Anonymous — January 22, 2013 - 10:34am
While it’s no surprise that pizza and cake provide the essential fuel that powers many software development projects, it is a pleasure when one of our customers has a specially decorated cake made to celebrate the successful deployment of their customized Synaptica taxonomy management software. The project, completed this month, was a collaboration between Synaptica and the content management team at Elsevier, Netherlands.
Please let us know if you have any comments or questions.
Join us at Taxonomy Boot Camp 2012 for a presentation on, " Chaos-Control: Enterprise Management of Federated Taxonomies"
Jim Sweeney — August 26, 2012 - 9:00pm
On Tuesday October 16, 2012 please join us at Taxonomy Boot Camp in Washington DC for a presentation on, "Chaos-Control: Enterprise Management of Federated Taxonomies" from 2:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.
Jim Sweeney, Product manager for Synaptica will disccus the problems and suggest solutions surounding Enterprise taxonomy management.
Here is a synopsis of the presentation:
Enterprise taxonomy is generally synonymous with centralized taxonomy just as federated taxonomy is generally synonymous with decentralized taxonomy. Each model has its pros and cons. What happens when an organization needs both the efficiency and cross-searchability associated with centralized taxonomy management and the autonomy and heterogeneity associated with decentralized taxonomy management? Drawing upon real-life examples this presentation compares and contrasts the two models and then explores various hybrid solutions, which bridge the divide to combine and deliver advantages from the alternative approaches.
We hope to see you there!
In late October of 2011, Intel’s Sherry Chang gave a presentation at the Taxonomy Boot Camp conference in Washington DC describing the successful implementation of this solution in the Synaptica KMS software. Many companies large and small may find themselves in a similar situation, and Synaptica looks forward to addressing this and any other challenges that they are presented with as a result of the ever-evolving requirements of enterprise taxonomy management.
When Intel came to Synaptica in June of 2010, they had a problem, and they wanted the Synaptica development team to try and help out with it. Intel has a very large product catalog of integrated chips, CPUs, motherboards, and other computer components sold around the world. They also have a large, global work-force with requirements to source, manufacture, sell, and support those products worldwide. As a result, what should have been standardized product terms were being segmented, re-organized, and reprioritized by different internal groups and business lines, each to suit their own requirements and view of how they needed the catalog to be organized.
The result was 20 different product hierarchies that were being used across the organization, each one with variations on product names and descriptions for what should have been identical product entries. The requirement, then, was to allow for the creation of multiple, distinct product hierarchies to suit each business user’s needs, while utilizing the exact same terms to form these hierarchies.
After gaining a better understanding of the issue and the desire to maintain multiple, parallel hierarchies in the same set of terms, the Synaptica team’s initial response was to say, “That would break all of the rules!” An example provided by Intel had the term “Processors” as the parent to “Desktop” and “Server” for one internal customer, and as the child of those terms for another. Given existing rules for hierarchical taxonomy construction, you can’t have a term be both the parent and child of another term. It just couldn’t be done!
But, after further discussions and some out-of-the-box thinking by the Synaptica development team, an innovative approach was developed that would require the creation of an entirely new relationship class called “Multiple BT/NT” (mBT/mNT). This new class would allow for multiple, parallel hierarchies to exist using the same set of terms, a concept that could simply not be accomplished with the traditional hierarchical relationship “BT/NT” class.
Example of parallel, multiple hierarchies created using the mBT/mNT relationship class using a singular set of terms (the Term Cloud); From Intel’s Sherry Chang’s presentation, “Hierarchies & Polyhierarchies: Is More Better?” 2011.
[Taxonomy Bootcamp Takeaway] In a case study presentation Dave Clarke of Synaptica described how the Taxonomy Warehouse online directory had been re-engineered as an ontology. Clarke said one of the essential differences between the legacy system and the new system is that in the old system, an information search terminated with results and individual records, whereas in the new system, there are no dead-ends: whatever you are looking at, the ontology provides new paths and more information discovery options. Clarke gave an example where a search for a blog leads to a bio about the blogger, which then leads to a description of the company they work for. This leads to information about products and services the company provides. From here links to generic product and services types open the window on all the other companies providing similar products and services. Dave's presentation is available from: www.synapticasoftware.com/images/ReengineeringTWweb.pdf.
[Taxonomy Bootcamp 2011 Takaway] Joseph Busch of Project Performance Corporation (PPC) delivered a practical presentation that aimed to help people understand objective criteria for evaluating the capabilities of current taxonomy software tools. PPC is a leading management consultancy with a growing taxonomy practice. Busch analysed editorial functionality, degrees of sophistication, database definition, import and export options, and workflow and governance. Busch then gave detailed descriptions for four specific products and summarized the results in a product vector with two axes: ease of implementation and completeness of vision. Microsoft Excel scored top on ease of implementation but low on vision (functionality). While MultiTes did not score high on either scale it was selected as a notable tool because its simplicity and low price point have established it as a prominent entry-level tool. The three tools closest to the top-right quadrant were SmartLogic, Synaptica and TopBraid. In Busch’s assessment these three tools are very close together, with each one having some distinguishing selling points. Joseph's presentation is available online at: www.taxonomystrategies.com/presentations/2011/Taxonomy%20Tools%20Requirements%20and%20Capabilities-Busch%20and%20Wahl.pdf.