[T]hey fancied that they could detect in numbers, to a greater extent than in fire and earth and water, many analogues of what is and comes into being—such and such a property of number being justice, and such and such soul or mind , another opportunity , and similarly, more or less, with all the rest—and since they saw further that the properties and ratios of the musical scales are based on numbers, and since it seemed clear that all other things have their whole nature modeled upon numbers, and that numbers are the ultimate things in the whole physical universe.
-Aristotle, Metaphysics, Book 1, 985b
Much of what interests me in data mapping and data extraction in light of network maps, concept modeling, vector space modelling, etc., is that they are not only methods, but also metaphysics.
Dealing with a corpus is a bit like the Pre-Socratics trying to find the underlying something that comprises reality. The big ideas–or Big Idea–that connects or threads the works together. The corpus may have alcoves and pockets, islands and peninsulas, but unity and commonality exists. Patterns exist.