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Metadata standards, Keyword lists, and Guidelines: An Expert View? ( E.g. to walk, or to go by foot, or to go by boot) :- terminology & meanings (definitions)

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Presentation on theme: "Metadata standards, Keyword lists, and Guidelines: An Expert View? ( E.g. to walk, or to go by foot, or to go by boot) :- terminology & meanings (definitions)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Metadata standards, Keyword lists, and Guidelines: An Expert View? ( E.g. to walk, or to go by foot, or to go by boot) :- terminology & meanings (definitions) matter in metadata ) Jarmo Saarikko & Keith Rennolls ( Experts? Yes, but not the only experts! Blame Aljoscha for inviting us and not you. Personal view based on personal expertise and experience. We are NOT independent experts. We are on the NEFIS boot with other partners, and dont want it to sink! We have been directly involved in the consultations which led to the report we are reviewing!

2 Plan of Presentation 20 mins KR: general and strategic aspects, 8 mins. JS: detailed and tactical issues, 8 mins. Discussion: 4mins.

3 NEFIS Aims and NEFIS Deliverables AIMS included: … from EFICS (1989) Interoperable distributed databases (ddb) of compatible forestry data from member states … from current web technology: Web-services and the semantic web. DELIVERABLES aimed for were: …from GFIS: a catalogue of For. Inf. Objects DC metadata Restricted vocabularies for thesaurus themes.

4 A Persisting Rationale… Interoperability is a complex and ambitious aim It depends on web technologies which are changing almost continuously: XML, RDF, Topic maps, DAML+OIL,OWL, Grids,…+ many others EFIS has to be the GFIS node. We need to be behind the technology front edge, adopting robust and upgradeable standards.

5 General View of D3 The specific deliverables have been addressed professionally, with acceptable results: DC++ quality etc… Some very good Restricted Vocabularies: Some as multilingual dictionaries of synonyms, (as needed in global web searches) Some preliminary thesaurus structures. Some keywords for other themes.

6 …Interoperability/Compatibility status Good review of the issues and the current activities, with some gaps: Compatibility issue: Forest area, tree volume, top-height Conversion Factor tables rather an over-simplification of what might be done. Some references: Recommendation: Set up Centres of Excellence and Working Groups on (i) Vocabulary/terminology/nomenclature (practitioners +) (ii) Metadata/Ontologies (practioners & systems builders) (ii) Compatibility/Interoperability (systems builders +) in FORESTRY alone. We agree with all except but the last bit.

7 Comments & Suggestion The vocabulary/terminology/nomenclature Metadata/Ontologies Compatibility/Interoperability concerns are common to other natural resources, to agriculture, to the environment, and ecological sciences. Sustainable forestry is not possible without these other perspectives. We need to work together across the boundaries of these sister Natural, Renewable and Environmental and Ecological resource disciplines, and with Remote Sensing Otherwise: Non interoperable interoperable systems!!! FEIDSS04, 05 as a forum?

8 The D3 STOP! Recommendation Page 27, rec. 14. Decisions on standards to be supported for interoperability and retrieval should be made prior to the creation of additional metadata or other work on the sample datasets Simply, we do not accept the last part of this recommendation.

9 WHY? 1. EFIS and NEFIS : some unfulfilled opportunities. EFICS (89) is a long ago, and there almost no progress on the ddb metadata/ontology and compativility/interoperability challenges. There seems to have been singular DC/RV focus (confusion?) about thesuarus and ddb functionality in EFIS and NEFIS WP2. E.g. Greenwich has offered to progress ddb metadata/ontology and compativility/interoperability in NEFIS, to WP2, and WP4, - -- but no opportunity contribute…..yet! No access to raw data formats, or raw data needed. Coversion of the data to the required format of the Visual Toolkit:- It is in this conversion that the core issues of compatibility and interoperability arise.

10 2. Satisfaction of the ddb compatibility and interoperability aims, in the context of global search for information objects and data resources requires: an open multilingual vocabulary approach which involves both dictionary and thesaurus-ontology aspects. 3. Provision of metadata at any level, on an upgradeable path is to be encouraged. Dont try to force harmonization!!! Ensure translation!!! 4. We cannot do it all at once. We should not wait. We should get started, on ALL aspects of the task ahead.

11 5. Any decision at a particular time will have a limited life. Changes will occur, and upgrading of legacy ontologies must be part of our forward plan. 6. D3, Page 13, re. The Bradford Distribution: Size matters!!! A classification system which works well for small databases may not cope at all well with a large database. Non-scalable ontologies??? We might need autonomic tools for web ontology merging and nesting. An issue for the dynamic working future, but not to be decided now!!!

12 CONCLUSIONS D3 & D5 Deliverables: A good pass mark!!! Wider aims: ddb metadata/ontology & compativility/interoperability Little progresss & some missed opportunities. Recommendations: Forestry…. Widen the Environment Wider aims: wait for standards…….NO!!! Future: missed opportunities are opportunities yet to be taken up!!!


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