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Re: Library data diagram

From: Karen Coyle <kcoyle@kcoyle.net>
Date: Wed, 01 Sep 2010 10:35:59 -0700
Message-ID: <20100901103559.qk39cz2a044ogokc@kcoyle.net>
To: Thomas Baker <tbaker@tbaker.de>
Cc: public-lld@w3.org
Hi, Tom. Thanks for your reply. It is helping me organize my rather  
scattered thoughts here.

It seems to me that the Singapore Framework shows dependencies between  
actions (although the block diagram treats the actions as end results,  
but by inference there has to be an action that produces the results).  
e.g. metadata vocabularies are built on rdf/s. That implies that  
"building" took place. (I guess I'm basically a verb person.)

What may be hidden to non-librarians is the complex role of the  
library cataloging rules, which Emmanuelle has tried to place in the  
context of the SF. If you were to locate the cataloging rules on or  
about the building blocks of SF, they would appear in multiple places.  
In particular, they would appear in the blocks of the domain model,  
the functional requirements, and the metadata vocabulary. Note that  
RDA is the first version of library cataloging rules that has  
attempted to actually identify a vocabulary; in the past, developers  
had to extract them from the rules document as best they could. And  
what functional requirements we have are sadly inadequate and  
under-developed. (The FRBR four requirements: find, identify, select,  
obtain are so broad as to be mere hand-waving.)

All of that to say that fitting library practice to the SF is not  
easy, and if we wish to understand library data it is necessary to be  
familiar with the community's expression of its intention, which is to  
be found in the documents that are listed on the library resources page.


and are not organized as to SF blocks.

The work that was initiated by the DC-RDA group is promoting a  
formalization of the vocabularies that are inherent (but far from  
explicit) in the library community documentation, such as FRBR and  
ISBD. The work that Diane and Gordon have done in this regard is truly  
monumental. By its nature, the formalizing of library metadata is  
going to surface problem areas; problems that are not evident when the  
concepts are presented in a textual form.

You (Tom) say:

> If this is done, then the metadata creation workflow in
> libraries can be seen as fitting both the Singapore Framework
> view and its implied workflow (which starts with Functional
> Requirements)

and there is the rub. We still do not have a good set of stated  
functional requirements, at least that I know of. (The last good set  
that I've encountered are Cutter's functional requirements from 1878  
-- excellent, but perhaps needing some revision, especially some  
addition of detail.) As I recall from my long ago courses in  
cataloging at library school, a good instructor pulls these concepts  
out of the rules and uses them for teaching. But I haven't seen an  
actual document that would summarize the functional requirements of RDA.

So that's the library landscape, as I see it, compared to the SF  
diagram. I'm sure I've glossed over some important points and perhaps  
mangled others. However, any work on linked data must begin at this  
point and work to move things forward, so understanding this "state"  
gives us common ground for our work.

I do hope others will contribute their knowledge in this area. I'm  
sure my own knowledge is incomplete.


Quoting Thomas Baker <tbaker@tbaker.de>:

> Thank you, Emmanuelle, for drawing up the comparative
> diagrams [1] and thank you, Karen, for getting the ball
> rolling on discussion.
> A comment specifically on Singapore Framework [2]...
> On Tue, Aug 31, 2010 at 08:38:36PM -0700, Karen Coyle wrote:
>> The Singapore Framework places guidance rules outside of the flow of
>> vocabulary and DCAP development. This makes me think that in SF the
>> guidance rules are developed and applied after the other steps toward
>> an application profile have taken place.
> As I see it, the SF diagram is intended to show how the
> components of an "application profile" relate to each other
> and to underlying foundational standards (RDF).
> The diagram does also suggest a workflow, and I too like to
> present it this way -- starting with Functional Requirements,
> through defining a Domain Model, specifying a Description Set
> Profile and, finally, creator a Data Format, with the designer
> "dipping down" one level to create new or cite existing domain
> models and vocabularies.  And as a rough approximation, this
> seems like a reasonable way to proceed as long as it is not
> applied too mechanically.  In the end, though, SF is meant
> to depict less a specific sequence of tasks than a picture of
> how things relate.
>>                                          This is accurate in terms of
>> Dublin Core metadata, which was developed initially without actual
>> guidance rules.
>> In Emmanuelle's diagram of library metadata, the guidance rules appear
>> to precede the vocabulary. This is accurate in terms of library
>> metadata, in which the vocabularies arise from the guidance rules.
>> These two models, DC and libraries, seem to me to be the extremes of
>> the development continuum. In libraries the guidance rules are the
>> most important aspect of the metadata creation activity, and in Dublin
>> Core they can almost be considered unnecessary.
> If for libraries, guidance rules are the point of departure for
> metadata design, then "support for guidance rules" would quite
> simply need to be defined as a key functional requirement.
> If this is done, then the metadata creation workflow in
> libraries can be seen as fitting both the Singapore Framework
> view and its implied workflow (which starts with Functional
> Requirements) -- only that, in this case, the functional
> requirements may be unusually heavy on existing guidance
> rules...
> Tom
> [1] http://www.w3.org/2005/Incubator/lld/wiki/File:LayeredModelV3.pdf
> [2] http://dublincore.org/documents/singapore-framework/
> --
> Tom Baker <tbaker@tbaker.de>

Karen Coyle
kcoyle@kcoyle.net http://kcoyle.net
ph: 1-510-540-7596
m: 1-510-435-8234
skype: kcoylenet
Received on Wednesday, 1 September 2010 17:36:35 UTC

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