UBC Wiki

Categorization Manipulation

One of the main tools to organize a wiki is categories. Mark Choate, in his book Professional Wikis, describes adding categories to a wiki article as a parallel to adding tags to a blog article or a photo: tags and categories are “both keywords that are used to describe or group a page into some conceptual category or topic”. The advantage of using categories as a type of folksonomy, Choate states, is that one user might categorize an article one way while a another chooses an entirely different approach. Thus, when many people add pages to a category, different points a view are represented by the links and someone reading the wiki may discover connections between topics that they might not have thought of themselves.

Unfortunately, the current state of the UBC Wiki is that users are not currently adding categories to their pages. The majority of pages in the UBC Wiki (before this Gardening Project began) had no categories or links to other pages in the wiki. Thus, each article was isolated, even if there were other articles on related topics.

I’ve begun adding some basic categories to articles that currently exist on the wiki. Some nice examples of how useful a categories might be can be found in the Economics and Physics categories. In each category, you can find specific topics as well as pages on some courses, student groups, and departments.

It is my hope that as key categories become more built out, users will become more familiar with the concept, recognize the usefulness of categories, and begin adding categories themselves.