Metadata standards

Metadata standards are requirements which are intended to establish a common understanding of the meaning or semantics of the data, to ensure correct and proper use and interpretation of the data by its owners and users. To achieve this common understanding, a number of characteristics, or attributes of the data have to be defined, also known as metadata[1].

Contents

Metadata

Metadata is often defined as data about data [2][3][4]. It is “structured information that describes, explains, locates, or otherwise makes it easier to retrieve, use or manage an information resource”, especially in a distributed network environment like for example the internet or an organization[5]. A good example of metadata is the cataloging system found in libraries, which records for example the author, title, subject, and location on the shelf of a resource.

Metadata is usually categorized in three types[6][7][8]:

  • Descriptive metadata describes an information resource for identification and retrieval through elements such as title, author, and abstract.
  • Structural metadata documents relationships within and among objects through elements such as links to other components (e.g., how pages are put together to form chapters).
  • Administrative metadata helps to manage information resources through elements such as version number, archiving date, and other technical information for purposes of file management, rights management and preservation.

Available metadata standards

Metadata elements grouped into sets designed for a specific purpose, e.g., for a specific domain or a particular type of information resource, are called metadata schemes. For every element the name and the semantics (the meaning of the element) are specified. Content rules (how content must be formulated), representation rules (e.g., capitalization rules), and allowed element values (e.g., from a controlled vocabulary) can be specified optionally. Some schemes also specify in which syntax the elements must be encoded, in contrast to syntax independent schemes. Many current schemes use Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) or XML to specify their syntax. Metadata schemes that are developed and maintained by standard organizations (such as ISO) or organizations that have taken on such responsibility (such as the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative) are called metadata standards.

Many different metadata schemes are being developed as standards across disciplines, such as library science, education, archiving, e-commerce, and arts. In the table below, an overview of available metadata standards is given.

Name Focus Description
DDI Archiving and Social Science The Data Documentation Initiative is an international effort to establish a standard for technical documentation describing social science data. A membership-based Alliance is developing the DDI specification, which is written in XML.
EAD Archiving Encoded Archival Description - a standard for encoding archival finding aids using XML in archival and manuscript repositories.
CDWA Arts Categories for the Description of Works of Art is a conceptual framework for describing and accessing information about works of art, architecture, and other material culture.
VRA Core Arts Visual Resources Association – the standard provides a categorical organization for the description of works of visual culture as well as the images that document them.
Darwin Core Biology The Darwin Core is a metadata specification for information about the geographic occurrence of species and the existence of specimens in collections.
ONIX Book industry Online Information Exchange - international standard for representing and communicating book industry product information in electronic form.
CWM Data warehousing The main purpose of the Common Warehouse Metamodel is to enable easy interchange of warehouse and business intelligence metadata in distributed heterogeneous environments.
EML Ecology Ecological Metadata Language is a specification developed for the ecology discipline.
IEEE LOM Education Learning Objects Metadata - specifies the syntax and semantics of Learning Object Metadata.
CSDGM Geographic data Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata maintained by the Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC).
ISO 19115 Geographic data The ISO 19115:2003 Geographic information -- Metadata standard defines how to describe geographical information and associated services, including contents, spatial-temporal purchases, data quality, access and rights to use. It is maintained by the ISO/TC 211 committee.
e-GMS Government The e-Government Metadata Standard (E-GMS) defines the metadata elements for information resources to ensure maximum consistency of metadata across public sector organizations in the UK.
GILS Government/ Organizations The Global Information Locator Service defines an open, low-cost, and scalable standard so that governments, companies, or other organizations can help searchers find information.
TEI Humanities, social sciences and linguistics Text Encoding Initiative - a standard for the representation of texts in digital form, chiefly in the humanities, social sciences and linguistics.
NISO MIX Images Z39.87 Data dictionary - technical metadata for digital still images (MIX) - NISO Metadata for Images in XML is an XML schema for a set of technical data elements required to manage digital image collections.
<indecs> Intellectual property Indecs Content Model - Interoperability of Data in E-Commerce Systems addresses the need to put different creation identifiers and metadata into a framework to support the management of intellectual property rights.
MARC Librarianship MARC - MAchine Readable Cataloging - standards for the representation and communication of bibliographic and related information in machine-readable form.
METS Librarianship Metadata Encoding and Transmission Standard - an XML schema for encoding descriptive, administrative, and structural metadata regarding objects within a digital library.
MODS Librarianship Metadata Object Description Schema - is a schema for a bibliographic element set that may be used for a variety of purposes, and particularly for library applications.
XOBIS Librarianship XML Organic Bibliographic Information Schema - a XML schema for modeling MARC data.
PBCore Media PBCore is a Metadata & Cataloging Resource for Public Broadcasters & Associated Communities
MPEG-7 Multimedia The Multimedia Content Description Interface MPEG-7 is a ISO/IEC standard and specifies a set of descriptors to describe various types of multimedia information and is developed by the Moving Picture Experts Group.
MEI Music notation Music Encoding Initiative is a community-driven effort to create a commonly-accepted, digital, symbolic representation of music notation documents.
Dublin Core Networked resources Dublin Core - interoperable online metadata standard focused on networked resources.
DOI Networked resources Digital Object Identifier - provides a system for the identification and hence management of information ("content") on digital networks, providing persistence and semantic interoperability.
ISO/IEC 11179[9] Organizations ISO/IEC 11179 Standard that describes the metadata and activities needed to manage data elements in a registry to create a common understanding of data across organizational elements and between organizations.
ISO 23081 [10] Records management ISO 23081 - two-part technical specification defining metadata needed to manage records. Part 1 addresses principles, part 2 addresses conceptual and implementation issues.
[1] Records management MoReq2 - A specification describing the MOdel REQuirements for the management of electronic records.
DIF Scientific data sets Directory Interchange Format - a descriptive and standardized format for exchanging information about scientific data sets.

Sources: [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20]

See also

References

  1. ^ International Organization for Standardization and the International Electromechanical Commission (ISO/IEC) (2003), Information Technology - Metadata Registries - Part 3: Registry metamodel and basic attributes, ISO/IEC 11179-3:2003(E), International Organization for Standardization, Geneva
  2. ^ National Information Standards Organization (NISO) (2007), A Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections, 3rd ed., A NISO Recommended Practice, NISO, Baltimore, USA
  3. ^ Duval, E. (2001), Metadata Standards, What, Who & Why, Journal of Universal Computer Science, 7(7), 591-601, Springer
  4. ^ Cabinet Office (2006), e-Government Metadata Standard Version 3.1, e-Government Unit, London
  5. ^ De Carvalho Moura, A, Machado Campos, M, Barreto, C (1998), A survey on metadata for describing and retrieving Internet resources, World Wide Web, 1, (4), 221-240, Kluwer Academic Publishers
  6. ^ Lambe, P (2007), Organising Knowledge: Taxonomies, Knowledge and Organisational effectiveness, Chandos Publishing, Oxford
  7. ^ National Information Standards Organization (NISO) (2004), Understanding Metadata, NISO Press, Bethesda, USA
  8. ^ National Information Standards Organization (NISO) (2007), A Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections, 3rd ed., A NISO Recommended Practice, NISO, Baltimore, USA
  9. ^ ISO/IEC (2003, 2004)
  10. ^ ISO (2004)
  11. ^ Baca, M. (ed) (2002), Metadata Standards, Library Technology Reports, 38, (5), 19-41
  12. ^ Bargemeyer, B.E. and Gillman, D.W. (2000), Metadata Standards and Metadata Registries: An Overview, paper presented at the International Conference on Establishment Surveys II, Buffalo, New York
  13. ^ De Carvalho Moura, A.M., Machado Campos, M.L., Barreto, C.M. (1998), A survey on metadata for describing and retrieving Internet resources, World Wide Web, 1, (4), 221-240, Kluwer Academic Publishers
  14. ^ National Information Standards Organization (NISO) (2004), Understanding Metadata, NISO Press, Bethesda, USA
  15. ^ http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/cataloging/metadata/metadataStandards.html
  16. ^ Taxonomy Warehouse (2007), Standards and Initiatives, visited on 15-04-2008
  17. ^ Wrembel, R. and Bębel, B. (2005), Metadata Management in a Multiversion Data Warehouse, in: Meersman, R., Tari (eds.), CoopIS/DOA/ODBASE 2005, LNCS 3761, 1314 - 1329, Springer-Verlag, Berlin
  18. ^ Lambe, P. (2007), Organising Knowledge: Taxonomies, Knowledge and Organisational effectiveness, Chandos Publishing, Oxford
  19. ^ National Information Standards Organization (NISO) (2007), A Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections, 3rd ed., A NISO Recommended Practice, NISO, Baltimore, USA
  20. ^ NCSU Libraries (2008), Metadata Standards and Organizations, visited on 15-04-2008

External links


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