Forum: Post tagging etiquette musings
gravatar for Emily_Ensembl
3.8 years ago by
Emily_Ensembl18k wrote:

Michael's post about the mypost tag got me thinking about tagging etiquette on BioStars. Generally I think tagging is a difficult problem, as it relies on people actually following the rules. I'm interested to see how people use tags, both from a searching perspective and from a posting perspective.

I have a set of My Tags and I use them identify posts that might be of interest to me. Tags that I think are useful include:

  • The name of every tool/database you're working with. As a person working for a tool, one of my favourite tags is for my tool name, as I know I'm likely to be able to help, but it's also useful data gathering on our part.
  • File types.
  • The type of data, eg variants, genomes, genes, proteins.

I'd be interested to see any further tags that people think would be useful.

Another thing I do, and I don't know if other people also do this, but I use my moderator privileges to add tags to other people's posts. If I find something useful that is un-tagged or missing vital tags, I'll edit the post to add them in, so that other people who might be interested or helpful can more easily find the post.

forum etiquette tag • 892 views
ADD COMMENTlink modified 3.8 years ago by John12k • written 3.8 years ago by Emily_Ensembl18k
gravatar for Istvan Albert
3.8 years ago by
Istvan Albert ♦♦ 80k
University Park, USA
Istvan Albert ♦♦ 80k wrote:

One of my pet projects (but I may not ever get to it) is to build a classifier that applies missing tags automatically. 

For example if we were to take the "similar posts" column on the right, extract the most common tags from those then apply them automatically (or perhaps into another field called auto-tags)

Or take on a more advanced text classification project, obtain the the whole corpus and build the predictor on that, then classify posts as they come in.

I do agree that proper tagging is both very useful but can be very frustrating. Fixing up tags should also be a lot simpler, double click tag and replace right from the page. 

ADD COMMENTlink written 3.8 years ago by Istvan Albert ♦♦ 80k
gravatar for cpad0112
3.8 years ago by
cpad011211k wrote:

It should be more or less like tagging in JiRA. But automated tag generation is not present. However one possible solution I propose for automated tag generation:

1) there are already predefined tags. Let them be set1.
2) in addition to existing tags, user can tag a pre defined number of tags (let us say 3)
3) using tag clouds, it is easy to identify tags that are overly used.
4) with certain cut off, few tags from step 3 can be added step 1.
5) iterate this process

ADD COMMENTlink modified 3.8 years ago • written 3.8 years ago by cpad011211k
gravatar for John
3.8 years ago by
John12k wrote:

From a UX perspective, user-optional-tagging of posts is useful when full-text search is not an option and/or the tags relate to some higher-order classification that isn't mentioned in the text.  For example, a post could be tagged with "python" but the content of the post all about pysam, and never actually mentions python explicitly. This is rarely better than a full text search though, using lucene or similar (which seems to be what the live search already uses?) because if the tag is so integral to the post, it will probably be mentioned in the text anyway.

Compulsory-tagging on the other hand is totally different tool in the UX toolbox. This is where a user has to select N tags from a given nomenclature, so their post can be properly categorised and automatically displayed to the appropriate userbase. This is what stackoverflow is doing, as well as product/service sites like ebay, etsy, upwork, facebook ads, etc. The tags are used instead of (or in addition to) search to give content to "subscribed" users. Biostars doesn't do this, and i'm quite grateful actually, because it exposes us to problems outside our interests.

I tag all my posts with important nouns - but in all honesty I don't know why, since I know i'll be repeating them in the text anyway - and itll get picked up by the FTS. :)  

ADD COMMENTlink written 3.8 years ago by John12k

The thing is that BioStars let you save a list of favourite tags that then appear in a My Tags page. I just go to that page and find everything that's of interest to me. If it's in the text, I have to carry out an actual search, which is more work.

ADD REPLYlink written 3.8 years ago by Emily_Ensembl18k

Oooh, cool - so thats like subscribing to a tag feed. I see. Thats pretty cool :)
Perhaps when you make a post with a new tag, that tag should automatically get added to your My Tags list? That would encourage tagging, since there's immediate functionality. I have so many questions now. Are tags case-sensitive? Is there a list of all possible tags? :)

ADD REPLYlink written 3.8 years ago by John12k

Subscribing automatically can be very confusing for users.

Tags are automatically lowercased. Unless the tag is R then will be uppercased -  that is a special case, ha! what a great pun!

To see all tags visit:

ADD REPLYlink modified 3.8 years ago • written 3.8 years ago by Istvan Albert ♦♦ 80k

I wouldn't want that. I sometimes post jobs, which I tag with "job", but I'm not looking for a job.

ADD REPLYlink written 3.5 years ago by Emily_Ensembl18k
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