[open-data-manual] Linked Data - its place in the Open Data Manual

Tim McNamara tim.mcnamara at okfn.org
Wed Aug 3 23:02:21 UTC 2011


Linked Data - should it be in the manual? (yes)
What level of detail? (introduction + glossary)
How will it get written? (Undecided, perhaps Italians write their own
manual, then translate it into English)

Ticket: https://github.com/okfn/opendatamanual/issues/19


Quite rightly, Linked Data has been raised in IRC:

<timClicks> well.. we've just had a new italian team member
<napo> timClicks: maybe he want help, so this is good
<napo> timClicks: in this days 4 people asked to help
<napo> timClicks: and federico morando traslated the first version (80%)
<napo> timClicks: ah .. always from italy the are some suggestions for
a chapter about linked data

I think it will be a great enhancement of the manual to have some
excellent introductory material. I have created a ticket
(https://github.com/okfn/opendatamanual/issues/19) for anyone who
would like to build a Linked Data section.

Despite this, I'm wary. I don't want to scare data providers away by
telling them that they need to start publishing wonderful RDF using
well established ontologies. That could add lots of cost and
complexity to an open data project.

Here are my thoughts on the target level (from the ticket):

"The manual shouldn't attempt to be a complete text book on everything
related to Linked Data. It should attempt to explain the concepts in
broad detail, outline the benefits and be realistic about the
difficulties of the semantic web. We should provide pointers to
(ideally openly licenced) sources of further information."

"Concepts such as RDF, OWL, SPARQL and so forth should be included in
the glossary."

Do people agree with this?

The next question is how should we proceed. Should we create a section
in the English version, then translate it? I think that if OKFN Italy
members have expressed interest, then they should create a section in
their native language and then translate it. Once it becomes sizeable,
then the English version becomes the standard and the translation
happens normally.

There are some problems with this though:

 - Pootle is not really designed to allow bi-directional translations.
As far as I know, it follows a "one original --> many translations"
 - We have a larger pool of expertise within English.
 - It may take a while to have an Italian text created, translated
into English, then incorporated into the wider body of the manual

Regarding the second point, and I hope he doesn't mind me saying this,
but one of the contributors of the Sesame* project, Jeen Broekstra is
a member of this list. He lives here in Wellington and will probably
be part of an informal semantic web/open data meetup group that I'm
helping to start. I invited him a few weeks ago to join. He's
expressed keen interest in assisting as time permits.

My best, Tim

* A well-regarded RDF datastore.

More information about the open-data-handbook mailing list