W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-esw-thes@w3.org > March 2004

faceted classification

From: Miles, AJ (Alistair) <A.J.Miles@rl.ac.uk>
Date: Mon, 22 Mar 2004 13:19:36 -0000
Message-ID: <350DC7048372D31197F200902773DF4C04944189@exchange11.rl.ac.uk>
To: "Douglas Tudhope (E-mail)" <dstudhope@glam.ac.uk>, "Leonard Will (E-mail)" <L.Will@willpowerinfo.co.uk>, "Stella Dextre Clarke (E-mail)" <SDClarke@lukehouse.demon.co.uk>
Cc: "'public-esw-thes@w3.org'" <public-esw-thes@w3.org>

Hi Doug, Leonard, Stella,

I just read the article [1] that Doug forwarded.  I was wondering if you
could help to me to clear something up.

I have so far come across two meanings for 'faceted classification':  

(Sense 1) 

A set of things are 'classified' according to their properties.  For example
(from [1]) a set of detergents are classified by 'brand name', 'form',
'scent', 'agent', 'effect on agent' and 'special property'.  In this sense,
each of these properties represents a 'facet' through which the set of
instances can be viewed. 

(Sense 2) 

A set of 'concepts' are grouped according to their most primitive type.  For
example, the concept 'marble' is placed in the 'materials' facet.  The
concept 'insects' is placed in the 'organisms' facet.  In this sense, a
'facet' is essentially a primitive class, and every member of a facet group
is either an instance or a sub-class of that class.    

So my first question is: have I described these two senses accurately (or am
I missing something)?

My second question is: are there any other senses of 'faceted
classification' worth considering?

Finally: if my analysis is correct, these two senses describe quite
different systems of organisation (*).  So would it be useful in the short
term to come up with unambiguous names for these two meanings?  For example,
we could refer to sense 1 as 'classification by description' and sense 2 as
'primitive classification'.  

Please let me know what you think.  



(*) although sense 2 could be viewed as a special case of sense 1, in which
concepts are classified according to the value of a 'primitive type'
property - i.e. 'primitive type' represents a 'facet' in sense 1! 

[1] <http://www.miskatonic.org/library/facet-web-howto.html>

Alistair Miles
Research Associate
CCLRC - Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
Building R1 Room 1.60
Fermi Avenue
Oxfordshire OX11 0QX
United Kingdom
Email:        a.j.miles@rl.ac.uk
Tel: +44 (0)1235 445440
Received on Monday, 22 March 2004 08:25:53 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Wednesday, 2 March 2016 13:32:03 UTC