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Experience from 10 months of University Linked Data<br />Mathieu d’Aquin - @mdaquin<br />Knowledge Media Institute, the Op...
Linked Data<br />As set of principles and technologies for a Web of Data<br />Putting the “raw” data online in a standard,...
Graph (up to date)<br />
The Open University<br />The biggest university in the UK (200,000 students)<br />One of the youngest (40 years)<br />Most...
So Linked Data for the OU?<br />RAE<br />DBPedia<br />Data from <br />Research <br />Outputs<br />OpenLearn<br />Content<b...
Why is it important?<br />The OU has been the first University to expose its data as linked data: http://data.open.ac.uk<b...
The data.open.ac.uk Stack<br />Applications<br />Institutional repository data<br />Research Data (Arts)<br />Organization...
data.open.ac.uk<br />
Expose<br />Store<br />Collect<br />Extract<br />Link<br />Ontologies<br />Scheduler<br />Cleaning rules<br />RDF file (ad...
Method for a exposing a dataset<br /><ul><li> Identify data
 Get sample data
 Identify Copyright Issues
 Identify possible links
 Identify users and usage</li></ul>Initial Meeting with Data Owner<br />Lucero Core Team<br />Data Owner<br />Data Modelin...
 Map onto the data
 Identify uncovered parts
 Define URI Scheme</li></ul>Data Modeling Validation<br />Lucero Core Team<br />Lucero members<br />Data Owner<br />Develo...
Screenshot of the dataset page<br />
Applications<br />For education <br />Mobile podcast explorer, podcast explorer on TV <br />OU Building Map, OU location t...
Example application: Link OpenLearn to relevant course/podcasts<br />
Example Application: keep track of location, meetings, tutorials, at the OU<br />
Example application: exploring research communities<br />
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Experience from 10 months of University Linked Data

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Presentation at IFGI, Munester, Germany, http://ifgi.uni-muenster.de/ on 15/04/2011

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Experience from 10 months of University Linked Data

  1. 1. Experience from 10 months of University Linked Data<br />Mathieu d’Aquin - @mdaquin<br />Knowledge Media Institute, the Open University<br />LUCERO project <br />lucero-project.info – data.open.ac.uk<br />
  2. 2. Linked Data<br />As set of principles and technologies for a Web of Data<br />Putting the “raw” data online in a standard, web enabled representation (RDF)<br />Make the data Web addressable (URIs)<br />Link with other data <br />
  3. 3. Graph (up to date)<br />
  4. 4. The Open University<br />The biggest university in the UK (200,000 students)<br />One of the youngest (40 years)<br />Most teaching done at a distance<br />1 campus, 13 regional centers<br />Committed to “Open”:<br />Open educational material available as podcasts (iTunes U), units of course material (OpenLearn), etc.<br />Tradition of investing in new technology for teaching, learning, knowledge sharing, etc.<br />Role of the Knowledge Media Institute (KMi)<br />
  5. 5. So Linked Data for the OU?<br />RAE<br />DBPedia<br />Data from <br />Research <br />Outputs<br />OpenLearn<br />Content<br />ORO<br />Exposed as linked data, our data interlink with each other and the external world: become part of the “global data space” on the Web<br />Archive of <br />Course <br />Material<br />Library’s<br />Catalogue<br />Of Digital<br /> Content<br />geonames<br />data.gov.uk<br />Currently: OU public data sit in different systems – hard to discover, obtain, integrate by users.<br />A/V Material<br />Podcasts<br />iTunesU<br />BBC<br />DBLP<br />
  6. 6. Why is it important?<br />The OU has been the first University to expose its data as linked data: http://data.open.ac.uk<br />Now widely recognized as a critical step forward for the HE sector in the UK (and worldwide)<br />Favor transparency and reuse of data, both externally and internally<br />Reduces cost of dealing with our own public data: integration and reuse by design<br /> Enable both new kinds of applications, and to make the ones that are already feasible more cost effective<br />At least 3 other UK universities have now followed our example:<br />http://data.online.lincoln.ac.uk/, http://data.ox.ac.uk/, http://data.southampton.ac.uk/<br />And others in other countries are setting up similar initiatives<br />
  7. 7. The data.open.ac.uk Stack<br />Applications<br />Institutional repository data<br />Research Data (Arts)<br />Organizational infrastructure<br />Technical infrastructure<br />
  8. 8. data.open.ac.uk<br />
  9. 9. Expose<br />Store<br />Collect<br />Extract<br />Link<br />Ontologies<br />Scheduler<br />Cleaning rules<br />RDF file (add) RDF file (delete)<br />URL redirection rules<br />RSS Extractor<br />Delete (1)<br />Add (2)<br />RDF Cleaner<br />Web Server<br />ORO, podcast<br />RSS feed<br />RDF file (add) RDF file (delete)<br />Triple Store<br />RSS Updater<br />SPARQL<br />endpoint<br />RDF Extractor<br />New items<br />Obsolete items<br />Each datasets<br />Index<br />Entity Name System<br />Search<br />XML Updater<br />URI creation rules<br />Lib, courses, loc<br />Planning + Logging<br />Generic process<br />Dataset specific process<br />
  10. 10. Method for a exposing a dataset<br /><ul><li> Identify data
  11. 11. Get sample data
  12. 12. Identify Copyright Issues
  13. 13. Identify possible links
  14. 14. Identify users and usage</li></ul>Initial Meeting with Data Owner<br />Lucero Core Team<br />Data Owner<br />Data Modeling sessions<br />Lucero KMi Team<br /><ul><li> Find reusable ontologies
  15. 15. Map onto the data
  16. 16. Identify uncovered parts
  17. 17. Define URI Scheme</li></ul>Data Modeling Validation<br />Lucero Core Team<br />Lucero members<br />Data Owner<br />Development of Extractor<br />URI Creation Rules Definition<br />Deployment<br />Lucero KMi Team<br />
  18. 18. Screenshot of the dataset page<br />
  19. 19.
  20. 20. Applications<br />For education <br />Mobile podcast explorer, podcast explorer on TV <br />OU Building Map, OU location tracker (cf. foursquare)<br />OU Expert Search<br />Connecting courses/OpenLearn to relevant podcast<br />OU Course Profile Facebook app using list of courses, “Study Buddy” app connecting facebook users to relevant courses<br />For Research<br />Display connections in a research community<br />Research Data/Impact Analysis<br />Connection research datasets to external data <br />
  21. 21. Example application: Link OpenLearn to relevant course/podcasts<br />
  22. 22. Example Application: keep track of location, meetings, tutorials, at the OU<br />
  23. 23. Example application: exploring research communities<br />
  24. 24. Example application:<br />Expert Search using publication information and connecting to contact information within the OU<br />
  25. 25. Example application: Explore Information about a person in the “Reading Experience Database” based on data provided by DBPedia (Linked Data version of Wikipedia)  New ways to look at humanities research data<br />
  26. 26. Lessons Learnt<br />The major part of the work is not technical<br />Linked data is simple!<br />Identifying available data, obtaining access to them, re-modeling them is hard<br />Making people understand that it is worth doing is critical<br />Especially when dealing with challenges such as data licenses, private data, etc.<br />Get people involved (it is not about you, or the technology)<br />A lot of people’s job (administrators, managers, researchers) is all about collecting and managing data<br />A lot of this effort is lost because of closed systems, lack of integration and exposure of the data<br />Our job is to demonstrate to these people how the principles of linked data can be used to leverage this effort <br />Without being disruptive (e.g., the URI of a course in a browser redirects to the course webpage on the OU website<br />
  27. 27. Lessons Learnt<br />There is no killer app<br />The direct benefit of linked data is not in a great big smart application, it is in the many small things that are made easier<br />Need to make it easy for developers to get into it, play with it, see the potential by themselves<br />Integrating the benefits of linked data in the university’s practices/workflows takes time. It is not a threatening big change, but a slow, incremental adoption<br />Plan for long term = need for endorsement<br />We work with the assumption that, soon, it will be as common and necessary for a University to have a linked data platform as it is to have a website<br />So a linked data initiative at a university cannot be a one time thing. Courses evolve, new material appear, new datasets are made available. (e.g., data.open.ac.uk is updated every day)<br />It needs to become part of the University’s role and be endorsed by the departments involved (IT, communication, education, research, business)<br />It does not always work<br />Some applications might be incompatible with the University’s policies (e.g., Google rich snippet showing the price of a course)<br />Support might only get up to a certain point<br />
  28. 28. The future <br />From nice demonstrators to real semantic web applications<br />Use of reasoning and data mining for data consolidation and analysis<br />Need proper frameworks for application developers!<br />Linked data and the Semantic Web to support research<br />Not only research communities<br />Identifying new research questions and collecting evidence through connected datasets<br />It is not about individual Universities!<br />Universities sharing data to benefit students and researchers: the higher education’s web of linked data<br />Needs collective vocabularies, recipes, approaches, classifications… the GoodRelations of higher education?<br />
  29. 29. The future<br />Linked data analytics/Linked data mining<br />Interfaces to linked data/Making sense of linked data (with ontologies)<br />Semantic web for activity data/personal data<br />
  30. 30. Thank you!<br />Carlo Allocca<br />(Dev)<br />SalmanElahi<br />((Ex)-Dev)<br />Jane Whild<br />(Admin)<br />FouadZablith<br />(Dev)<br />KMi<br />AndriyNikolov<br />(linking)<br />Enrico Motta<br />(SGP)<br />Mathieu d’Aquin<br />(PD)<br />Arts<br />Suzanne Duncanson-Hunter<br />John Wolfe<br />Paul Lawrence<br />Richard Nurse<br />((ex-)PM)<br />Owen Stephens<br />(PM)<br />Stuart Brown<br />Com./<br />Student<br />Comp.<br />Services<br />Data Owners<br />Non Scantlebury<br />Library <br />Specialists<br />Arts Specialists<br />OU Library<br />

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