My career has been about creating and conveying information. Whether it was in data processing, radio, television, newspapers, marketing collateral, or online help… I have been a willing operative in the evil plot to drown the universe in words.
Lately I feel I have switched sides. Every day I now work on ways to search, filter, slice, dice, and otherwise make the vast smorgasbord of information palatable — or at least digestible.
There are some very cool technologies that people are developing: weapons in this war. I have previously outlined some ontological developments that will support the Semantic Web: RDF and OWL specifically. But there are other ways to categorize and navigate the sum of human knowledge. Many of these are built upon RDF itself, like the Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS).
Perhaps most interesting to me are the ways we can merge the formal ontological endeavors with group-driven organizations represented by things like folksonomies and collaborative filtering. I believe this blitzkrieg approach, using more than one technique at once, is how we’ll emerge from our battles triumphant!