By woodjr on Jan 15, 2007
Why is there so much argument over the need for a tagging standard? Of course we need a standard. It just doesn't have to be a new one. We have a ready-made standard in existing keyword-to-content systems: search engines.
How is tagging so different than searching? About the only difference I see is that they're done in reverse order. Instead of proposing keywords for a not-yet-found piece of content, tagging applies keywords to content up front. Great. Both are useful. Both are important. And both should share one syntax for keywords.
Since search came first, it gets to set the standard. So if you want to see how tagging should work, just look to Google's search form. It's space-delimited, spaces can exist within quoted items, and quotes can exist within items if they're escaped. There you go--the tagging standard wars are settled. The settlement just happens to predate tagging itself.