Over the past year we have begun many presentations talking about the potential benefits of linked data. Only recently as we have come to the conclusion of our first year working on the project have we started to see these benefits in truly compelling user interfaces and demonstrable ways. In a recent webinar OCLC put on, there was a mention of the work the Linked Data for Libraries collaboration is doing to investigate use cases for linked data. This is the first full-scale investigation of its kind (that I have been able to find) and the chart on this page of their wiki is fabulous for helping to better understand the concrete ways that users foresee using linked data for research.
Ultimately, everyone just wants to know, "what is linked data going to do for ME?" and we are getting closer to having a good answer to that question. Yes we can respond telling people about breaking down silos of information, but we also need to be showing them interfaces like PivotViewer and Gelphi, and Relfinder. Beyond that, once people start to see the potential and the reality of implemented linked data; then we need to start asking them, as these use cases do, what do THEY want from linked data. Explore these use cases on your own and let us know what other ideas come to mind, especially among digital collections users.