[uf-discuss] citation: another example of practice in the wild

Michael McCracken michael.mccracken at gmail.com
Wed Aug 16 22:42:31 PDT 2006

On 8/16/06, Bruce D'Arcus <bdarcus.lists at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 8/16/06, Tantek Çelik <tantek at cs.stanford.edu> wrote:
> > FWIW, I don't think DC provides a particularly good set of names, far too
> > theoretically designed, and eclipsed in practical usage by several of the
> > other established formats (OpenURL, Bibtex).
> Come on Tantek; that's an entirely arbitrary assessment, without any
> real factual basis.  Given the wide-spread use across a whole slew of
> formats (HTML, RSS, OpenDocument, the new MS XML formats, Adobe's XMP)
> how can you possibly say that it's "theoretical"? More stuff is
> described using DC than probably any format or term set in existance.

Is anyone else using it to describe parts of an HTML doc, or is it
just the HEAD?

I'll explain my reaction in specifics here, which I shared in general
reply to Tantek's email.

> But rather than argue about this, let's step back and pull out what we
> can likely agree on.
> The first group is so obvious I really don't think we could possible disagree:
> *  dc:title (absolutely need a "title" term, for all kinds of things)
> *  dc:date (and the qualfiers issued, etc.)
> *  dc:subject (aka tag, keyword, etc.)
> *  dc:publisher
> *  dc:identifier

yeah, I have no problems with those, although I did think it wasn't
clear that subject meant keywords.

> And then there's the following, which have one issue or another where
> reasonable people can disagree:
> *  dc:creator (OK, maybe a little problematic in different ways, but
> widely understood and useful, if too broad for most citation needs)

I like 'author' and 'editor' better than 'creator' and 'contributor'.
I didn't see where 'editor' would fit. A contributor? and is a second
author a creator or a contributor?

> * dcterms:isPartOf and isVersionOf. OK, yes, a little bit abstract,
> but they are excellent ways to describe critical relations in
> bibliographic data, in ways that don't resume upfront a limited scope
> of description. Document isPartOf collection, track isPartOf album,
> article isPartOf journal, etc. Am happy if someone comes up with
> better terms, so long as they still retain some flexibililty.

I liked these terms, but I thought it translated awkwardly into HTML
markup, at least in my example.

I also thought 'abstract' is an obvious choice, except that there were
others that might be confusingly similar, like description.

I am not sure what you meant by the date qualifiers. I couldn't see a
way to mark the date as the 'published' date, and so I thought just
dc:date was ambiguous...

It seems to me like DC is useful to mine ideas from, but maybe not a
good idea to import wholesale.


Michael McCracken
UCSD CSE PhD Candidate
research: http://www.cse.ucsd.edu/~mmccrack/
misc: http://michael-mccracken.net/wp/

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