Please feel invited to discuss those words here.
For me, what’s most exciting about what your doing, what makes by far the biggest contribution is creating an effective data standard for location-based sustainability resources, with buy-in from lots of people and eventually uptake and provision of data in that standard by many providers. That is an amazing idea, really powerful. This will enable many more providers to publish information and enable lots of other people to do important things with it, things that we couldn’t even imagine = serendipitous reuse. This standard can build upon existing POI standards, by adding sustainability related fields. Here’s a recommendation from Paul Mackay (CCed), who was also in Berlin, and a London Cleanwebber, and should be in a good position to advise also.
I think the process that Popolo have used for defining standards is a good pragmatic one, doing the minimum to be a very usable spec but reusing as much as possible and not having a hugely formal standards defining process.
Seems like a good direction to consider.
Whilst creating a map of maps is a noble end in itself, it’s main value, for me, is as a catalyst of the data standardisation process.
Data standardisation is a difficult social process. Technically it’s straightforward. You are creating shared rules - akin to the ones that govern an information commons. The main contribution of 14mmm can be to find some agreement to these difficult questions: what fields are in, which are out? What options are available? What do the terms mean? Are they intuitive and international, can people without training use them?
Linked data, or some aspect of it, may well be the best medium for this, but I don’t want to push that too hard, it is still quite early days for linked data technologies. The important thing is the standardisation/ data model, and that is independent of the technology, could also be in JSON, or XML. I would though, recommend creating a data model in OWL, the linked data ontology language, which is straightforward to use with the Protege software, and doesn’t commit you to using the rest of the linked data suite. Perhaps the best reason to use linked data would be all the reference data that you would get for free. Having great reference data, that is maintained and updated is vital.
Have just had lunch here in London with linked data expert Amy (CCed) who came to the Berlin workshop, and she has kindly offered to play with some of the data sources to knock together a simple data model and prototype.
Thinking on, here are some ideas for ordered deliverables
- Create a rough draft data model for location-specific sustainability resources.
- Produce a first draft centralised map with data from a few different sustainability networks, extracted from APIs, RSS feeds etc.
- Hold workshops to develop and agree data standards 1.0
- Match data against leading reference datasets, to improve quality and linkability.
- Offer gathered data to world for reuse as (linked) open data, XML, JSON etc.
- Produce a centralised map with data from many different sustainability networks
- Enrich the data by pulling in lots of related data from across linked data world (e.g. Geonames location descriptions, Wikipedia explanations of key concepts)
- Persuade different providers to open up their data and provide it in standardised format
- Demonstrate that linked open data is an important resource for progressing sustainability (the W3C recommended way to connect diverse open datasets to provide requisite interdisciplinary to progress sustainability.)
Happy to chat about any of this for more details.