Hypertext over Print

The non-linear nature of hypertext fiction can express more than print can due to the nature of randomness and the arbitrary connections readers create while reading a nonlinear story. Randomness refers to mathematically random sequences, made possible by programming. The word arbitrary refers to decisions or connections made for no specific reason or a not necessarily relevant reason, decisions made by a human. When a story is reordered and put into a nonlinear form that can be regenerated again and again through the use of programming, the reader makes sense of the story in different ways every time. New stories can be formed in the mind of the reader with the same text be formed in different orders, or by new text being created and inserted into a preexisting story. The hyperlinked nature of electronic literature allows viewers to “choose their own adventure” combining the random aspect of programming with the arbitrary nature of the reader’s choices, allowing the story to be rewritten in almost an infinite number of ways.

Electronic literature’s uses the properties of a computer, programmability and the network, creates literature that could not exist in print