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For review: Benefits, Part I

From: Karen Coyle <kcoyle@kcoyle.net>
Date: Tue, 14 Jun 2011 12:18:19 -0700
Message-ID: <20110614121819.2604689ecg6e9qez@kcoyle.net>
To: public-lld <public-lld@w3.org>
This is the first in a series of posts asking for review of specific  
sections of the Incubator's Group draft final report. Note that at the  
end of this email there is a section called "Scope of this report"  
that gives some key definitions of terms.

********* Please forward to appropriate parties and lists ******

The W3C Library Linked Data Incubator Group would like a comments and  
suggestions on the group's final report. All comments should be sent  
to the public mailing list: public-lld@w3.org. Posting is allowed to  
non-subscribers. Because each of these mails contains only a small  
section of the report, it is advised to view the section in its context:


********* Benefits, Part I ***********

Benefits of the Linked Data approach

The Linked Data approach offers significant advantages over current  
practices for creating and delivering library data while providing a  
natural extension to the collaborative sharing models historically  
employed by libraries, archives, and museums ("memory institutions").  
Linked data is sharable, extensible, and easily re-usable. It supports  
internationalization of data and user services. These characteristics  
are inherent in the linked data standards and are supported by the use  
of web-friendly identifiers for data and concepts. Resources can be  
described in collaboration with other libraries, and linked to data  
contributed by other communities or even individuals. Like the linking  
that takes place today between web documents, linked data allows  
anyone to contribute their unique expertise so that it can be reused  
and recombined with the expertise of others. The use of identifiers  
ensures that the diverse descriptions are all talking about the same  
thing. Through rich linkages with complementary data from trusted  
sources, libraries can increase the value of their own data beyond the  
sum of its sources taken individually, as in the story of the stone  
soup, where the hungry travellers' boiling a pot of stones attracted  
from the locals enough curiosity, and small contributions of herbs and  
carrots, to create a nourishing meal.

By using globally unique identifiers to designate works, places,  
people, events, subjects, and other objects or concepts of interest,  
memory institutions can make trusted metadata descriptions available  
for common use, allowing resources to be cited across a broad range of  
data sources. An important aspect of the identifier system is its use  
of the Domain Name System of the Web. This assures stability and trust  
in a regulated and well-understood ownership and maintenance context.  
This is fully compatible with the long-term mandate of memory  
institutions. Libraries, and memory institutions generally, are thus  
in a unique position to provide the metadata for resources of  
long-term cultural importance as data on the Web.

Library authority data for names and subjects will help reduce  
redundancy of bibliographic descriptions on the Web by clearly  
identifying key entities that are shared across linked data. This will  
also aid in the reduction of redundancy of metadata representing  
library holdings.

*********  Some Definitions **************

"Library Linked Data": Scope of this report

The scope of this report -- "library linked data" -- can be understood  
as follows:

Library. The word "library" (analogously to "archive" and "museum")  
refers to three distinct but related concepts: a collection, a place  
where the collection is located, and an agent which curates the  
collection and administers the location. Collections may be public or  
private, large or small, and are not limited to any particular types  
of resources.

Library data. "Library data" refers to any type of digital information  
produced or curated by libraries that describes resources or aids  
their discovery. Data used primarily for library-management purposes  
is generally out of scope. As discussed [elsewhere in the report] in  
more detail below, this report pragmatically distinguishes three types  
of library data based on their typical use: datasets, element sets,  
and value vocabularies.

Linked Data. "Linked Data" (LD) refers to data published in accordance  
with principles designed to facilitate linkages among datasets,  
element sets, and value vocabularies. Linked Data uses Web addresses  
(URIs) as globally unique identifiers for dataset items, elements, and  
value concepts, analogously to the library world's identifiers for  
authority control. Linked Data defines relationships between things;  
these relationships can be used for navigating between, or  
integrating, complementary sources of information.

Library Linked Data. "Library Linked Data" (LLD) is any type of  
library data that is either natively maintained, or merely exposed, in  
the form of RDF triples, thus facilitating linking.

Karen Coyle
kcoyle@kcoyle.net http://kcoyle.net
ph: 1-510-540-7596
m: 1-510-435-8234
skype: kcoylenet
Received on Tuesday, 14 June 2011 19:18:49 UTC

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