Information Visualization And Tags

I'm curious about how to organize my blog. Its a curious question. I'd lke to think that the things I blog about blur lines between topics. They're never talking about one particular subject or another.

The major organizational paradigm that has been around for a while is tags. There are a lot of reasons for tags. They are:

  1. Easy to handle. Anyone can type them or describe stuff with them
  2. Super duper flexible
  3. Will help machines sort out your article a lot faster. (Woohoo, Semantic Web)

The second major organizational paradigm is categories. The difference between a tag and a category is:

  1. Where tags are flexible categories are usually rigid and articles are written to fit them
  2. Categories are mainly used for browsing a website once you land on the main page. Conversely, tags are more conducive to searching

But I've been wondering recently about how to use tags effectively to actually arrange my blog well. So how do I use both these paradigms to help me nicely display a motley collection of articles. Here is what I need:

  1. A solution that will let me harness tags for searching but not leave them as broadly unexplained as tags tend to be.
  2. A solution where users can use the tags to browse not search. As in it should be as conducive to browsing as categories are without forcing articles to be in one category.
  3. However this solution must still be useful to searches

What I Came Up With

My Rules:

  1. Tags should not be arbitrary but designed to answer specific questions (what this is about, who this targets, what platform etc.)
  2. Every post must not answer each question but only a subset of the questions. (thus making this different from categories)
  3. Each question can be considered a way to look through the posts in the blog. Though each question might only present subset of the required posts (browsing)
  4. When it comes to searcxhing I believe designating questions as searchable or not will be able to create a set of tags that defines an article so it can be found easily.

Now the remaining point is what will be the questions mentioned above. I thought long and hard about it and could come up with nothing. The truth is there is no set of questions that can truly define every single post that I write. Questions about platforms would relate to a tutorial, while questions about what my mood was while writing would apply to a more personal post.

A 5 question limit and a 2 question minimum seems sufficient to explain a post thoroughly. The hope is, by coming up with a series of cross-referencing questions I will be able to visualize what I write about thoroughly.

05 May 2014