Ockham’s Bathroom Scale, Lego blocks, and Microformats

The blog post “Ockham’s Bathroom Scale, Lego blocks, and Microformats” presents an interesting concept for information professionals dealing with the onslaught of so-called microformats as a sort of “quick and dirty” fix to simple organizational needs. Essentially the author compares these formats to Lego bricks. These toys are modular meaning they may be manipulated in many number of ways, but it will always work together. While this concept seems simple it is deceivingly so contends the author because these toys have been designed and tested through a half century of development and implementation. He represents the sinister side of these toys through an analogy to the dreaded Lego in the floor – a painful occurrence which many parents can attest to having experienced. This analogy serves as something of a warning to the fast adoption of varying microformats – that while they solve simple problems and are easily implemented leaving fragmented and isolated systems in play across many institutions may be as painful as the dreaded Lego in the floor when it comes time to integrate, collaborate, and perform inter-institutional functions.




Posted on February 4, 2015, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I have to admit that when I tried reading the Ockham’s Bathroom Scale blog post my eyes completely glazed over and I think most of what he said flew over my head. Your synopsis really helped me conceptualize microformats better and understand this guy’s argument. Thanks!


  2. Very nice summary of the article! I really like how you make the analogy of the Lego brick meaningful to us as future librarians.


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