Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Tagging, Categorization, & Cognitive Processes

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately about tagging, categorization, and organization - particularly since working with a new LMS has forced me to rework some of my standard organization schemes for resources and links for my online classes.

I found Rashmi Sinha's cognitive analysis of tagging to be very useful - particularly the section on the "post-activation analysis paralysis" that occurs with categorization. (Thanks, elearningpost for the link)

I agree that the key issue really has more to do with future "findability" rather than categorization itself - and for me this has to do with setting up the right conventions to fit in with the way I find and use information ... and I still can't help but find that tagging is too chaotic and counterintuitive for me - I guess I need the discipline of forming my cateogories, hierarchies, and conventions in advance, though I agree it's sometimes maddening to try to force different types of information into my current organizational schemes and to constantly re-categorize and subcategorize. Hmmm... I guess I have to give this one a bit more thought to see if it's really my own stubborness that's keeping me from reaping the full benefits of tagging ....