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Sharing Agricultural Events Information: When and where is that workshop?


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In the last few years a strong need has emerged for a standard way to interchange various types of information, such as on organizations, projects, experts, events and news, in the agricultural community. This paper focuses on the metadata set for events, the Agricultural Events Application Profile (Ag-Events AP), created specifically to enhance description, exchange and reuse of information on events. The Ag-Events AP provides a minimum interoperability layer through which information about upcoming events related to agriculture can be described, shared and reused. The Ag-Events AP was developed by FAO, in collaboration with its partners, the Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR) and Global Forest Information Service (GFIS), to offer a “minimum” set of metadata elements necessary to share quality descriptions about events. This paper talks about the work done on creating the AP, its use in various applications and the next steps.

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Sharing Agricultural Events Information: When and where is that workshop?

  1. 1. Sharing Agricultural Events Information: When and where is that workshop? Gauri Salokhe, Valeria Pesce, Magnus Grylle, Eero Mikkola, Johannes Keizer, Ajit Maru
  2. 2. Requirements for the event information <ul><li>Agricultural Community Members (CIARD) wanted to have the possibility to exchange “news and event information” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>filtering to produce custom-made feeds, such as those for an “early warning system” on topics such as “avian influenza” or “desert locusts”. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The new possibilities provided by the Web 2.0 technologies </li></ul>
  3. 3. News information <ul><li>Standard RSS formats can be used for this </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(RSS) Title </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(RSS) Link </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(RSS) Description </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(RSS) pubDate </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Additional optional information includes: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Location, Subject, Category etc. </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Event information <ul><li>event is defined as “something that happens at a given place and time.” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>recurrence and serial nature of an event was not addressed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ subsets’, for example by day or session also not considered. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>For example, some of the events in FAO are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>26th Session of Committee on Fisheries (COFI), Rome, Italy. 7 March 2005 - 11 March 2005 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>17th Committee on Forestry (COFO), Rome, Italy. 15 March 2005 - 19 March 2005 </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Event information --Requirement <ul><li>metadata set that can provide just enough information to allow users to 'know' about an upcoming event and guide them to the event Web site which provides further detailed information. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Event Information -- Technical requirements <ul><li>The standards should: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>remain simple to create and apply (high quality, low complexity) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>capture enough information, i.e. provide enough ‘mandatory’ elements to get satisfactory information about an event </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>minimize the risk of conflicts with standards already adopted by some of the parties involved, therefore it should take elements, where possible, from existing standards such as RSS, DC and AgMES </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>address the issue of multilingual information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ensure that data ownership was retained by the publisher </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>show benefits of establishing such a standard to all participants </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Event Information -- Requirements <ul><li>Most websites use RSS and/or Atom for syndicating news information </li></ul><ul><li>RSS format is extensible by definition, by means of the addition of other namespaces </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Standard RSS formats require: <item>, <link> and <description> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>For event information to be comprehensive and standardised across many applications there was a need to have new pieces of information such as dates and location. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Other existing standards <ul><li>International Press Telecommunications Council’s Event ML </li></ul><ul><ul><li>used in the context of a publishing environment (Reuters, BBC, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>extremely complex </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Other existing standards <ul><li>Dublin Core </li></ul><ul><ul><li>provides dc:coverage element to contain location and date information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>difficult to parse </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li><dc:coverage startdate=“2008-08-24” enddate=“2008-08-27” location=“Tokyo, Japan”> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>intended for coverage of documents </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Other existing standards <ul><li>RDF Site Summary 1.0 Event Module < ev:startdate> <ev:enddate> <ev:location> <ev:organizer> <ev:type> </li></ul><ul><ul><li>location information or the place where the event is taking place is provided as either short description or by giving URL to the place </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>reduced “parseability” by location </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>example: events in a given region </li></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Application Profile for Event information exchange
  12. 12. Example in RSS
  13. 13. Application 1: AgriFeeds <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Agricultural news and events aggregator </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Filtering by topics </li></ul><ul><li>Filtering of events by region (e.g. Asia ) </li></ul><ul><li>Custom feeds (e.g. water pollution ) </li></ul><ul><li>Global issues feeds (e.g. avian influenza , biofuels ) </li></ul>
  14. 14. AgriFeeds feeds reused!
  15. 15. Application 2: Global Forest Information Service (GFIS) <ul><li>Forestry Specific information </li></ul><ul><li>Same feeds submitted to both “aggregators” </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  16. 16. GFIS Event Calendar
  17. 17. Lessons learned/future plans <ul><li>The Ag-Events AP presented above meets the needs of sharing basic information about upcoming events </li></ul><ul><li>It allows for timely delivery and search of events related to Agriculture </li></ul><ul><li>To ensure easy adoption and creation of events feeds using this AP, we need to provide a easy to use tool. </li></ul>
  18. 18. References <ul><li>Agricultural Metadata Element Set (AgMES) </li></ul><ul><li>AgriFeeds Website </li></ul><ul><li>AGROVOC Thesaurus </li></ul><ul><li>Dublin Core Metadata Element Set (DCMES) </li></ul><ul><li>Events ML-G2 Standard from the International Press Telecommunications Council (2008) and </li></ul><ul><li>Expert Consultation of October 2005 </li></ul><ul><li>FAO Technical Knowledge Classification Scheme </li></ul><ul><li>Global Forest Information Service </li></ul><ul><li>Guidelines for exchanging event metadata: The Ag-Event Application Profile </li></ul><ul><li>ISO 3166 Codes for the representation of names of countries </li></ul><ul><li>RFC 822 Standard for the Format of ARPA Internet Text Messages </li></ul><ul><li>Søren Roug. RDF Site Summary 1.0 Modules: Event (2001) </li></ul><ul><li>W3C-DTF - W3C Encoding rules for dates and times - a profile based on ISO 8601 </li></ul>
  19. 19. Thank you! Gauri Salokhe ( [email_address] )