Thursday, 18 November 2010

On Lonclass, UDC and RDF

An interesting read about sharing and linking data on Dan Brickley's blog "danbri’s foaf stories: the web, the world, us, you and them" explaining some of the ideas behind the NoTube 'semantic television' project.

Snippets:

"Lonclass is one of the BBC’s in-house classification systems – the “London classification”. I’ve had the privilege of investigating Lonclass within the NoTube project. It’s not currently public, but much of what I say here is also applicable to the UDC classification system upon which it was based. UDC is also not fully public yet; I’ve made a case elsewhere that it should be, and I hope we’ll see that within my lifetime. UDC and Lonclass have a fascinating history and are rich cultural heritage artifacts in their own right, but I’m concerned here only with their role as the keys to many of our digital and real-world archives.

Why would we want to map Lonclass or UDC subject classification codes into RDF?

[....] The work needs to be shared, and RDF is currently our best bet on how to create such work sharing, meaning sharing, information-linking systems in the Web. The hierarchies in UDC and Lonclass don’t attempt to represent all of objective reality; they instead show paths through information.

[...] Classification systems with compositional semantics can be enriched when we map their basic terms using identifiers from other shared data sets. And those in the UDC/Lonclass tradition, while in some ways they’re showing their age (weird numeric codes, huge monolithic, hard-to-maintain databases), … are also amongst the most interesting systems we have today for navigating information, especially when combined with Linked Data techniques and companion datasets."

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