Google Maps & Bracket Notation
I’ve been plowing through Humanized today and though it’s been somewhat less interesting than I thought it would be (perhaps my expectations ELZR were just too high), here are two very worthy text scraps:
Why do people use Google Maps? Because it’s just so nice to use. Microsoft’s Terraserver gave users access to high resolution satellite images many years before Google Maps did the same. (In fact, while attempting to be clever, I inadvertently terrified my to-be roommate: I used the service to view an aerial photograph of his home and asked him some leading questions about the stuff in his backyard. It took until the second quarter of college before he even talked to me, and then only warily.) But, it wasn’t until Google rethought online maps that the security and privacy issues of such a service came into the national conscience. Why? Because whereas Microsoft had given access to satellite imagery, Google made them accessible.
Aza Raskin, Interface Math
[Bracket Notation for Editing is] simply three sets of square brackets. The first set denotes deletion, the second set denotes addition, and the third set denotes a comment. It’s easiest to explain by example. Let’s start with a simple sentence plagued by two typical errors:
They called to say that their coming over in an quarter-hour.
An editor might revise the sentence to:
They called to say that the[ir][y’re] coming over in a[n] quarter-hour. [Be careful with “their” and “they’re”.]
Aza Raskin, Collaboration Made Simple with Bracket Notation