OAI metadata: why and how
Jenn Riley
Metadata Librarian
Indiana University
Why share metadata?
Benefits to users
 One-stop searching
 Aggregation of subject-specific resources
Benefits to insti...
Why share metadata with OAI?
“Low barrier” protocol
Shares metadata only, not content,
simplifying rights issues
Same e...
Three possible architectures
OAIHarvester
Digital asset management system
Metadata
creation
module
OAI data
provider
modul...
Basic metadata sharing workflow
 Create metadata, thinking about shareability
 Determine format(s) you wish to share you...
Shareable metadata
Jenn Riley
Metadata Librarian
Indiana University
Shareable metadata defined
Promotes search interoperability - “the ability
to perform a search over diverse sets of
metad...
Finding the right balance
Metadata providers know the materials
 Document encoding schemes and controlled
vocabularies
...
Metadata as a view of the resource
There is no monolithic, one-size-fits-all
metadata record
Metadata for the same thing...
Choice of vocabularies as a view
Names
 LCNAF: Michelangelo Buonarroti, 1475-1564
 ULAN: Buonarroti, Michelangelo
Plac...
Choice of metadata format(s) as a
view
Many factors affect choice of metadata
formats
MARC, MODS, Dublin Core, EAD, and ...
6 Cs and lots of Ss of shareable metadata
Content
Consistency
Coherence
Context
Communication
Conformance
Metadata standar...
Content
Choose appropriate vocabularies
Choose appropriate granularity
Make it obvious what to display
Make it obvious...
Consistency
Records in a set should all reflect the
same practice
 Fields used
 Vocabularies
 Syntax encoding schemes
...
Coherence
Record should be self-explanatory
Values must appear in appropriate
elements
Repeat fields instead of “packin...
Context
Include information not used locally
Exclude information only used locally
Current safe assumptions
 Users dis...
Communication
Method for creating shared records
Vocabularies and content standards used
in shared records
Record updat...
Conformance to Standards
Metadata standards (and not just DC)
Vocabulary and encoding standards
Descriptive content sta...
Before you share…
Check your metadata
 Appropriate view?
 Consistent?
 Context provided?
 Does the aggregator have wh...
The reality of sharing metadata
Creating shareable metadata requires
thinking outside of your local box
Creating shareab...
Choosing metadata formats
Jenn Riley
Metadata Librarian
Indiana University
Consider the materials
Format
Genre
Specialized vs. general audience
Primary vs. secondary
Use
Consider the standards
Purpose
Multi-level vs. item-level description
Method of expression
Reputation of developer
St...
Consider your institution
Library, archival, or museum tradition
Standards used in your community
Resources and experti...
Consider the needs of the project
Robustness of description desired
Describing multiple versions
Relationships between ...
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OAI Metadata: Why and How

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Riley, Jenn. "OAI Metadata: Why and How." DLF OAI Implementers' Workshop, Stanford University, August 25, 2006.

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OAI Metadata: Why and How

  1. 1. OAI metadata: why and how Jenn Riley Metadata Librarian Indiana University
  2. 2. Why share metadata? Benefits to users  One-stop searching  Aggregation of subject-specific resources Benefits to institutions  Increased exposure for collections  Broader user base  Bringing together of distributed collections Don’t expect users will know about your collection and remember to visit it.
  3. 3. Why share metadata with OAI? “Low barrier” protocol Shares metadata only, not content, simplifying rights issues Same effort on your part to share with one or a hundred service providers (basically) Wide adoption in the cultural heritage sector Quickly eclipsed older methods such as Z39.50
  4. 4. Three possible architectures OAIHarvester Digital asset management system Metadata creation module OAI data provider module Transformation Metadata creation system Stand-alone OAI data provider Transformation DC QDC MODS MARCXML DC MARCXML QDC MODS Metadata creation module Static Repository Gateway Transformation
  5. 5. Basic metadata sharing workflow  Create metadata, thinking about shareability  Determine format(s) you wish to share your metadata in  Transform records into versions appropriate for sharing via OAI  Validate transformed metadata  Load transformed metadata into OAI data provider  Test with OAI Repository Explorer  Communicate with service providers  See what your metadata looks like once a service provider harvests it
  6. 6. Shareable metadata Jenn Riley Metadata Librarian Indiana University
  7. 7. Shareable metadata defined Promotes search interoperability - “the ability to perform a search over diverse sets of metadata records and obtain meaningful results” (Priscilla Caplan) Is human understandable outside of its local context Is useful outside of its local context Preferably is machine processable
  8. 8. Finding the right balance Metadata providers know the materials  Document encoding schemes and controlled vocabularies  Document practices  Ensure record validity Aggregators have the processing power  Format conversion  Reconcile known vocabularies  Normalize data  Batch metadata enhancement
  9. 9. Metadata as a view of the resource There is no monolithic, one-size-fits-all metadata record Metadata for the same thing is different depending on use and audience Affected by format, content, and context Harry Potter as represented by…  a public library  an online bookstore  a fan site
  10. 10. Choice of vocabularies as a view Names  LCNAF: Michelangelo Buonarroti, 1475-1564  ULAN: Buonarroti, Michelangelo Places  LCSH: Jakarta (Indonesia)  TGN: Jakarta Subjects  LCSH: Neo-impressionism (Art)  AAT: Pointillism
  11. 11. Choice of metadata format(s) as a view Many factors affect choice of metadata formats MARC, MODS, Dublin Core, EAD, and TEI may all be appropriate for a single item High-quality metadata in a format not common in your community of practice is not shareable
  12. 12. 6 Cs and lots of Ss of shareable metadata Content Consistency Coherence Context Communication Conformance Metadata standards Vocabulary and encoding standards Descriptive content standards Technical standards
  13. 13. Content Choose appropriate vocabularies Choose appropriate granularity Make it obvious what to display Make it obvious what to index Exclude unnecessary “filler” Make it clear what links point to
  14. 14. Consistency Records in a set should all reflect the same practice  Fields used  Vocabularies  Syntax encoding schemes Allows aggregators to apply same enhancement logic to an entire group of records
  15. 15. Coherence Record should be self-explanatory Values must appear in appropriate elements Repeat fields instead of “packing” to explicitly indicate where one value ends and another begins
  16. 16. Context Include information not used locally Exclude information only used locally Current safe assumptions  Users discover material through shared record  User then delivered to your environment for full context Context driven by intended use
  17. 17. Communication Method for creating shared records Vocabularies and content standards used in shared records Record updating practices and schedules Accrual practices and schedules Existence of analytical or supplementary materials Provenance of materials
  18. 18. Conformance to Standards Metadata standards (and not just DC) Vocabulary and encoding standards Descriptive content standards (AACR2, CCO, DACS) Technical standards (XML, Character encoding, etc)
  19. 19. Before you share… Check your metadata  Appropriate view?  Consistent?  Context provided?  Does the aggregator have what they need?  Documented? Can a stranger tell you what the record describes?
  20. 20. The reality of sharing metadata Creating shareable metadata requires thinking outside of your local box Creating shareable metadata will require more work on your part Creating shareable metadata will require our vendors to support (more) standards Creating shareable metadata is no longer an option, it’s a requirement
  21. 21. Choosing metadata formats Jenn Riley Metadata Librarian Indiana University
  22. 22. Consider the materials Format Genre Specialized vs. general audience Primary vs. secondary Use
  23. 23. Consider the standards Purpose Multi-level vs. item-level description Method of expression Reputation of developer Stability Update frequency
  24. 24. Consider your institution Library, archival, or museum tradition Standards used in your community Resources and expertise available Formats already being used Systems and workflows already in place
  25. 25. Consider the needs of the project Robustness of description desired Describing multiple versions Relationships between records Other management needs

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