Vingt-cinq ans sur le rythme des métadonnées


Metadata systems within and beyond libraries have undergone many leaps and stumbles over the past 25 years. Many confident predictions of the 1990s, such as the end of MARC and the rise of librarians as uber-curators of the World Wide Web, have yet to come true. In the meantime, astonishing and unexpected innovations, such as Google, the Web 2.0, big data and now AI, have arisen from unexpected places and changed our information landscapes dramatically. This keynote address will use my own leaps and stumbles in the field of metadata as a template by which to highlight and extract three significant domains of metadata development: descriptive cataloguing in libraries, semantic markup for electronic documents, and linked data for web-based data retrieval. Each domain, in its different way, echoes the aim of Sir Anthony Panizzi in the nineteenth century to create semantic metadata that meaningfully and usefully contributes to our use of information. Library catalogues create structured metadata surrogates; semantic markup languages embed meaning into the very structure of electronic documents; linked data embeds semantic meaning into the links between data elements. All three domains have been partially displaced by ensuing innovations, but all three continue to play eccentric but important roles in information environments today.

Jun 4, 2024 11:15 am — 12:45 pm

D. Grant Campbell was born and raised in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario; he completed his Honours BA in English at University of Toronto; his Master’s and PhD degrees in English Literature at Queen’s University; and his Master of Information Studies at University of Toronto. He spent 4 years working for North York Central Library, and taught courses at Queen’s, U. of T., George Brown College and Dalhousie University before coming to Western in 1998. His research has primarily focused on knowledge organization; he has presented his research in Europe, the United States and South America, in English, French and Portuguese, and is currently writing a book on dementia and information for University of Toronto Press.

D. Grant Campbell, Associate Professor

Faculty of information and Media Studies

Western University

London, Ontario N6A 5B9