Not an exotic sandwich, but tasty guru-on-guru commentary about the Smenatic Web [sic] and metadata:
“I find myself recommending that extensive investments in metadata be postponed, at least in the enterprise environment, in favor of less expensive and more feasible architectural approaches that won’t go down in flames and force my clients into bankruptcy.
Why am I so uneasy with large metadata-driven approaches? One problem: in many environments, those espousing metadata as “the answer” don’t recognize that there are really two types of metadata to wrangle with: structural (think attributes or fields) and semantic (descriptive values or controlled vocabularies that populate those attributes). Each of these can require an extensive investment to think through, develop, implement, and, perhaps most importantly, maintain. People’s information needs are moving targets, as is an organization’s content; the metadata that connect them naturally need to evolve as well.”
I’m thinking that while, like Lou, I’ve heard a lot of the same evangelising of metadata, (leading, almost inevitably to ‘boil the oceans’ type-projects); there is a lot of R.S.M.M. going on in the background of the current crop of personal and group web tools which means that for a set of problems and markets, that exciting ‘sematic-web’ like stuff will get built, and will prove useful to end-users and affordable to achieve for clients/companies.
Wow it’s comfortable on this fence.