Thomas Thurner

American Physical Society Taxonomy – Case Study

image_jb

Joseph A Busch

Taxonomy Strategies has been working with the American Physical Society (APS) to develop a new faceted classification scheme.

The proposed scheme includes several discrete sets of categories called facets whose values can be combined to express concepts such as existing Physics and Astronomy Classification Scheme (PACS) codes, as well as new concepts that have not yet emerged, or have been difficult to express with the existing PACS.

PACS codes formed a single-hierarchy classification scheme, designed to assign the “one best” category that an item will be classified under. Classification schemes come from the need to physically locate objects in one dimension, for example in a library where a book will be shelved in one and only one location, among an ordered set of other books. Traditional journal tables of contents similarly place each article in a given issue in a specific location among an ordered set of other articles, certainly a necessary constraint with paper journals and still useful online as a comfortable and familiar context for readers.

However, the real world of concepts is multi-dimensional. In collapsing to one dimension, a classification scheme makes essentially arbitrary choices that have the effect of placing some related items close together while leaving other related items in very distant bins. It also has the effect of repeating the terms associated with the last dimension in many different contexts, leading to an appearance of significant redundancy and complexity in locating terms.

A faceted taxonomy attempts to identify each stand-alone concept through the term or terms commonly associated with it, and have it mean the same thing whenever used. Hierarchy in a taxonomy is useful to group related terms together; however the intention is not to attempt to identify an item such as an article or book by a single concept, but rather to assign multiple concepts to represent the meaning. In that way, related items can be closely associated along multiple dimensions corresponding to each assigned concept. Where previously a single PACS code was used to indicate the research area, now two, three, or more of the new concepts may be needed (although often a single new concept will be sufficient). This requires a different mindset and approach in applying the new taxonomy to the way APS has been accustomed to working with PACS; however it also enables significant new capabilities for publishing and working with all types of content including articles, papers and websites.

To build and maintain the faceted taxonomy, APS has acquired the PoolParty taxonomy management tool. PoolParty will enable APS editorial staff to create, retrieve, update and delete taxonomy term records. The tool will support the various thesaurus, knowledge organization system and ontology standards for concepts, relationships, alternate terms etc. It will also provide methods for:

  • Associating taxonomy terms with content items, and storing that association in a content index record.
  • Automated indexing to suggest taxonomy terms that should be associated with content items, and text mining to suggest terms to potentially be added to the taxonomy.
  • Integrating taxonomy term look-up, browse and navigation in a selection user interface that, for example, authors and the general public could use.
  • Implementing a feedback user interface allowing authors and the general public to suggest terms, record the source of the suggestion, and inform the user on the disposition of their suggestion.

Arthur Smith, project manager for the new APS taxonomy notes “PoolParty allows our subject matter experts to immediately visualize the layout of the taxonomy, to add new concepts, suggest alternatives, and to map out the relationships and mappings to other concept schemes that we need. While our project is still in an early stage, the software tool is already proving very useful.”

About

Taxonomy Strategies (www.taxonomystrategies.com) is an information management consultancy that specializes in applying taxonomies, metadata, automatic classification, and other information retrieval technologies to the needs of business and other organizations.

The American Physical Society (www.aps.org) is a non-profit membership organization working to advance and diffuse the knowledge of physics through its outstanding research journals, scientific meetings, and education, outreach, advocacy and international activities. APS represents over 50,000 members, including physicists in academia, national laboratories and industry in the United States and throughout the world. Society offices are located in College Park, MD (Headquarters), Ridge, NY, and Washington, DC.

Enhanced by Zemanta
Andreas Blumauer

Why SKOS should be a focal point of your linked data strategy

skos_hand-small

The Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS) has become one of the ‘sweet spots’ in the linked data ecosystem in recent years. Especially when semantic web technologies are being adapted for the requirements of enterprises or public administration, SKOS has played a most central role to create knowledge graphs.

In this webinar, key people from the Semantic Web Company will describe why controlled vocabularies based on SKOS play a central role in a linked data strategy, and how SKOS can be enriched by ontologies and linked data to further improve semantic information management.

SKOS unfolds its potential at the intersection of three disciplines and their methods:

  • library sciences: taxonomy and thesaurus management
  • information sciences: knowledge engineering and ontology management
  • computational linguistics: text mining and entity extraction

Linked Data based IT-architectures cover all three aspects and provide means for agile data, information, and knowledge management.

In this webinar, you will learn about the following questions and topics:

  • How SKOS builds the foundation of enterprise knowledge graphs to be enriched by additional vocabularies and ontologies?
  • How can knowledge graphs be used build the backbone of metadata services in organisations?
  • How text mining can be used to create high-quality taxonomies and thesauri?
  • How can knowledge graphs be used for enterprise information integration?

Based on PoolParty Semantic Suite, you will see several live demos of end-user applications based on linked data and of PoolParty’s latest release which provides outstanding facilities for professional linked data management, including taxonomy, thesaurus and ontology management.

Register here: https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/404918583

 

Andreas Blumauer

17 Video Tutorials are available now: Learn how to use PoolParty – step by step!

Learn how to make use of PoolParty, step by step! Each video is about a specific feature or functionality of PoolParty Thesaurus Server or PoolParty Extractor. By walking through all the modules you learn how to use PoolParty for your Semantic Information Management.

Visit our YouTube channel!

This series of tutorials has been produced in cooperation with our partner Term Management, LLC.

Andreas Blumauer

PoolParty: SKOS is the basis for Enterprise Knowledge Graphs

The latest release of PoolParty Thesaurus Server offers a comfortable GUI to extend SKOS thesauri by other RDF schemas in order to create highly linkable knowledge graphs which now can be deployed into a Virtuoso RDF database.

In its core, PoolParty is built upon SKOS, W3C’s standard to define controlled vocabularies like taxonomies or thesauri. However, the latest release 3.2.2 of the well known Thesaurus Software offers a highly flexible RDF schema editor to introduce either widely accepted schemas like FOAF or SIOC or even individual ones, customized to one’s own needs.

“This extension of PoolParty offers new options to our clients to create highly expressive knowledge graphs. Custom schemas can also be used to make links between differing enterprise vocabularies. One the other hand we have taken care not to overload the PoolParty user interface with unwanted complexity”, says Helmut Nagy, COO of the Semantic Web Company.

Watch this video to get an impression how this new feature works:

In addition to “Custom Schemas”, PoolParty Thesaurus Server is now integrated with Virtuoso Universal Server. Thesaurus managers can ‘deploy’ stable versions of their knowledge graphs into a Virtuoso RDF store. Virtuoso is well-known for its high performance even when complex queries are made across different (named) graphs.

The following video will show a short demo of this brandnew feature which opens up completely new options for big data solutions based on enterprise linked data integration:

To get a complete overview over all new features of PoolParty Thesaurus Server 3.2.2, please take a look at the release notes.