[ckan-discuss] Package Relationships - remove?

David Read david.read at okfn.org
Thu Aug 25 09:34:50 BST 2011

On 24 August 2011 21:47, Rufus Pollock <rufus.pollock at okfn.org> wrote:
> I'm +1 to remove.
> Right now this isn't buying anything and we probably want something
> different point. I do think that:
> a) At some point I'm pretty sure we will need things like "depends on"
> or "requires"

This was your original reasoning for the feature, and it's not
happened. What do you see changing in the future?

> b) there is a good use case right now for a more general form of
> "connection" which isn't just between datasets but is e.g. from
> dataset to external visualization or policy paper. E.g. it would be
> really nice to say "this government report at url X uses data from
> this dataset" or this visualization at url X uses this dataset (thanks
> to Sam Smith for emphasizing the importance of this to me a few months
> ago)

Great to have a fourth suggestion of a relationship type. But
visualisations are still simply Resources. I made the point that we
could generalise Relationships to include Resources, but that is a
subtle shift, not one that will suddenly create demand for this

> c) For derivation and transformation relationships (definitely going
> to be important) we need to include resources not just
> datasets/packages (maybe *just* resources).

You started by saying get rid of Relationships and spend the rest of
this email arguing *for* something very similar! ;-)


> This is something that
> changed since resources did not really exist when we first implemented
> relationships.
> Rufus
> On 24 August 2011 18:25, David Read <david.read at okfn.org> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> I've got a proposal that we move away from the CKAN feature that
>> provides structured links between data packages - the Package
>> Relationships feature. I'd love to get some feedback on removing this
>> under-used feature.
>> This feature was implemented in the API 18 months ago, and although
>> several use cases were originally proposed, none have really taken
>> off. I understand the LOD people found it difficult to use, so simply
>> used Package Extra fields for describing the links between packages in
>> a flexible way.
>> This has put us off spending the time to create an edit interface in
>> the Web interface (but of course, maybe that has been the problem).
>> And it's not a simple part of our data model, requiring some work to
>> handle well in our RESTful API throughout the refactor, and yet some
>> issues remain which will require a chunk of further work.
>> So I'm suggesting we get rid of it and collect ideas for a future
>> replacement for forking/deriving/relating Resources instead, in a
>> Github-style way, as spreadsheets get cleaned up or extended etc.
>> More details of the use cases that have failed to take off are in the
>> CREP here: http://trac.ckan.org/ticket/1289. Please do reply to this
>> list with any thoughts.
>> David
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> --
> Co-Founder, Open Knowledge Foundation
> Promoting Open Knowledge in a Digital Age
> http://www.okfn.org/ - http://blog.okfn.org/

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