The term “topics” refers to the ideas, concepts, terms etc. that glue the database together. The database illustrates relationships as “ideas held in common”. By relating each topic to other topics defined in the database, we create a complex web of connections representing the community as an ecosystem. Each related topic is [[social equity|defined in its own page]] using [[social ecology|original]] or [[civic society|cited]] content. The related content automatically displayed next to each topic serves to further illustrate and clarify its significance. [[Frames]] provide a means of identifying and exploring related topics visually.
Related topics are also displayed for each entry in the database based on the related topics held in common. “Related” is therefore defined subjectively by the user when inputting content, and automatically by the database when identifying related content in the sidebars. The related content that shows up in the sidebars is found by an algorithm that searches for content (of a particular type) having the most related topics assigned to it that are held in common with those of the entry displayed.
Keywords are different from related topics in that they do not have a specific page or definition assigned to them. They can be assigned to content to aid searches and to also identify relationships when held in common between multiple entries. Keywords are appropriate for more commonly understood ideas that do not require further definition.
Tags are assigned to content in the same way that related topics and keywords are assigned. However, tags are used to associate an entry with specific names or titles of other entries, such as the Organization or Business, author, article, and/or source, etc.
The categories term is somewhat of a formality in this database, corresponding to one of the three E's: Equity, Ecology, and Economy. Use your best judgment to discern which ogf the E's most readily correspond to the content being entered. This is very subjective, but will be useful nonetheless for sorting content. Categories are not used to identify related content.
“Organization” is used informally; it does not imply any particular status and can refer to anything from an online group to a registered nonprofit.
A “program” may refer to an established program or project of a business or organization, or an independent initiative. It broadly refers to any specific effort(s) towards some particular purpose.
This term can refer to multiple types of information, including news articles, blog posts, reports, videos, books, etc. It can be as informal an original anecdote, or as official as a journal citation.
This term applies to any occurrence that can be pinned to a particular time, whether past, present, or future. Stories or reports of past events are better represented as references (ie: Share the Bounty Week reference). Classifying an entry as an event is better reserved for a description of the event itself.
“Places” refer to physical spaces that comprise our environment. These can be specific features (such as a river or alley) or a broad area such as a bioregion or park. This term is generally not meant to represent the specific locations of business, programs, events, etc. (for instance [[Goshen Farmers Market]] should be entered as an organization rather than a place).