Simon Willison’s Weblog


4 items tagged “facets”


Datasette Facets

Datasette 0.22 is out with the most significant new feature I’ve added since the initial release: faceted browse.

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Digg Search: Now With 99.987% Less Suck. Really nice implementation of faceted search, still using Lucene and Solr under the hood. # 10th April 2009, 10:17 pm



Yet another interesting take on XML metadata representations: FacetMaps. A facet map (as I understand it) is a way of combining facets with hierarchies, best explained by the excellent interactive three minute concept intro on the site. One of the main contrasts to XFML is that in a Facet Map Facets, rather than Topics, are the principle categorisation element. A resource in a Facet Map is linked directly to one or more facets, rather than going through a topic. The XML format is pretty simple (a lot simpler than XTM and XFML) so I might have a go at a PHP implementation at some point.

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Facets understood

And suddenly I understand faceted metadata. Sometimes all you need for that final moment of insight is a good example, and Peter Van Djick’s Columbia Guide Site Map is just what I needed. A facet is simply a “flat”, mutually exclusive (at least as far as the XFML specification is concerned) way of categorising a topic—it can be described as a bottom-up method of categorisation rather than the more common hierarchical top-down approach (as seen on the ODP) which seeks to assign all topics as sub-topics of something else. Peter writes in XFML Background and Concepts that Faceted taxonomies are generally more powerful for websites than classic hierarchical taxonomies—this seems to make a great deal of sense, and it will be interesting to see this demonstrated by XFML in the near future.

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