In a break out session of academic researchers funded by an agency, people were asked by the program manager to identify in which class their research falls: Theory, Technology, and Applications.
This may appear obvious to you, but a very interesting discussion started because multiple people felt that their research is really innovative and this classification does not capture their project. When asked to add a class and identify the characteristics of that class that make it different from the above three, discussion continued until the program manager, I believe, got a bit frustrated and insisted that each project has to belong to one of these classes.
It does appear that one of the goals that we have in research community is to prove that our research is in a class of its own — a sue generis — and that desire takes us deeper in the classification tree until we can make our research to be a leaf. I learnt something important about some aspects of research culture.