See!! Add a bit of context & the challenge becomes much more focused.
There was a very spirited discussion—read: contentious—of this very “contexts of context” topic just this past Wednesday.
Ah, HA! This sounds very similar to the pursuit of the mythical TLO (top level ontology) that has been generating a tremendous amount of enthusiastic handwaving in certain circles.
The “one place” “one meaning” “one version of the truth” approach has proved unworkable for nigh on 50+ years just in software—millennia if we go back to Greek philosophers.
A good research site is John Sowa’s www.jfsowa.com
What does prove feasible—but thinly practiced—is to allow information to reside in different tools (‘databases/containers’ like Excel, OmniOutliner, The-Brain, GIT-Hub, etc.) & to automate the process of sharing selected pieces of information between the various silos.
As you have correctly pointed out, there’s simply too much information to collect in a single place & make sense of it.
A distinction needs to be made between the bottom level collection, storage & maintenance & the top level presentation of information.
Never lose sight of the fact that no matter how well organized & classified information is, just rotating the view a smidge—changing the context—will cause the perfect classification scheme to instantly break down.
In my world of large organization “data management,” business glossaries are currently popular. Yet one of the market leading products only allows one meaning per term. Never going to work.
As a proof of concept for how I try to tilt at this exceedingly large & slippery windmill, a while back I built a simple “glossary” (two columns: term & meaning)… ended up with 2,000 terms—largely acronyms, but I make no distinction between a single word, a multiple word phrase, or acronyms/abbreviations—and 68,000 meanings.
When I started “CC” had 298 meanings. Today it has 455 meanings.
Haven’t gotten to the “classification” facet quite yet. That’s still on the futures list.