Annotation system

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There exist many kinds of annotation systems and therefore the term is quite ambiguous and context dependent. A general definition was given by Cousins et al. (2000):

Definition of annotation: An annotation is a commentary on an object that:

  • the annotator intends to be separable from the object itself
  • the reader interprets to be separable from the object itself
(Cousins, Baldonado and Paepcke, 2000).

Wikipedia defines an annotation as “a marked-up comment made to information in a book, document, online record, video, software code or other information.”, retrieved 18:22, 2 July 2009 (UTC).

Annotation systems in education

Used in education, annotation system can refer to a variety of technologies, e.g.:



  • Cousins, Steve B.; Michelle Baldonado and Andreas Paepcke (2000). A Systems View of Annotations, Technical Report P9910022, Xerox PARC, PDF - PDF