Good common sense essay from Cory Doctorow on the problems with metadata: Metacrap: Putting the torch to seven straw-men of the meta-utopia. It’s definitely hard for people see the value of metadata. Basically it boils down to us monkeys telling robots what to do in robot language**…and why the hell should we do that? I wanna talk to robots in English, dammit…or better yet, the robots should know what I want from them before I tell them.
An addendum to point #3 of Metacrap could be that human-generated metadata (monkey to robot) might not work too well, but computer-generated metadata (robot to robot) is fairly useful. (Of course, at some point a human has to tell the computer what metadata to generate, but there’s gotta be a line drawn somewhere.)
** This whole monkey-robot-as-it-relates-to-metadata-and-XML thing is all Matt Haughey’s idea. He was going to write an essay on it, but didn’t, so I’m using the idea here because it’s too good to sit in Matt’s brain uncommunicated to the world at large. Or something.
(Sigh. This is the part of the entry where I lament the lack of discussion system for kottke.org because I would like to hear what you all think about this. None of the discussion systems out there right now fits my needs for one reason or another. Hopefully I will have one up in the next month or two.)