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A national terminology service? Lorcan Dempsey VP Research and Chief Strategist, OCLC JISC Terminologies Workshop, London, February 13, 2004.

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Presentation on theme: "A national terminology service? Lorcan Dempsey VP Research and Chief Strategist, OCLC JISC Terminologies Workshop, London, February 13, 2004."— Presentation transcript:

1 A national terminology service? Lorcan Dempsey VP Research and Chief Strategist, OCLC JISC Terminologies Workshop, London, February 13, 2004

2 Overview

3 JISC Contexts Examples Issues A partial presentation! Assumption: M2M services with a human face. Assumption: discussion is about potential contours of a national terminologies service, rather than solving complex community discussions about vocabularies.

4 Contexts A changed digital environment

5 I know it when I see it … Structured representations of –Personal and organizational names –Concepts/categories –Place names –Audience levels –Resource types –Species names –…. Labels: –KOS (knowledge organization systems) –Authorities –Taxonomies –Ontologies –…–… Different worldviews, experience, expectations, legacy! Different motivations: research, service, …

6 The big change … Then: –information assets were primary objects of interest. –Subjects, etc, were seen as attributes of assets. –Systems built to reflect this. Now: –We manage multiple entities, their representations and relationships: Assets –Works; manifestations; copies Rights Collections Services Concepts Names Places … … …

7 Data assets data services Application services 1.Objects 2.Collections 3.Services 4.Terms 5.Users 6.Institutions 7.Rights 8.Schemes 9.Rules 10.Version Control 11.Ingest 12.Export 13.Search 14.Update 15.ID Creation 16.ID Check 17.Version Control 18.Analysis 19.Validation 20.Stats 21.Validation 22.Relation 23.Synchronization 24.Resolution 25.Authorization 26.Format Conversion 27.Search 28.Request 29.Question 30.Navigate 31.Alert 32.Use Tracker (IFM) 33.Workflow Web services Simple contrived example! Examples: Discovery environment Editing environment e.g Dspace Routing Name authority service KOS service Object metadata repository Validate Automatic class. Navigation Exchange Mapping

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9 Terms and term sets are resources Release value in a web environment Webulated –URI for names, concepts, … –Concepts/names/etc are ex-citable –Traversable relationships –Build services on top of this –May be manifest through several services E.g. URI for a Dewey number Info:ddc/22/eng// Example services –Mappings –Caption, etc –Navigate –Bind classes of resources based on link Authors Libraries Popular?

10 Example Some preliminary OCLC developments (by request)

11 Knowledge org systems Plethora of vocabularies Incompatible approaches to encoding Few connections –Education GEM Subjects, ERIC Thesaurus, LCSH, JACS, CIP (Classification of instructional programs) –Cultural Heritage AAT, Thesaurus for Graphic Materials (TGM) Subjects & Genre Terms Not built for the web –Link to concepts

12 Terminology services at OCLC: Webulating knowledge organization Goal: to offer accessible, modular, web-based terminology services. Make vocabularies more available for –Metadata creation –Searching –… Refine and extend mappings Represent vocabularies and mappings in major encoding and distribution standards, e.g., MARC, Zthes, TIF, OAI Prototype custom web services as appropriate to insert functionality in different workflows

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17 Zthes interface generated from WSDL

18 Issues Some banal observations

19 JISC et al role Act where it makes sense to do something once rather than many times –Remove redundancy from local operations –Create shared resources –Capacity build –Economies of scale and scope Concentrate expertise and development effort Terminology services lend themselves to this approach

20 Communities are the same and different E-science –… Learning –… Library –… Cultural heritage –… Biodiversity … Usage scenarios Capacity Expectations View of the world

21 Identify potential wins Motivating use cases –Cross searching –Navigation/browsing –Metadata creation –Routing –… Address compelling interest within capable communities Emphasise diversity rather than universality (remember different values, legacy, …) Scope will influence choices (research, prototype services, meet real needs) Research into patterns of use and demand.

22 The past is another country.. Need to think differently – using terminologies as resources in a distributed network environment calls forward different way of thinking –Unplug and play Making functionality available within multiple workflows. –Bilateral development responsibility Provider and consumer have development burden.

23 Avoid techeology Techeology –substitution of ideology for engineering –manifest in dominance of acronym advocacy over service advocacy

24 Recombinant growth Do not overspecify Make several simple services available which encourage experimentation For: –Online m2m and h2m interaction –Exchange –Selective harvest Compare Google and Amazon APIs Registry – webulation.

25 Opportunity … Thank you,


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