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Hierarchical tags are now available


We just got hierarchical tags. A tag can have one or more children, and when you search on a tag you can either search just that tag or also search its children. This gives us another way to organize content.

This feature was proposed on the Judaism site; you can see more background there. (This was also a longstanding request on Mi Yodeya, and its absence led to some cumbersome tag names.) This seems like it could be useful here, and we can do it opportunistically: we're not building a whole tree, but in cases where tags are clearly specializations of other tags, we can now link them together.

As a demonstration, I've created one child of the technical-writing tag. Please use this meta post to discuss whether and where we'd like to create other tag relationships.

A tag can have only one parent; this isn't C++. :-)

Why should this post be closed?


1 answer


That's an awesome feature and I see quite a few tag families that could profit from being officially recognized as such. Here are some more points that might be relevant to a discussion about this feature:

  1. We have some pretty broad tags that might either need quite a few children or might possibly need to be reevaluated such as writing, which seems to encompass basically everything on this site, or fiction and non-fiction, which together would basically encompass everything. style is also a pretty broad topic with quite a few tags that could feasibly be seen as children, such as tags about writing styles. It's probably a good idea to check whether child tags make sense or the category is inherently too broad and should be broken down.

  2. We could probably make citation and writing style related tags such as mla and apa children of academic-writing. These seem to fit the intentions behind making child tags quite well.

  3. tools is another category where child tags make sense, for example for specific tools that get lots of questions such as scrivener or microsoft-word. There is the question how we should handle software in this case though, or whether we might want to remove either "tools" or "software", though I remember that "tools" can also encompass analogous tools that for example help people make notes on-the-go. For the documentation of software we already have software-documentation - which, by the way, would fit quite well with technical-writing.

  4. When searching for some tags you sometimes immediately find a few that could be grouped together. publishing could have electronic-publishing, self-publishing, scientific-publishing and independent-publishing as children. We have to be careful about how broad we want to make the parent-child connection though, as there are also tags such as publisher.

  5. psychology-of-writing often encompasses writers-block.

  6. figures-of-speech goes with rhetoric and metaphor.

We could query the database for correlated tags and see which tags go together quite often. For now it might still be a good idea to go to SEDE for a first idea about which tags could make sense as a tag family here if we can't easily query the underlying database of codidact. But if that's possible in the long-term there might even be a sort of "moderator warning / notification" that certain tags correlate very often, but are not currently a tag family. This could help identify cases of very similar tags that have been accidentally created and should be merged or tag families that are not formally ordered as parent-child.


I did some structuring in some of the tech-writing and tools tags. I made software a child of tools since tools is broad, and the put Word and Scriviner under software. As we come across more we can add them in. Monica Cellio about 1 month ago

Also, I'm pretty sure the "writing" tag is a data-import bug; that doesn't make sense. I've pinged the developers. Monica Cellio about 1 month ago

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