Vocabulary Management Issues

“Issues in Vocabulary Management” is the latest Technical Report (TR-06-2017) published by the National InformationStandards Organization (NISO), approved on September 25, 2017. I had the honor of serving on its working group, specifically on its subgroup for Vocabulary Use/Reuse. The most significant NISO publication for controlled vocabularies is ANSI/NISO Z39.19-2005…

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Avoiding Mistakes in Taxonomy Hierarchical Relationships

Perhaps the most important issue in designing a hierarchical taxonomy is creating hierarchical relationships between terms correctly. This makes the taxonomy intuitively easy to understand and navigate by all kinds of users, regardless of whether they have had any training on using a taxonomy. The basic principles of the hierarchical…

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Vocabularies and Controlled Vocabularies

I have long considered a taxonomy as a particular, structured kind of controlled vocabulary. More recently, however, I have been hearing of “vocabularies” without the word “controlled” in front, although still for the purposes of information management and retrieval, which is cause to wonder: are controlled vocabularies and vocabularies the…

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Taxonomies and Terminologies

The current specialties of taxonomy management and terminology management have different histories and serve different purposes, but they are in fact closely related, and taxonomies and terminologies can be linked to share knowledge. At the annual Taxonomy Boot Camp conference in Washington, DC, earlier this month I met a terminologist…

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Deviating from Taxonomy Standards

In my last blog post, I suggested that enterprise taxonomies need not follow the standards for controlled vocabularies and thesuari (ANSI/NISO Z39.19 guidelines and ISO 25964-1) to the same extent as “traditional” discipline taxonomies and thesauri. I say this cautiously, though. Standards should not be ignored for any taxonomy, but…

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Enterprise Taxonomies vs. Traditional Taxonomies

A book that I have been reading (Structures for Organizing Knowledge: Exploring Taxonomies, Ontologies, and Other Schemas, by June Abbas, 2010) got me thinking about the comparison between corporate/enterprise taxonomies and other “traditional taxonomies”. I found it intriguing that Abbas presents corporate or “professional” taxonomies in the same chapter on…

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