Difference between revisions of "citation-brainstorming"

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Here is [http://www.aadl.org/cat/seek/search/X?SEARCH=knitting&searchscope=26&x=0&y=0&SORT=D&sourceid=Mozilla-search&rss=1 an example of the HTML (inside an RSS feed) that the [http://www.aadl.org Ann Arbor District Library] is generating] and wants to mark up with some sort of publication microformat.
Here is [http://www.aadl.org/cat/seek/search/X?SEARCH=knitting&searchscope=26&x=0&y=0&SORT=D&sourceid=Mozilla-search&rss=1 an example of the HTML (inside an RSS feed)] that the [http://www.aadl.org Ann Arbor District Library ] is generating and wants to mark up with some sort of publication microformat.

Revision as of 04:42, 21 December 2005

Citation Brainstroming

XHTML Structure

With my exprience working X2V and hCa* has taught me what elememts are easy to find and which are not. Since the Citation microformat is very new it is possible to not make a lot of the same errors twice and to make things easier for extracting application to find and imply certain properties.

  • There should be some sort of 'root node' that implies all child elements are for the Citation microformat.
  • Since most people will have multiple Citation there should be away to represent each Citation object as a unqiue block independant of another. This is to keep the parse from finding 'author' and applying to all citations. Each citation should be in a container (class="???") that scoped from others.

@@ more points will be posted as i remember of them

Semantic Meaning

One of the guiding priniciple of Microformats is to use the most semantically rich element to describe each node (Point 2 of Semantic XHTML Design Principles: Use the most accurately precise semantic XHTML building block for each object etc). Since we are dealing with HTML and citations, several elements are candidates to be used to enrich the semantic meaning. CITE, BLOCKQUOTE, Q, A, (are there more?)

The Citation Brainstorming Page has a few development and ideas about how to give another person credit for a link. Some of the semantic ideas behind their choices of tags can be applied to a full bibliographic type reference.

ISBN:// Protocol

RFC3187 defines an isbn protocol



I'm not sure if any browser uses this data, but it might be have an application in citations describing registered materials with an ISBN

Question: what about using something like OCLC's WorldCat for linking titles? - Tim White

This and That

After reading through alot of different citation encoding formats, i noticed that each format was being used in onw of two ways. It was either to describe the Current page (THIS.PAGE) or being used to encode references that point to external resources (THAT.PAGE)

The informatation being encoded was identical for both resources (author, date, name, etc) they just reference different things. For this microformat, i'm not sure if we want to try to solve both problems, or just one? The meta tags in the head element would be the ideal place for information about the THIS.PAGE, but that is not in following with the ideals of microformats where information is human-readable. The THAT.PAGE idea where a list of references is at the end of a document in the form of a bibliography is more inline with the ideals of a microformat where the data is human-readable. That doesn't mean that data about the current document shouldn't be human-readable, so some of the same properties used to reference extermal resources can be used for the current document (THIS.PAGE). To do this a different root item could be used and transforming applications could either extract the citation data about the current page, or information about this page's references.

This is open for discussion, but either way, i believe that the properties used to describe a page will be the same for both THIS and THAT. brian suda

Date Formatting

Since microformats are all about re-use and the accepted way to encode Date-Time has been pretty much settled, then this is a good place to start when dealing with all the different date citation types.

These are all the different fields from various citation formats that are of temporal nature:

* Date (available | created | dateAccepted | dateCopyrighted | dateSubmitted | issued | modified | valid)
* originInfo/dateIssued
* originInfo/dateCreated
* originInfo/dateCaptured
* originInfo/dateOther
* month
* year
* Copyright Year
* Date - Generic
* Date of Confernce
* Date of Publication
* Date of update/revisou/issuance of database record
* Former Date
* Entry Date for Database Record
* Database Update
* Year of Publication

There are several common properties across several citation domains and will certainly be in the citation microformat, the unique instances will need further consideration, otherwise there could be no end to posiblities.

There are also several properties (year, month, Year of publication) that can be extracted from another source. Therefore, if you only encode a more specific property such as; Date of Publication, you can extract the 'year of publication' from that. Since the date-time format we are modeling after is the ISO date-time format, just the Year portion is an acceptable date. So if you ONLY know the year of publication, the you can form a valid 'Date of Publication' as a microformat (which inturn is a valid 'year of publication') - you milage may vary when it comes to importing into citation applications.

Types and Roles

There are many different types of publications and this information should be captured in the citation. Possible types include:

  • Novel/fiction (specify type -- literature, sci-fi, romance, etc.?)
  • Non-fiction
  • Poem
  • Play
  • Magazine
  • Reference (seperate out encyclopedia, dictionary, almanac, etc.?)
  • Journal
  • Article
  •  ??

Likewise, there are several different roles associated with publications -- author, co-author, editor, translator, etc. Should these be captured under a master "role" or treated as individual elements?


Some of the citation formats has a place for 'keywords' or 'generic tags', etc. This might be a good place to re-use the RelTag microformat. The downside would be that they are then forced to be links, which might be the correct way to mark-up these terms.


OpenURL is in use in library software around the world to allow citation metadata to be embedded in URLs. Typically these URLs are used for targeting resolvers which essentially proxy access to licensed content. OpenURL also provides an XML encoding. The key/value pairs used in OpenURL could relatively easily be adapted to semantic HTML. This is a cow path that could be paved relatively easily using existing modules as appropriate.

MARC / MODS / Dublin Core

The MODS (example) and Dublin Core (example) transformations of MARC21 may contain some useful ideas.

Here's a first attempt at rewriting the linked examples in XHTML (written in response to a mailing list query about encoding book information with microformats):

<div class="book" lang="en">
  <h3 class="fn">Arithmetic /</h3>
  <p>By <span class="creator"><span class="fn">Sandburg, Carl</span>,
     <span class="date">1878-1967</span></span>,
     and <span class="illustrator">Rand, Ted</span></p>
  <p>Publisher: <span class="publisher"><span class="fn">Harcourt Brace Jovanovich</span>,
     <span class="locality">San Diego</span></span></p>
  <p>Published: <span class="issued">1993</span></p>
  <p class="description">A poem about numbers and their characteristics. Features
     anamorphic, or distorted, drawings which can be restored to normal by viewing
     from a particular angle or by viewing the image's reflection in the provided
     Mylar cone.</p>
  <p class="note">One Mylar sheet included in pocket.</p>
    <li class="subject">Arithmetic</li>
    <li class="subject">Children's poetry, American.</li>
    <li class="subject">Arithmetic</li>
    <li class="subject">American poetry</li>
    <li class="subject">Visual perception</li>

Here is an example of the HTML (inside an RSS feed) that the Ann Arbor District Library is generating and wants to mark up with some sort of publication microformat.