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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

The Phenomenon Called Tagging

So many of us complain about information overload and end up spending significant time in information retrieval Tagging has become extremely powerful and popular as well in the last few years. I read this interesting note on ways to use tagging. Also read there – why the newest craze is ma.gnolia for bookmarking and a few more things. Has yahoo done anything at all post the acquisition of Del.icio.us?
At the elements, tag classification, and the concept of connecting sets of tags between web/blog servers, has led to the rise of folksonomy classification over the Internet, the concept of social bookmarking, and other forms of social software. In real life we see that larger-scale folksonomies tend to address some of the problems of tagging, as astute users of tagging systems will monitor/search the current use of "tag terms" within these systems, and tend to use existing tags in order to easily form connections to related items. The result : evolving folksonomies define a set of tagging conventions through eventual group consensus, rather than by use of a formalized standard.
Although "tagging" is often promoted as an alternative to organization by a hierarchy of categories, more and more online resources seem to use a hybrid system, where items are organized into broad categories, with finer classification distinctions being made by the use of tags. For a long time, I was wondering why one can’t tag locally stored objects. Then came the not widely known capability of Windows Vista to provide tagging support at the desktop level for local objects.
Windows Vista has built in functionality for letting users tag files with keywords and other metadata, making it lot easier to find. With custom created “virtual folders” based on saved searches for explicit keywords of the files tagged, already having different virtual folders for different projects can be brought under the tagging ambit.. Some of the formats that are currently supported include :

• TIFF and JPEG files.
• MP3 files.
• XPS, Microsofts equivalent of PDF.
• MSI installer files. Windows Media Audio and Windows Media Video files
(It is windows – so one cant’t tag acrobat files!!) Good idea of what tagging is all about – read here. No doubt, am again falling in love with tagging.

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