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July 2010 meetup

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on July 1, 2010 at 7:34:11 pm

'Linking museums: machine-readable data in cultural heritage'


A meetup for people interested in the applications of linked data, microformats, RDFa (etc) for museums and the cultural heritage sector.


July 7, 2010, Shooting Star pub, London. 7:30 - 10pm-ish.


The Shooting Star is at 125-129 Middlesex Street, London, E1 7JF.  The 'gallery' (at the other end of the pub from the TV) is reserved for Mia for 7:30pm.


There are quite a few events in London that week, like EVA London and That Camp London - feel free to invite others.



I'm trying to cut through the chicken and egg problem - as a museum technologist, I can work towards getting machine-readable data available, but I'm not sure which formats and what data would be most useful for developers who might use it. Without a critical mass of take-up for any one type, the benefits of any one data source are more limited for developers.  But museums seem to want a sense of where the critical mass is going to be so they can build for that.  How do we cut through this and come up with a sensible roadmap?



You! If you're interested in using museum data in mashups but find it difficult to get started or find the data available isn't easily usable; if you have data you want to publish; if you work in a museum and have a data publication problem you'd like help in solving; if you are a cheerleader for your favourite acronym...


Put another way, this event is for you if you're interested in publishing and sharing data about their museums and collections through technologies such as linked data and microformats.



Pretty informal!  I'm not sure how much we can get done but it'd be nice to put faces to names, and maybe start some discussions around the various problems that could be solved and tools that could be created with machine-readable data in cultural heritage.


Possible Topics for Discussion?

Has anyone implemented microformats or RDFa on their website? If so, what formats, which schemas? What uptake/usage of the metadata has been seen? 


RDFa vs microformats? Advantages of each?

Work-of-art microformat. Would a more generic microformat for man-made objects attract more interest?

What data could we potentially link to? Competing resources - e.g. Geonames vs Getty Thes. of Geographic Names.

Any word of progress on the Collections Trust Terminology Server? Potentially a powerful resource to link to.


What could we work towards after the meeting?


  • All contribute to pushing the discussion on a proposed microformat
  • Encourage one manager/supplier of authority data to expose it as free linkable data
  • Each have a trial project on one microformat/RDFa format and report back
  • Try using some already published data and send your feedback to the publishers
  • Offer to help someone get started publishing in a particular format
  • Something even more exciting that you invent on the night...


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