Ever since getting into del.icio.us and gmail (and now spurl.net), I’ve been pretty much sold on the utility of the tagging metaphor as opposed to the folder metaphor. If that doesn’t make sense to you, here’s my layman’s description of the difference:
You have item ‘A’ and it needs to be organized somewhere. Should it go in folder ‘Project A’ or should it go in folder ‘Group A’? You have to choose one, then remember it. This is what we’ve all grown used to with our computers. Between tags and robust search tools, it’s going away.
You have item ‘A’ and it needs to be organized somewhere. You can tag it with ‘Project A’ and with ‘Group A’. Now when you go looking for it in ‘Project A’ on Tuesday, it’ll be there. And when you need it again on Thursday, but can only remember to look in ‘Group A’, it’ll be there too. Nice.
Pretty much all blog software allows you to organize your posts into various ‘categories.’ Categories are basically tags, since a single post can belong in several categories.
As far as I can tell (and I’m no expert) the tag metaphor is pretty much the same idea as faceted classification in library science, but dumbed down for us commoners.
Okay, enough with the background. I really just wanted to point out that Technorati has just added a tag search to their already fine services (via Many 2 Many). Be sure to check out the zeitgeist. Neato.