W3C (RDF) and DC

From: "Weibel,Stu" <weibel@oclc.org>
To: meta2@net.lut.ac.uk
Subject: W3C Newsletter note about Helsinki
Date: Tue, 21 Oct 1997 16:11:15 -0400



The following is (very nearly) the text of a piece in the most recent
W3C Newsletter (Members Only) concerning the W3C and the DC community.
It is a narrative version of the resolutions approved in
a plenary at Helsinki.  As I indicated then, I think this formal
consolidation of the relationship between the W3C and the DC community
is a substantive step forward for both groups, and bodes very good
indeed in achieving the goal of an effective metadata infrastructure for
the Web and beyond.

A version of this will probably be released soon for a wider public.
Take a bow.



Fifth Dublin Core Workshop endorses Resource Description Framework

The fifth Dublin Core Metadata Workshop was held October 6 to 8 in
Helsinki, Finland.  Seventy five experts from libraries, the networking
and digital library research communities, and a variety of content
specialties gathered to continue the international consensus-building
around the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set.

Representatives from the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Resource
Description Framework (RDF) working group presented interim results of
the RDF specification effort at this meeting.  Eric Miller of OCLC,
Renato Iannella of the Distributed Systems Technology Centre, and Ralph
Swick of the W3C showed how RDF addresses the architectural requirements
for resource description that were identified at the Fourth Dublin Core
Workshop in March of this year.

While still in a preliminary state, the RDF model developed thus far
helped to guide the Helsinki discussions toward a formal data model that
makes easier the task of structuring resource description metadata.
The cross fertilization of ideas between the W3C metadata architects and
the Dublin Core Community has helped to focus the ideas and efforts of
both groups and has greatly enhanced the near-term prospects for a
fully-functional metadata architecture for the World Wide Web. 

Participants in the 5th Dublin Core Workshop were unanimous and
enthusiastic in their endorsement of the RDF as a critical component of
the evolution of a metadata architecture for the Web.  The Dublin Core
effort has focussed on identifying the semantics appropriate for simple
description of electronic resources.  The RDF effort promises to provide
the technical base for interoperable distribution of Dubin Core metadata
and a wide variety of other types of metadata on the Web.

The Dublin Core Community will continue to work closely with the W3C to
promote a broad-based understanding and use of metadata on the Web.
Eric Miller of OCLC has been tasked as the official representative of
the Dublin Core Community to the W3C Metadata Activity.  His work as
co-chair of the RDF working Group and long-standing participant in the
Dublin Core series make him an ideal liaison between the groups.  Work
in both groups is expected to converge and result in substantive
progress before the next Dublin Core meeting. 
The cooperation of experts from many communities (including libraries,
museums, commercial software vendors, and academics) is converging on
solutions that will serve all Web users.  As the quality and coherence
of resource description infrastructure improves, the result will be a
steady improvement in the value of the Web as a global information