Monday, January 31, 2005

"The Insurgency of Leaves"

I'm pleased that my first UXCentric link is to an article by David Weinberger. As one of the authors of "The Cluetrain Manifesto" (site and book) and his own Small Pieces Loosely Joined, David's ideas have had a profound effect on my thinking and career.

In Trees vs. Leaves, David discusses taxonomies and tags—specifically the "folksonomies" emerging from sites like Flickr, Del.ico.us and Technorati that permit users to tag content in any way they damn well please (in sharp contrast to traditional top-down hierarchical taxonomies). What particularly intrigues David (and is likely the subject of an upcoming book) is the idea that user-tagging schemes may reveal new insights about how we view information and knowledge. His preliminary conclusion: Folksonomies may reveal user skepticism "not just about the content of knowledge but about how it's divvied up in the first place."

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