DLF and Linked Open Data: Current Efforts, Call for Ideas

Efforts and interest surrounding linked data and semantic web is growing rapidly in the digital library community, and I am often asked,”What is DLF doing in relation to Linked Data?”

On March 16, (CLIR) received a $49,500 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to conduct an in-depth survey of publications, projects, tools, and environments pertaining to semantic web, linked data, and RDF triples technologies. Simultaneously, Stanford University Libraries has received a parallel grant of $50,000 to conduct an invitational workshop intended to incorporate the results of the CLIR survey into a design for a scalable prototype system.

Linked data offers libraries, universities, and scholarly projects improved ability to cross-search and discover digital information. The survey will provide background for participants in a workshop to be held at Stanford University Libraries in summer 2011 that aims to develop specifications, requirements, and a basic technical design for a multinational, multi-institutional prototype demonstrating the viability and efficacy of a linked data environment for improving discovery and navigation. CLIR will publish the survey report following the workshop. The documents emerging from the workshop will also be published online.

“This is a significant grant for CLIR/DLF, as it builds upon our history of rigorous research and analysis of issues that are fundamentally important to our constituencies, as well as marking a new direction,” said CLIR President Chuck Henry. “Linked data has the potential to align and federate digital resources across thousands of institutions. It is thus an aspect of large-scale solutions that CLIR has placed at the core of its strategic mission.”

In addition to the Stanford Workshop, DLF will be present at the LOD-LAM: International Linked Open Data Meeting, being held in San Francisco on June 2-3, 2011.

It is apparent, from the questions, conversations, and the sheer level of interest, Linked Data is in the forefront of many DLF community members’ minds. As a community driven organization, we need to identify where in the Linked Data conversation, it makes the most sense for DLF to engage, and where we can contribute for the greatest benefit.

In order to understand how DLF can best serve its community with regards to Linked Data, we are openly calling for ideas to be posted Linked Open Data: Call for Ideas space of the DLF website.

There is also a  Linked Open Data Interest Group Page on the DLF website, to help gather together LOD resources and information. If you are seeking to help coordinate and catalyze this interest group, let me know.

Your voice and contributions are greatly appreciated!

~ Rachel Frick, DLF Director