Everyday we go about our lives, make decisions, and use various different offline and online tools to help us manage different tasks. What we are often not aware off is the fact that the base for many of those tools have a base heavily relying on taxonomies. But what even are mentioned taxonomies?
Taxonomies are essential tools for organizing and categorizing information, and they play a significant role in making daily life easier for individuals. They can be found everywhere, from libraries and museums to online platforms and databases, providing a structured and meaningful way of organising and accessing information. Madi Salomon, who teaches a course in the Content Strategy master’s course at FH Joanneum, speaks about Taxonomies and their benefits in a podcast episode of „The Cherryloaf Podcast“.
The Importance of Categorising
One of the primary benefits is that they make it easier to find information. Taxonomies provide a clear and organized structure for categorizing and labeling information, making it easier to locate and access relevant information. For example, a library uses a taxonomy to categorize books by subject, author, or genre, making it easier for patrons to find the books they are looking for. Online platforms, such as e-commerce websites and search engines, use taxonomies to categorize products and search results, making it easier for users to find what they are looking for.
Taxonomies also play a crucial role in information management and retrieval. By organizing information into categories and subcategories, they help to reduce information overload and make it easier to find relevant information. For example, museums use taxonomies to categorize their collections and make it easier for visitors to find and access information about specific exhibits. In the workplace, taxonomies can be used to categorize and manage information within a company, such as customer data, product information, and financial records.
Taxonomies for Consistency
Another important benefit of taxonomies is that they provide consistency and structure in the way information is organized and accessed. This consistency makes it easier for individuals to understand and navigate different systems and platforms, improving the overall user experience. For example, when using a search engine, individuals expect to find similar results for similar searches, regardless of the platform they are using. Taxonomies help ensure that this consistency is maintained, making it easier for individuals to find the information they need.
The system plays a key role in knowledge management and the creation of information products. By organising information into categories and subcategories, taxonomies provide a framework for creating and distributing information products, such as books, databases, and websites. For example, an encyclopedia uses a taxonomy to organise and categorise information, making it easier for users to access and understand the information. Similarly, a database uses a taxonomy to categorize and manage information, making it easier for users to search and retrieve relevant information.
Analyse complex information
They can also be used to improve decision making and problem-solving. By categorising information into relevant categories, taxonomies make it easier for individuals to understand and analyze complex information. This is particularly useful in fields such as finance and healthcare, where accurate and timely information is critical for making informed decisions. For example, in finance, taxonomies are used to categorise financial data and make it easier for analysts to identify trends and patterns. In healthcare, taxonomies are used to categorise medical information and make it easier for healthcare professionals to diagnose and treat patients.
In conclusion, taxonomies play a vital role in making daily life easier for individuals by providing a structured and meaningful way of organizing and accessing information. They can be found everywhere, from libraries and museums to online platforms and databases, and they provide numerous benefits, such as improved information management and retrieval, consistency and structure in information access, and improved decision making and problem-solving. As technology continues to evolve and information becomes increasingly complex, the importance of taxonomies will only continue to grow.