Step-by-step guideline for designing and documenting the navigation structure of multimedia hypertext systems

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Abstract:

Most traditional navigational design techniques do not provide a good mechanism for dealing with the complexity of the navigational path of multimedia hypertext (or hypermedia) systems, such as a multimedia page on the Web. When the number of pages (or nodes) of the hypermedia system grows, the links among these pages increase factorially. This makes the navigation structure diagram of a small 20-page Web site almost impossible to read, maintain, expand and reuse. In addition, most of these techniques do not provide formal instruction, or a step-by-step guideline, for users to support their development of hypermedia systems. This paper, therefore, aims to introduce, step-by-step, a new graph-based navigational design technique, the Navigational Graph, together with a new set of notation. It provides systems developers to visualise and manipulate the navigational structures of Web sites. This technique improves the reusability, maintainability, decomposability, readability and expandability of the development of Web sites in terms of navigational design. This paper also attempts to address the problem of lack of guidelines for users to design and document their Web sites.

Keywords: Design; Hypertext; Information Management; Multimedia

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09685229910370784

Publication date: February 1, 1999

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