Dynamic search history
I don't know how close this would come to the IBM scripting program that, I understand, is just released.
I suggest defining a (log)file that
- can be created by a user if he plans a search on the internet - than can be created by the browser by logging the actions of the user - at that moment the user can easily add to that logfile - a link to the current page - a comment or an explanation - different levels of titles - the user can move the cursor in the logfile (that perhaps would be visible in a tab) - the user can create and navigate through several branches - The user can change its mind and remove unwanted links and comments easily - the logfile can be replayed by the browser - opening the links - showing the comments and the titles (perhaps in a tab) - the user can choose the branch he wants to follow - the user has then the ability to change the logfile (and save it) - by changing/adding comments - by going to other URL's - by removing elements - the logfile can be read by a human - the logfile can be exchanged with other people for two purposes - it could show, prove how a specific result was found or not found - for use in help forums, on educational sites, scientific forums, information forums etc. - it could show a difference of opinion with two or more hypotheses, each with their own references and cross linked with the counter arguments - for use in discussion forums so avoiding the endless repetition of the same arguments in those forums - it could contain a evaluation of the sources cited in the links - the fileformat could be found and recognized on a website. It could replace a simple link - It could be converted in one or more a standard webpages
Maybe there should be wiki-style support for a user that has changed the file to upload his changes. That could be organized on the server site with an existing protocol to accept the new version and put it as a change on the site, or the browser could specially support it only sending the suggested changes to the file on the site.
Starting from a relatively simple active logfile, I (naively ?) think this could end up being a very powerful way to communicate and an important standard. Maybe an existing internet file-format standard could be extended to this functionality.
Except for the support for discussions, the file would not be that different from any (rich) text file with an explanation in it and many links. The difference is mostly in the way the browser act on it, replaying the contents by going to the links and showing the comments, allowing navigating trough the file. Of course the file should contain enough information, in a standard form, to allow the browser to do all that.
In the long term a standard format, usable by all browsers would be the best solution (like the world without software patents would be the best solution).