How great is Ranganathan exactly? (by Hannah)

I appreciated that all our readings this week demonstrated the logic and notation used in different kinds of taxonomies, but I wished they had used concrete examples to explain the import of the differences between them. For instance, the definition of hospitality in the article on Ranganathan made sense on its own, but I wasn’t convinced that that advantage of colon classification would outweigh the inconvenience to users of needing to learn a scheduling order that’s dictated by the unique judgment of an institution, or else look up each facet to determine which one is treated as the genus that contains the other facets according to that institution’s classification system. In more abstract terms, a sequence of facets linked by colons still seems like a hierarchy in a practical sense in that subsequent facets in a sequence are grouped together under the preceding ones, but without predictable logical links to them.


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