This page contains pointers to papers that introduce the basic ideas of
topic maps. Other pages provide links to the specifications, to papers
exploring various aspects of topic maps, and to news from the world of
TAO of topic maps, Steve Pepper, April 2002
The classic introduction to topic maps, which takes as its starting
point the forms of navigation with which we are all familiar from the
world of printed information: indexes, glossaries and thesauri.
What are Topic Maps?,
Lars Marius Garshol, September 2002
This article published on XML.COM gives
a basic introduction to Topic Maps.
Papers: Lessons on Applying Topic Maps, Steve Pepper and Lars
Marius Garshol, October 2002
A new, follow-on article for those that
have already read "The TAO". This paper describes some of the
basic steps in applying topic maps in a real world application, a topic
map-driven web portal of conference papers.
Taxonomies? Topic Maps! — Making sense of it all, Lars
Marius Garshol, March 2004
Describes how topic maps compare to familiar concepts like metadata,
taxonomies, and thesauri, and how they go beyond what these can do,
while at the same time allowing these familiar techniques to be used
with topic maps.
Seamless Knowledge — Integrating Public Sector Portals in
Norway, Steve Pepper, April 2004
The story of how Topic Maps
has "taken off" in Norway — primarily as a vehicle for web
portals in the public sector — and how this is paving the way for
realizing the vision of "Seamless Knowledge".
All the following articles contain basically the same exposition
of the core concepts as "The TAO". The only reason for including
these older versions is that they include some unique material, which
may be of interest.
haystacks and discovering needles, Steve Pepper, September
An article that appeared in Markup Languages: Theory and
Practice, Vol. 1 No. 4 (MIT Press, 1999). Contains additional material
under the subject headings "Topic maps and reference works publishing" and
"Topic maps and RDF". (But see also more
recent material on topic maps and RDF.)
maps and revolution, Steve Pepper, May 1999
paper from XML Europe 1999 containing an introduction (now superceded),
an account of the applicability of topic maps to reference works
publishing (see rather the Markup Languages article, above), and the