Went to hear a talk by Thomas Vander Wal (the creator of the term folksonomy) last week at Leicester De Montfort University. It was interesting. It was good to hear his definition of what folksonomy is. And even better to realise I have been on the right track for the last 6 months! It focussed more on businesses use for folksonomy at marketing products. Using tags to gauge public opinion of products.
I particularly liked his visualisations of folksonomy which I hadn’t seen anywhere else, they showed the relationships between tags as meta data, identity as the user and object being tagged. Looking back whilst writing this it is similar to nodes in the tripartite network of a collaborative tagging system.
We ran out of time at the end so he never fully got to discuss what he saw as the future of tagging, which I would have liked to have got his opinion on. I gathered that clustering through co – occurrence relationships was the main development, which adds some order to the folksonomy without necessarily forcing a hierarchy. Examples of how this works on Flickr and Rawsugar showed how it is a very useful development.
I would have liked to have asked him some questions, but ran out of time – it is intimidating though asking a question in a group talk situation, I prefer informal workshop one on one discussions I think. I’ll have to get over that.