Chaos. It’s everywhere around us. Dark energy is forcing our universe into ever-expanding chaos. Climate change fosters chaos. Misplacing a credit card constitutes the worst chaos of all.
Those same forces are turning your inventory of tags into chaos, and Brightspot’s Dynamic Taxonomy extension imposes badly needed order on the mayhem. Before we get into the details, let’s go over a few concepts.
“Tags” are very familiar to anyone in electronic publishing. Authors use tags to group related assets. For example, a cookbook publisher create tags
Vegetables, and applies those tags to individual recipes.
A “taxonomy” is a classification of related objects. Arguably the most famous taxonomy was developed by Carl Linnaeus, who placed many living organisms into categories ranging from kingdom to species. Electronic tags, such as the cookbook publisher’s
Vegetables, are also a taxonomy.
As a publication grows, its inventory of tags naturally grows as well. Our cookbook publisher may accumulate 100 vegetable recipes, making the
Vegetable tag less useful. A visitor clicking on the
Vegetable tag sees 100 recipes, but is really only interested in recipes using carrots. Chaos starts to set in, and at some point, it’s more realistic to make the
Vegetable tag a category, and place individual tags into the category. The same is true for the
At this point, our taxonomy has some structure.
As our cookbook publisher branches into more sophisticated cuisines with ever more recipes, there may be dozens of categories, each containing dozens of tags. It becomes more difficult for editors to find the correct tag to apply to a particular asset. With the Dynamic Taxonomy extension, you assign certain categories to certain content types.
Our cookbook publisher has two content types:
Lunch (and my favorite,
Dessert). The Brightspot administrator limits tag selection for dinner recipes to the
Vegetables categories, and limits tag selection for lunch recipes to the
Vegetables category. This taxonomy greatly reduces the number of tags an editor sees in the content edit form, which also helps ensure that other recipes with the same tag are actually similar.
Most Brightspot customers use Dynamic Taxonomy as a replacement for Brightspot’s standard Tag feature. Because the concepts between Tag and Dynamic Taxonomy are similar, editors make an easy transition from one to the other.
The primary benefits of Dynamic Taxonomy for editors are faster and more accurate tagging; for visitors, clicking on a dynamic tag results in a focused, usable list of related assets.