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IWMW2004 Slide 1 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification - using the library as a metaphor to demystify the process of portal taxonomy development.

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Presentation on theme: "IWMW2004 Slide 1 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification - using the library as a metaphor to demystify the process of portal taxonomy development."— Presentation transcript:

1 IWMW2004 Slide 1 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification - using the library as a metaphor to demystify the process of portal taxonomy development.

2 Slide 2 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Why A Taxonomy?: Oracle University Portal ~ Oracle10g AS Taxonomy: Oracle portal requirement Perhaps most crucial component of the portal project Taxonomy not understood: perception highly specialised technical mechanism Initial reaction buy in consultancy? Misconception: Taxonomy silo Taxonomy only required for portal

3 Slide 3 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Why A Taxonomy?: Issues Taxonomy concepts not understood by colleagues – We need one, how to we design and build?. The late realisation that a taxonomy was required to service other institutional requirements like the FOI publication scheme and Records Management. Folly to build taxonomy focusing on Oracle portal requirements – What happens if we change our portal platform?.

4 Slide 4 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Our Backgrounds Chris Milne, Academic Librarian Information Retrieval / Classic texts Sayers, W. C. B Sayers manual of classification for librarians. 5 th ed. London: Deutsch Rowley, J. E Organising knowledge: an introduction to information retrieval. Aldershot: Gower. Hunter, E. J. and Bakewell, K. G. B Cataloguing. 2 nd ed. London: Bingley.

5 Slide 5 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Our Backgrounds Dave MacCabe, IT Specialist User requirements analysis Business analysis Software development Web development Database design

6 Slide 6 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Blended Approach Taxonomy development at UAD will Use combination of Librarianship & IT skills sets Librarianship skills sets Information retrieval: designed to support users information seeking behaviour IT skills sets What can be achieved with technology?

7 Slide 7 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Workshop Outline Generate a more rounded view, clearer perspective of taxonomy development Looking to share our experiences and gather the experiences of others We dont have all the answers!

8 Slide 8 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification x 2 Surveys to ascertain: Range of skills sets available to portal / taxonomy teams Business drivers for developing / deploying taxonomies x 2 Presentations Taxonomy: theoretical background Information retrieval techniques related to taxonomy development Workshop Elements (1)

9 Slide 9 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Workshop Elements (2) x 3 Activities Discussion of survey results (x 2) Applying a taxonomy and meta-data to fixed-term contract example materials General / concluding discussion on project team skills sets and the use of Library staff

10 IWMW2004 Slide 10 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Skill Sets: Ourselves, our teams and our institutions.

11 Slide 11 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Useful Questions? What skills to we have? Do we think they are appropriate? What are the institutional perceptions of the skills required? Is it a converged service project? Will the team be supplemented by external consultancy?

12 IWMW2004 Slide 12 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Presentation: The t heoretical background to taxonomies and metadata

13 Slide 13 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Aim To set the scene for the key activity, Im going to try to sprint down the road from basic theoretical constructs to a concrete portal example.

14 Slide 14 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification What is a Taxonomy ? A systematic way of classifying knowledge A structure of concepts (hierarchical?) A common language for sharing knowledge An artificial, formal construct acting as a symbolic model of an information domain Examples Linnaeus plant taxonomy Organic compounds

15 Slide 15 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Dictionary Break TAXONOMY [Taxonomy is] the science of classification according to a predetermined system used to provide a conceptual framework for discussion, analysis or information retrieval. Ravid, Y. (2002)

16 Slide 16 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Dictionary Break ONTOLOGIES Descriptions of the meaning and nature of things, a superset of taxonomies – a formal explicit specification of a shared conceptualization KNOWLEDGE MAPS Used for knowledge representation – both visual and conceptual

17 Slide 17 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Why have a Taxonomy ? Essential for knowledge management Coping with infoglut Faster information retrieval and improved productivity Sharing of knowledge and comparison of knowledge bases and, of course, for us… Content management for institutional portals

18 Slide 18 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification In fact … A good taxonomy helps to inject order into the chaos and anarchy of a typical intranet or website.

19 Slide 19 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Organisational Drivers The costs, both financial and organizational, of poor access to information The requirement for regulatory compliance (for example Freedom of Information, Records Management) The requirement to manage the organization effectively. Higher levels of productivity in knowledge workers

20 Slide 20 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification In fact … [taxonomies are] a strategic imperative for any organization looking to manage and exploit its knowledge more effectively

21 Slide 21 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomic Issues … Hierarchical Key concepts

22 Slide 22 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification The FOI Scheme: A Hierarchy Class Groups 1. GOVERNANCE 2. FINANCIAL RESOURCES 3. HUMAN RESOURCES 4. PHYSICAL RESOURCES 5. STUDENT ADMINISTRATION AND SUPPORT 6. INFORMATION SERVICES 7. TEACHING AND LEARNING 8. RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT 9. EXTERNAL RELATIONS Class GroupClass 1. GOVERNANCE1.1 Legal Framework 1.2 Governance Structure 1.3 How the institution is organized 1.4 Information on the Institutional Context 1.5 Management Structure

23 Slide 23 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Issues with Hierarchies Hierarchy classification limitations Enforced Classification Scattering Matches information seeking behaviour? Implicit navigation Drives development (e.g. Oracle pages, tabs) Matches information seeking behaviour? Width.v. depth Seeking behaviour Dont forget publishing behaviour!

24 Slide 24 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification General Issues Push.v Pull. Google thinking. Management by exception Role-specific delivery

25 Slide 25 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Dictionary Break METADATA meta-data (or "meta data") Data about data. In data processing, meta-data is definitional data that provides information about, or documentation of, other data managed within an application or environment. The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe

26 Slide 26 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Metadata & Key Words

27 Slide 27 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Dictionary Break THESAURUS Labelling and relating objects and groups of objects with appropriate words and concepts as an aid to knowledge indexing and retrieval

28 Slide 28 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Student Coursework (1)

29 Slide 29 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Student Coursework (2)

30 Slide 30 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Key References ? Many texts – very few offer any practical advice just theoretical perspectives on the knowledge management area. Obtain practical advice from portal development environment documentation. MUST READ – Wyllie, J and Skyrme, D. J. Taxonomies: Frameworks for Corporate Knowledge, London: Ark Group, 2003.

31 IWMW2004 Slide 31 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomy Project Drivers: Or, What are we trying to achieve, and why?

32 Slide 32 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Useful Questions? Why do commercial organizations develop taxonomies, and are there similarities are there with HE? Who are the information consumers (students, staff, local business, general public, special interest bodies)? What are the real information needs and how do they arise? What technical infrastructure is being considered and/or used: does this place limitations on, or help the process of taxonomy development?

33 IWMW2004 Slide 33 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Presentation: Applying classification, cataloguing and indexing techniques to organise and retrieve information within portals

34 Slide 34 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Aim Provide a clearer perspective on the processes surrounding the development of a portal taxonomy, using the analogy of classification, cataloguing and indexing techniques as deployed in libraries to manage information

35 Slide 35 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification The Problem Taxonomy concepts initially not understood by colleagues We need one, how to we design and build? Reference document outlining rules for taxonomy development Use Oracle9iAS Portal as Your Knowledge Exchange

36 Slide 36 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Core Themes Identified Primary Taxonomy: concerned with Visual presentation of information and services to users Navigation Logical arrangement, two primary concerns How do we expect users to find, and retrieve information? How can the organisation of information, be designed in such a way to support institutional objectives? e.g. developing deeper engagement with the University Supermarket Taxonomy: designed to create zones, and protect goods

37 Slide 37 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Core Themes Identified Virtual Taxonomy: concerned with Development of meta-data to support retrieval via search-engine Building indexes, describing information and services Creation of an alternative approach to finding and retrieving information, not supported by any natural limitations within the Primary Taxonomy

38 Slide 38 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Core Themes Identified Imperative: develop an understanding of users information requirements and information seeking behaviour How will people look for content? How will people use content to support their jobs? How to people expect content to be organised and described? What is the structure of the organisation?

39 Slide 39 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Role of Organising Content? Organising on-line information attributed to IT solutions Parallels with the role of a Web Master i.e. technical skills set Role of Librarianship incorporating established Information Retrieval techniques used for hundreds of years to organise the complexities of library collections worldwide frequently overlooked

40 Slide 40 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Classic Information Retrieval Faceted / Non-faceted Classification Pre-coordinate & Post-coordinate Indexing Citation Order Principle of Inversion Cataloguing Thesauri / Subject Headings Automatic Indexing

41 Slide 41 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification A Taster: Principle of Inversion In an analytico-synthetic classification, the implementation of the Principle of Increasing Concreteness requires that the facets in the facet formula of a basic class should be in the decreasing sequence of concreteness. If the scheme has rounds of facets, the facets in each round should be in the decreasing sequence of concreteness S.R. Ranganathan's Prolegomena to Library Classification (2e) (1957).

42 Slide 42 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomy & Information Retrieval Equivalents Primary Taxonomy (equivalent to) Pre coordinated indexing Example: Dewey Decimal Classification Within portal: Predefined grouping of content and services, users have a predefined path to follow to find and retrieve information by virtue of what clicks they have to make and [hypertext] links to follow

43 Slide 43 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomy & Information Retrieval Equivalents Virtual Taxonomy (equivalent to) Post coordinated indexing Example: Library Catalogue (OPAC not card) Within portal: User decides how to find and retrieve information via the selection of keywords and index terms, applied to a search engine

44 Slide 44 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Example: Library Taxonomy Primary Taxonomy (i.e. How users see / approach the physical library stock) Users approach Library stock via collection Level 1 Short Loans Level 2 Reference Materials / Law Lending stock Level 3 Lending Stock Level 4 Journals Each collection organised by subject, using Dewey Decimal Classification Anticipates that users need to find materials based on subject, with related items being found together Supports information retrieval by browsing

45 Slide 45 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Characteristics: Primary Taxonomy Supports users, logical subject approach to retrieving information Organisation by Dewey Decimal Classification stable framework, adaptable for new subject areas e.g. Computer Games

46 Slide 46 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Limitations: Primary Taxonomy Scattering Classified works can only appear in one place within a library Works organised by citation order i.e. order in which the various facets are presented in a compound subject Medium – Period – Style - Country Leads to scattering works of related subject In this example items on Country will be scattered throughout the collection

47 Slide 47 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Primary Taxonomy Will Influence the physical design of the Portal Pages / Sub Pages, Regions and Tabs are the tools available in Oracle 10G to underpin a Primary Taxonomy Virtual Taxonomies can be implemented to support user requirements not provided for in the Primary Taxonomy

48 Slide 48 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification More than One Taxonomy? Library restricted to a single Primary Taxonomy due to nature of physical stock Electronic environment, Portal will support multiple taxonomies This could depend on the user entering the Portal e.g. different view for member of academic staff, student, support staff

49 Slide 49 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Example: Library Taxonomy Library Catalogue (OPAC) (Virtual Taxonomy) Supports alternative means of accessing materials in an attempt to overcome the limitations of the Primary Taxonomy i.e. search by: Author(s) Subject heading(s) Various facets that each item represents can be included, whereas the Primary Taxonomy (Dewey classification) centres on primary subject area Title Series

50 Slide 50 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Catalogue Search Indexes Randle, Kevin D. UFO crash at Roswell / -- New York : Avon p. ; 19cm ISBN (pbk) : £6.99 : CIP entry (Jun.) Unidentified flying objects.Unidentified flying objects - Sighting and encounters - New Mexico - Roswell.Unidentified flying objects - Censorship - United States. I. Schmitt, Donald R. II. Title.

51 Slide 51 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Virtual Taxonomy ~ Catalogue Meta-data equates to the Subject, Author, Title, Series entries used within a library catalogues Controlled search terms (vocabulary) to improve recall E-commerce see Electronic Commerce Alternative retrieval mechanism aiming to overcome limitations of classification scheme employed e.g. Author search

52 Slide 52 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Virtual Taxonomy Meta-data Describing portal content via: Attributes Categories Perspectives Creating indexes for search engines in Oracle 10G, providing an alternative virtual taxonomy to supplement the primary taxonomy Again, similar concept to the Library catalogue

53 Slide 53 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomy Design / Content Analysis Anticipated user behaviour i.e. who will use the Portal and how will people expect to find and use the Portals information and services This can be identified via content analysis e.g. how will students expect to find a past paper? If students cannot click their way to a past paper, how can the Virtual taxonomy be used to quickly, efficiently, intuitively provide the desired information?

54 Slide 54 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomy Design / Content Analysis Is your Taxonomy required to support other institutional objectives e.g. FOI, Records Management? How will this effect index design & construction i.e. selection of meta-data? Index under document type related to FOI publication scheme?

55 Slide 55 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Suggested Steps: Designing UAD Portal Taxonomy What do we need to organise? What is going into the Portal Content / Document Analysis FOI / Records Management functionality! Decide how best to organise material Organisation will support design objective i.e. deepening student engagement with the University Efficient information retrieval(Logical groupings)

56 Slide 56 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Suggested Steps: Designing UAD Portal Taxonomy Identify gaps in the Primary Taxonomy Starting point to think about best approach to designing the Virtual Taxonomy to support alternative paths for our users Primary Taxonomy will scatter documents and services, how will your meta-data / search engine approach bridge these problems External examiners reports may be organised in the Primary Taxonomy by School Other users may wish to see all these reports as a single group Meta-data element document type to support retrieval of all external examiner reports

57 Slide 57 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Conclusions Information retrieval techniques developed to organise complexities of human knowledge Techniques applied to libraries and specialised collections remain valid and can be successfully applied to organise knowledge within portals

58 Slide 58 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Taxonomy: the Science of Classification Opportunity to bring together the combined skills sets of Information Professionals and Web developers to develop a relatively inexpensive in- house solution to taxonomy development, minimising the requirement to draw upon external consultancy.

59 IWMW2004 Slide 59 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Skill Sets: Can traditional information retrieval skills-sets be usefully applied to support taxonomy creation?

60 Slide 60 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Useful Questions? Have you previously considered using librarians to support portal / taxonomy development? If not, would you now consider using librarians to support portal / taxonomy? Do todays librarians retain these classic information retrieval skills?

61 IWMW2004 Slide 61 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Key Activity: - Applying meta-data and recognising relevant information consumers

62 Slide 62 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Topic Deliberately left field so we can focus on the process rather than the information itself. The use of fixed-term employment contracts in higher education institutions.

63 Slide 63 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Organization Part 1 – Technical Briefing Part 2 – Background Information Part 3 – Applying a taxonomy and meta-data

64 Slide 64 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Organization Part 1 – Technical Briefing Part 2 – Background Information Part 3 – Applying a taxonomy and meta-data

65 Slide 65 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Part 1 – Technical Briefing Following on from the mini-talks already delivered, I want to pose a series of questions that we need to address in Part 3 of this activity. Useful to have these questions in mind during the background details that follow. Actually a good, real world example but only because youll need to get involved in minutiae across the institution.

66 Slide 66 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Regulatory Compliance the Freedom of Information Act the Data Protection Act the Disability Discrimination Act ? How do we manage compliance with :-

67 Slide 67 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Internal Information Consumers Who needs this content? How will they use it? How should it be delivered (push.v.pull)? How do these information consumers look for information? How should you best organize content to meet user requirements and institutional objectives?

68 Slide 68 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification External Information Consumers Who will search for this content? How will they use it? How do these information seekers look for information? What will be the context of the search and what constitutes related content?

69 Slide 69 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Information Lifecycle How frequently do you anticipate it will change? How can we ensure appropriate classification of updates? How should the updated information be delivered to internal and external seekers?

70 Slide 70 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Finally, the content… Our example is the use of fixed-term employment contracts. Chris will now provide the relevant background on this topic.

71 IWMW2004 Slide 71 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Key Activity: - Applying meta-data and recognising relevant information consumers

72 Slide 72 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Topic Deliberately left field so we can focus on the process rather than the information itself. The use of fixed-term employment contracts in higher education institutions.

73 Slide 73 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Organization Part 1 – Technical Briefing Part 2 – Background Information Part 3 – Applying a taxonomy and meta-data

74 Slide 74 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Organization Part 1 – Technical Briefing Part 2 – Background Information Part 3 – Applying a taxonomy and meta-data

75 Slide 75 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Background Significant concern as to the high degree of use of FTCs within HE (40%) Sector Reviews of HE (Dearing, Bett) Funding Councils Trade Unions HEIs instructed to reduce reliance of FTCs

76 Slide 76 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Legislation / Guidance EC Fixed-term Work Directive 1999/70/EC UK SI: 2002 no 2034 JNCHES Guidance Agreed standard between University employers association and recognised trade unions as to use and management of FTCs within HE

77 Slide 77 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Issues Clear evidence to suggest that HEIs remain heavily reliant on use of FTCs Introduction of legislation, JNCHES guidelines and pressure from funding councils has not led to any significant reduction in use Culture of over dependence Contract research funding Blunt tool to avoid performance management

78 Slide 78 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Information Typically HEIs require to improve information flow re FTCs to improve Awareness of obligations as employers / managers Ensure employees aware of the protection now afforded to them under law Remove culture of dependence Monitor use Demonstrate ethical HR policies to funding council

79 IWMW2004 Slide 79 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Key Activity: - Applying meta-data and recognising relevant information consumers

80 Slide 80 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Topic Deliberately left field so we can focus on the process rather than the information itself. The use of fixed-term employment contracts in higher education institutions.

81 Slide 81 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Organization Part 1 – Technical Briefing Part 2 – Background Information Part 3 – Applying a taxonomy and meta-data

82 Slide 82 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Activity Organization Part 1 – Technical Briefing Part 2 – Background Information Part 3 – Applying a taxonomy and meta-data

83 Slide 83 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Part 3 – Applying a Taxonomy Group discussion.

84 IWMW2004 Slide 84 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Final Discussion: Project team skill sets and the use of library staff.

85 Slide 85 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Learning Outcomes A clearer perspective on the processes surrounding the development of a portal taxonomy, using the analogy of classification, cataloguing and indexing techniques as deployed in libraries to manage information A realisation that the combined skills sets of 'information professionals' and 'Web developers' can be brought together to develop a relatively inexpensive 'in-house' solution to taxonomy development minimising the requirement to draw upon external consultancy

86 Slide 86 Taxonomy: The Science of Classification Useful Questions? Are we happy with the vocabulary surrounding taxonomies and portals? Are there key references? Do we have the appropriate skill sets available already in the information management professions in our institution?


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