Unveiling of nature or social creativity: classification and discovery in astronomy

It has always interested me to see how the development of ideas of classification and categorisation in the information sciences has been intertwined with analogous developments in the natural sciences. This is most obviously the case for botany, where Linnaeus's stipulation that "classification and name-giving will be the foundation of our science" could equally well… Continue reading Unveiling of nature or social creativity: classification and discovery in astronomy

The case for Pluto

The makers and maintainers of classifications, thesauri and other tools for indexing and arranging human knowledge have to tread a delicate balance. On the one hand, they want to keep things stable as much as possible; users are annoyed if major changes are made too often, particularly if it means that hapless librarians have to… Continue reading The case for Pluto