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Goals of the Study

The goals of the study were:

  1. to assess the validity and reliability of comment parsing and location software.

  2. to determine the impact of hypertext commenting and structured management of comments on the editorial process.

Documents that are structurally copymarked have both a final form and a reviseable form. In the current study, it was considered important to allow reviewers of the document to work with a final-form version which would be easier to read. At the same time, editors would most easily work with the document in its reviseable form. This meant that comments had to be located in the reviseable form of the document based on information obtained from the final form, i.e., a comment referring to ``page 132, line 27'' or to ``section'' had to be placed in the appropriate structural element. In addition, these comments, which were manifest as URL references, had to be embedded in such a way as not to interfere with the processing of the source text. Our goal was to establish both the feasibility, accuracy, and error rate associated with placement of the links.

More central to the impact of in-line commenting is the question of how such commenting impacts the editorial process. Questions of whether the editorial process is improved or harmed by the inline commenting as well as whether there are any advantages in terms of the speed or accuracy of the editorial process remain. The second goal of the current work seeks to ascertain findings in this area.

Michael Spring
Tue Apr 23 13:23:13 EDT 1996