Being A Good Data Provider


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This presentation is intended to give some brief advice for those publishing
digital content (digital images, cultural heritage, scholarly information etc.)
on the Internet and in particular how to ensure good visibility via Google and other portals

Published in: Education, Technology
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Being A Good Data Provider

  1. 1. Being a Good Data Provider Alastair Dunning JISC Programme Manager - Digitisation a.Dunning AT , 0203 006 6065 February 2008, London, UK This presentation is intended to give some brief advice for those publishing digital content (digital images, cultural heritage, scholarly information etc.) on the Internet
  2. 2. Outline <ul><li>Being a Good Data Provider: A simple thing gets complex </li></ul><ul><li>Cool URIs </li></ul><ul><li>Being Friends with Google </li></ul><ul><li>Is Google Enough? </li></ul><ul><li>International Portals </li></ul>
  3. 3. Cool URIs <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>URI ( Uniform Resource Identifier ) refers to the &quot;generic set of all names/addresses that are short strings that refer to resources&quot; whereas URI ( Uniform Resource Locator ) is &quot;an informal term (no longer used in technical specifications) associated with popular URI schemes: http, ftp, mailto, etc.“ </li></ul><ul><li>Keep them stable , memorable and consistent – develop a short URI policy </li></ul><ul><li>Where do URIs get quoted? – Often taken out of their environment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Publicity material – expensive to reprint </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Academic Citations – damages scholarly trust </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bookmarks within browser or on social bookmarking sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Emails (therefore less than 76 characters, avoid underscores) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs and other URIs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>By search engines – loss will inhibit resource discovery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Guesswork – users make guesses at URIs – use redirects and good 404 pages </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Item level not a collection level <ul><li>Users may have no interest in the general resource but plenty of interest in a particular item </li></ul><ul><li>Designing Shakespeare – Shakespeare performed in London & Stratford, 1960 – 2000, 1000s of plays </li></ul><ul><li>Researchers & teachers interested in general resource </li></ul><ul><li>Actors interested in specific performances . Needed stable URIs for cast lists and photos </li></ul>
  5. 5. Being friends with Google <ul><li>No need to explain the importance in exposing content to metadata – academics use this as their principal springboard for digital information </li></ul><ul><li>Even if using authentication, expose metadata </li></ul><ul><li>Make sure your database is easily queried by robots like Google </li></ul><ul><li>Optimisation is complex and depends on good communications process </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use established URIs – Ensure your website is trusted </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get incoming links from other trusted sources – this drives up traffic via Google and via the original sites themselves </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Being friends with Google <ul><li>Give distinctive <title> to each page – helps with clarity on Google </li></ul><ul><li>Use Google Sitemaps to upload details of your pages </li></ul><ul><li>Google Analytics can help with measuring web usage </li></ul><ul><li>Google Maps, Google Scholar? </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  7. 7. Is Google everything? <ul><li>Recommendation by peers and other respected persons gets resources used </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing a resource is an integrated strategy to marketing which involves technical and ‘academic’ integration </li></ul>Source – Lesly Huxley et al (2007): Gathering evidence: Current ICT use and future needs for arts and humanities researchers
  8. 8. Is Google everything? <ul><li>How is your collection integrated into library catalogue? </li></ul><ul><li>How does your resource fit in with other resources? </li></ul>Source – Mark Greengrass et al (2007): RePAH: A User Requirements Analysis for Portals in the Arts and Humanities “Resource discovery and use would be increased by separate collections being aggregated logically based on their content” Recommendation 3 – Daisy Abbott (2008): Digital Repositories and Archives Inventory
  9. 9. Bringing content together - International Portals <ul><li>OAIster - </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Large-scale harvest of digital resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ From electric refrigerators to Harriet Beecher Stowe memoirs” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy for cultural heritage institutions / HE to join up – but certain metadata tests need to be passed </li></ul></ul><ul><li>WorldCat - </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bibliographic data - both digital and not digital </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Metadata exposed via Registry of Digital Masters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Requires membership – so best done via institution </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Certainly useful services? But how useful for the end user? </li></ul>
  10. 10. Bringing content together - International Portals <ul><li>Aquifer / US Social History </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relevant records harvested as MODS records via OAI-PMH </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Investigating mapping issues for other formats (MARC, EAD, VRA) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Digital Library Foundation hopes Aquifer can be spun-out for other topics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Nines </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focused on British and American nineteenth-century studies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dublin Core metadata developed into RDF (Resource Description Framework) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Bringing content together - International Portals <ul><li>Plenty of data providers but a lack of service providers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do you know others? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>JISC is looking to fund some work in portal development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Allowing projects to tailor metadata for existing service providers / portals – including JISC Digitisation projects </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Developing themed portals in specific areas </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Building conference and academic awareness of resources around the theme </li></ul></ul></ul>