Thursday, October 20, 2005

Tag Coups

Since you add a number of Flock URLs as favorites as you get it
configured, those URLs have soared in the popularity
rankings today. As I write this, Flock-based URLs are 4 out of the top
10 at and the top 3. Not to mention that a enormous number of new blogrolls and blogs just sluiced into the blogosphere.


Tagging, integrated into the browser: Flock is a new Firefox-based browser with interesting support built in: Your bookmarks are your favorites in Flock, and tagging is built directly into the browser interface. It also provides direct blogging tools; I am editing this post in Flock itself, not in Blogger's web interface. This is in beta, but this is already a fantastic tool and may be the killer app for tagging.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

apophenia: articles on tagging (help?)

apophenia: articles on tagging (help?):

excellent roundup of articles on tagging, with even more suggestions in the comments. An ongoing resource.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2005


Tagyu :: Your tags, smarter:

You enter some text or a URL, and the site suggests appropriate tags. I'm seeing a lot of tools that try to automate authorities and thus solve one of the big problems of tagging - the wild disparity in tags. Also see lazy sheep, a bookmarklet that purports to automatically tag and describe your bookmarks. I've tried lazy sheep, and it seems pretty simplistic in terms of its assignments. I don't know what the logic is, but if I had to guess I'd say it's based on word lists and associations.

Rashmi Sinha has some interesting objections to lazy sheep. One is that it "dilutes" the value of by trying to force a homogeneity of tagging onto all users. He's right, I think, and his point illustrates one of the major tensions at the heart of tagging: audience.

The main difference between tagging and library classification is that tagging attempts to be simultaneously idiosyncratic and collective. In other words, wants to serve as a centralized store for your bookmarks, tagged the way you see it, while also serving as the OPAC for the Web. Lazy sheep is definitely on the OPAC side of the fence.

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Saturday, October 08, 2005

Shirky on Ontology

Shirky: Ontology is Overrated -- Categories, Links, and Tags:
I also want to convince you that what we're seeing when we see the Web is actually a radical break with previous categorization strategies, rather than an extension of them. The second part of the talk is more speculative, because it is often the case that old systems get broken before people know what's going to take their place. (Anyone watching the music industry can see this at work today.) That's what I think is happening with categorization.
Clay Shirky is the most radical voice with regards to tagging. He is convinced that formal classification as we know it is a doomed system, given its basis in a model of centralized authority. This is a good introduction to his thinking on the subject, though he has also written extensively elsewhere.

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Thursday, October 06, 2005

Visual tagging

In beta at CNET:

Interesting. Sort of an interactive concept map. Fun using it to browse CNET's ontology. Though it doesn't use tags or folksonomies, I could easily see this working with or Technorati's tags.

Reinventing the wheel?

Wired News: Tips for Top Taggers
After a few months of storing bookmarks online with tools like, many people find the tags they've used to categorize them are a hopeless mess. So what are the best methods for getting your tag taxonomy in order?

This article highlights the 2 main problems I see with tagging: the first is overclassification. People are trying to think of every possible tag that might fit a bookmark; what results is dilution of the overall effectiveness of tagging as signal-to-noise in a category gets stretched thin.

The second is inconsistency in tagging, both on a personal level and in the broader system. Tagging works best when you define a set of tags and stick to them, i.e. subject headings. It makes sense to use generally agreed-upon tags, especially if you're looking to gain influence in the social bookmarking world. But that very same influence-seeking can also result in overtagging as you try to game the system and get your bookmarks seen in as many categories as possible.

This is a major difference between cataloging and tagging - cataloging isn't a competition.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Tag Campers

HomePage - Kwiki:
Tag Camp is an open, welcoming event for geeks to camp out overnight, get wired on Halloween candy and think really fast about tagging, its applications, and implications. It’s like Tag Tuesday but instead it's at Commercenet's beautiful Palo Alto office, featuring luxurious showers.

Combination social event and brainstorming session. All that candy could be dangerous though.

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Particletree · Tagging Roundup

Particletree · Tagging Roundup:
Whether you’re a novice or veteran, the following resources will help you understand how tags are quickly changing the Internet one word at a time.
Good set of introductory articles on tagging.

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Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Cognitive tagging.

The cognitive process of tagging.

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Intelligent Tags?

Interesting post on the need for refactoring in tagging. Posits a need for self-evolving tagging.

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Library clips

Blue sky post on infrastructure necessary to support folksonomies in blogs. But are we seeing any other use of tagging outside of blogs?

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looks to be sort of a meta-aggregator. Not yet released but could be an interesting tool as the tagging /folksonomy world begins to coalesce.

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