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FAQ : Is this vocabulary currently curated?

From: Bernard Vatant <bernard.vatant@mondeca.com>
Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2011 15:51:47 +0200
Message-ID: <CAK4ZFVGeAL+LuXHEBD8rznTKC30FRRnBxO5m2WSvKD+eG8xmMA@mail.gmail.com>
To: public-vocabs@w3.org
Hi all

After more than six months of work at Linked Open Vocabularies (LOV) [1], I
would like to start a discussion about a certain number of  desirable
metadata currently lacking in vocabularies description.
Basically, in the best of cases as it stands, the vocabulary metadata
includes in the owl:Ontology description a couple of dcterms properties such
as dcterms:created, dcterms:modified, dcterms:creator, dcterms:contributor,
dcterms:publisher. Those properties are not always explicit in the RDF
specification of the vocabulary, but can often be extracted from the html
documentation.

Useful as they are, those metadata do not help to answer some critical
questions for a potential user  :

Is this vocabulary currently curated?
Is it stable, or is it likely to change in the future?
How could I know when changes occur, and what those changes are? is there a
track of older versions?
... and if the above questions are not explicitly answered in metadata, whom
should I contact to know more about it, or nobody is in charge any more?

The question comes up particularly when the vocabulary has been sitting on
the Web for quite a few years. Some vocabularies listed in LOV have a
dcterms:modified value tracking back to 2003, meaning basically that nothing
happened since. This can be interpreted either as good news (stability) or
bad news (no more evolution/curation). In such cases, whatever the quality
of the vocabulary, a potential adopter is bound to think that this
vocabulary has been put on a shelf somewhere, and somehow forgotten by its
initial publishers. A supposition that turns out to be true when the
vocabulary is a by-product of a project long ago wrapped up. Sometimes a
potential curator has not even the access to the vocabulary namespace and
would not be able to update, modify, fix the vocabulary whatsoever.

Curiously enough, unless I miss something, I could not find in all metadata
vocabularies gathered in LOV any dedicated properties such as "status",
"current curator" or "last known curator", so I think about adding such
properties to VOAF [2]
Meanwhile, if you are the current curator of one or more of the vocabularies
listed at [1], and particularly if the said vocabulariy lacks metadata, or
you know more about its current status, feel free to ping me here or
off-list so that a short sentence about the vocabulary status can at least
be added in the description, and that we can think about the best way to
represent it as structured metadata.

Thanks for your attention

[1] http://labs.mondeca.com/dataset/lov/
[2] http://labs.mondeca.com/vocab/voaf



*Bernard Vatant
*
Vocabularies & Data Engineering
Tel :  + 33 (0)9 71 48 84 59
 Skype : bernard.vatant

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*Mondeca**          **                   *
3 cité Nollez 75018 Paris, France
www.mondeca.com
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Received on Monday, 24 October 2011 13:52:38 GMT

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