Abstract Computer-based multimedia has the potential to allow users to interact with information as they might interact with a human expert. Unfortunately very little existing multimedia comes close to this ideal. Creating systems that afford this high level of interactivity requires first that the information be organized in a non-linear fashion. An interface must then be designed that allows the user to make meaningful choices regarding what he/ she wants to do or see next. This paper discusses principles for organizing information and designing interfaces that allow a user to make meaningful choices.