Tuesday, January 01, 2008

5 Ways to Continue Tagging

So here we go, January first, and I'm starting superfresh to read blogs and crossblog what I think is important (without thinking that it's a waste to pump around information). Marshall Kirkpatrick blogged about 5 ways you can fall in love with tagging again.

Though I've never falling out of love with tagging, it gives a good overview of the diverse applications of tagging to share resources. I'm still as ever fanaticly tagging webresources with my delicious account. Always when I find resources that I don't think I can read now, but sound like topics I may need in future, I tag them. For instance I tagged resources with the name 'widgets' and now I'm preparing an overview of blogwidgets and my delicious account is just a wealth of information. But I also tag resources I read that are powerful and mark them with top10 as a way to find good resources when I need them. I contribute to the collective NPK4dev tag (knowledge management for development resources) and I tag freelance resources (tagged with 'van_start') and feed their RSS feed our Ning forum for freelancers. Marshall also talks about his move from delicious to magnolia, something we are contemplating too.

Here are the 5 reasons Marshall wrote down (I shortened it a little, so if you want read the full blogpost):

1. Re-enforce your learning at the end of year
The inspiration for this post came from social media aficionado Tim Bonnemann's practice of tagging all the words he looks up online with the tag "dictionary." At the end of the year, he posted the full list of links to his blog. What a great way to deepen recall of the things you've learned!

2. Build a collaborative tag stream for a community of practice
One of the best things about tagging URLs is that all kinds of RSS feeds become available. One community of practice, a loose group of nonprofit technologists, uses the tag "nptech" to mark items of interest in del.icio.us, ma.gnolia, flickr, youtube and elsewhere. The feeds for nptech items in all of these services are then combined into one NPtech metafeed.

3. Create a shared items feed and put it on your web page
Many of our readers probably use the shared items feature in Google Reader. That service continues to grow more sophisticated - last week it added any shared items feeds from your Gmail contacts to your list of subscribed feeds, for example.
While that's pretty hot - there's something to be said for baking your own, too. If you tag items something like "toshare" in a service like del.icio.us or Ma.gnolia then you can share URLs that you find outside of Google Reader and you can switch feed readers/tagging services without loosing all your shared items subscribers. I did this on my personal blog this year by taking the feed from my items tagged "toshare" in del.icio.us and running it through the service FeedDigest. There I got a PHP snippet to display my links and notes on the sidebar of my blog

4. Tag into a mobile reader
In addition to tagging things "toshare" I've also taken recently to tagging items "toread" and pulling that feed into Netvibes. Adding my toread tag to Netvibes has made it easy for me to catch up on things I want to read while traveling around town. Sometimes I'll just read the most widely popular items from my toread feed, by running that feed through AideRSS and getting a new feed of the 20% of those items that were most tagged, Dugg, commented on and linked to. AideRSS can be applied on top of all of the methods on this list.

5. Tag your microblog posts
I know I'm not alone in finding it much easier to share information over Twitter than by blogging or tagging in a social bookmarking app. Enter Hashtags. Like tagging for Twitter, hashtags are terms you put after a # in a post. Hashtags.org then aggregates all the tweets using a given tag and publishes an RSS feed. Reading a feed of short messages sent from the #sandiegofires was very interesting, for example. Though you can certainly just subscribe to a search feed through a service like Terraminds - Hashtags let you do all the things in microblogging that you can do using the methods described in numbers 1 through 4 above. See also Dave Sifry's new project Hoosgot - a service he calls the Lazyweb for the age of Twitter.

6 comments:

Beth's Blog said...

Hello! I've never fallen out of love, but sometimes fall out of the habit.

wondering if you have thoughts about tagging communities and twitter?

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