Category Archives: Ontology

Brief rant about

@semanticvoid, who I thank for providing the following, at, writes:

“ initiative from Google, Bing & Yahoo to create & support a common vocab for structured data markup (via @arnabdotorg)”

I really do have to say, remembering back to the work for my MSLIS degree learning MARC and ISBD standards, and that I was told that the day and age of the skilled cataloger was gone, and that all we would need would be the 11 (or whatever the number is) fields of the Dublin core, and that all people want and need is a free text search, just like google, THAT I TOLD YOU SO. Even google does not want to search “like google” any more.

The one other comment I want to make, by way of a question, is, Does everyone really want these super-corporations to establish the ways in which our relationships to one another are going to be represented online? As in the case of Facebook? The revolution will not be televised, oh no, it will be tweeted and appear in the status updates of Facebook users around the world, meanwhile, those not participating can “like” it.

Please, google and everyone else who was so vocal about how ontologies, term lists, etc., are too centralized, not truly social because they require a central organizing authority to set the standards, knock yourself out creating a structured markup language. If the Library of Congress is too authoritarian for you, then how about google, Microsoft, and Yahoo!? I’ll be in the Rose Reading Room looking back over a favorite of mine: Fahrenheit 451.

PS I am posting this from my phone using WP’s iPhone app. I hope it looks ok.

Updated CV

For my upcoming evaluation, I put together an updated CV. On the off chance that it might interest someone, here it is.

Well, it’s not just an exersize in narcissism. I really struggled to figure out how to divide up the various kinds of projects I have been working on, in the “Scholarship” section. I settled on the following.

  • Book chapter (peer reviewed)
  • Conferences
  • Edited works. Includes my digital republication of the Origin of Species.
  • Invited lecture.
  • Ontology.
  • Bibliography.
  • “Evolution Resources” column in Evolution: Education and Outreach.
  • Book reviews.
  • Web presence. Blogs, twitter.
  • Development. I am the BibDesk release engineer. Lapsed, apparently. Seriously, though, I will get to the next release soon.
  • Computing. Applications, including svn, Emacs, other development tools.

I have no idea what this will mean to the Dean, the Provost, or the evaluation committee. Nor will I find out, either, except by way of a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down.”

It’s important to differentiate these different kinds of works according to their nature and purpose, rather than lumping them together as “web publications” or “software.” Look, we don’t put journal articles, posters, and books in the same category because they are all printed materials (or at least, used to be). In fact, some of the digital works do more or less the same thing as their print analogs, for instance, bibliographies. Whether in print or in the form of a BibTeX database, a collection of bibliographic records serve the same essential functions.

One thing that is clear, whatever other confusions there may be, is that I need to publish papers in the usual places, peer-reviewed periodicals, whether online or in any other form.

I’d be interested to hear about how other people in the Humanities working on digital projects have represented them to their administrators.

Files for Pratt LIS 663

Tonight I am guest lecturing at Pratt Institute School of Information and Library Science. The topic is ontology. This post is mainly for the students; they will be able to find the lecture notes and the “Make your own ontology” worksheet here.

The worksheet is HERE.

The lecture notes are HERE.