A Half-Century of Hypertext at Brown: A Symposium
Celebrating Brown University's Contribution to the Linked World

This spring, Brown CS will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the official founding of the department. But as we know, CS started as an informal track within Applied Math more than a decade before that. One of the earliest themes of the pre-department days was “Hypertext.” When the first project started back in 1967, hypertext –non-sequential writing and linked documents – was a concept known by probably fewer than 100 people in the world. Fast-forward 52 years, and 4.4 billion people -- more than half of the Earth's population -- uses hypertext on a regular basis.
Brown CS and Brown in general had a significant impact on the hypertext revolution. Recently, at the request of the Computer History Museum, two “ancient” Brown systems have been resurrected and are running again. FRESS, started five decades ago, is running on an emulated IBM/370 mainframe with an emulated Imlac graphics terminal replacement. IRIS Intermedia, started three decades ago and presumed lost, was discovered on an old disk drive; it has been restored and is running on actual 30-year-old Macintosh hardware. The revival of both of these led to the idea of having a symposium around Commencement time, to show these two systems plus as many additional Brown hypertext systems from the past half-century as possible and to discuss the impact they have had on the pervasiveness of hypertext in the world today. The Symposium will feature live demos of more than half-a-dozen systems ranging from 1967 to the present, as well as content from courses taught with these systems.

Thursday, May 23
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Oregon Center for the Arts
Professor of English, Director Program in Screen Arts
Louisiana State University
Professor and Chair
Brown University, Literary Arts
Chair, Computer Science
University of Minnesota Law School
Steve DeRose is a Computational Linguist (Brown '82, Ph.D. '90) whose industry and academic work focus on electronic document systems and natural language processing.
David had the first "faculty brat computer account" at Brown and was an early FRESS user. He is now responsible for Tizra's Web content delivery platform.
Professor of Computer Science
Columbia University
Gross & Belsky PC
Information Designer & Author
Northeastern University
Former Co-Director
IRIS, Brown University
Create With Photos
Director, Center for Digital Scholarship
Brown University Library
School of Information Sciences, UIUC
Professor of Italian Studies
Brown University
Senior Software Engineer
Sr. Software Engineer
Connected Living
PhD Student
University of Colorado Boulder

A total of 167 people have registered so far. The following 34 have opted to share their information.

Alberta Devor

Andrew Masek

3D Artist

antonella sisto

Birkin James Diana

Charlie Evett


David Brock

Debbie van Dam

Diane Pozefsky

George P. Landow

Original Intermedia project, Context 32, Context 34; hypertext and critical theory (Mellon Grant)

Greg Lloyd

HES schlep and filmmaker; WGBH 'After Dinner'

Griffin Smith

Writing 3D: Literature in Virtual Reality

Hector Correa

Discovery at the Library

Jack Lenk

Jeff Stamm

Jeff Vogel

Joe Pato

LMS, Layout, ONR Repair Manual

Julie Strandberg

Ken Prager


Lisa Manekofsky

Lou Mazzucchelli

Marc Weber

History of the Web and hypermedia

Mark Pozefsky


Marty Michel

HES prototype, bits of Fress and Imlac, NRL, LSD, IRIS, etc.

Massimo Riva

Decameron Web (Storyspace to XML, 1995- ), Digital Pinocchio (Cave Writing, 2002-04), Garibaldi Panorama (TAG, 2007- )

Matthew Obert

Hot Web Matter

Michael Umbricht

Nick Scappaticci

Quinn Jacobus

Hypertext Hotel VR

Steve DeRose

Steve Feiner

Interactive Graphical Documents (IGD)

Steven Drucker


Sunny Deng

Tyler Schicke

William Beeman

Director of Office of Program Analysis (OPA), IRIS

No records found.

MacMillan Hall, 167 Thayer Street, Providence, RI 02912
Location: MacMillan Hall, 167 Thayer Street, Providence, RI 02912



Most streets around the CIT have parking meters that accept credit cards as well as change. They offer a maximum of two hours of parking, at which point you must move your car.


The closest parking lot to the CIT is at 450 Brook Street, serviced by a pay station at the Cushing Street entrance. This lot features two charging stations for electric vehicles. Brown has a Visitor Parking Lot on the upper level of the Power Street Garage at 110 Power Street. This lot is serviced by a pay station at the Power Street entrance and another at the rear of the lot, near Brook Street. They accept credit cards and bills but do not give change.

Bowen Street and others further north become all-day free parking at 10 AM. We recommend arriving a few minutes earlier to avoid the rush.

There are parking spaces for Brown employees only on Charlesfield, Thayer, Benevolent, George, Brook, and Brown Streets from 8 AM to 12 PM (see the purple lines on the map). Parking in one of these "Brown Permit Required" spots will result in a fine.




Both MacMillan and the CIT have accessibility through ramps and elevators. If you need any extra assistance, don’t hesitate to contact Lisa Maneskofsy at lisa_manekofsky@brown.edu.

If you have an accessibility parking permit from any state, let us know and the Brown Transportation Office can provide a parking pass for a lot closer to the event.

We look forward to seeing everyone. Feel free to contact Lisa or me with any other questions.