Tag Galaxy is a Flickr visualisation tool (via). I’ve seen lots of these sort of applications before (there’s a good round up of visualisation tools here), many based on tags which people have allocated to the content which they have uploaded. Most of them are fun, some are useful, some intriguing, some beautiful.
Tags allow the classification and taxonomy of content. There are already technologies available that can dynamically tag millions of pieces of content a second and intelligently interpret text on a page. Surely it’s only a matter of time before the same is true of visual image and video content.
But the interesting thing about tags is the relational connections that they allow, which many of these visualisation tools bring to life, and the fact that they all started with a human judgement about how that piece of content should most appropriately be labelled. The results of these relational connections therefore are routed in human understanding and assessment. We shouldn’t forget the uniqueness that this gives them.