Literary Machines (short title) is a book first published in 1980 by Ted Nelson, and republished nine times by 1993. It offers an extensive overview of Nelson's term "hypertext" as well as Nelson's Project Xanadu. It also includes other theories by Nelson, including "tumblers" for addressing bits in files past and present, "transclusion" as a method for including original work in one's own work, and "micropayments" to pay for the use. The format of the book is nonlinear, as the chapters are arranged in such a way that the text can be read out of order.
The first edition of the book, referred to by Nelson as "The Humanist Edition", featured a silver Mylar cover. Subsequent editions, referred to by Nelson as "The Technical Edition" featured a white soft cover.
- Literary Machines: The report on, and of, Project Xanadu concerning word processing, electronic publishing, hypertext, thinkertoys, tomorrow's intellectual revolution, and certain other topics including knowledge, education and freedom (1981), Mindful Press, Sausalito, California.
- Publication dates as listed in the 93.1 (1993) edition: 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993.
- Reprint edition by Eastgate - ISBN 0-89347-062-7
- Stephen W. Smoliar, "Review of 'Literary machines' by Ted Nelson, 1983", ACM SIGSOFT Software Engineering Notes, October 1983, p. 34-36, webpage: Abstract of review (with link), read 2009-01-26.
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