I’ve always found the traditional category system used by most blog packages, including ExpressionEngine, to be less than ideal. The reason being that every so often I’ll write an entry that doesn’t fit any of the categories I’ve come up with previously, but I’m not sure if I’ll ever write another entry that’ll make use of that category so I’m reluctant to create a new category for just that one entry. So I end up sticking it someplace it doesn’t really fit.
The advent of tagging seemed like an ideal way to address this problem and I’ve long hoped that the folks who develop EE would add the option to use tags over categories to their software. They haven’t, but the folks at Solspace have with the release of a tagging module and extension for EE. It seems to offer all the features one would expect from a tagging system including the option to create tag clouds and allow users to submit their own tags for an entry. It’s been available for awhile now and a lot of other ExpressionEngine users are making use of it and seem quite happy so I thought I’d give it a shot.
Thanks to a PayPal donation I received recently I decided to go ahead and purchase the module ($29.95) and see if I couldn’t get it up and working here at SEB. Because we have almost 5,000 entries at the moment I’ll be leaving the existing category system in place for the older entries and will start making use of the tagging system from here on out. If you’re a registered member and wish to submit an entry you’ll find that there’s a new field just under the Extended Text field where you can put in tags for any entries you want to submit. You can use as many tags as you like separating each one with a comma. I’ve modified the templates to output the tags associated with an entry unless there aren’t any in which case it’ll output the categories instead assuming it’s an older entry.
I haven’t decided yet whether to make use of the option to allow readers to submit tags on individual entries or not. At the moment I don’t have that implemented, but if folks think it’d be useful to have then let me know.