February 22, 2002
MarkBernstein.org
 
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Indexes

Razorfish information architect Victor Lombardi is very interested in indexes and related structures -- ways to better organize the information that accumulates in web logs.

"Perhaps the next generation of blogs is a way to massage ... post/comment combinations into documents.... because ultimately I think a well-structured document is more useful than a reference format.....I think an index could be built with Tinderbox using keywords and agents."

He's exactly right. For example, this page is an automatically-built index to my book notes; whenever I add a new review to any of the Books pages, the review is automatically added to the list. The list was easy to make -- it took me perhaps five minutes -- and it automatically alphabetizes the titles. (In this case, I didn't even have to add keywords!) The lists of new items at the top of this column are automatically-built indexes, too.

My Singapore Album is another kind of self-assembled document. An agent graphs all the items that (a) have pictures, and (b) were posted while I was in Asia, or are marked with a special keyword. This lets me add new pictures to the album, even if they were posted later, without having to go back and add keywords to lots of old items.