Annotate The Web With

A new web design project is going to involve embedding a story online, and letting readers annotate it, and said project has brought my attention back to an annotation tool. is not an annotation tool so much as it is a universal annotation platform. (It’s the kind of thing Google should be doing, but isn’t.) It is designed to work in your web browser, and it can also be integrated into websites, apps, LMS, and what have you.

Hypothesis is a new effort to implement an old idea: A conversation layer over the entire web that works everywhere, without needing implementation by any underlying site.

Our team creates open source software, pushes for standards, and fosters community.

Using annotation, we enable sentence-level note taking or critique on top of classroom reading, news, blogs, scientific articles, books, terms of service, ballot initiatives, legislation and more. Everything we build is guided by our principles. In particular that it be free, open, neutral, and lasting to name a few.

My current work process involves saving articles to Instapaper so I can take notes on paper later, but I can happily report that the Chrome extension works on Instapaper as well as most websites.

I plan to integrate it into my work routine; let’s see how that turns.

Have you used it? What do you think?

image by vickysandoval22 via Flickr

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

1 Comment

  1. Tex9 November, 2020

    Back in 2017 I wrote about and a few other “Web Annotation” standards (mostly dealing with notes/highlights in EPUB/PDF though):

    Haven’t been following it in a few years though… I wonder what enhancements have happened since then.


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