I think if files are related but not as directly to belong to a common folder, it might be useful. But when is that the case?
When would I want to use tagging?
In my research projets, this happens... ALL the time.
I'm using the same articles for different papers, I'm grouping the same files differently in different folders — depending on the project. Right now, I’m using shorcuts or even hard links to do that : what a drag. Shortcuts are just really inefficient.
I'd gladly use Ultra Recall, myBase or one of these, but the fact is that I feel imprisonned in them. They force me to use their own search engine
(when I could use the much more powerfull Archivarius or X1 to search ALL my files), they “semi-force” me to move back in forth between their databases and my normal folders
(which sometimes contains huge files that I don't wanna transfer), they generally don't have a “file Explorer” component that's as powerful as the other file explorers that are available
for normal file exploring (Total Commander, directory opus, Xyplorer, ), they don't have renaming capacities that are as powerful than the one proposed by other softwares
(BRU, Flash Renamer), They force me to discriminate between information that “should be” useful OR unuseful (because the only information searchable in their database is the information that I've… transferred to their database), while I prefer to have everything available as potentially useful
, they always try to do all kinds of stuff that's uselessly duplicating other software that perfectly do the job, etc.
So, right now, my “information management” system is mainly composed of
1. a notetaking software (EverNote, despite some of its limitations — see the notetaking thread) where I can store and retrieve tidbits of information that I wouldn't put in individual files -- what a mess would it be
2. a good word processors with good formatting and outlining capabilities (MS Word — yes… I'm just so used to it and it's very powerful whatever people say —and Open Office, sometimes), for structured information, OCRed documents, etc. + Excell for tables, etc.
3. a good software to display information and map ideas in different ways (mindmanager / freemind)
4. a good renaming software (BRU / Flash Renamer),
5. a good PIM (outlook — yes, for it's Palm synching abilities — + MLO… but I'm currently evaluating Achieve Planner ; very promising, but some syncing problems and a tad slow, it seems),
6. a good desktop search programs for deep searches (X1, mainly, but I just bought Archivarius for the times when X1 will not work the way I want…),
7. a foolproof naming system (well, almost... I like long names…
at least, they tell something precise about the file which is convenient for searching softwareS like FARR and locate… but long names don't allow me to use deep directory structures), and other deep searching software's like “Advanced Find and Replace” and “File Locator Pro”.
8. a good launching and "quick searching" programs (Farr + Locate).
BUT, there are some component missing that you'll find in good softwares using some kind of "free-form" database systems (like Ultra Recall, Surfulater, AskSam, and even Evernote) : these are what could be called : virtual folders, file and folder "cloning" capacities (in some ways, similar to "hard linking" -- not vulnerable shortcuts that will become useless as soon as you rename or move a file, please!), easy tagging, etc.
So... comming back to what you said : a tagging system like tag2find
could be used to create these so much needed virtual folders, and dependable links between files and folders (depending on the subject or the projetc). Right now, I put tags in my filenames, and while this is usually efficient, names can become absurdly long and it doesn't give any visual representation of anything (unlike to have a tree representation, or a mindmap, or tag clouds, etc. : the notetaking thread mentioned all the advantages of these representations and how they can always be useful depending on the situation). Anyway. so this is one reason why I still use folders (and try to use "hard links"), but it's far from ideal.
...Ahhh. I feel handicapped because I don't feel comfortable enough in English
: I'd have so many other things to say about tagging, virtual folders, the way NTFS is currently used to organize files and how it could be used (see the threads on hard links, soft links, symbolic links, etc.). But probably nothing new though…
Well… if anybody has anything to comment on the subject… of tagging I mean (virtual folders, data organization subject)...