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Partnering For Innovation, September 30th, Pt 2: John Sheridan

On September, we hosted another Partnering for Innovation event looking at the current TSB metadata funding call, this time round at RIBA in London. (Several of the presentations can be seen here.)

 
I'd already been lucky enough to see the  National Archives' John Sheridan speak at a PFI event in Birmingham in the summer; John took us through a version of that presentation, with some new insights along the way. Looking at the history of metadata generally, John then went on to look at the opening up of government data and what can be done with that. Along the way, a couple of anecdotes and observations caught my ear.
  • The US are UK almost in competition with each other about who can release the most semantically-readable data!
  • That without agreed, international standards, metadata would fail to reach its full social and business potential (I was once again taken with John's citing of the inventor of the mass-produced - and hence standardised - screw, Henry Maudslay).
  • The government is publishing URIs for all its documents.
  • This against the background that the government web estate grows by an astounding one terabyte per quarter.
  • Similarly, the Ordnance Survey is in the process of publishing a URI for every topographical entity in the British Isles - literally millions of them!
  • Finally, I was amused by John's term for the data chaff left over from the wheat: dotsum and netsum. Sweet.
 
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