TechBytes 4 May 2017

Schema.org Metadata

Schema.org RDF is a community Linked-Data Vocabulary and Extensions for the Semantic Web

One of the most popular metadata vocabularies is schema.org, a RDF vocabulary that was originally founded by Google, Microsoft, Pinterest, and others, as a way to provide structured data on the Internet. Schema.org also has a robust extension process with officially sponsored vocabularies that extend schema.org into other knowledge domains. The Library community has an official extension bib.schema.org that includes library-specific classes like Audiobook, Collection, Newspaper, and Thesis. Other extensions include automobiles and health and life sciences.

Schema.org has a hierarchy of classes with Thing being the most basic entity with such subclasses as Book, Movie, Event, Organization, Person

Schema.org encourages the use of microdata to directly embedded metadata within the HTML of a webpage. Below is an example of the previous page's BIBFRAME example represented as microdata:

<div itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Book">
    <h1 itemprop="name">
        Contemporary pottery techniques in Southern and Central Mexico /
    </h1>
    by 
    <span itemprop="author" 
       itemtype="http://schema.org/Person"> 
       George M. Foster
    </span>
 </div>

The same example in RDF Turtle Format:

@prefix schema: <http://schema.org/> .
@prefix rdf: <http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#> .
@prefix rdfs: <http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#> .
@prefix xml: <http://www.w3.org/XML/1998/namespace> .
@prefix xsd: <http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema#> .

<https://catalog.coloradocollege.edu/3506720#Work> a schema:Book ; schema:author <https://catalog.coloradocollege.edu/3506720#Agent100-9> ; schema:name "Contemporary pottery techniques in Southern and Central Mexico /" .

<https://catalog.coloradocollege.edu/3506720#Agent100-9> a schema:Person ; schema:name "George M. Foster" .

Using Schema.org in a Library Application

A web-based application at Colorado College allows senors to self-submit their thesis along with any accompanying datasets, video, or audio to Colorado College's Fedora-based institutional repository. This application queries a Colorado College RDF Knowledge Graph to generate a list of academic departments at the college along with faculty advisors. The Knowledge Graph is built using existing websites with faculty being generated an URI if the faculty member does not have a ORCID or LC Name Authority URI id.

Below are Colorado College RDF Files that make Knowledge Graph for the 2016-2017 Academic year:

  • colorado-college.ttl - set of basic facts about the college that rarely change including department and different units on campus.
  • cc-people.ttl - Triples for people associated with the Colorado College, focused on administrators, faculty and staff.
  • cc-2016-2017.ttl - Triples for the academic year, associates the departments and link to the faculty and rank (professor, associate professor, adjunct, etc.)
BIBFRAME Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries BIBCAT Project