Alistair Miles

Month: January, 2008

Request for Comments — SKOS Reference — W3C Working Draft 25 January 2008

The W3C Semantic Web Deployment Working Group has announced the publication of the SKOS Reference as a W3C First Public Working Draft:

This is a substantial update to and replacement for the previous SKOS Core Vocabulary Specification W3C Working Draft dated 2 November 2005. The publication has been announced in the W3C news, and a request for comments has been sent to various mailing lists.

The abstract from this new specification:

This document defines the Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS), a common data model for sharing and linking knowledge organization systems via the Semantic Web.

Many knowledge organization systems, such as thesauri, taxonomies, classification schemes and subject heading systems, share a similar structure, and are used in similar applications. SKOS captures much of this similarity and makes it explicit, to enable data and technology sharing across diverse applications.

The SKOS data model provides a standard, low-cost migration path for porting existing knowledge organization systems to the Semantic Web. SKOS also provides a light weight, intuitive language for developing and sharing new knowledge organization systems. It may be used on its own, or in combination with formal knowledge representation languages such as the Web Ontology language (OWL).

This document is the normative specification of the Simple Knowledge Organization System. It is intended for readers who are involved in the design and implementation of information systems, and who already have a good understanding of Semantic Web technology, especially RDF and OWL.

For an informative guide to using SKOS, see the upcoming SKOS Primer.


Using SKOS, conceptual resources can be identified using URIs, labeled with lexical strings in one or more natural languages, documented with various types of note, linked to each other and organized into informal hierarchies and association networks, aggregated into concept schemes, and mapped to conceptual resources in other schemes. In addition, labels can be related to each other, and conceptual resources can be grouped into labeled and/or ordered collections.

On the OAIS Information Model as a Platform-Independent Model (PIM) in a Model-Driven Software Architecture


This short paper summarises some work done on the possibility of using OAIS information model as a basis for the model-driven design and implementation of components within a digital preservation software architecture. Two model transformations were defined using the Enterprise Architect template language. The first model-transformation transforms a platform-independent UML class model (PIM) into a set of UML interfaces specific to the Java 1.5 platform (here called a Java API model). The second model-transformation transforms a platform-independent UML class model (PIM) into set of UML classes specific to the Java 1.5 platform, implementing the interfaces generated by the first model-transformation (here called a Java implementation model). Both were applied to the OAIS information model as PIM, and the generated models are presented here with discussion.

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Using PicaJet and Flickr to Manage Photos on the Desktop and Online

I’ve been looking around for something to help me manage my burgeoning photo collection. I’ve got a Sony Ericsson K800 and a Nikon D40, and between the two of them I’m generating quite a few images. Adobe Photoshop Album Starter Edition came with my mobile phone software, so I tried that to start with. The tagging interface worked well for me — a quick once through tagging with who, where, when and occasionally what is all I ever have time for, and is usually enough to allow me to find an image again. However, the two things that bugged me about Photoshop Album were (1) that there was no integration with Flickr, so if I uploaded photos I’d have to retag them completely, and (2) I couldn’t export my photo catalog or move it between computers easily.

After a not too exhaustive search on the Web, I found PicaJet, and downloaded the free edition. I was encouraged because the tagging interface is great (very similar to Photoshop Album), and because PicaJet has an integrated Flickr uploader which preserves all of your tagging. I also discovered that the photo catalog can be easily exported, so in a nutshell, PicaJet ticks my boxes. You can do quite a lot with the free edition — tag photos, upload to flickr, some basic editing. I’ll be upgrading to PicaJet FX (the full version, around £30) mainly because I want to be able to do more with the tag categories — in the free version you can only have a two-level hierarchy, and you can’t add new top-level categories.

I tried Picasa2, but that doesn’t have any tagging support or Flickr integration.

I also downloaded Microsoft Photo Gallery, which advertises Flickr integration. The installation process was painfully slow, then the application crashed when I tried to launch it on my bog-standard Windows XP machine.