Content Shift

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Ever wish you could warn everyone who went to a webpage that its author was a lunatic, or the corporation running it had a despicable environmental record? Ever want to bring about discourse on a site where none was supported? These are some of the principles behind ShiftSpace, part meta-internet, part treasure mapping interface.

ShiftSpace allows users to insert Javascript tweaks—most easily instituted with Firefox and the Greasemonkey plugin—in order to tag pages, leave notes, swap images, highlight text or change source code. For instance, you could highlight the fine print that says Google never deletes anything you feed it, or leave a note explaining various nuances and implications of the policy. Then, you string together a series of site shifts and create a trail, putting a narrative spine into your thematic items. The creators, Mushon Zer-Aviv and Dan Phiffer, who met in late 2005, are former students of the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at NYU. "We were looking for something that resembles a public space on the web, but found that the web is more like a mall," Zer-Aviv says. "It has the appearance of a public space but with the deeper properties of a private space."
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