible, believing that it would help fix these problems. Through this machine, Bush hoped to transform an information explosion into a knowledge explosion.

This article predicted many kinds of technology invented after its publication, including hypertext, personal computers, the Internet, the World Wide Web, speech recognition, and online encyclopedias such as Wikipedia:

Wholly new forms of encyclopedias will appear, ready-made with a mesh of associative trails running through them, ready to be dropped into the memex and there amplified.[1]

Bush envisioned the ability to retrieve several articles or pictures on one screen, with the possibility of writing comments that could be stored and recalled together. He believed people would create links between related articles, thus mapping the thought process and path of each user and saving it for others to experience.

References Edit

  1. Id.

See also Edit


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