Why Trust Techopedia

What Does Xanadu Mean?

Xanadu is a hypertext/hypermedia project first conceptualized by Ted Nelson. Although originally conceived in the 1960s, Xanadu was still in development when it was eclipsed by Tim Berners-Lee’s World Wide Web in the 1990s.
Nelson introduced the term hypertext. As a result, Xanadu is considered an important part of Internet history, as well as an inspriation for what future networks may be like.


Techopedia Explains Xanadu

Xanadu differs from the Web in many important ways, including:

Two-way linking, allowing the user to track an original source as well as see content derived from that source
Three-dimensional browsing (Xanaduspace) displaying a graphical line between hypertextual links
A system of micro-payments that are paid to the rights holder whos content is copied
Versioning of content to allow side-by-side comparison Project Xanadu released XanaduSpace 1.0 in 2007 as a prototype ofan eventual system, but Xanadu’s broad ambitions have yet to be properly realized, whereas the World Wide Web is already out there and growing. That said, many of the features originally set out for Xanadu have been incorporated into the Web. This incorporation may continue as the Web evovles

Xanadu owes its name to the mystical land of Xanadu from the poem “Kubla Khan” by Samuel


Related Terms

Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.