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Head of Digiatal Collections
Digital Collections Metadata Librarian

Library Vendors and Linked Data

By Cory Lampert on June 11, 2014 10:59 AM | Permalink

This image comes from the Report of the Stanford Linked Data Workshop

One of the challenges of working on linked data in these early stages of adoption is that there is not an easy way to adopt our current workflow into a new linked-date ready system and completely migrate to an all-linked data world.  For the meantime, then we will be maintaining a parallel structure of creating our digital collections within our digital asset management system and then exporting data from this platform and transforming it into linked data where it is stored in a triplestore and published.  This process does have redundancies, but until we can fully adapt our workflow, systems and user experience to accommodate linked data, there is no other option. There are several strategies that we are undertaking to try and work toward the goal of an integration like this:

  • adapting our current workflows to do as much as possible to be "linked-data" ready in terms of data preparation and best practices
  • investigating technology tools and design possibilities for building linked data interfaces for users
  • investigating digital asset management platforms and technology tools that accommodate linked data

It is interesting to monitor what is happening with various vendors and their efforts to work with linked data.  One of the most resounding committments to building a commercial product with linked data in mind comes from the International Group of Ex Libris Users. They have created a Manifesto for Linked Open Data in Ex Libris Products that is very interesting and encouraging.  Worldcat/OCLC is also working on these efforts and Innovative Interfaces has recently acquired VTLS which has a digital asset management component built on Fedora. But as many librarians know, it can be a long development process for vendors to implement enhancements, updates, and feature requests in their products.  Some organizations prefer to take control of these priorities themselmves by adopting open source tools and developing their own systems.  We will be looking at this issue in more detail as UNLV commits more expansively to linked data projects.