New tags for biology and medicine.

Benjamin Mesing bensmail at
Wed Sep 5 17:15:20 UTC 2007


> > Thus we need to decide, if those details should become
> > part of the main vocabulary database.
> Well, I don't think that we should make a harsh difference compared
> to the main vocabulary database.  Considering the effect of a less
> fine grained tagging: People will be presented a list of (guess)
> 20 items instead of 3-5 items for the more fine grained list, but
> I think 20 packages in a list are manageable.  The danger of "bloating"
> the system with about 15 more packages you might not need is not
> really a thing many people are scary about.

Sorry, I can't really follow your thoughts here, do you vote against a
fine-grained tagging? With the fine-grained tags, you will have more
tags, but usually a smaller result set (i.e. package list). So what you
are bloating is the vocabulary (the set of all available tags and

> > Another way would be to provide
> > them in a different vocabulary/tag database - debtags supports multiple
> > of those.
> Just for the sake of academical interest: What are the consequences of
> a differnet vocabulary/tag database?  I guess the drawback is higher
> than a fine grained tagging.

      * clean separation 
      * you keep the full expressivity of the main vocabulary (i.e. you
        can add tags into the other facets like works-with, made-of...) 
      * additional administrative overhead for hosting the tag database 
      * additional overhead for users of this tag database, which must
        be enabled one way or another 
      * tagging infrastructure must be provided (or happen centrally by
        the Debian-med team) 

> > +Tag: field::biology:bioinformatics
> > +Description: Bioinformatics
> > + Sequence analysis software.
> > +
> > +Tag: field::biology:molecular
> > +Description: Molecular biology
> > + Software useful to molecular cloning and related wet biology.
> > +
> > +Tag: field::biology:structural
> > +Description: Structural biology
> > + Software useful to model tridimentional structures.
> > +
> >
> > This is probably a reasonable distinction, though we have to decide if
> > we want such a fine-grained separation of the "field" facet.
> I also wonder whether we gain much at users and.  It might happen that
> users have a slightly different perception of these terms and we could

This would hint to have them only inside a special debian-med:: area.

> > We would
> > also end up with needing the same level of detail for electronics,
> > chemistry, physics,...
> Well, this is always the same - you need someone who does the job.
> Debian-Med just joins forces for people interested in medicine and
> biology so we are a little bit ahead. :)

Sure, I am not saying that we actually *need* the level of detail there,
but that eventually the same level of detail will arise in the other
areas, which will bloat the vocabulary.

Regards Ben

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