For many centuries, human knowledge developed through the process of incessant specialization and progressive isolation of its disciplinary spheres. This is, in particular, reflected in the hierarchical trees and subject directories of the Web, such as Yahoo. The same Web, however, creates a unique opportunity for the most remote fields to be instantly connected through digital units. Within the existing patterns of specialization, a new tendency is evidently at work: to built interconnected, interlaced hierarchies of knowledge more reminiscent of a forest, than of separate trees.
A thinklink is a basic unit of interdisciplinary thought, an attempt to connect within a single theoretical system or a coherent logical discourse the concepts from various professional domains. A thinklink is similar to a metaphor in that it unites two heterogeneous images; a thinklink, however, is not a metaphor since it establishes the internal, logical connection of two concepts or phenomena, not only their imaginative similitude or resemblance.
Eventually, all these thinklinks could be incorporated into those subject areas they refer to. The resourses and directories on linguistics, for example, will contain links to geology and gastronomy, to astronautics and silentology, not only to specific languages, grammars, and dictionaries. Thinklinks will constitute another dimension of the entire Web, making it intellectually what already it is electronically - the Web. To use a Hegelian expression, the Internet comes through the Intelnet to its ultimate self-awareness, to the conscious manifestation of its own Idea.
This is an image of how I view the Web radiant with thinklinks:
Guidelines and forms for the submission of thinklinks
Directory of thinklinks, chronological
Directory of thinklinks, thematic
An example of a thinklink connecting linguistics and gastronomy through the description of a candy wrapper.
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