/Russia/Moscow/MAI/iMAI/Projects/Flight of Thought/

/Rossiya/Moskva/MAI/iMAI/Proecty/Vzloyt Mysli/

The Internet project "Flight Of Thought" is dedicated to 100th anniversary from Saint-Exupery birthday (29 June 1900 - 2000)

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Project [Home] [About] [Guest] Heroes [Tsiolkovsky] [Saint-Exupery] [Bach]

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...The star sky over me...

Internet-project "Flight Of Thought"Author: A. P. Karavaev
Title:
About the internet-project "Flight Of Thought"(1)

In memory Antoine de Saint-ExuperyThe Internet - project "Flight Of Thought" is dedicated to
100-anniversary from birthday
Antoine de SAINT-EXUPERY

TEXT

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This is just draft translation from Russian, sorry. If you can, read it in Russian, please.

"Flight Of Thought" - the author's, educational, experimental-research Internet-project. There are two primary goals:

  1. To collect the information on life and humanitarian creativity of heroes of the project: remarkable people, outstanding personalities, thinkers with own philosophy of life which trade is connected to aircraft and astronautics.
  2. To present the collected information in the convenient electronic form for interactive viewing and the automated analysis.

There are also a number of accompanying tasks:

  • To stimulate closer acquaintance of the netizens, first of all students, with life and creativity of heroes of the project;
  • To promote the publication of a humanitarian heritage of K. E. Tsiolkovsky;
  • To promote development of a role of humanitarian aspect in formation of the engineer;
  • To save up experience and to create base for drawing together educational process and the Internet;
  • To study in practice those new opportunities which open Internet-projects;
  • etc.

The Internet - project " Flight Of Thought " is also the modest contribution, all those who worked above the project, in celebrating the 100th anniversary from birthday Antoine de Saint-Exupery which is marked June, 29, 2000. Also it is important for us, that the project starts his life in the Internet in unusual time, in the year of Millenium, on the eve of XXI century.

The status of the project. The project " Flight Of Thought " is carried out by the author under the own initiative. The choice of heroes of the project, selection of a material, development of design and designing of pages, realization of the project as a whole are carried out by the author of the project. In realization of the project: scanning and digitization of texts and illustrations, search of materials, modelling and testing of elements of design etc. active participate students of Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI). Rights on the author's materials placed in the project (texts of books, articles etc.), belong to their authors or legal owners. To the author of the project " Flight Of Thought ", belongs the right on idea, title and hypermedia-realization of the project.

The hero of the project " Flight Of Thought " is the pilot, the cosmonaut, the inventor of aerospace engineering, and at the same time... The philosopher, the writer, the teacher of life... The idea of the project consists in organic (embodied in one person - the hero of the project) a combination of an engineering trade (in the field of aircraft and astronautics) with an outstanding humanitarian creative idea. At the moment of the publication in the project three heroes: Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, Antoin de Saint-Exupery and Richard Bah (heroes are ordered by date of their birth). These three names are inseparable from the project. The idea of the project was formed under influence of their creativity and the person. Not be though one of them, probably, there would be no neither ideas, nor project. It is more difficult to reply: whether "there will be at the project other heroes?" The only thing, that is possible to tell now, it what to deny such opportunity it would be wrong...

Heroes of the project "Flight Of Thought" are very different. Life of two from them, Tsiolkovsky and Saint-Exupery, is completed and may be investigated and analyzed. But Richard Bach is our contemporary. To interfere in his life, trying to investigate it and to analyze it would be awkward. Therefore the structure the information on Richard Bach which we are going to present in the project a little differs from the information on other heroes of the project. There are no some headings (the chronicle of life, the biography and memoirs etc.). Instead of it there are interviews with Richard Bach, the information on his official site and, probably, translation on Russian of the most interesting materials of this site will be submitted.

Around of heroes of the project so it is a lot of things. "Cumulative time of their life" if such concept may have the right to existence, covers, without breaks and intervals, second half XIX, all XX and the beginning of XXI century, since 1857 till today inclusive. Telling about them, involuntarily mention the fatal dates, interesting themes, remarkable people.  The understanding of a role of these dates in histories, disclosing of these themes, acquaintance to these people certainly would promote formation of more precise, brighter representation about heroes of the project. How to not miss all this and at the same time to not break a composition and integrity of the project? Not having, on this account, the ready decision, we have entered (or we shall enter in the near future) headings "Guest of the project" and "Theme of the project " (probably "Date of the project"). These headings are called to absorb important and interesting, for perception of idea of the project and its heroes, the information. But nevertheless this information may be isolated, not complete and/or to have the indirect relation to heroes of the project.

Criteria of selection of heroes of the project follow from its idea and the status. There are three:

  1. The area creative or professional work of the hero of the project "Flight Of Thought" should be connected to aircraft and astronautics. For example: the pilot, the cosmonaut, the aircraft designer... (the founder or professional "user" of aerospace engineering).
  2. The hero of the project "Flight Of Thought" should be the author of known literary, philosophical, publicistic and other products, the outstanding personality, the thinker with own philosophy of life.
  3. The final decision approves the author of the project (it is important for preservation of integrity of the project).

The title of the project is the compressed verbal formula of the basic idea of the project. A formal combination of two parts of idea of the project: the sky, space + the person, an idea. In this context two variants of the name were considered: "polyot mysli" and "vzlyot mysli" (Flight Of Thought). The second variant was chosen. In a word collocation "vzlyot mysli" is more expressive and drafts upwards. There is an aspiration to overcoming, to jerk. "Polyot mysli" associates with "polyot fantazii (a stretch of imagination)" and has a little bit languid dynamics and softly expressed orientation that does not correspond to characters of heroes of the project and don't adjust the project as a whole.

It is not necessary to perceive the title of the project as desire to attach to creativity of heroes of the project special value to exhibit it as top of all humanitarian idea. The opportunity of such interpretation of a word collocation "vzlyot mysli" formally exists, but does not correspond to the validity. We are categorized a creativity of our heroes with the big respect, but we have no intention to absolutize it.

Principles of selection and use of the information. We shall aspire to collect, unit as much as possible materials about life and creativity of heroes of the project to present them  maximum full, without withdrawals, in different editions, in different translations etc. For this purpose we scan and we digitize the published printed editions: books, articles, photos etc. We shall include in our project network materials too. Thus we are not limited to references to materials, and we include materials completely, as our supertask is creation actually the hypertext that demands inclusion in used materials of bookmarks and hyperreferences. A simple example: in article published in the network edition and devoted Saint-Exupery it is mentioned a denomination in 50 francs (this page is in Russian only) on which it is represented Saint-Exupery and heroes of his books. In the project "Flight Of Thought" there is a page with the description and the image of this denomination. Transferring article in the project, we add the appropriate reference (how we have made it above). Understanding all delicacy of such operation, we confirm, that we do it maximum cautiously, trying not only to not damage, and on the contrary to open, show immanent to the borrowed text hypermeasurement. Simultaneously we indicate a source of the information and we give the hyperreference to the original.

Development and design are executed by the author of the project. Probably the design is is loudly told. Any arrogant tasks here it was not put. Basically it is the textual information slightly "decorated" on title pages with amateur collages, executed in the elementary graphic editor. Our pictures carry out informative, instead of aesthetic function. The pictures of the project is a videoinformation which we actively scooped including in the Network. And still we have spent the certain efforts to designing of these simple pages. We approached to their designing from the engineering point of view, as to designing information objects of new type.

Structure of the information on page, the geometrical forms, specialization etc., that was a subject of our reflections. Features of web-editions are essential. Hardly you can consider books in library, except their covers, as the isolated and hashed pages, for example, after page from the encyclopedia about the historical person, there may be a page with the recipe of sauce from the cookbook. For Web it is a predicted situation. Pages of the printed edition are built strictly in a context of the edition and outside of this context may not exist, anyway, more often, such existence is not supposed. In the Internet the visitor whence it may is necessary ("for us is not given to foresee") to get on any of our pages. And if in virtual space its, probably, also is guided, orientation in physical space, as a rule, is unevident. That though somehow to compensate this uncertainty, we have created "phisvirt-navigator": On any page of our project the first and last (identical) lines (look now) will prompt the visitor not only on what Web-server he/she is, and in what part of it, but also where physically this server is, in what country, in what city, in what organization. The information is resulted in Russian and English languages though from abroad we do not expect the big inflow. I think, that if the similar information was on every Web-page it would facilitate her/his fate as web-wanderers. At any moment they might orient not only in virtual, but also and in physical space. We want it whether or not, but with recent ages we are doomed for existence in two measurements: physical and virtual.  Sometimes it has no value, but in some cases to know it not only it is interesting, but also necessary. While, the most part of the experience saved up by us concerns nevertheless to physical space and it would be desirable to take it into account.

Philosophy of the project. Creation of the project "Flight Of Thought", besides already listed above purposes and the reasons, was caused also by more deep reasons connected to those new opportunities and prospects which are gradually shown all more precisely, in process of prompt development of information technologies and becoming the Internet. All event here mentions bases of a human civilization and will result in rather close future in cardinal changes in all institutes of a modern society. More and more deep comprehension of this fact, induces to accept any not indifferent person a call of time to put into operation on theoretical judgement and practical development of a new information reality. It is interesting work. It may not be executed without intensive experiments which bett and more natural to carry out not in laboratory conditions, and in real the Internet. The project "Flight Of Thought" is also natural experimental base which, in the long term, is called to help to formulate answers to the vital issues of construction the Internet.

Development of the project. In the project there are few the completed pages. That already is present, is the germ supposing a number of consecutive stages of evolutionary development. The first stage is connected to gathering materials about life and creativity of heroes of the project, their translation in a html-format (a stage of accumulation of a material). At the moment of accommodation of the project in the Internet, even the first stage of the project is still very far from end, the big work on gathering materials and their translation in the electronic form is necessary. The second stage consists in development, enrichment and perfection of structure of the collected materials due to saturation by their advanced system of hyperreferences, i.e. in transformation of set of linear texts to essentially nonlinear text, to the hypertext, in complete sense of this word. The second stage, there where it is possible, will be carried out in parallel with the first. Process of transformation of set of linear texts in the hypertext, in the essence,  iterative. Inclusion in structure of the project new the document may demand updating of already processed documents. Realization of the second stage will give visitors of the project rich opportunities the environment of interactive viewing of the information on life and creativity of heroes of the project (a stage of transformation of the saved up material in the interactive environment enriched with intensive hypertext-refferences). The third stage is connected to more complete realization of those advantages, which resides to the electronic form of data presentation, namely, with automation of processes of their processing. It is realization of mechanisms of indexation of the data of the project, the organization of algorithms of search and query mechanisms. Realization of the third stage will give visitors and professional researchers an opportunity of the automated analysis of the data of the project. The expanded opportunities of interactive hypertextual viewing in aggregate with mechanisms of the automated analysis form such powerful tool of research of all set of the available data which may not be realized by any printed edition. In this sense, during work above the Internet-project, it is important for us to investigate from within the new form of the organization of the information.

In a basis of the following stages of development there are also some interesting ideas which are incorporated in the project initially, but we shall not open them now. It would be desirable, that these ideas were showed in development of the project and "would be open" by visitors independently.

Thank you for attention to the project. 
A. P. Karavaev

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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • Contacts of the project
  • History of the project
  • The students-participants of the project
  • Symbolism of the project
  • Registration of the project
  • Working materials

COMMENTS & NOTES

(1) I don't know how do closely enough translate from Russian into English: "vzlyot mysli". May be "Flight Of Thought", or "Rise Of Idea", or "Take Off Think", or something else will be more closely. I chose "Flight Of Thought", but I am not sure.

The date of last modification: 12.27.2000 (27 Dec 2000)

 

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