The Accidental Taxonomist, 2nd edition
by Heather Hedden
Published by Information Today Inc., June, 2016
496 pages/softbound, ISBN 978-1-57387-499-1
Regular: $39.50; Web-order: $35.55; Ebook: $27.65
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Summary & Endorsements
The Accidental Taxonomist is the most comprehensive guide available to the art and science of building information taxonomies. Heather Hedden—a leading taxonomy expert and instructor—walks readers through the process, displaying her trademark ability to present highly technical information in straightforward, comprehensible English.
Drawing on numerous real-world examples, Hedden explains how to create terms and relationships, select taxonomy management software, design taxonomies for human versus automated indexing, manage enterprise taxonomy projects, and adapt taxonomies to various user interfaces. The result is a practical and essential guide for information professionals who need to effectively create or manage taxonomies, controlled vocabularies, and thesauri.
In this fully revised second edition, Hedden provides updates on taxonomy standards, development techniques, and career opportunities for taxonomists. She presents fresh survey data and offers new and expanded coverage of such critical topics as taxonomy testing, metadata, linked data, and SharePoint. Drawing on numerous real-world examples, she explains how to create terms and relationships, select taxonomy management software, design taxonomies for human versus automated indexing, manage enterprise taxonomy projects, adapt taxonomies to various user interfaces, and more.
Endorsements to the Second Edition
Hedden’s book has quickly established itself as a comprehensive and indispensable resource in the field. In covering numerous important new directions (and software offerings!) this second edition should appeal to wide-eyed newcomers and experienced taxonomists alike.
—Marjorie M. K. Hlava, President, Access Innovations, Inc., and Author, The TaxoBook Series
Taxonomy has finally gone mainstream and I hold The Accidental Taxonomist at least partially responsible. Hedden mashes together practical applications with librarian-quality standards, bleeding-edge technologies with practitioner lifestyles. …Read this book.
—Seth Maislin, Principle Consultant, Earley Information Science
A well-written, well-structured book. … highly recommended to all involved in building taxonomies and on the verge of entering this field. It is also highly recommended to faculty teaching about taxonomies—both as a resource to develop their own teaching material and as recommended material for students.
—Ina Fourie, The Electronic Library
Endorsements to the First Edition
In The Accidental Taxonomist, Heather Hedden has taken on the prickly challenge of setting definitions to the very terms her community of peers has trouble agreeing on! She clearly details the conceptual and practical notions of controlled vocabularies so that newcomers to the field can understand what they’ve gotten themselves into and experienced practitioners can have a common frame of reference. This work is richly packed and will become a standard reference book in the field. Ms. Hedden has taken on the challenge of controlling the terms of controlled vocabularies and provided a valuable reference book in the process.
—Christine Connors, Principal, TriviumRLG LLC
From the novice taxonomist to the experienced professional, all will find good, practical advice in The Accidental Taxonomist.
—Trish Yancey, COO Synaptica, LLC
This book squarely addresses the growing demand for and interest in taxonomy. … Heather brings a variety of background experience, including not only taxonomy construction but also abstracting and content categorization and creating back-of-book indexes. These experiences serve her well by building a broad perspective on the similarities as well as real differences between often overlapping types of work.
—Marjorie M. K. Hlava, President, Access Innovations, Inc., and Chair, SLA Taxonomy Division
A wealth of descriptive reference content is balanced with expert guidance. … Open The Accidental Taxonomist to begin the learning process or to refresh your understanding of the depth and breadth of this demanding discipline.
—Lynda Moulton, Principal Consultant, LWM Technology Services
This book is an excellent resource for librarians and non-librarians working with taxonomies, library students, and for librarians who wish to learn more about information structure and organization.
—Rebeca Befus, Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship
Discussion of Topics
A discussion of some of the topics that appear in The Accidental Taxonomist are in a podcast interview of Heather Hedden conducted by Jorge Arango as part of his series, The Informed Life, posted July 19, 2020:
Heather Hedden on Taxonomies