I saw two examples of uses of FRBR that do not follow the structure provided in the FRBR documentation and both made good sense to me.
- The Bibliotheque Nationale of France (BNF) is working to export its data in a linked data format. They are linking the Manifestation directly to the Work and to the Expression, rather than following the M -> E -> W order that is defined in FRBR. I need to think about this some more, but it seems to remove some of the rigidity of the linear WEMI.
- The Deutsche Nationalbibliothek is using an identifier method that seems to resolve the (long) discussion I instigated on the FRBR list about identifying WEMI with a single identifier. They give an identifier to the single WEMI group (one work, one expression, one manifestation, and presumably one Item, but no one seems to be talking about items.) There is also an identifier for each W, E, M, I. This works well for input and output (and sharing). When a matching W or WE is found, a "merged" identifier is coined for the FRBR units. I couldn't follow the presentation, as it was in German, but from the slides it looked to me that all of these identifiers could co-exist, and therefore would represent different views simultaneously of the bibliographic data that would depend on the function in play (e.g. export of data about a book v. support of shared cataloging).
I was the opening speaker on a panel about the Semantic Web at this conference and unfortunately that was the only bit of the conference I was able to attend other than the exhibits. Online Info is a combined publisher/library conference, with the publishing side being primary. At the conference one of the three tracks was "Exploiting Open and Linked Data." In the exhibits the term "semantic" was everywhere. I would like to attend this conference (because I can't really say that I have) to get a view of linked data from another industry's perspective.
My co-speakers were Sarah Barlett of Talis, and Martin Malmsten from the Swedish National Library. Sarah did something that had never occurred to me, but now I just think "Doh!" it's so obvious. Her talk walked through a literary, rather than bibliographic, view of some library materials. She showed how you could use linked data to support the humanities. It was, as the British say, brilliant. It's also a great way to teach people about linked data, and she advised everyone to come up with something they have a passion for and use it as an exercise in linking. Now I want to come up with some fun linking exercises for teaching purposes.
Martin talked about the motivation for making LIBRIS, the Swedish union catalog, open as linked data since 2008. He and I agreed that we really need a good linked data app that would allow people to explore the linked data space. He quoted Corey Harper saying that the killer app for linked data will probably be created by a 13-year-old, someone for whom the idea of open linking is neither novel nor new. I am really interested to see what the "linked open data" generation comes up with!