A new taxonomy for Transition’s website
By Ed Mitchell 27th October 2010
Ben and I are specifying much needed changes to the Resources Directory and are briefing the developers to introduce a new ‘taxonomy‘ (categorisation method) for the site.
This will sit alongside the current ‘Transition Themes’ taxonomy (Food, Energy, etc.) that currently sorts all information on the site by Transition Theme. You can currently see all content categorised by themes on the Transition Themes page (not really public yet, some tweaks to be done in phase 3).
(NB: this lovely taxonomic chart of ‘Beer’ on the left is a masterpiece of design to represent a taxonomy and you can buy the poster from their site)
Our new process-based taxonomy is intended to make the site and its content more reflective of the experiences that Transition groups go through on their journey, and the process work we are doing as part of the support stream, alongside the ‘thematic’ references.
If anyone has heard me gibbering about needing a third dimension to the site architecture, this is it. As well as being able to see all projects, people, resources etc. related to food, users will be able to see all projects, people, resources etc. related to where they are on the Transition lifecycle. (Cool, eh?)
Therefore we have been banging our heads on walls and waving our hands in the air to find a usable definition for this more ‘experiential-based taxonomy’ that we can fit into the site.
It has to be useful and understandable to normal Transitioners and relate to their experience in Transition, it has to map to the next book, and it has to be coherent to our outputs as an organisation so we are all using the same communications terms and tools.
When the Patterns popped out of Rob’s head, this was the beginning, and I knew we were getting there, but now we’re seeing the patterns maturing, I’m sure of it.
Ben and I offer for your thoughts that we use the ‘Meta-Patterns’ (top level patterns) as a new site taxonomy and call them “Phases”.
- What we start with
- Getting Started
- Ongoing and deepening
- Implementing Infrastructure
- Scaling up
This would mean that users could chose to view content on the site by ‘theme’ or ‘phase’ – ie by their intellectual and/or experiential requirements.
Ultimately, this would enable them to see who else is interested in the same things, or at a similar place on their Transition journey. A proper knowledge network.
So the wording of this is very important – it has to map coherently to the Patterns, and the next Book, and the Support work, and make sense.
How does this way of representing the experience of being in Transition work for you?