Knowledge Base+: a Cloud-Based Community Knowledge Base


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Knowledge Base+: A cloud-based community knowledge base by Ben Showers, JISC. Presentation at the JIBS User Group Workshop and AGM Back to the Future and Into the Cloud, 24 February 2012, School of Oriental and African Studies, London.

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  • So this is the title of my presentation. You’ll notice that I’ve highlighted the community aspect of this title – for me this is the most important aspect of this project (service) and is one of the things I think Cloud could help transform for the community.So the aims of my presentation are:Outline what the KB+ service aims to deliverProvide a bit of background and context to the projectThe implications of cloud on library services and systems – and the potential impact of the KB+ project on UK library services.So, taking the title of today’s event – I intend to begin with the future and work my way backwards to the past!!So, to begin with, what is KB+, and what does the service plan to deliver?
  • KB+ platform with user interface to allow academic institutions, suppliers, publishers and others to navigate, manage and manipulate data, supported by access management and permission tools.Verified, accurate and up-to-date publication information for NESLi2, JISC eCollections, SHEDL and WHEEL agreements in KBART format, suitable for use by link-resolversSubscription management information – such as post-cancellation access entitlement information, contact information, access management records.Licences in machine readable formats for NESLi2, major JISC Collections and major non-JISC Collections agreementsIntegrated usage statistics in machine readable format for NESLi2 publishers and other publishers stored within the Journals Usage Statistics Portal.Alerting services covering renewals, opt outs, service availability and disruption.Workflow management tools related to the selection, review, renewal and cancellation of publications.
  • There are relevant standards in place for almost all of the information that we intend to either create, improve and exchange. As mentioned previously the problem isn’t with the standards, but the uneven implementation of those standards.If JUSP has demonstrated something to us, it is that whilst we may all be supportive of standards, you need an incentive to actually go out and implement them.In order to make all of this information available we intend to implement the most appropriate standards for both the capture, management and presentation of ERM information.Something that this project is going to be very keen on is identifiers and the use of the most appropriate authority files for them.We are not seeking to invent standards, and I think that because we’re operating in a global environment of suppliers and academic institutions with complementary information requirements it is beholden upon us to make sure that whatever we do has global relevance and use.
  • We intend to start addressing issues around data quality immediately.We’ll focus on publication information, usage statistics, subscription information and licences.We will make that information available via the knowledge base.Which brings me on to…
  • I actually think talking in terms of there being an ERM or subscription management ecosystem is very useful – it might be argued that the current ecosystem is failing (has failed) and is subject to the implications of monocultures and reduced diversity that natural ecosystems are.So what does this ecosystem look like at the moment...?
  • Please don’t assume this is exhaustive – I have just tried to capture a snap shot of what the environment looks like currently. I haven’t included all the open and community developments and initiatives, nor all the commercial developments and vendors within this area. Rather, I hope this demonstrates the various different classifications of projects and initiatives that will and are influencing the project and that comprise the current ERM landscape. I have essentially tried to bring a little order to the diverse things that are currently taking place out there around subscription resources.
  • So... We wanted to learn from the past to build better services for the future. With our experience and a good look at the environment took a slightly different approach. Why couldn’t we exploit the rich sources of data that exist in the community, at JISC and commercially and create something better, more efficient, and transformative.Why do we need to build another system? More importantly, we couldn’t have built another system if we’d wanted: commercial market, no one would’ve wanted it; not effecting the fundamental change that we want to see.
  • But of course, the KB+ will have an impact on the current information management landscape. This is especially true when it is thought of in relation to those aspects of JISC’s library and information infrastructure programme that sit alongside it – mirroring the SCONUL domains.
  • Mention the current funding opportunity.
  • Mention the collaboration with SCONUL – and the exemplar of collaboration and engagement that seems to have created.Note, this was a hard slog – dead ends, financial crisis, difficult requirements gathering, liasing with HEFCE, getting our prefered managing agent etc.
  • So, it’s worth briefly reflecting on some of the implications cloud in general, and the KB+ service in particular, has for libraries and their systems and services. As a community librarians need to ensure they’re aware of the benefits and potential downsides of cloud – these are very much things that have copped up as I have been working on this project and from some of the workshops we’ve had so far.
  • Of course, this isn’t necessarily an either or situation. The reality is much more complex than this. But it’s worth reflecting on the assumption you can outsource infrastructure and focus on service and innovation locally – but there is a cost associated with outsourcing infrastructure, and that’s skills. Why would you need the skills associated with that infrastructure if you no longer have it locally? Can you effectively deploy it elsewhere? What does that loss of skills mean on the capacity of the institution to innovate and focus on users?What role might something like KB+ play in the skills Vs Infrastructure issue... A pool of shared talent?I don’t see a huge difference between hardware obsolescence and hardware obsolescence – you need to account for the service just as much as the hardware. Lock-in: Traditionally something libraries have always been weary of. KB+ is all about implementing open standards – could this help affect a more open standards-based approach to cloud b suppliers?
  • The focus should be back on the user – the student expectation: The service may become obsolete but that’s fine – innovate and provide what’ needed.
  • Knowledge Base+: a Cloud-Based Community Knowledge Base

    1. 1. Friday 24th February JIBS, SOASLibraries in the cloud: Building a sharedknowledge base for UKHE.Ben ShowersJISC Programme Manager, Digital Infrastructure
    2. 2. About...Ben ShowersProgramme ManagerJISC Digital @benshowersPhone: 020 3006 6015
    3. 3. 27/02/2012 | | Slide 3
    4. 4. Back to the Future and into the Cloud
    5. 5. “They say the next big thing is here, that the revolutions near, but to me it seems quite clear that its all just a little bit of history repeating itself” Propellerheads , featuring Miss Shirley Bassey
    6. 6. The Problems • Data accuracy and availability • Interoperability: Silos and flows • Implementation of standards • Duplication of effort • Populating Knowledge bases • Maintenance of Link Resolvers
    7. 7. A Cloud based Community Knowledge Base
    8. 8. Principles Phase One Participants Data Academic Institutions Standards Title lists JISC Services Workflow HoldingsInteroperability Quality Publishers KB+ Verification SystemsShared Activity Alerts Licences Vendors Usage statistics SubscriptionBusiness Model Agents Registration Legal Model Agencies
    9. 9. Benefits• Access to accurate data for UK (and overseas)• Ability to integrate with value-add tools and services• Improved value for money forinstitutional customers• Reduced costs of data management,creation and exchange• Partnerships with UK institutions(and overseas)
    10. 10. Interoperability Data Data Exchange MaintenanceJISC Local Open SupplierServices Systems Source Systems Investing in the enhancement and improvement of existing services whilst supporting the needs and viability of local systems and new services
    11. 11. Standards Licence Usage Publication Information Identifiers Management ONIX for AuthoritySUSHI COUNTER KBART ONIX-PL Serials files
    12. 12. Data Accurate Authoritative Structured Validated Timely Publication Information Usage Statistics Entitlements Licences Licence Link Knowledge Analysis Entitlement JUSP ComparisonResolvers Bases Tools Registry Tool
    13. 13. Subscription management landscape
    14. 14. JUSP CORAL ALMA (Ex Libris) TERMs E-Registry User groups eMatrix Peprs Innovative ERMI (Sierra platform) Open Knowledge Bases Suncat OCLC (web scale) KBART Open Library Unofficial Environment collaborations Activity data Discovery Commercial Community Community effort Community JISC Fundeddevelopments Developments Initiatives
    15. 15. A data-centric approach
    16. 16. How does the KB+ change thewider library systems landscape?
    17. 17. JISC Information and LibraryInfrastructure Discovery Emerging tools and Knowledge Base Library Systems Plus
    18. 18. Discovery LMS Electronic Resource ManagementThe squeezed middle...
    19. 19. You have to know the past to understand the present Dr Carl Sagan
    20. 20. A little bit of history… 2009 SCONUL Shared Services Study for HEFCE 2010-11 Use Case and User Requirements project 2010-11 Knowledge exchange with Kuali OLE HEFCE has awarded UMF funding to JISC to July 2012 Owen Stephens and David Kay undertake some interim work ‘pump priming’Turning point JISC Collections agrees to be the managing agent for the project August – Liam becomes project lead
    21. 21. The clouds methought would open and show riches Ready to drop upon me, when I wakd, I cried to dream again. Caliban, the Tempest
    22. 22. Stormy Clouds...?• Infrastructure and Skills• Obsolescence: Services as much ashardware• Lock-in: Standard formats across cloudproviders?
    23. 23. a silver lining
    24. 24. • New approach to skills• Enhancing and Supporting Communityactivity• Scale: Greater than the sum• Back to the User: make the admin efficientand easy; innovate and serve the user!• Open, Standards-based approach
    25. 25. Find out more...• Website:• Blog:• Twitter: @jiscKBplus