"Auto-tagging" - Take existing tags to tag your books
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Let's say I would like to know what are my most often used tags in my collection, but I have got 2000 books and I don't feel like tagging them all to find out what are my most used tags, the words that "define" who I am (or at least, what I'm interested in reading).
Hence "Auto-tagging", that is, to grab the tags that others have already assigned to a book and tag your whole collection from them.
As this feature of auto-tagging is not available at the moment, has anybody programmed any sort of automated script, Greasemonkey, perl script... that does this task?
I think the idea is if people don't individual enter tags, and enough people just start automatically adding the most popular tags for a book, then eventually the fact that those tags are the most popular becomes less meaningful. It's sort of a case of a swarming mob effect and the few deciding for the many whether Dune counts as fantasy or sci-fi (for example), instead of the mob democratically deciding for itself through individual tagging.
But, again, that's not an official answer, just my impression.
you want other people to define who you are? Wouldn't ou rather do that for yourself?
if you enter the tags as you add the work it doens't rack up as quite such an ardeous chore.
PS As reading-fox (#4 says), I didn't enter tags at first, because it seemed daunting, but then I started entering them as I entered books, and it became easier. As I go along, I fine-tune them too.
I do not want other people tags in any suggestions when I'm adding my tags for my own books.
2 things here.
1 - People who don't care about tagging, wouldn't tag anyway. So autotagging wouldn't prevent him from tagging what they would have never done.
2 - If 1000 people autotagged using the tags that only 100 cared to input, that would have absolutely *NO* effect on the quality of the tags used to describe the books. Statistics speaking.
As only the top 5 most used tags would be used to autotag, and those would be actually the best tags agreed by the minority who care to tag, it would actually be that minority who would still hold the AUTHORITY to properly describe a book.
There you go.
That problem with most people not tagging, again.
And then you have one person putting in a bad or questionable tag, and the next 100 people who input that book picking it up without thinking about it.
Not to mention the remaining issue that even *if* autotagging didn't alter the top tags for a book, it would still reduce the incentive for people to come up with their own tags. So somebody who, on their own, might use the tag "dogs biting people aauuugh!" might instead settle for the common tag "animal attacks", since it's easier to autotag and it's peer-pressure-approved.
And then LT would be deprived of the much more descriptive "dogs biting people aauuugh!" tag in its database. And that would be sad. Because it would be less total information in the system. Statistically speaking is fine, but what individual quirky people have to say is just as useful, and LT gives us both.
...the most common tags will still come up for people who just want to know about the book, or see other books with similar tags. But what's the point of tagging in your own library if you don't go for tags that are the most meaningful for *you* and the way you think about your books? You might as well just use the LOC subjects then.
I'd be all for autofill based on your own previous tags though, says the person who has to periodically go through her tag cloud to reconcile the plurals.
I would submit that there's a certain non-trivial percentage of tags that do not need a creative interpretation. Reference books, etc. I don't think it's a crime to "conform" in terms of those tags, and of course i can always add another tag or change the existing tag once i've done that. I could even take a tag from another user who shares 30 of my books, and then do power edit and change the tags entirely! And that would be a lot easier than having to find those books in my library, assemble them in a list that makes sense, and then tag them via power edit.
That will leave a lot of spare time for us to exercise our creativity on coming up with new, individualistic tags for our other books ;)
You can see I'm pretty passionate about this--Please PLEASE give us this feature!
I read some of the fiction in my library 40 years ago. I sometimes look at the social page tags to try to find a reminder about the plot. :-)
Ok. Later posts were confusing to me, in that some said that they'd like to see a list of their own tags as suggestions but NOT other people's tags. They didn't seem to me to be talking about auto-tagging.
I wouldn't use auto-tagging. But I'd like a fill-in (subject to manual override) from my existing tags when I type the beginning. When you are trying to list thousands of books, typing out something like "science fiction and fantasy" or "American Revolution" gets to be a pain. I'd also like a drop down of tags used for the book, from which I could select if I liked.
Failing that I would like to see a search option that allows me to search within my library based on other people's tags (even if my books were tagged completely differently). First of all it would be good in situations where I hadn't tagged my books but it would also be a good comparison to easily compare my idea of 'cyberpunk' to the group's idea.
21quiltartist First Message
When you add a new tag, just add it to the list. You can always check your profile for the tags you have used. The last thing I would want is to use someone else's tags.
I always add tags when I enter the book, saves a lot of backtracking. I will check out the information in Message 6 about entering items with the same tag.
Well, if you only want to see how others tag your collection of books, without necessarily attaching those tags to your own library, then rejoice – that feature already exists! There is the tag mirror under Profile > Clouds > Tag mirror. Read more about it in this blog post. It is possible to click an individual tag in the tag mirror cloud to see a list of those of your books that have been tagged in that way by other users.
You can easily see the tags you've used to date by clicking on the Tags folder in the top menu bar.
I regularly go through mine and prune out ones I was originally too enthusiastic about or ones I've mispelt; I also consolidate singular with plurals or vice versa and have tried to standardise the way in which I refer to the centuries (eg 13th C, not 13C) or to individuals or places.
However these are my preferences and so I personally wouldn't support a need for auto completion, even with my own range. Besides it doesn't take long to do at least three tags per book - (maybe more) - and it makes you think about what the book is about.
Then you could select
Then you could pick a "heading" and select your tags out from under it (allowing for multiple choosings of course).
I would be an advocate of being able to select from your own tags for consistancy (I am constantly having to "clean up" my tags list).
I'm not really interested in being able to select from other's tags. I see why some folks want it but I agree with Tim that being forced to select how you consider a work has its benefits. I guess I would say that I think this adds to the "depth" of the metadata the tags are reflecting.
It's not automatic, but it means you choose which are relevant to you. You probably wouldn't want every single subject classification, since some of them can be a bit off. (They're particularly off when you don't use a library source to add your books, since then LT just has to guess classifications based on all the copies here, which can include classifications from libraries all over the world. My amazon-added copy of Kate Chopin's Awakening, for example, has a LONG and repetitive list of subject classifications, including Kuṇḍalinī, which may be correct in some language, but which I wouldn't want automatically entered as a tag for my own library.)
So, I'd suggest a combination of searching your library for subject classifications or key terms in the titles, browsing the tag mirror (a good suggestion someone made above), and then using power edit.
In a way, actually, what it sounds like would be useful is a "subject classifications cloud" -- I'll admit that would be fun to have, but probably very messy, since LOC subjects are often several words long, and hierarchical to boot.
"Hmm, I wasn't necessarily thinking of drilling down through levels, but just being able to create groups with a heading to organize the tags on my tag page, instead of having just the alphabetical or frequency run-in lists. It would make life so much easier for me.
To repeat and extend the example above:
biodiversity, biogeography, developmental biology, ecology, geology, mathematics
French, Hebrew, Italian, Spanish
The headings wouldn't have to be tags themselves, just an organizing tool."
I still think it's a good idea!