Posts Tagged ‘British Library’

The Future of Libraries, Linked Data and Schema.Org Extensions

Image Courtesy Flickr/ Paul Lowry

 

Yesterday The Semantic Link Podcast featured Karen Coyle, a consultant in library technology who’s consulted for esteemed institutions including the Library of Congress. Coyle discussed libraries’ long history with metadata, including with the MARC (machine-readable cataloging) format for nearly 50 years, and of sharing that metadata. That history helps explain why libraries, she said, are looking at semantic web technology – but also why changes to established processes are huge undertakings. “The move toward Linked Data will be the most significant change in library data in these two centuries,” she said, requiring the move from mainly textual data into using identifiers for things and data instead of strings.

Today, The Semantic Web Blog continues the discussion by sharing some perspectives on the topic from OCLC technology evangelist Richard Wallis. As noted in yesterday’s podcast, change has its challenges. “Getting the library community to get its head around Linked Data as a replacement for MARC … will be a bit of a challenge,” Wallis says. While more members of the library community are starting to “get” Linked Data, and what can be accomplished by extracting entities and linking between them, some still struggle with why change can’t just occur within the MARC format itself or its successor Resource Description and Access (RDA), that provides atomistic, machine-actionable data and machine-interpretable relationships. RDA, Wallis reminds us, took a decade from inception to publication and business model.

“The ramifications of turning into the Linked Data world are quite deep and meaningful but it will be a few years for that to be established in the library world,” Wallis says.

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Bringing Together Public Open Data & Academia

John Kaye of the British Library recently shared his views on what open data and academia have to learn from one another. He writes, “Professor Nigel Shadbolt recently visited the Library to talk to staff about the benefits of releasing public data into the wild. He didn’t need to convince me, being a public sector researcher prior to joining the library I fought many licensing and cost battles to get my hands on the data needed for my research projects. This blog isn’t about making the case for opening up public data as this has been made many times and yielded numerous important benefits. Having worked in creating, using and disseminating both public and academic data I think that there are tools and methodologies that both areas can learn from each other.” Read more

British Library Announces Major Release of Linked Data

A new article reports that the British Library has announced “a significant contribution to the development, application, and sharing of bibliographic data using Linked Data techniques and technologies, with a preview of a new approach to publishing the British National Bibliography. Chief Executive Dame Lynne Brindley announced the initiative in her Keynote at Linked Data and Libraries 2011, hosted by Talis at the British Library (BL) in London.” Read more