[crm-sig] Draft CIDOC CRM Homepage text
Tony_Gill at notes.rlg.org
Sat Jun 22 06:23:50 EEST 2002
Here's a first draft of some text for the CIDOC CRM homepage. It attempts
to capture all of the salient points about the CRM as briefly as possible.
Here's the "conceptual" layout:
- Very brief one paragraph description
- A paragraph elaborating the CRM's scope (p.s. Nick - ICOM statutes
appear to have been revised)
- Brief guide to potential applications (4 bullet points cribbed off
Nick's draft doc)
- Paragraph with techie details about the CRM
- Paragraph with details of history, maintenenance, ownership, ISO
Comments, revisions, counter-proposals all welcome.
The CIDOC Conceptual Reference Model (CIDOC CRM) is a knowledge
representation framework for cultural heritage information. It represents
the concepts and relationships that museums use to document their
collections as a formally-defined "domain ontology."
The scope of CIDOC CRM is very broad; documentation about the material
evidence of people and their environment, at a sufficient level of depth
and quality to enable serious academic research. This includes information
about museum collections of all kinds, and much of the documentation about
library and archive collections.
There are a number of potential applications for the CIDOC CRM:
* An aid to mutual comprehension
By providing a rich and detailed formal analysis of the cultural heritage
domain, the CRM can be used as a semantic reference tool to establish a
common understanding between people in different disciplines and domains,
and facilitate unambiguous dialogue between cultural heritage experts and
* A tool for reliable data exchange
The CRM can serve as a technical reference for use in comparing,
evaluating and mapping between heterogeneous cultural data schema and
* A reference for cultural information systems design
The CRM can be used as a reference when creating technical specifications
for the design of new information systems in the cultural heritage domain.
Although it is not intended as a data storage or delivery format, it can
help developers create well-designed systems that avoid some of the common
pitfalls caused by under-estimating the complexity of information in the
cultural heritage domain.
* Mediation systems
The CRM could form the basis for integrated query tools and mediation
systems. Many features of the CRM have been specifically designed with
mediation in mind, allowing data to be combined from relatively rich and
less detailed sources in a meaningful way and without loss of detail.
The CIDOC CRM is expressed as an object-oriented model, which provides
exceptional expressive power in an elegant and extensible framework that
is particularly well-suited to the cultural heritage domain. Version 3.3.1
consists of 80 classes, and 123 property links between those classes. It
is particularly well-suited to expression as an RDF (Resource Description
Framework) Schema, and is highly applicable for museum applications of the
W3C's Semantic Web.
The CIDOC CRM was first published in 1998 by the International Committee
for Documentation (CIDOC) of the International Council of Museums (ICOM).
It is maintained by the CIDOC CRM Special Interest Group on behalf of the
CIDOC Documentation Standards Working Group. It represents over a decade
of standards work by museum documentation professionals and data modeling
experts, and is currently under submission to the International Standards
Organization for review and publication as an ISO standard.
Tony Gill <tony.gill at notes.rlg.org>, RLG <http://www.rlg.org/>
1200 Villa Street, Mountain View, CA 94041 USA
Voice: +1 (650) 691-2304 <> Fax: +1 (650) 964-1461
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