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Original author(s)Dan Phiffer and Mushon Zer-Aviv
Last release
0.17 / May 31, 2011; 7 years ago (2011-05-31)
Repository Edit this at Wikidata
Written inJavaScript, PHP
Operating systemCross-platform
TypeWeb annotation, Metaweb
LicenseTri-licensed: MPL/GPL/LGPL

ShiftSpace is a discontinued open-source metaweb or web annotation application and framework that allows altering web pages with different tools. The tagline of the application is "an open source layer above any web page". It is implemented as a userscript for the Greasemonkey extension for Firefox.

Development of ShiftSpace ceased in 2011.


A ShiftSpace user viewing any webpage that has at least one Shift on it will notice the small ShiftSpace notifier icon on the bottom left corner of the browser window. By pressing the shift + space keys, a user invokes the "meta layer" for that particular page, and the additional user-created content becomes visible.

ShiftSpace user can invoke the "meta layer" above any web page to browse and create additional interpretations, contextualizations and interventions (called "Shifts"). The available tools for authoring shifts (called "Spaces") that are currently included in the core release are Notes, Highlights, ImageSwap, and SourceShift. Some Spaces are utilitarian (like Notes and Highlights) and some are more interventionist (like ImageSwap and SourceShift).


ShiftSpace was founded in 2006 by Dan Phiffer and Mushon Zer-Aviv, then students at NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program. Later that year, it received a PrixArs honorary mention in The Next Idea category from the Ars Electronica Center.

ShiftSpace has been covered by TechCrunch[1] and CNet.[2]

ShiftSpace was supported through a grant by the Swiss Confederation and by a commission through

See also[edit]

  • Wikis, websites which allow users (either certain users or all users) to edit them via a web interface