How glorious it will be!
When the computing power and programming skill allows the Internet, retroactively and in its totality, to be tagged!
Every website, file, app, game, video and subpage made taggable by aggressive coding. Any Internet user, big or small, able to attach any word or hashtag or category to anything online – anything, anytime. Does the article refer to some particular celebrity? Tag that celebrity to the article. Does the Cirque de Soleil video contain a clown? Tag “clown” to the video. Is it a happy clown? Make it “happy clown.” Is the clown wearing yellow trousers? Tag “yellow trousers.” Does the clown do a water-pistol-flower gag? Tag “water pistol flower” and also “flower gag” and “squirt flower” and “joker lapel water blossom” because you’re not sure what it’s called. Is the video family-friendly? Tag it “family-friendly.”
Another user comes along, agrees with your tags, and likes them to increase their approval. Maybe they think it’s not family-friendly, but is PG-13 because of a wink-wink joke, and they tag it differently. Maybe they add “red shoes.” Maybe they make it “giddy clown.”
The more people tag any site or Internet Object, the more accurate and consensus, all-encompassing and specific the tags become. Given enough time, video of Paul McCartney playing “Hey Jude” at the Olympics might get a thousand tags, including “old man,” “outdoor performance,” “nostalgic,” “awkward choice,” “living legend,” “grand piano,” “Danny Boyle,” “group chorus,” and more (including, of course, “na na na na.”) It might not get a lot of upvotes on “old man,” so it doesn’t come up highly in a search when someone is just searching for video of an old man, but somewhere on the Internet the Platonic ideal of a video of an old man will be upvoted enough.
The Very Smart Omnipotent Internet Tag-Gathering Machine knows all.
If someone wants to search the VSOITGM for “clown,” that Cirque video might come up as the 50,000th result. If they search “happy clown red shoes flower gag Chicago 2015” it might come up quite a bit higher.
The current Google method works the reverse of this. It watches when people search and then tracks which results they choose. The omnipotent tagging machine starts with the results and turns them into searches based on the tags placed on them by people already there.
Once the tagging becomes prominent enough, the whole Internet gets completely indexed.
Want to find “gold-tinted photograph autumn outside New England wistful kind of sad deep background one figure young man looking down at shoes formal dress church in distance natural light no photoshop” and you just may well get a few dozen pretty accurate results, instead of just some random large batch of autumn photos to sift through for that one exact one.
Want to find “original quote BY Thomas Jefferson slave ownership private letter” and you can without having to bypass a dozen random blog posts that happen to be about Jefferson’s slave ownership. (Not that this is a particularly difficult example but you get the idea.)
And with super smart future phones that are tied to GPS data, this means you can tag real life places too, instead of just their web presences. You can tag people, so that you get an actual person’s Futuregoogle listing when you search for “comic book artist for hire Santa Monica experienced anime style likes surfing funny weird” as opposed to having to hope that some comic book artist has a webpage.
Or maybe not!