W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-architypes@w3.org > August 2015

Re: How to describe things in an archive collection?

From: Richard Wallis <richard.wallis@dataliberate.com>
Date: Thu, 6 Aug 2015 12:44:49 +0100
Message-ID: <CAD47Kz44DX=y6dFRLD8htNqhEDjBFoZGdcCBS6ZRXx1RAnOpNA@mail.gmail.com>
To: Giovanni Michetti <michetti@mail.ubc.ca>
Cc: public-architypes <public-architypes@w3.org>
Thanks for your input Giovanni,

I have now created a page/table on the wiki <
https://www.w3.org/community/architypes/wiki/Potential_properties> to
capture the properties we are discussing.

Some of the properties that we suggest may well already be available in
Schema.org for the type of thing we are describing.  CreativeWork
<http://schema.org/CreativeWork> and its sub-types, such as Book
<http://schema.org/Book> and Article <http://schema.org/Article>, are
already rich in properties.  Everything in Schema inherits a basic set of
properties from Thing <http://schema.org/Thing> - name, description, url,
image, etc.

Thanks for the clarification about 'archives'.  Would this mean that the
suggested new Type ArchiveCollection should be changed to


Richard Wallis
Founder, Data Liberate
Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/richardwallis
Twitter: @rjw

On 6 August 2015 at 03:28, Giovanni Michetti <michetti@mail.ubc.ca> wrote:

> Hello Richard,
> I think that the most common standards for archival description offer
> quite a long list of the descriptive properties that would be of use in
> describing an item's place and role in an archives. In particular, if we
> take a look at the most famous one, ISAD(G), and avoid focusing on the
> specific information elements, we can recognize some aspects that are
> fundamental to any archival description:
> - identification (identifier, title, location, ...)
> - physical characteristics (extent, dimensions, medium, ...)
> - creation (info on creator, dates and circumstances of creation)
> - custody (info on custodial history, including curation actions)
> - content (scope, content, keywords...)
> - access & use (info on conditions governing access & use)
> - related materials (info on relationships with any relevant objects
> within or outside the collection, including the collection itself)
> - description control (info on the description process, including authors,
> dates, methods ...)
> I would like to point out that:
> 1) such a rough list comes from a quick review of ISAD only;
> 2) these broad categories result in a set of properties whose granularity
> has to be defined and shared by the group. I think it may be useful though
> to proceed in a top-down approach, identifying the areas of interest, and
> then specifying the properties;
> 3) information on creation and custody, as well as on the description
> control, is fundamental to trace the Provenance of an archival object,
> which is a core issue in the research agenda of many scientific initiatives
> around the world. I would put a lot of attention in these areas;
> 4) with reference to your tentative list of properties, they all fit the
> above list.
> On a separate note, I would like to add a quick comment on archives vs
> archive: 'archives' is not plural, it is a technical term used in the
> archival domain to designate a specific object--an archives. Just like a
> fonds is a fonds--this is not about plural. I guess no one would ever
> create a class called "ArchivalFond", just like no one would create a class
> called "New" to refer to news. In short, I don't think the argument on
> respecting the Schema.org convention (i.e., use singular for the names of
> classes) holds here. Also, please note that the ICA Glossary does not have
> any "archive"--only archives. Anyway, I'm sure there will be time for
> further discussion later.
> Giovanni
> Giovannni Michetti
> InterPARES Trust
> On 2015-08-05 12:03 PM, Richard Wallis wrote:
>> In other threads we have been discussing how to describe an Archive as
>> an Organization/LocalBusiness
>> <http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-architypes/2015Jul/0002.html>
>> when
>> appropriate, and how to describe an ArchiveCollection
>> <http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-architypes/2015Jul/0008.html
>> >.
>> Now I think it is time to add one more area to our attention - how to
>> describe the physical/digital things that we find within an archive
>> collection.
>> In archives we find all types of things from creative works such as
>> books, letters, artworks, videos, web pages etc., to furniture, personal
>> items, vehicles, fossils, rocks and of course the favourite box of
>> things yet to be identified.  From what I understand there are certain
>> common categories of things such as physical creative works, digital
>> creative works, physical containers of things identified or not, but it
>> would be far too limiting to build our recommendations around these.
>> The result is that we need to be able to describe anything that could be
>> found in an archive which means /anything!/.
>> Fortunately in our world all these things have one aspect in common -
>> they are in an archive.
>> If we can establish a set of descriptive properties that would be of use
>> in describing an item's place and role in an archive, we can then look
>> to some, schema.org <http://schema.org>, techniques to apply them
>> alongside other properties that are already available in the Schema
>> vocabulary.
>> Properties that come to mind include:
>>     isPartOf - a reference to the collection a thing is in
>>     condition - state of preservation of an item
>>     containedIn - the box or digital file containing the item
>>     curatedBy
>>     curationDate
>>     CurationEvent - possibly a better way to describe a curation event -
>>     linking where when and by who
>>     location - of item, not necessarily the collection location
>> We could look to already existent standards, CIDOC-CRM for example, as a
>> source of inspiration.
>> So, over to you for suggestions.  Once we have assemble a few by email
>> discussion, we can create a page in the Wiki to capture them and become
>> the basis for the core of our proposals.
>> ~Richard.
>> Richard Wallis
>> Founder, Data Liberate
>> http://dataliberate.com
>> Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/richardwallis
>> Twitter: @rjw
Received on Thursday, 6 August 2015 11:45:17 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Friday, 17 January 2020 18:57:12 UTC