Devinette du vendredi : le “memex”, la machine de l’avenir

D’après vous, la description de cet appareil de l’avenir a été écrite quand ?

A memex is a device in which an individual stores all his books, records, and communications, and which is mechanized so that it may be consulted with exceeding speed and flexibility. ..

It consists of a desk, and while it can presumably be operated from a distance, it is primarily the piece of furniture at which he works. On the top are slanting translucent screens, on which material can be projected for convenient reading. There is a keyboard, and sets of buttons and levers. …

In one end is the stored material. … Yet if the user inserted 5000 pages of material a day it would take him hundreds of years to fill the repository, so he can be profligate and enter material freely.

Most of the memex contents are purchased …. Books of all sorts, pictures, current periodicals, newspapers, are thus obtained and dropped into place. Business correspondence takes the same path. And there is provision for direct entry. On the top of the memex is a transparent platen. On this are placed longhand notes, photographs, memoranda, all sorts of things.

There is, of course, provision for consultation of the record by the usual scheme of indexing. If the user wishes to consult a certain book, he taps its code on the keyboard, and the title page of the book promptly appears before him, projected onto one of his viewing positions. Frequently-used codes are mnemonic, so that he seldom consults his code book; but when he does, a single tap of a key projects it for his use. … On deflecting one of these levers to the right he runs through the book before him, each page in turn being projected at a speed which just allows a recognizing glance at each. If he deflects it further to the right, he steps through the book 10 pages at a time; still further at 100 pages at a time.

A special button transfers him immediately to the first page of the index. Any given book of his library can thus be called up and consulted with far greater facility than if it were taken from a shelf. As he has several projection positions, he can leave one item in position while he calls up another. He can add marginal notes and comments, … and it could even be arranged so that he can do this by a stylus scheme… .

… le 1er juillet 1945 par monsieur Vannevar Bush, directeur du Office of Scientific Research and Development des États-Unis. Si ça ne s’appelle pas de la vision, je ne sais pas ce que ce mot veut dire. Faites-vous plaisir et lisez-le au complet.

M.À.J.: 13 février 2014

La DARPA lance un programme de recherche pour mettre au point le moteur de recherche de la nouvelle génération. Le nom du programme: Memex.

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