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1 Introducing Technical Standards Paul Miller Interoperability Focus UK Office for Library & Information Networking (U KOLN )

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Presentation on theme: "1 Introducing Technical Standards Paul Miller Interoperability Focus UK Office for Library & Information Networking (U KOLN )"— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Introducing Technical Standards Paul Miller Interoperability Focus UK Office for Library & Information Networking (U KOLN ) U KOLN is funded by Resource: the Council for Museums, Archives and Libraries, the Joint Information Systems Committee (J ISC ) of the Further and Higher Education Funding Councils, as well as by project funding from J ISC and the EU. U KOLN also receives support from the Universities of Bath and Hull where staff are based.

2 2 Joined up Talking e–Government A Netful of Jewels e–Culture the Semantic Web New Library: the Peoples Network Virtual Museum of Canada. MEG e–* e–University CIMI

3 3 Joined up Building The Peoples Network Distributed National Electronic Resource / / *.gov AMICO CHIN.

4 4 Joined up Doing= Interoperability

5 5 What is interoperability? to be interoperable, one should actively be engaged in the ongoing process of ensuring that the systems, procedures and culture of an organisation are managed in such a way as to maximise opportunities for exchange and re-use of information, whether internally or externally. See

6 6 Why interoperate? because, at the end of the day, the user really doesnt care which high quality data repository gives them the stuff they want… …so long as they can get it!.

7 7 Why interoperate? The cultural heritage need not respect organisational views we impose upon it A virtual museum of all Da Vincis work? All of the Parthenon stonework in one place, virtually if not in reality? The content of the British Museum available to people in a language other than English? The paintings of the Louvre, explained to a seven year–old? Books, archival folios, and physical objects relating to a topic available together?.

8 8 Why interoperate? Internally… to manage our information better Externally… to be more visible to meet the needs of our (often remote) users to align with portal, etc., developments To minimise manual repackaging of information in response to every request, exhiblet, etc.. See

9 9 How to interoperate… Depends upon the situation, of course, but… standards standards! de facto de jure national international community initiative

10 10 So… why use standards? Benefit from the expertise of others Enforce rigour in internal practices Facilitate interoperability (and access) –NOF projects receive public money, for the public good –Considered deployment of standard solutions makes access to your resources feasible for many.

11 11 What do standards do? Help identify whats important –CIMIs Access Points –Mandatory fields Allow for consistent use of terminology –Name Authority Files –Thesauri –Look–up tables Enable internal and external data exchange or access Reduce duplication of effort Minimise (hopefully!) wasted effort Reflect consensus.

12 12 What types of standard are there? Terminology –Roma, not Rome –Roma is preferred to Rome Format –Miller, A.P. 1971–, not Paul Miller Semantics –A gross simplification, and a very big bucket –Creator, Subject, Title, Description… Syntax – Transfer –….

13 13 The nice thing about standards… …is that there are so many to choose from!

14 14 Standard solutions

15 15 nof Standards Guidelines Based upon Digital Life Cycle Include some requirements with which you must comply but mostly guidance and advice Help you choose appropriate standards Provide pointers and tips help you ask the right questions…. See

16 16 The Digital Life Cycle Creation Management Collection Development Access (Repackaging).

17 17 What is Metadata? –meaningless jargon –or a fashionable, and terribly misused, term for what weve always done –or a means of turning data into information –and data about data –and the name of a person (Tony Blair) –and the title of a book (The Name of the Rose).

18 18 What is Metadata? Metadata exists for almost anything; People Places Objects Concepts Web pages Databases.

19 19 What is Metadata? Metadata fulfils three main functions; Description of resource content –What is it? Description of resource form –How is it constructed? Description of resource use –Can I afford it?.

20 20 Challenges Many flavours of metadata which one do I use? Managing change new varieties, and evolution of existing forms Tension between functionality and simplicity, extensibility and interoperability Functions, features, and cool stuff Simplicity and interoperability Opportunities

21 21 Introducing the Dublin Core An attempt to improve resource discovery on the Web –now adopted more broadly Building an interdisciplinary consensus about a core element set for resource discovery –simple and intuitive –cross–disciplinary not just libraries!! –international –open and consensual (DC–8 in Ottawa) –flexible. See

22 22 15 elements of descriptive metadata All elements optional All elements repeatable The whole is extensible –offers a starting point for semantically richer descriptions Interdisciplinary –libraries, government, museums, archives… International –available in more than 20 languages, with more on the way... Introducing the Dublin Core

23 23 Title Creator Subject Description Publisher Contributor Date Type Format Identifier Source Language Relation Coverage Rights Introducing the Dublin Core

24 24 Some summary Technical standards make the job easier in the long run but can make it harder to get started There is rarely a right standard for all situations so the NOF guidelines often say you must do something, without being specific about how know who your audience is, what you have to offer, and what your purpose/message is NOFs technical standards align you with other emerging developments.

25 25 See Mail Join

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