Learning Opportunity for Competitive Intelligence

April 22, 2015  
Posted in Business Intelligence, News, Taxonomy

The Special Libraries Association, Competitive Intelligence Division is bringing a learning opportunity to you. “Creating Competitive Intelligence Taxonomies to Visualize Your Business Environment” is a structured approach to intelligence information that makes competitive intelligence faster and even more efficient. Using topic maps or taxonomies, this webinar demonstrates ways to visualize and organize a dynamic business environment. 

The event is scheduled for Wednesday, April 29, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. EDT. The presenter is Jesper Martell from Comintelli, a provider of competitive intelligence software. You can register at this link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8757607181802983170

The Competitive Intelligence Division encompasses all aspects of competitive intelligence, including planning, identifying decision makers’ intelligence needs, collecting and analyzing information, disseminating intelligence products and services, evaluating intelligence activities, promoting intelligence services among a client base, and additional industry-specific issues.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.

Action Heroes vs. Super Heroes

April 22, 2015  
Posted in News, Taxonomy

How could I not share this little gem? Labeled the “action hero manifesto”, this wheel classifies the various attributes that surround a superhero. For instance, an action hero is not a superhero. This interesting information came from Esquire magazine in their article, “The Taxonomy of Action Heroes.

Furthermore, an action hero has to be able to die. And an action hero drives a car. Always. Even if he lives in Manhattan.

There is value in classification. True taxonomies can help manage big data by providing a solid standards-based taxonomy to index against. The results are comprehensive and consistent search results. Access Innovations is one of a very small number of companies able to help its clients generate ANSI/ISO/W3C-compliant taxonomies because of consistency.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Data Harmony, a unit of Access Innovations, the world leader in indexing and making content findable.

Opening the Data for Future Advancements

April 22, 2015  
Posted in News, search, Taxonomy, Technology

A new report by the IBM Center for The Business of Government has looked at cities that have used innovation and technology to improve city services. Through a variety of methods, cities are leveraging information technology (IT) for better management, citizen engagement, and service. This interesting information came to our attention from GCN in their article, “4 tactics cities use for better management.”

One of the common denominators in these success stories is the data and more specifically, how it is available. Many cities are making data more accessible through open data initiatives, in which government agencies release electronic versions of documents or machine-readable data in one central location. With taxonomies, thesauri, and visualization tools being used to organize the data, open data can be searched with ease and comprehensive results.

It is refreshing and inspiring to see folks being creative about how the technology advancements of today will work for the betterment of our society in the future.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.

Alice Redmond-Neal Crosses the 30,000-Abstract Threshold for IFEBP and Access Innovations, Inc.

April 20, 2015  
Posted in Access Insights, Featured, Taxonomy

Access Innovations, Inc. is proud to announce that one of its devoted staff members has crossed a large indexing and abstracting milestone.

Chief taxonomist Alice Redmond-Neal has worked on over 50 projects for Access Innovations, from the most general to the most specific, but none has she worked on more closely than her long-standing work for the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP). For years, Alice has written abstracts for and indexed their articles, and has now crossed over the 30,000-abstract mark. Regarding this feat, Margie Hlava, President of Access Innovations, stated, “Alice has long proven herself to be a valued employee, a skilled taxonomist, and most importantly, a great friend to the company. From everyone at Access Innovations, I want to congratulate her and thank her for her dedicated work.”

Alice remarks, “I am very honored to have worked for EB for so long on this project. It’s important to note that many people have worked on this project, but their trust in the quality of my work and the strong service that Access Innovations offers is well noted. It doesn’t hurt that we have built such a warm and friendly relationship with the client, as well!”

Since 1986, Access Innovations has been producing the Employee Benefits INFOSOURCE database, which provides a centralized resource for timely, comprehensive information about all facets of employee benefit plans. Access Innovations indexes and abstracts articles from more than 350 journals and newsletters and, in the nearly 30 years since the project began, Access Innovations has produced over 100,000 abstracts; Alice herself has been an integral part of nearly a third of that work.

Access Innovations looks forward to the continued growth of the INFOSOURCE database and waits eagerly as Alice inches toward the next milestone.


About Access Innovations, Inc. – www.accessinn.com, www.dataharmony.com, www.taxodiary.com

Founded in 1978, Access Innovations has extensive experience with Internet technology applications, master data management, database creation, thesaurus/taxonomy creation, and semantic integration. Access Innovations’ Data Harmony software includes machine aided indexing, thesaurus management, an XML Intranet System (XIS), and metadata extraction for content creation developed to meet production environment needs. Data Harmony is used by publishers, governments, and corporate clients throughout the world.

You Can Help

April 20, 2015  
Posted in News, Taxonomy

AGROVOC is a controlled vocabulary covering all areas of interest of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. It is published by FAO and edited by a community of experts.

Are you an AGROVOC user? The AGROVOC team wants users to take a survey so they can improve the thesaurus. The survey is open until May 15 and can be accessed here – http://goo.gl/forms/pTmpnF7sY6

AGROVOC consists of over 32,000 concepts available in 23 languages. Used by researchers, librarians, and information managers, AGROVOC has been a primary resource for indexing, retrieving, and organizing data in agricultural information systems and Web pages.

Currently, AGROVOC is an SKOS-XL concept scheme and a Linked Open Data (LOD) set aligned with 13 other multilingual knowledge organization systems related to agriculture. AGROVOC is edited through VocBench, an open-source, Web-based collaborative editing tool for multilingual thesauri and RDF-SKOS resources.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.

Indexing Conference Offers More

April 14, 2015  
Posted in indexing, News, Taxonomy

The American Society for Indexing (ASI) is once again hosting their annual conference, this time in Seattle, Washington. This comprehensive event is scheduled for April 29-May 1, 2015 and is considered the primary source for information and education about indexing.

The state of the art of indexing and the publishing world is in constant flux, and keeping up with the evolution of the field requires lifelong learning. At the annual conferences, attendees can learn more about the best and most up-to-date advances in indexing as an information organization and retrieval resource.

In Seattle, just five minutes from the famous Pike Place Market, the ASI 2015 Conference can help you hone your technical skills with a plethora of software programs. The keynote speaker, Karen E. Fisher, professor at the University of Washington Information School will share her research on ethnic minorities and information access, algorithmic human relationships as an information problem, and the multiplex value of public libraries.

Not enough? In the extracurricular activity department, there will be a visit to “Underground Seattle,” a fascinating, historic tour of the city’s original first floor.

Learn more and register here.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.

A Short Roundup of Recent Taxonomy Books

April 13, 2015  
Posted in Access Insights, Featured, reference, Taxonomy


© Nasir1164 | Dreamstime.com – 3d People Around Books Photo

Over the past couple of decades, the field of knowledge organization systems (such as taxonomies and thesauri) has matured. This maturation has led KOS experts to write books that consolidate and share the theories, insights, and techniques that have emerged. Below is a roundup of some of the more recent books in the area of taxonomies and related knowledge organization systems.

The Taxobook

One of the most recent books, published as a trio of monographs, is The Taxobook, written by Access Innovations President Marjorie Hlava and published by Morgan & Claypool Publishers. TaxoDiary recently had a blog post about The Taxobook. We’ll reiterate the summary:

Volume 1, The Taxobook: History, Theories, and Concepts of Knowledge Organization, introduces the foundations of classification, covering theories from the ancient Greek philosophers to modern thinkers. This volume also includes a glossary that covers all three volumes.

Volume 2, The Taxobook: Principles and Practices of Taxonomy Construction, outlines the basic principles of creation and maintenance of taxonomies and thesauri. It also provides step-by-step instructions for building a taxonomy or thesaurus and discusses the various ways to get started on a taxonomy construction project.

Volume 3, The Taxobook: Applications, Implementation, and Integration in Search, covers putting taxonomies into use in as many ways as possible to maximize retrieval for users.

The Accidental Taxonomist

This book, by well-known taxonomy expert Heather Hedden, was published by Information Today Inc. in 2010. Here’s the publisher’s summary:

The Accidental Taxonomist is the most comprehensive guide available to the art and science of building information taxonomies. Heather Hedden—one of today’s leading writers, instructors, and consultants on indexing and taxonomy topics—walks readers through the process, displaying her trademark ability to present highly technical information in straightforward, comprehensible English.

Drawing on numerous real-world examples, Hedden explains how to create terms and relationships, select taxonomy management software, design taxonomies for human versus automated indexing, manage enterprise taxonomy projects, and adapt taxonomies to various user interfaces. The result is a practical and essential guide for information professionals who need to effectively create or manage taxonomies, controlled vocabularies, and thesauri. 

Introduction to Controlled Vocabularies: Terminologies for Art, Architecture, and Other Cultural Works 

This book, originally published in 2010 by J. Paul Getty and revised in 2013, focuses on controlled vocabularies for the world of museums and cultural studies. Author Patricia Harpring is managing editor of the Vocabulary Program at the Getty Research Institute, which maintains some highly respected thesauri and other controlled vocabularies, including the Art & Architecture Thesaurus (AAT), the Union List of Artist Names (ULAN), the Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names (TGN), and the Cultural Objects Name Authority (CONA). Co-author Murtha Baca is Head of Digital Art History at the Getty Research Institute. Here’s the Institute’s description of the 2013 revision:

This primer on the characteristics, scope, uses, and methods for building and maintaining controlled vocabularies for art and cultural materials explains how vocabularies should be integrated in cataloging systems; utilized for indexing and retrieval; and structured to group synonyms and arrange concepts into categories.

The updated edition reflects recent developments in the field, including new national and international standards, current trends such as Linked Open Data, and revisions to the Getty vocabularies. The glossary and bibliography have also been updated.

Structures for Organizing Knowledge: Exploring Taxonomies, Ontologies, and Other Schema

This book, published in 2010 by Neal-Schuman Publishers, was written by June Abbas, whose research focuses on the development of user-centered digital libraries, institutional repositories, and knowledge organization structures. In the Preface, she outlines the three major sections of the book:

Traditional Structures for Organizing Knowledge—Part I looks at structures used in libraries, such as MARC records, subject headings, and classification schemes, as well as traditional structures that may not be as familiar, such as those from natural science. The historical  contributions to the organization of knowledge from fields such as library and information science, philosophy, natural science, and cognitive science are examined. Exemplars of how the structures have remained the same and/or have been adapted for use in the digital environment are also included in this section.

Personal Structures for Organizing Knowledge are the focus of Part II. These are systems developed by individuals in both home- and work-related contexts. Several research streams from library and information science (knowledge organization and human information behavior) and human–computer interaction (personal information management) are introduced, and research in each area of personal knowledge structures is explored.

Socially-Constructed Structures for Organizing Knowledge, or those that are beginning to merge as the result of individual and collaborative uses of social bookmarking and social cataloging Web 2.0 sites, are examined in Part III. Research focused on these new environments is becoming more prevalent and providing information professionals with a glimpse into how people organize their own collections. 


In 2008, the American Library Association published the first edition of this book by Marcia Lei Zeng and Jian Qin, two experts in the field of knowledge organization systems and in the metadata connected with those systems. The second edition is scheduled to be released in 2016. Here’s the ALA’s description of the new edition:

Metadata remains the solution for describing the explosively growing, complex world of digital information, and continues to be of paramount importance for information professionals. Providing a solid grounding in the variety and interrelationships among different metadata types, Zeng and Qin’s thorough revision of their benchmark text offers a comprehensive look at the metadata schemas that exist in the world of library and information science and beyond, as well as the contexts in which they operate. Cementing its value as both an LIS text and a handy reference for professionals already in the field, this book

Lays out the fundamentals of metadata, including principles of metadata, structures of metadata vocabularies, and metadata descriptions

Surveys metadata standards and their applications in distinct domains and for various communities of metadata practice

Examines metadata building blocks, from modeling to defining properties, and from designing application profiles to implementing value vocabularies

Describes important concepts as resource identification, metadata as linked data, consumption of metadata, interoperability, and quality measurement

Offers an updated glossary to help readers navigate metadata’s complex terms in easy-to-understand definitions

An online resource of web extras, packed with exercises, quizzes, and links to additional materials, completes this definitive primer on metadata.

Organising Knowledge: Taxonomies, Knowledge and Organisational Effectiveness

This book, by knowledge management consultant Patrick Lambe, was published by Chandos Knowledge Management in 2007. In the book’s introduction, Lambe offers an overview:

In the first half of this book we’ll challenge a number of assumptions about taxonomies and the work of taxonomy building, and relate this work to organization effectiveness and knowledge management.…

In the second half of this book, we take a more practical approach and guide you through the steps involved in a ‘typical’ taxonomy project. Here we challenge the assumption that taxonomy development can be done in the abstract, by a consultant, sitting apart from the information and knowledge world of the organisation it is intended for. Very few taxonomies can be developed in that distant, unengaged way.…

To close, in Chapter 10 we take a forward look at issues and challenges on the horizon for knowledge managers. What do the semantic web, folksonomies, ontologies and social tagging mean for taxonomy work? Will we need taxonomies at all?

Those of us involved with TaxoDiary believe that taxonomies, thesauri, and other controlled vocabularies will continue to be relevant to knowledge management and information retrieval. And we look forward to seeing new insights and approaches, and new books.

Barbara Gilles, Taxonomist
Access Innovations, Inc.

Finding Data in No-Standards Indexing

April 13, 2015  
Posted in metadata, News, Standards, Taxonomy

For the average reader, details like hyphens may seem irrelevant to the content and overall message. But those in the taxonomy field understand all too well how important details can be in classifying data and retrieving it easily. Making content findable is the name of the game. This interesting information came from jboyd.net the post, “Aves—A Taxonomy in Flux.”

The author talks about stylistic considerations, which in some circles is like talking about politics. No one will ever agree on one method. For example, gray vs. grey or hyphens to break up words for scanning efficiency. We just have to accept the fact that they will not always look the same, but they will be pronounced the same.

The International Ornithological Congress (IOC) maintains the IOC World Bird List and they are a good example of having accommodations for the English names of birds. This approach extends beyond the world of birds.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.

Capturing the Data

April 9, 2015  
Posted in indexing, metadata, News, Taxonomy

ZL Unified Archive is being used by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) for records and information management of government unstructured data as part of a solution provided by Unisys Corp. to transition NARA to a cloud-based email and collaboration solution. Market Wired brought this news to our attention in their article, “National Archives and Records Administration Leverages ZL Unified Archive® for Records Management.”

ZL is known for providing unstructured big data archiving and governance for large enterprises, so meeting the security and scale demands of a government agency seems in line.

In an effort to comply with the Presidential Memorandum – Managing Government Records, NARA required the scalability to handle storage needs of extensive data volumes, while also demonstrating full compliance with federal records management statutes and regulations.

How the content is classified impacts the findability of your data. Capturing the data is only part of the project. Professionals should look for an experienced builder of solid standards-based taxonomies to associate content for appropriate machine-assisted indexing. Access Innovations can provide solutions that are ANSI compliant.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.

Classifying the Themes in Parks

April 7, 2015  
Posted in metadata, News, Taxonomy

It is always interesting to find so-called taxonomies of interesting and unusual topics. Even if they aren’t true taxonomies, they are typically classifications of some form or another and they provide information, which is after all, the goal. Foxxfur recently published The Theme Park Trope List, a first attempt to summarize the narrative gimmicks used in theme park attractions. This humorous but interesting topic came from Boing Boing in their article, “Taxonomy of theme park narrative gimmicks.”

Theme parks have been around for 60+ years now, but the entertainment park experience goes all the way back to the Chicago World’s Fair of 1893, and infamous parks like Coney Island. There’s a whole history of rhetorical devices, narrative conceits, motifs, and cliches that theme park attractions draw on to communicate with us strongly and basically visually. These are called tropes, and are the focus of this classification.

There is value in classification. True taxonomies can help manage big data by providing a solid standards-based taxonomy to index against. The results are comprehensive and consistent search results. Access Innovations is one of a very small number of companies able to help its clients generate ANSI/ISO/W3C-compliant taxonomies because of consistency.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Data Harmony, a unit of Access Innovations, the world leader in indexing and making content findable.

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