Magazine article Information Today

OCLC Announces News of DCMI, Virtual Electronic Library Project

Magazine article Information Today

OCLC Announces News of DCMI, Virtual Electronic Library Project

Article excerpt

OCLC has announced that the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI), an organization leading the development of international standards to improve electronic resource management and information discovery, has released the formal recommendation of the Dublin Core (DC) Qualifiers. The addition of the DC Qualifiers enhances the semantic precision of the existing DC Metadata Element Set. OCLC has also announced that the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) and OCLC have completed development of the CIC Virtual Electronic Library (VEL) Phase I and have agreed to suspend the joint development effort for the second phase of the project.


For the past year, working groups of the Dublin Core developed these newly agreed upon refinements to give better access to information. The new recommendations for Dublin Core Qualifiers increase the effectiveness of metadata by giving it finer granularity. For example, a publication's date, which would be the Dublin Core Metadata Element, may be further detailed as a particular type by using a Dublin Core Qualifier such as date last modified, date created, or date issued.

"Think of Legos," said Stuart Weibel, OCLC consulting research scientist and DCMI director. "The close tolerances of these simple toys ensure all the different Lego themes, built at different times, can work together smoothly. Dublin Core is the basic Lego block for promoting discovery of resources on the Web: a simple and interoperable foundation upon which many information solutions can be built. The introduction of Dublin Core Qualifiers is like adding color and themes to the Legos--it helps enrich the description of information resources on the Internet."

The DC Qualifiers build upon the DC Metadata Element Set, which provides 15 categories to describe resources on the Web. Known as the Dublin Core, the metadata model has become the de facto standard for description of information on the Internet.

Dublin Core's usage committee has launched the next step toward a cohesive metadata standard. The DC Qualifiers improve interpretation of metadata values and can be easily recorded or transferred into HTML, XML, RDF, or relational databases. The evolution of DC Qualifiers draws from the input of many individuals across a broad array of disciplines.

Users include museum informatics specialists, archivists, digital library researchers, libraries, government information providers, and a variety of content providers. …

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