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Ruben Verborgh

Bringing your collection into the Linked Data cloud: how to use Google Refine to get more out of your metadata

by Seth van Hooland, Max De Wilde, Ruben Verborgh, Rik Van de Walle, and Johannes Hercher

The early-to-mid 2000s economic downturn in the US and Europe forced cultural heritage institutions to adopt a more pragmatic stance towards metadata creation and to deliver short-term results towards grant providers. It is precisely in this context that the concept of Linked and Open Data (LOD) has gained momentum. In this paper, we want to focus on reconciliation, the process in which we map domain specific vocabulary to another (often more commonly used) vocabulary that is part of the Semantic Web in order to annex the metadata to the Linked Data Cloud. We believe that the integration of heterogeneous collections can be managed by using subject vocabulary for cross linking between collections, since major classifications and thesauri (e.g. LCSH, DDC, RAMEAU, etc.) have been made available following Linked Data Principles. Re-using these established terms for indexing cultural heritage resources represents a big potential of Linked Data for libraries, archives and museums (LAM), but the application of LOD publishing still requires expert knowledge of Semantic Web technologies. Therefore, this paper aims to examine the feasibility of using subject vocabularies as linking hub to the Semantic Web in advance of such effort. Namely, we will examine and answer the two following questions: 1) what are currently the possibilities to reconcile metadata with controlled vocabularies in a completely automated manner with the help of non-expert tools, and 2) what are the characteristics of the reconciled metadata, and more specifically, do they offer a sufficient discriminatory value for search and retrieval? To provide an answer to these two questions, the paper gives a pragmatic overview of how free-text keywords from the Powerhouse museum (Sydney) can be successfully reconciled with the LCSH (Library of Congress Subject Headings) with the help of Google Refine. The different steps towards reconciliation are performed through freely available metadata and tools, making the process repeatable and understandable for collection holders. All the necessary tools, data and documentation will be made available on the project website FreeYourMetadata.org.

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Published in 2011 in UK Museums on the Web.

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Cite this article easily using its BibTeX entry:

@inproceedings{vanhooland_ukmw_2011,
  title = {Bringing your collection into the {Linked Data} cloud: how to use {Google Refine} to get more out of your metadata},
  author = {van Hooland, Seth and De Wilde, Max and Verborgh, Ruben and Van de Walle, Rik and Hercher, Johannes},
  booktitle = {UK Museums on the Web},
  year = 2011,
  month = nov,
  url = {http://www.elis.ugent.be/web/ext/publ/pdf.jsp?nr=P111.238},
}

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IEEE
S. van Hooland, M. De Wilde, R. Verborgh, R. Van de Walle, and J. Hercher, “Bringing your collection into the Linked Data cloud: how to use Google Refine to get more out of your metadata,” in UK Museums on the Web, 2011.
ACM
Seth van Hooland, Max De Wilde, Ruben Verborgh, Rik Van de Walle, and Johannes Hercher. 2011. Bringing your collection into the Linked Data cloud: how to use Google Refine to get more out of your metadata. In UK Museums on the Web.
LNCS
van Hooland, S., De Wilde, M., Verborgh, R., Van de Walle, R., Hercher, J.: Bringing your collection into the Linked Data cloud: how to use Google Refine to get more out of your metadata. In: UK Museums on the Web (2011).
APA
van Hooland, S., De Wilde, M., Verborgh, R., Van de Walle, R., & Hercher, J. (2011). Bringing your collection into the Linked Data cloud: how to use Google Refine to get more out of your metadata. In UK Museums on the Web.
MLA
van Hooland, Seth et al. “Bringing Your Collection into the Linked Data Cloud: How to Use Google Refine to Get More out of Your Metadata.” UK Museums on the Web. 2011. Print.

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