You are browsing the archive for 2011 March.

Room & Ride Sharing

March 30, 2011 in logistics

While we’re still a ways out, people are wisely planning their travel. I’ve gotten some questions from folks interested in potential room/ride sharing. Please feel free to post here if you’ve got or need a double room or extra couch to share, or coordinate rides from Bay Area destinations.

Smithsonian staff talking linked data

March 29, 2011 in Uncategorized

Smithsonian Staffers

Smithsonian Staffers

Smithsonian staff are doing some planning around the LOD-LAM summit. Today, a group of us met to talk about projects, data sets, and such. We’ll have more of these sessions to talk about what’s up and what’s happening so that participants can know what kinds of things the Smithsonian will have to offer.

Pictured above, from left, Suzanne Pilsk and Keri Thompson (Smithsonian Libraries), Günter  Waible (Digitization Program Office), Michael Edson (Web and New Media Strategy), Effie Kapsalis (Smithsonian Archives). I’m the reflection in the window.

Opening the space, virtually

March 28, 2011 in announcements

Nihonbashi woodprint by Utagawa Hiroshige II (see page for license), via Wikimedia Commons/Brooklyn Museum

I’m excited to announce the list of participants for the LOD-LAM Summit today. As you can see, we’ve expanded the number of participants quite a bit due to the interest and the fact that many participants were able to get support from their institutions to attend.

As you know,the LOD-LAM Summit will be organized using the Open Space Technology format. If you haven’t experienced a meeting or unconference like that before (like FooCamp, BarCamp, THATCamp or the like), it might be a little unnerving at first, but don’t worry, I promise you it will come naturally soon. The bottom line is that we’re creating an open space to explore one question, which is “How can we move Linked Open Data forward in libraries, archives, and museums in the next year?” We’ll set the agenda together in the first hour of our meeting, assuring that the issues that are most important to you will be addressed. It will make for an exciting and exhausting two days, but you’ll be amazed at what we accomplish.

At the beginning of our meeting, we’ll start in a circle. After a quick introduction, we’ll begin to post our session ideas into an open framework of breakout rooms and time slots. We’ll work together to combine and coordinate sessions. We’ll confab, collaborate, have heated discussions, hack.

I’d like to open that circle virtually right now and invite you to share your ideas on this blog as you see fit. You can edit your bio pages and update your projects as you like. You can start posting and exploring session ideas now (just be sure to use the SessionIdeas category), you can discover and work with a good chunk of the public raw data of the participant list (and let me know if you need more). You can start to incorporate RDF or RDFa into this site, build visualizations, post reading lists.

While in-person attendance at the LOD-LAM Summit is limited by space and budget, the ongoing proceedings and discussions are open to all. Our hope is that we will continue the conversation in various and widespread venues over the next year. There’s already been some great discussion on the LOD-LAM Google Group, which is open to anyone who’s interested.

I’ve been amazed at the energy and enthusiasm around this Summit from the beginning, and I’m very excited to see where it leads us.

What the lod-lam? You drive me crazy…

March 27, 2011 in Uncategorized

In the blur that life/work seems these days I am trying to get my thoughts and energies focused for the LOD-LAM summit in San Francisco in June.

my-first-lightening-shot by WindRanch by-nc-nd 2.0

my-first-lightening-shot by WindRanch by-nc-nd 2.0

Aside being pretty excited about visiting a hilly shaky waterfront city like my home town of Wellington (Aotearoa/New Zealand) where DigitalNZ lives – the gallery/museum fiend in me is keen get to the SF MOMA and the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts and the Computer History Museum (if I can find a way to get to Mountain View).

I had a ‘funny’ as in “what the?” experience recently in relation to the semantic web. Idealism and talking within your own peer community has its pitfalls (read: group think).  I learned that not everyone is interested and/or committed to the idea of a semantic web (still) – and well – it surprised me.  I guess I’m used to the critique and/or close observation of the social web (which is good to have).  For some reason I thought this debate about the quirks of humanity and the  semantic web had gone quiet.  I’ve been behind the scenes for a while working towards delivering a useful, informative and potentially engaging experience online in the GLAM sector (LAM) and advocating for a linked data approach where possible.  So – this skepticism really surprised me – I view web development as a socio-technological phenomenon and I think it’s self evident that social behaviours will leave their imprint on and be imprinted on by new technologies.

In any case, I figure the grand vision and theory is one thing and the current reality quite another.  But I’m intrigued enough now to want to do some background reading (or be in receipt of pearls of wisdom from kindly boffins) to be disabused of my idealism.  Why?  Well I’m seeing linked open data (LOD) as a no-brainer and the idea of a semantic web as just that, an idea in the making.   What I’m taking from this is that not only is there practice/culture change involved, there is tradition, opinion and academic research… oh no!  Oh yes!  I think I’ve found my lod-lam mojo in all this pondering… I’m outing myself as a realist and a socio-technologist… eeek!

Anyway, my Mum sent me a link to this piece by Sherry Turckle Alone Together: Why We Export More From Technology and Less From Each Other which is tilting in a different direction but it also got me thinking about what drives me to push for a stronger linked data approach.  What drives me is to build systems and use technology to work effectively in a space that I used to work in as a research librarian years ago – so that time is freed up to do other work or meet new and/or expanding needs of researchers.  I also want to help advocate for ways that the GLAM (LAM) community can work more effectively together with linked data because it drives me (and other information or data seekers of all disciplinary stripes) crazy that they don’t.

I’m really looking forward to this summit… and to meeting up with people at LOD-LAM… and contributing.

All notifications sent

March 8, 2011 in announcements

We’ve emailed all LOD-LAM Summit invitations and travel offerings at this point, so if you have applied to attend the Summit and have not received a response, please let me know. To be clear: every applicant was sent a response, so if you didn’t receive anything, please contact me. We’re having an awful time with spam filters.

Of course, we had more attendees than we could afford to get here physically, but hope to continue the conversation online here and at regional conferences and meetups in the coming years. There are so many great projects in the works and one thing we hope to do right off the bat is disseminate a list of the many LOD-LAM projects in action already. Thanks to everyone who took the time to put in an application for the Summit or the earlier survey—there’s no question that there’s a demand for more information and resources for this developing field.

Short delay in notifications

March 7, 2011 in Uncategorized

Please bear with us, but there will be a short delay before all notifications are sent out. We’re anticipating all notifications will be out before Wednesday March 9, but we’re working hard to accommodate as many people as possible.