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Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan

August 2020

Published onAug 31, 2020
Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan

Raghavan, K. S. "Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan." Encyclopedia of Knowledge Organization, edited by Birger Hjørland and Claudio Gnoli, 2019 ( - If you want to work with entities, you will have to read Ranganathan's theory. Firstly, you need to study some elemental topics in the subject of the classification and description. If you want to understand schema and categories, you will need to get knowledge from the theory. People say his theoretical contributions are about the five laws. It seems to me that his main contribution was the fundamental categories of concepts. Nowadays, you can see facets or tags in digital services; however, all objects, properties, and values are part of the whole. Seemingly these topics are common. Nevertheless, we must have understood them previously those topics to make databases and online catalogs. His theory can reinforce our understanding in cataloging, such as how the workflow works in the database. Ranganathan’s theory responds to the typical questions of who, what, when, where and why – they correspond to Personality, Matter or property, Energy, Space and Time. He also explained the triplets under his optical. He had written about Matrix (mathematics) and its relation on the databases; similar to object [property: value] in the case of using JavaScript Object Properties or GraphQL.  Unfortunately for Ranganathan, his classification was not accepted in the libraries. We must not ignore Ranganathan's contributions to knowledge organization. - HGS


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