Anonymous — June 4, 2009 - 1:29pm
If you are planning to attend the upcoming SLA Annual Conference in Washington, DC, then you won't want to miss the SLA Tech Zone workshop Taxonomy and SharePoint--A Powerful Combination.
SharePoint helps your organization connect people to business critical information and expertise in order to increase productivity and reduce information overload. It achieves this by providing your employees with the ability to find relevant content in a wide range of repositories and formats. Understanding and using taxonomies within a SharePoint implementation to help users find content, is an essential part of ensuring a successful SharePoint deployment. Taxonomies can range from quite simple to very complex. In this session, we will cover the basics of evaluating what you can do to create a simple taxonomy that will yield the most benefits for your SharePoint implementations. You will have a chance to learn a range of Best Practices, from the basics of building a taxonomy to the hands-on skills of deploying that taxonomy within a SharePoint site.
This workshop is a suitable as either a quick-start or refresher in taxonomy managment for SharePoint. There are three sessions:
- Monday, 15 June 2009 9:00AM - 10:30AM (Ticketed Event #640)
- Monday, 15 June 2009 3:30PM - 5:00PM (Ticketed Event #660)
- Tuesday, 16 June 2009 11:30AM - 1:00PM (Ticketed Event #805)
Price: US $35 member / US $35 non-member / US $35 student member
For details and registration information, see the SLA 2009 site.
I recently attended a seminar on the 10 Steps to Business Efficiency with Content, Collaboration and Process given by the good people at AIIM (http://aiim.org) all about ECM strategies and best practices. This was a free seminar, well organized and well attended by a broad spectrum of representatives from all types of organizations, large and small, new and old industries. The topics of discussion too ranged from the most effective way to digitize archival assets; to applications to better allow for federated search across various data repositories; and then there was certainly a lot of discussion around what has become the most ubiquitous of ECM type applications, Microsoft SharePoint.
There were of course the usual quotes and statistics from AIIM, Forrester and Gartner regarding information proliferation and management today: The amount of data being produced is doubling every 18 months; 80% of this data is unstructured and 90% of that is entirely un-managed.
An interesting quote that I will paraphrase here was attributed to Thomas Washington , "The pursuit of knowledge in an age of information overload is less about the process of acquisition than it is about a proficiency of tossing things out." And regarding the storage of all of this information another interesting fact was thrown out: while 1 GB of storage may now cost an average of 20 cents, it costs $3,500 to review that same 1 GB of data and start to make sense of it in the context of your business. (AIIM)
As I listened to the various presentations and vendors I was struck by one thing: none seemed to offer a unified solution for using taxonomy more effectively to structure, classify and categorize the content that was going into these vast data repositories. Certainly it was agreed that there was value to such a process, but it is something that many organizations have still not recognized as absolutely necessary to fundamentally improve the tagging, organization and discovery of information within these huge libraries of data, documents, and other media.
It is our opinion that the integrated use of taxonomy applied to ECM applications, as well as across the rest of the enterprise, using a centralized and standardized set of vocabularies for navigation, search, discovery, meta-tagging and many other applications is a necessity in moving towards a unified means of data normalization and discoverability. To achieve this we offer services to get companies started as well as tools like Synaptica with out-of-the-box integrations to tools like SharePoint, but also more generic means of integrating with external applications via simple APIs and Web Services.
As the proliferation of data only increases over time and the means of digitizing archival records or utilizing native electronic formats becomes more efficient, storage becomes less a matter of cost and more a matter of management. The efficient means of identifying, tagging, categorizing and sorting information will be key to the effective operation of any organization.
A couple months back, my colleague also wrote up the 10 Rules of Successful ECM Implementation after attending an AAIM seminar that we have found quite useful in talking to business and technology owners about content access strategies.
We see many of our customers at the forefront of addressing these issues and working with them, we continue to work towards providing better and easier ways for data managers and end users alike to find what they are looking for. We look forward to sharing some of these use cases as well as hear from you on your successes and struggles!
Image| Flickr | ul Marqa
Anonymous — February 8, 2009 - 4:45pm
20 degrees, light snow, 8:00 on a Sunday morning….and I’m about to do a presentation and hopefully lead a discussion on taxonomy development and digital projects for the Networked Resources and Metadata Interest Group at the ALA Midwinter conference . As I entered the area, there was only one other person and I thought that perhaps my worst fears had come true – that only the group chair and I would be present! Soon however, additional people began to arrive and by the time we wrapped up the presentation and discussion there were about 40 people present. My presentation covered definitions and examples of controlled vocabularies, from simple lists up to and including ontologies. Examples and pros and cons of each type were presented and discussed. The uses of controlled vocabularies in search and navigation were also presented and discussed. The presentation concluded with more in depth information on term structure, term relationships, notation and other general considerations when developing taxonomies and controlled vocabularies. The slide deck I used is embedded below and it is also available from the ALA conference wiki .
Following the presentation we had about a 30 minute discussion on aspects of the presentation as well as how we use and develop controlled vocabularies for clients in the Dow Jones Taxonomy Services group. There was a good discussion on the differences in the way libraries use vocabularies and do vocabulary development and the way commercial enterprises use controlled vocabularies and taxonomies. Thanks to all the attendees for your participation! please contact me with questions at email@example.com
Leslie Owens' Forrester Report: How To Build A High-Octane Taxonomy For ECM And Enterprise Search Systems
Anonymous — January 27, 2009 - 4:00pm
We all know that building controlled vocabularies in enterprise settings is not simply a nice (fun?) intellectual effort. The point is to deliver value to the enterprise, whether it’s aiding in realizing revenue or ensuring full utilization of knowledge assets. In “How to Build a High-Octane Taxonomy for ECM and Enterprise Search Systems” (Forrester Nov 2008 free with registration), Leslie Owens presents a strong discussion of exactly how to go about building that “taxonomy” for your enterprise.
First and foremost, you should never engage in a “taxonomy” project in a vacuum. Ultimately, it’s all about context and knowing that context! Owens echoes this belief. We work closely with our clients to first clearly define and document the business objectives and ensure the project’s objectives are aligned with the enterprise’s objectives. The work must be done within the context of a specific set of business objectives and goals. Then we work with our clients to identify the systems which will utilize the controlled vocabularies. What are their constraints? How will they process the information? How might they display the information and surface the controlled vocabularies for the users? Speaking of users, they are the third aspect of context which we have front of mind as we work with our clients to initiate these long-term efforts. Who are they, what is their level of knowledge about the content and its use, why are they using the systems to be enhanced, how do they do their work and how do they think about the content base(s), etc.
Owens presents a good, but academic, discussion regarding the techniques for building controlled vocabularies. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter which techniques are employed or in what combination you use them as long as you’re effective and the outcome is a controlled vocabulary which can be deployed, maintained and re-used for long-term business value. In our experience, most engagements involve utilizing a hybrid of techniques in an iterative process. It’s not worth getting caught up in labeling the technique (even for those of us often referred to as “the word police”).
If you’re considering initiating a “taxonomy” program within your enterprise, or you’re already well down the road, we strongly recommend reading Owens’s report. You will glean good information to guide you in your process. One last thought I would leave you with; no matter how “simple” you think this effort is, it should not be undertaken believing it is a “once and done” project. You are initiating a long-term program which should always remain as an active component in your ECM, search, knowledge management, or whatever larger appropriate program.
Anonymous — January 20, 2009 - 8:15pm
Our global taxonomy consultants are always willing and ready to participate in conferences, local meetings and any other get togethers that they can get to and they often are asked to participate and lead discussions/presentations around different topics. (of course when they are not working on client engagements!!)
At this year's ALA Midwinter 2009 (American Library Association) meeting as part of the Networked Resources and Metadata Interest Group (NRMIG) there will be a discussion on taxonomy development on Sunday, January 25, from 8-10 a.m.The discussion will be led by our very own Laura Dorricott.
Laura is a Project Delivery Manager in our Dow Jones Taxonomy Services group and has many years of experience doing taxonomy and indexing projects including Taxonomy/thesaurus assessment, development and design.
Over on the Metadata Blog , the official blog of the Networked Resources and Metadata Interest Group (NRMIG), they are requesting input in advance on topics that should be covered- so if you are attending or have some 'remote' thoughts for Laura feel free to add your comments either here or there!
A request was already added by Diane Hillmann that she would " like to hear Laura discuss the differences she sees in the way libraries view vocabularies and vocabulary development and the way commercial entities view these issues. Is there something we can learn from those differences? I'd also like to hear a bit about how the commercial sector evaluates return on investment for this kind of development.".
Sounds like a great discussion and i can't wait for Laura's report from the field!