Thursday, April 23, 2009


Media- any form of communication
Medium-the means for communication. eg. paper(text), speaker(audio), monitor screen(visual).
Data-any form of information
Information-medium with media
Linux-open source software distribution.
Code-text language recognized and interpreted by a computer.
Link/hyperlink- in a wiki-directs the user to information on the linked material. Accessing it displays information about the link (usually a word or text) by referring the user to material on the linked word… A like directs the user to a different sepperate page of information on the internet. It takes you to another webpage.
Wiki- a collection of web pages designed for public access and modification. Pages are connected by links. Wikipedia is a popular wiki available on the internet. (

int main() {
int days, hours, mins;
struct sysinfo sys_info;

if(sysinfo(&sys_info) != 0)

Notice the color scheme, (simply) used to differentiate between text, and code.
Notice the beginning / followed by lines beginning with * and ending with /. This is essentially a foot note. It is supplemental information not directly affecting the code, not affecting the program (story). Like the footnotes in HOL, the comments at the beginning of the code serve the distinct function to build context about the presented material. In the source code above the “footnote” refers the user/reader to the “author’s” (programmers) contact information as well as a description about the nature of the code/program. Indeed, the footnotes in HOL serve the same purpose, to provide context to the material being presented, specifically Zanpano’s manuscript. Danielewski uses footnotes in HOL in an identical manner.
Also notice the different colors indicating various levels of the code. Like in House of Leaves when, for example, Zanpano’s words would be one color, lets say red, Jonny’s words would be another color, blue, and Danielewski’s words would be yet another color, black. Like this code where all is’s {metaphorically in House of Leaves, Danielewski’s} writing the text displayed in color represents another level of communication. in this code must communicate with computer, must communicate with external user, and must communicate with the code. These levels of communication, though not conveniently color coded, are represented in House of Leaves. Danielewski is like in his multi-tiered communication with the user/reader.
The house and the wiki are one in the same. The house I refer to is not the house that Danielewski writes of through Jonny’s interpretation and modification of Zanpano’s “house” (being simply box of manuscripts), nor the house Jonny creates and speaks of. It’s nothing in what Danielewski nor Jonny nor Zanpano says or writes about, but in the creative interaction with the book does the house I speak of exist. Danielewski uses a traditional medium (the book) in a way meticulously designed to engage the reader interactively in the manipulation of the form and function of the simple (traditional) text printed on a page. Weather that house be edited and distributed code that, through users manipulation, can change form and content like Danielewski {metaphoricaly} does by purposefully presenting content through Jonny the editor’s admittedly faulty interpretation of apparently disorganized information.
Open source software, wiki’s, are introduced as prototypes to be improved. Danielewski expects, or at least invites, the reader to further improve, or at lease revise, Jonny’s information. Danielewski, in active participatory interaction with the reader, creates an imaginary environment in which the reader is engaged and, like user in a wiki, Jonny Truant edits the (essentially) data base being Zanpano’s box of manuscripts, adding supplemental material in an unrestrained expressive medium (granted wiki’s can managed and governed by form and content as was Jonny by Danielewski, but they can also be free and open in nature as Danielewski intends House of Leaves to be in form and content). Jonny is a representation of me or you, any one of us who has been inundated in collaborative interaction on a creative project like a wiki, or interaction with House of Leaves, or software code. Jonny is a sample wiki, an example or framework from which you or I (the reader) can begin to interpret (mentally edit) House of Leaves. He is a gateway that leads the reader into the house, or perhaps incising him/her into constructing his/her own house. In other words, the book House of Leave generally, and Jonny specifically, are sample wiki’s, prototypes on which the public (those with access to the book) can edit or start anew constructing their own personal house.
Danielewski seduces the reader into corridors and rooms in themselves possibly obscured by ego. Zanpano’s manuscripts enticed Jonny to explore previously un-accessible information, remarkably like a wiki (made possible by the internet) offers access to a plethora of information limited only by, and molded entirely by the user (reader) and their personal contributions to the information/data/media, such as House of Leave is sculpted by Jonny, as well as the reader. House of Leaves is a non-virtual wiki, edited initially and exclusively by Jonny, while Danielewski encourage, if not demands, the reader to become engaged in Jonny’s editing while simultaneously inviting the reader (synonymous with a wiki user) to offer variations/edits to the house He/Zanpano/Jonny begun. Weather subconsciously, or intentionally, the reader, as with user/editors of wiki’s, makes revisions and personalizes their individual experience. Though, obviously, the internet can take this process into actuality what Danielewski alludes to, being the participant driven evolution of media. A box full of scrambled idea’s becomes a complicated multi tiered text adventure through a medium (in House of Leaves being paper bound text, a book) of constantly changing form and medium. This is the idea behind a wiki, being a publicly accessible medium open for editing which form and content change with the contribution/participation of the user (reader). In House of Leaves, Zanpano is the visionary behind (the inventor of) the wiki and Jonny being like you or I (the public), the essential component of the realized idea in practice.
Jonny is a representation of ones (the readers) self in the creative interpretation of the media. The box as Jonny experiences it is much like a computer server full of seemingly nonsensical orderless data that arranges itself in exactly the manner a user defines (being ideal). The contents of the box/server are, in fact, meaningless without orderly structure to set context the “form” of the end product is aemorphic (form in flux), nearly limitless in its possibilities with recompiling. The media that a user accesses is defined by the user, specified by input commands and external (from the box/server) data, without interaction with the user data remains insignificant, mindless dribble. Like House of leaves, software designated “open source” is simply code, a box of manuscript, which with some assembly required becomes essentially the user, the reader. House of leaves is for everyone something different, the house has nearly limitless possibilities (form/content) by individualizing itself to each person experiencing the media. Open source allows public access to the code, the blueprints of the software it powers. Open source to the public is like Jonny to the box of manuscript which offers itself to be reinterpreted (reprogrammed) to the liking of the user, like House of Leaves, creates a house in which the user develops and resides in/over. The labyrinth is the internet, the hallway to Jonny’s mind, one’s interpretation of the house. The internet, literally, is a hopelessly complex network of wires and systems interconnected which is shapeless with essentially infinite content formed and filled by those involved in experience and interaction with the media. Unlike a still photo or other mediums House of Leaves must be categorized more like digital media than textual novel because it is presented as a third party interpretation of a box of various medium mostly consisting of scraps of text, and as a whole is interactive and at times visual art, like webpage’s consisting of nothing but text coding. While in reality nothing exists but text on paper, or virtual paper medium, but in experience the user/reader perceives far beyond the text, so much so in some case that the fact that both (House of Leaves and wiki’s) are text based.

Example Read Me.txt:

Power Tab Editor is a tablature authoring tool for Windows 95/98. It allows for the
creation of music scores that can be printed out and played back via MIDI. It is
intended to be used for guitar parts only and should not be used if you're looking for
a full blown sequencer.
- Microsoft® Windows 95 or greater *
- Microsoft® Common Controls version 4.70 or greater
- Microsoft® Internet Explorer 3.0 or higher **
- Microsoft® HTML Help files **
- Pentium 166 Mhz or greater ***
- 32MB RAM ***
- Select the What's New menu item on the Help menu.
- Select the Options menu item on the View menu. Under the general options there
should be an item called "Autosave after n minutes". Set the minutes to 1, and make sure that
the checkbox is checked. This will automatically save the current document to disk after every
minute. If the program crashes, you can recover the last autosaved file by using the Recovery
Tool on the Tools menu. This tool will list the last 5 autosaved files, starting with the
most recent. Simply click on the file to load it into the editor. (The autosaved files are
saved to a folder called Autosave in the directory where you installed Power Tab.)
- Select the Setup menu item on the MIDI Menu. This will allow you to choose a
MIDI output devices on your machine.
- Each PT document is split into 2 parts, a "guitar" score and a bass score. Place
all the guitar parts in the guitar score, and the bass guitar parts in the bass score. This
follows the same convention that most guitar magazines/songbooks use. Select Guitar Score or
Bass Score on the View menu to toggle between scores. All operations that you perform act on
the ACTIVE score only.
The following are the steps I follow when creating a new score...
1) Select the New File menu item from the File menu. Hit the ok button on the New Power Tab
File dialog
2) Select the Song Attributes menu item from the View menu. Enter all info about the song.
3) Select the Setup menu item from the Guitar menu. Add all the guitars you will need in
the SCORE (note that the guitars listed are for the active score only). You can have up to
7 guitars combined total in both scores. ie. 6 guitars + 1 bass guitar, 5 guitars + 2 bass gtrs
4) While the above dialog is open, click the Chord Diagram List tab. Add any chord diagrams
that will be used in the score.
5) Start tabbing out the song.
* The program has not been tested on any version of Microsoft® NT/2000. It may or may
not work on this OS. I do not have access to these products so I have no way to verify
program runnability at present time.
** These components are needed to view the Power Tab Editor help file, which is in HTML
format. If you're using Windows 98 or higher, you have all the necessary files to open
the help file.
*** The CPU and RAM requirements were the setup used on the computer that the program was
built on. The program has not been tested on a setup with lower values than these, it does
not mean that the program will not run on these machines.

What is a Wiki? I’ll let the developers speak for themselves.
Source code for “what is a wiki” found at

What Is Wiki

Wiki is in Ward's original description:

The simplest online database that could possibly work.

Wiki is a piece of server software that allows users to freely create and edit Web page content using any Web browser. Wiki supports hyperlinks and has a simple text syntax for creating new pages and crosslinks between internal pages on the fly.

Wiki is unusual among group communication mechanisms in that it allows the organization of contributions to be edited in addition to the content itself.

Like many simple concepts, "open editing" has some profound and subtle effects on Wiki usage. Allowing everyday users to create and edit any page in a Web site is exciting in that it encourages democratic use of the Web and promotes content composition by nontechnical users.

Historical Note. The first ever wiki site was created for the Portland Pattern Repository in 1995. That site now hosts tens of thousands of pages.

Last edited June 27, 2002

Return to WelcomeVisitors

What does this say?
“Wiki is in Ward's original description:
The simplest online database that could possibly work.
Wiki is a piece of server software that allows users to freely create and edit Web page content using any Web browser. Wiki supports hyperlinks and has a simple text syntax for creating new pages and cross links between internal pages on the fly. Wiki is unusual among group communication mechanisms in that it allows the organization of contributions to be edited in addition to the content itself.
Like many simple concepts, "open editing" has some profound and subtle effects on Wiki usage. Allowing everyday users to create and edit any page in a Web site is exciting in that it encourages democratic use of the Web and promotes content composition by nontechnical users.”

What does the code do?
Structures the text into position in the web page/directs links to proper locations/draws lines/builds tables…ect. The code acts like Jonny in the way he compiles Zanpano’s material. The code takes disorganized data/text and creates an organized developed product in the way Jonny does with the manuscripts. Danielewski builds the open source metaphor by presenting a story that has evolved to incorporate Jonny’s (and potentially anyone Jonny associated with) material in the way open source software developes. Open source software is distributed (free over the internet) with its source code in order for the source to be edited recompiled and re-released. This co-insides with the way HOL is presented; as a wiki. Like open source software, wiki’s are available in its “evolved” or edited version supplemented with its source over the internet. Also, like open source software, wiki’s are open to interpretation and editing and can be re-released.

Notice the color scheme, (simply) used to differentiate between text, and code.

Demonstration on links.
Footnotes as links.

In wiki’s the links (footnote1) are themselves as relevant as the information (text2) it is found in. Links, like footnotes, take you to relevant information relating to the noted item. The footnotes in HOL3 are as much a part of the book, as relevant, as the original source (Zanpano’s manscripts4). Links in wiki’s5 refer the user to information about the linked/noted item. The source6 is significant as a starting point, it builds context7 to the information being presented. It is significant that Jonny8 is presenting Zanpano’s source material because it builds context, it offers direct insight into the background9 of the present material. The source wiki is significant because it is the starting reference point to the material. In interpreting information in either HOL or a wiki the user/reader may reference a footnote/link for context, and as the footnotes/links are as relevant to the whole as the originally referenced material a user10 may reference the originally referenced material for context on the footnotes/links.

The house11 is the wiki. The footnotes are literally like the notes and comments in source code12, the read me!’s 13 and about files, and are figuratively the links in wiki’s. Both perform the same function, reference and comments/critical editing14, both can effectively and affectively influence the development and interpretation of information, and all are both associated with open source15 and with HOL.

1:material linked to other material. This being information relevant/supplemental to the noted word “footnote”. 2:the written word 3:House of Leaves’ form is defined by footnotes 4:Sinonomous for source code. Zanpano’s ideas are at the foundation of HOL/ the original material from which Jonny edits. 5: Wiki’s use links like Danielewski uses the relationship of content and footnote in the way that they connect like ideas. Imagine the footnote as a separate page linked to the marked noted material like in a wiki network. 6: Zanpano 7:History/relevance 8:The editor/user (in HOL editor of Zanpano’s source/in a wiki Jonny is representative of the public [specifically those who use/edit the wiki]) 9:Jonny is aware of Zanpano’s background as is the opensource programmer or the wiki user to the background of the code or displayed wiki. 10:YOU 11:THIS 12:Zanpano’s manuscript 13:These footnotes 14:What you will be doing  15:Free public access to original and edited material.

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