Re: Just Starting Out

From: Danny Ayers <>
Date: Mon, 15 Aug 2005 11:35:47 +0200

On 8/14/05, Jason Foster <> wrote:

I'm in a similar position, despite having known about RDF for a good
while, I still have loads of data tied up in disparate systems,
thinking it's time I pulled it together somehow.

> I've downloaded and built Longwell (which should mention somewhere
> that by default you have to be online to build) and am working on
> Haystack. My impression from browsing the Simile website is that the
> current focus is on read-only display of existing data. Given that
> all I have right now are handwritten research notes, some vaguely-
> structured text files, and an EndNote database, my next step seems to
> be coming up with a way to add information to an RDF store.

I've got the next step down slightly differently - finding a way of
expressing the data in RDF in a useful fashion (i.e. one in which you
capture as much of the info as possible). Essentially find appropriate
vocabularies/RDF schemas. Then look at mapping/translating the data
from its current form to an RDF form. With databases etc the ideal is
a continuous/two-way mapping, but in practice at this point in time an
export dump and one-off translation may be the best approach

I must confess I've not looked at Haystack since its (slightly
disappointing) early versions, it may now offer what you're after
(time I started a download, methinks).

An option for dealing with loose text notes might be to paste them
into a blogging system, export as RSS 1.0 . WordPress with the FOAF
Output plugin can provide fairly rich metadata, there's the category
stuff and links within content are pulled out as dcterms:references
statements (e.g. as at [1]).

> The Longwell documentation lists 5 different RDF stores and provides
> configuration information for each. Unfortunately (for me) I don't
> have a feel for which store makes the most sense. I have a sneaking
> suspicion that I should look at DSpace, but a cursory look hasn't
> revealed any documentation on integrating Longwell with DSpace.

I'd be tempted to experiment with text file based storage (i.e.
RDF/XML), at least initially. I found it straightforward to set up
with my own data, (see [2]) . I've no idea of the current
Longwell/DSpace status. At some point, personally I want to use
Longwell/PiggyBank alongside a Redland RDF store, but that's another

> If you have a minute, can you outline the steps that a new "RDF
> Convert" would follow to incorporate their research notes, web
> bookmarks, z39.50 results, etc., into a browsable *and update-able*
> RDF store?

Web bookmarks are pretty easy to convert (I have a script somewhere
for Netscape, long forgotten until this moment...thanks ;-)
Z39.50 - I'm sure that will been covered somewhere, this is a good
list on which to ask...
Updateable - hmm, might need one or two scripts.



Received on Mon Aug 15 2005 - 09:32:09 EDT

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