Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Folksonomies and Taxonomies in the Enterprise- My eBook Advocating a Hybrid Approach

So to date- my favorite feedback on my ebook on Folksonomies and Taxonomies in the Enterprise that was launched on Sunday for the start of the Special Library Association (SLA) conference in Seattle was from a fellow co-worker. In her email she congratulated me on a job well done, that the ebook looked great and that "Maybe you can get someone to animate your character and you can get her to do some of your work for you?" Oh boy...only if i could!

I have been on the road for what seems like ages- conference season is at hand, Semantic Technologies conference, Internet Retailer and now Special Library Association- awesome stuff but boy am i behind- if only i could get my ebook avatar to indeed give me a hand.

This ebook is nothing like i have seen been produced by Factiva/Dow Jones in the 8+ years i have been here. My marketing project manager for this ebook, Kelly Minervini did a spectacular job with putting it together and i am extremely grateful to her as well as the rest of the folks that worked on the team to get this out- it is beautifully designed and laid out, fun to read and provides a great description of my thoughts around the hybrid options around Enterprises leveraging hybrid approaches to Folksonomies and Taxonomies as part of their information strategy.

This ebook is laid out as a “Cookbook” in an effort to help readers find the best “recipe” for their enterprise metadata needs. It is divided into chapters and subheads, each titled with a play on words about the art of cooking. We wanted to make it a fun piece for the audience to read, so it contains cooking/food illustrations as they relate to the taxonomy/folksonomy theory described.

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that social tagging is a topic i am very interested in as it relates to information delivery and organization.

The ebook discusses:
  • The business value of a taxonomy/folksonomy and how you can deploy a solution that will grow with an organization
  • The impact of social networking tools on the enterprise
  • The governance tools that can be or should be applied
  • How to (and if you really should) merge folksonomies with existing taxonomies
  • Best practices
  • Common challenges and obstacles

Some of the key messages and take-aways i was trying to illustrate:
  • The taxonomy versus folksonomy issue is not an “either/or” debate, but an opportunity for mutual progress. By combining the virtues of each approach into a working hybrid model, the enterprise can achieve its goal: a user-friendly system that encourages collaboration and makes information easier to find.
  • Good content management tools are not necessarily those with the most features or the greatest power, but those that encourage participation by being easy to use.
  • There is no one right way to incorporate a folksonomy into an enterprise. Instead, there are levels of engagement ranging from free and loose social tagging with little supervision to closely monitored tagging built around a tightly controlled core taxonomy. By precisely identifying your goals, you can more effectively determine the balance between community freedom and centralized control that is right for your enterprise.
  • Today, the state of enterprise folksonomies is comparable to the state of corporate intranets and portals a decade ago – a learn-as-you-go period of trial-and-error experimentation.
  • There is no end to the possibilities of a hybrid approach to enterprise taxonomies and folksonomies. In fact, the important conclusions are not the ones the ebook draw, but the ones that the reader reaches after careful consideration of their enterprise needs and ambitions.
You can download the ebook here - all download forms come directly to me, so i am not going to spam you. You will get an automatic thank you note from me. If you want to contact me directly please email me at daniela.barbosa{@}dowjones.com

Thanks again to all the great folks that helped me in finalizing this ebook and for Dow Jones for the opportunity to publish this it!


Jonathan Kranz said...

My compliments to the chef! Congrats on a successful launch at SLA.

daniela barbosa said...

Jonathan- i couldn't have done it without you- from concept to delivery you were a big part of the ebook- so thank you!

Folks if you need a copywriter and overall great guy to work with you you should check out Jonathan: www.kranzcom.com/

Paul D'Souza said...

Daniela - love the presentation and formatting of your article, very well done. Secondly, thank you for the thinking and the effort related to this new-ish subject. It is not very well know, but one that really impacts how businesses organize content.

Finally - I would like to introduce you to what we are doing with www.rawsugar.com - we are a new company/technology that creates the space for users to capture their interpretation of how appears to them. In essence capturing the Folksonomy that exists at the operation level.

Based on all the conversation we are having - this is a fast developing space. Thanks for supporting it.

Paul D'Souza

Joel Edelman said...

This isn't lipstick on a pig; you took an important concept and made it information and easier to understand with an engaging design. Nice work!