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Understanding the standards gap
LIDA 2009 - Libraries in the Digital Age
Dublin Core Tools Community workshop
30 May, Zadar, Croatia
                             Dan Brickley
Dublin Core RDF tools in theory & practice....

               Standards Gap =
                 what you want
                     minus
                  what you get

    What RDF’s standards do “out of the box”
      ...and what we have to build ourselves.

  A brief introduction to Semantic Web thinking,
  and a proposal for role of the DC Tools group
If you buy, install or build RDF/DC “standards-compliant”
  metadata tools, what’s still missing? how to fill that gap?

                 Two conceptual tools:

1. Understand the RDF & Semantic Web style -
      lnformation-linking using Web technology

2. Understand Dublin Core history: DC as element set vs
DC as a community meeting place -
      from 15 DC metadata elements as ‘the’ solution,
      to DC community as place to share & find solutions
The Semantic Web project

A true story about linked information systems:
 From many small pieces of information (“claims”)...
   ...to the total universe of information (“The Web”).
Claims? as properties, relationships and attributes...
#me                           name                                       ‘Dan Brickley’
#me                           mbox                                    danbri@danbri.org
#me                           workplaceHomepage                       http://www.vu.nl/
#me                           currentProject                          http://notube.tv/
#me                           workplaceHomepage                     http://www.fao.org/
#me                           currentProject                  http://www.fao.org/agris/
#me                           currentProject               http://www.foaf-project.org/
#me                           homepage                               http://danbri.org/
#me                           interest                       http://www.dublincore.org/
#me                           interest                               http://www.w3.org/
#vu                           homepage                                http://www.vu.nl/
#vu                           type                                         Organization
#vu                           name                       ‘Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam’
#me                           type                                               Person
http://www.dublincore.org/    type                                             Document
#me                           schoolHomepage    http://hginfant.schoolwebbuilder.co.uk/
#me                           schoolHomepage     http://www.westergate.w-sussex.sch.uk/
#me                           schoolHomepage                  http://www.bristol.ac.uk/




      W3C Resource Description Framework (RDF):
                   simple factual claims in the Web.
(Q: are these claims useful for anything unless you know who made them?)
(Q: how do these claims relate to documents? to their creators? to hyperlinks? provenance?)
The world according to a document: claims as triples
http://hginfant.schoolwebbuilder.co.uk/
http://www.westergate.w-sussex.sch.uk/
http://www.bristol.ac.uk/
http://www.notube.tv/
Acronym Guide part 1:
      RDF/XML, RDFa, GRDDL, N3/Turtle standards


   These are all ways of encoding simple 3-part
       claims in various Web documents.

              That is all that they do.

 So different documents can make different claims?

                                            Yes.
What the computers see...




3 sets of claims
Acronym Guide part 2:
     SPARQL - an RDF query language

SPARQL lets you ask factual questions against a
database of these claims. That is all that it does.




And the queries can talk about who made each claim?


                                              Yes.
PREFIX : <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/>
SELECT ?x WHERE {
   GRAPH <http://localhost/notube/layerlist.rdf> {
        <http://localhost/notube/layer1.rdf#alice> :made ?byalice .
     }
  GRAPH ?byalice {
       <http://localhost/notube/layer1.rdf#alice> :schoolHomepage ?x .
   }
}


                       What school does Alice say she went to?

PREFIX : <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/>
SELECT ?g ?who WHERE {
  GRAPH <http://localhost/notube/layerlist.rdf> { ?who :made ?g . }
  GRAPH ?g {     <http://localhost/notube/layer1.rdf#alice>
                 :schoolHomepage <http://lookingglass.example.org/> .    }
}

                       Who has something to say about Alice’s schooling?
                       - does Alice’s school agree that she attended it? Does Bob’s?
                        - when sources disagree, how to prioritise? who to believe?




                  This is RDF’s approach - understand it and
                  you’ll understand what you get from RDF
                         tools, RDF data, RDF people...
Linking claims with topics,
   authentication & authenticity....
  prospects.html      dc:title                       quot;Oil investigation - early findingsquot;
  prospects.html      dc:creator                     person1
  prospects.html      rdf:type                       Document
  person1             foaf:name                      quot;John Smithquot;
  prospects.html      dc:subject                     sub1
  person1             foaf:workplaceHomepage         <http://mining_company.example.com/>
  person1             foaf:schoolHomepage            <http://miningschool.example.org/>
  person1             foaf:openid                    <http://miningschool.example.org/jsmith>
  person1             rdf:type                       Person
  sub1                rdf:type                       Concept
  sub1                skos:prefLabel                 quot;OFFSHORE DRILLING (MINING EXPLORATION)quot;
  sub1                skos:notation                  “62.001.4(26)” (UDC/lonclass)
  sub2                skos:preLabel                  quot;INDUSTRIAL TESTINGquot;
  sub2                skos:notation                  quot;62.001.4quot; (UDC/lonclass)
  sub1                skos:broader                   sub2




       SKOS in the Web: each concept gets a page...
       SKOS is a set of terms for making claims about
       subjects/topics, their properties and relationships.
(Q: how might employers, academia or individuals use it to make Web-based claims about expertise?)
Beyond Toy Examples
 Each Library of Congress Subject Heading has an RDF/SKOS page
  ... 6.5M bib records, ~200k auth records Swedish Union Catalog
   Many thesauri. All of Wikipedia (dbpedia.org). Yahoo & Google.

From http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Gutenberg:Feeds
<dc:subject>
 <rdf:Bag>
  <rdf:li><dcterms:LCSH><rdf:value>Epic poetry, Greek -- Translations into English</rdf:value></dcterms:LCSH></rdf:li>
  <rdf:li><dcterms:LCSH><rdf:value>Achilles (Greek mythology) -- Poetry</rdf:value></dcterms:LCSH></rdf:li>
  <rdf:li><dcterms:LCSH><rdf:value>   Trojan War -- Poetry</rdf:value></dcterms:LCSH></rdf:li>
 </rdf:Bag>
</dc:subject>



To using “http://id.loc.gov/authorities/sh2007100520”
DC Tools Community
People care about metadata standards for many reasons:

- long term archival
- integration with other collections
- lower cost of systems development
- reduce lock-in to commercial or opensource systems
- potential for alternative UIs
- consistency of interface for users

  None of us get all we need from off-the-shelf tools...
So ... DC tools & the standards gap...
(the difference between what you want and what you get...)

     Typical RDF off-the-shelf toolkit offers:

               Parsers, XML & SQL mappings, query
                   and rule systems, databases.


 That’s about it. But solid, standardised, well understood
     and with many independent implementations...

                                What more could you want?
Under development... (wishlists!)
Full text search, autocompletion systems,
sophisticated ranking algorithms, tagging, search and
browse interfaces. Tools to check and validate
conformance to ‘application profiles’ (ie. particular
patterns of descriptions & claims). Conversion and
mapping tools. Analytics. Stats. Tools that compensate
for inconsistent, semi-chaotic data. Tools that help
authors and publishers.[...]

... & .... documents that describe the available tools
and their use cases.
     Dublin Core is not a technical answer to all
questions, but a place where practitioners can share
answers, experiments, ideas...
Back to the future?   TODO.txt
                      1. (re-)read “Information Management:
                             A Proposal” (TimBL, 1989)

                      2. Document your own standards gap
                      in the DC Tools community: what do
                       you need that isn’t ready yet? What
                        have you tried? What works, what
                                     doesn’t?
Questions?




     mailto:danbri@danbri.org

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Understanding the Standards Gap

  • 1. Understanding the standards gap LIDA 2009 - Libraries in the Digital Age Dublin Core Tools Community workshop 30 May, Zadar, Croatia Dan Brickley
  • 2. Dublin Core RDF tools in theory & practice.... Standards Gap = what you want minus what you get What RDF’s standards do “out of the box” ...and what we have to build ourselves. A brief introduction to Semantic Web thinking, and a proposal for role of the DC Tools group
  • 3. If you buy, install or build RDF/DC “standards-compliant” metadata tools, what’s still missing? how to fill that gap? Two conceptual tools: 1. Understand the RDF & Semantic Web style - lnformation-linking using Web technology 2. Understand Dublin Core history: DC as element set vs DC as a community meeting place - from 15 DC metadata elements as ‘the’ solution, to DC community as place to share & find solutions
  • 4. The Semantic Web project A true story about linked information systems: From many small pieces of information (“claims”)... ...to the total universe of information (“The Web”).
  • 5. Claims? as properties, relationships and attributes... #me name ‘Dan Brickley’ #me mbox danbri@danbri.org #me workplaceHomepage http://www.vu.nl/ #me currentProject http://notube.tv/ #me workplaceHomepage http://www.fao.org/ #me currentProject http://www.fao.org/agris/ #me currentProject http://www.foaf-project.org/ #me homepage http://danbri.org/ #me interest http://www.dublincore.org/ #me interest http://www.w3.org/ #vu homepage http://www.vu.nl/ #vu type Organization #vu name ‘Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam’ #me type Person http://www.dublincore.org/ type Document #me schoolHomepage http://hginfant.schoolwebbuilder.co.uk/ #me schoolHomepage http://www.westergate.w-sussex.sch.uk/ #me schoolHomepage http://www.bristol.ac.uk/ W3C Resource Description Framework (RDF): simple factual claims in the Web. (Q: are these claims useful for anything unless you know who made them?) (Q: how do these claims relate to documents? to their creators? to hyperlinks? provenance?)
  • 6. The world according to a document: claims as triples
  • 11. Acronym Guide part 1: RDF/XML, RDFa, GRDDL, N3/Turtle standards These are all ways of encoding simple 3-part claims in various Web documents. That is all that they do. So different documents can make different claims? Yes.
  • 12.
  • 13. What the computers see... 3 sets of claims
  • 14. Acronym Guide part 2: SPARQL - an RDF query language SPARQL lets you ask factual questions against a database of these claims. That is all that it does. And the queries can talk about who made each claim? Yes.
  • 15. PREFIX : <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/> SELECT ?x WHERE { GRAPH <http://localhost/notube/layerlist.rdf> { <http://localhost/notube/layer1.rdf#alice> :made ?byalice . } GRAPH ?byalice { <http://localhost/notube/layer1.rdf#alice> :schoolHomepage ?x . } } What school does Alice say she went to? PREFIX : <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/> SELECT ?g ?who WHERE { GRAPH <http://localhost/notube/layerlist.rdf> { ?who :made ?g . } GRAPH ?g { <http://localhost/notube/layer1.rdf#alice> :schoolHomepage <http://lookingglass.example.org/> . } } Who has something to say about Alice’s schooling? - does Alice’s school agree that she attended it? Does Bob’s? - when sources disagree, how to prioritise? who to believe? This is RDF’s approach - understand it and you’ll understand what you get from RDF tools, RDF data, RDF people...
  • 16. Linking claims with topics, authentication & authenticity.... prospects.html dc:title quot;Oil investigation - early findingsquot; prospects.html dc:creator person1 prospects.html rdf:type Document person1 foaf:name quot;John Smithquot; prospects.html dc:subject sub1 person1 foaf:workplaceHomepage <http://mining_company.example.com/> person1 foaf:schoolHomepage <http://miningschool.example.org/> person1 foaf:openid <http://miningschool.example.org/jsmith> person1 rdf:type Person sub1 rdf:type Concept sub1 skos:prefLabel quot;OFFSHORE DRILLING (MINING EXPLORATION)quot; sub1 skos:notation “62.001.4(26)” (UDC/lonclass) sub2 skos:preLabel quot;INDUSTRIAL TESTINGquot; sub2 skos:notation quot;62.001.4quot; (UDC/lonclass) sub1 skos:broader sub2 SKOS in the Web: each concept gets a page... SKOS is a set of terms for making claims about subjects/topics, their properties and relationships. (Q: how might employers, academia or individuals use it to make Web-based claims about expertise?)
  • 17. Beyond Toy Examples Each Library of Congress Subject Heading has an RDF/SKOS page ... 6.5M bib records, ~200k auth records Swedish Union Catalog Many thesauri. All of Wikipedia (dbpedia.org). Yahoo & Google. From http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Gutenberg:Feeds <dc:subject> <rdf:Bag> <rdf:li><dcterms:LCSH><rdf:value>Epic poetry, Greek -- Translations into English</rdf:value></dcterms:LCSH></rdf:li> <rdf:li><dcterms:LCSH><rdf:value>Achilles (Greek mythology) -- Poetry</rdf:value></dcterms:LCSH></rdf:li> <rdf:li><dcterms:LCSH><rdf:value> Trojan War -- Poetry</rdf:value></dcterms:LCSH></rdf:li> </rdf:Bag> </dc:subject> To using “http://id.loc.gov/authorities/sh2007100520”
  • 18. DC Tools Community People care about metadata standards for many reasons: - long term archival - integration with other collections - lower cost of systems development - reduce lock-in to commercial or opensource systems - potential for alternative UIs - consistency of interface for users None of us get all we need from off-the-shelf tools...
  • 19. So ... DC tools & the standards gap... (the difference between what you want and what you get...) Typical RDF off-the-shelf toolkit offers: Parsers, XML & SQL mappings, query and rule systems, databases. That’s about it. But solid, standardised, well understood and with many independent implementations... What more could you want?
  • 20.
  • 21. Under development... (wishlists!) Full text search, autocompletion systems, sophisticated ranking algorithms, tagging, search and browse interfaces. Tools to check and validate conformance to ‘application profiles’ (ie. particular patterns of descriptions & claims). Conversion and mapping tools. Analytics. Stats. Tools that compensate for inconsistent, semi-chaotic data. Tools that help authors and publishers.[...] ... & .... documents that describe the available tools and their use cases. Dublin Core is not a technical answer to all questions, but a place where practitioners can share answers, experiments, ideas...
  • 22. Back to the future? TODO.txt 1. (re-)read “Information Management: A Proposal” (TimBL, 1989) 2. Document your own standards gap in the DC Tools community: what do you need that isn’t ready yet? What have you tried? What works, what doesn’t?
  • 23. Questions? mailto:danbri@danbri.org