It’s All About Tagging – Or Is It?
One of my favorite subjects – metadata tagging. For years, metadata would make business professionals stare glassily into space when explained to them. No more, I hope. Metadata is now information currency and if it isn’t woven into technology frameworks as the critical component in achieving organizational business objectives, then enterprises suffer from content paralysis. So that’s my admonishment to all organizations that remain clueless about the value, and risk, of metadata.
For those happy organizations attempting to transition their metadata from a liability to an asset, let’s talk about managing it. How are you going to do it? How much time will it take and how much ongoing maintenance? Yikes, this could be a full-time job.
How about a taxonomy? Oh no you say, we need artificial intelligence, natural language processing, or some cutting-edge technology that really isn’t all it’s cracked up to be and will take years to implement. Ahem, can we get back to reality and stop thinking about pie in the sky and hype, and start thinking about what does the job?
A taxonomy can take all your lovely metadata and organize it. In fact, there are solutions that can generate the lovely metadata in the first place. Really, you say. Yes. How accurate are they? Well, I would guarantee they are far more accurate than your end-user and system tagging.
Seriously, evaluating solutions that combine metadata generation and taxonomy management should be considered a priority in 2018. A pragmatic approach should be taken, assessing an easy-to-deploy taxonomy that provides a rapid return on investment. This effectively overcomes the typical academic methodology used by some vendors – where complex ontologies are used and become difficult to deploy, manage, and maintain – and the plug-and play-versions of machine learning that are incredibly hard to customize, require significant investment in time and resources and, of course, can change as new content is ingested.
Some are very good tools, most are not. So it’s a buyer-beware type scenario. Robust tools to manage metadata are no longer a ‘nice to have’ but are now a ‘must have.’ Choose wisely.
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