Social search and molecular biology parallels

“The details of a hurricane or a tornado are fundamentally not explainable by invoking the physics of individual air and water molecules.  Nor can a computer be understood by pondering the behavior of electrons.”
On several occasions I’ve been asked to explain tags.  And it seems to me that the answer people want is not about tags and tagging but rather the impact of their existence.  The details of a tag or the process of creating a tag are completely boring.  But the impact of tags and tagging have a much more profound future. #

  1. find shops that have socks
  2. identify cheapest, most useful and closest.  order by priority.
  3. find socks, select necessary quantity
  4. pay
  5. reward self with snack on way to car
        
But it’s not as good for making more qualitative decisions.  What if I want socks that last a long time?  What if I want knee-highs? #

“Multicellular organisms thrive because their cells specialize and collaborate in far more complex and information-rich ways than can a single cell organism.  Metazoans have cells and organs that are specialized for sensing environment, communicating and storing information and acting upon the environment. Yet, at least for a given individual organism and for its species, complexity is not an end in itself, it is merely the means of improving fitness to survive.”
To relate this to search, a much more efficient body of intelligence and information discovery is one that can both find the right information at the right time but also optimize the method for locating the right information through different means. #