Archive for February, 2010

Opening bibliographic data

February 7th, 2010

I love the CERN library’s message of “Raw bibliographic book data available now!”, framed
1989: TimBL invented WWW at CERN
2009: TimBL calls for “Open Data Now” at TED

CERN is the latest library to share their book data, as CERN emerging technologies librarian Patrick Danowski announced on twitter. The Open Book Data Project is further described on their website and in a youtube video (below) purpose-made for the occasion. The data is dual-licensed as CC0 and PDDL.

This isn’t the first time that library data has been shared with a splash.

After speaking at Code4Lib 2008 (my first Code4Lib conference), Brewster Kahle was presented with MARC records from the Oregon Summit consortium.

In 2007, a number of Library of Congress records were deposited in connection with
Scriblio Open Source Endeca, a faceted catalog Casey Bisson Durfee described at Code4Lib2007. Scriblio It has gone through several incarnations; the open source Kochief project is the latest.

Further, as Jonathan Gorman and I were discussing in #code4lib earlier this week, there are several collections of MARC records and more donated to Open Library hosted at the Internet Archive. A few are misclassified so also consider keyword searches (‘MARC’ and ‘MARC libraries’) if you’re trying to find all the MARC records that has.

Linked data in libraries is coming along more slowly; fruit, perhaps, for another post.

Where do you look for bibliographic records? Feel free to leave tips in the comments!

Updated 2010-04-14, with thanks to Dan Scott for corrections!

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Salmon Protocol: Comments Swimming Upstream

February 3rd, 2010

Salmon, an aggregation protocol, is championed by Google’s John Panzer, and described as an “an open, simple, standards-based solution” for “unifying the conversations”.

‘Conversations’ is deliberately plural, I think, to evoke the many conversations, invisible to one another: “The comments, ratings, and annotations increasingly happen at the aggregator and are invisible to the original source.”

Using Salmon, an aggregator pushes comments back to a “Salmon endpoint” (via POST). These can be published (or moderated) upstream at the original source. See also the summary of the Salmon protocol.

Comments swimming upstream…

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Problems and Opportunities for the Social Web 2010

February 3rd, 2010

In a post at ZDNet, Dion Hinchcliffe delineates 7 problems of today’s social web:

  1. Fragmentation of conversation.
  2. Disconnects between older and newer generations of social media
  3. Lack of control of identity, contacts, and data.
  4. A better social Web on mobile devices.
  5. Poor integration between social media and location services.
  6. Difficulty of coherently engaging in social activity across many channels.
  7. Coping with and getting value from the expanding information volume of social media.

from “The social Web in 2010: The emerging standards and technologies to watch” encountered via Ed H. Chi’s post at the PARC Augmented Social Cognition blog.

The trends? Openness, portability, aggregation of distributed content. Hopefully we’ll see more on all these fronts in 2010 and beyond. Hinchcliffe also suggests that we want “Better social and location capabilities added to the core of mobile devices.”

See the full post at ZDNet for more discussion and references to a number of standards, formats, and related developments. In the next post, I’ll highlight Salmon, a protocol for distributed commenting, which I’d neither encountered nor heard of.

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