Connecting the Smithsonian American Art Museum to the Linked Data Cloud

One of the bottlenecks to get museum data in the Linked Data Cloud is that it is hard to do it. The Europeana and CRM ontologies are large and complicated, and it is difficult to map data from the museum databases to these ontologies. For the last few years we’ve been working on tools to help people map their data to ontologies without programming or without writing scripts in languages such as xpath and XSLT. The tool is called Karma, and you can download it from

We would like to propose a session to show Karma. We have used it with datasets from several museums, and would like to show how we mapped the data from the Smithsonian American Art museum to the Europeana ontology (41,000 objects and 8,000 artists) and how we did linking to DBpedia, the NY Times and several other datasets. We think that Karma makes the process much easier than using other tools, and we’d love to hear what you think, and hopefully provide you tools to help you.

We presented a paper about this last month at the Extended Semantic Web Conference (ESWC) in Montpellier. You can get the paper at and the slides at I am very proud to say that we received the best in-use paper award for this work, and makes me very happy that our work with the Smithsonian museum was recognized at the conference.

You can also browse the data on the SPARQL endpoint. We are using Pubby (same thing as DBpedia), but looking forward to getting better tools from you. So check it out, here is the page for John Singer Sargent.

Pedro Szekely


LOD-LAM Zotero group sponsored by DLF

I’d like to call your attention to the LOD-LAM Zotero Group, sponsored by the Digital Library Federation, and invite you to check it out, bookmark it and/or get the RSS feed, and most importantly, contribute to it! (click on “Group Library” to see everything)

This is an online bibliography/webliography of linked data resources (articles, blog posts, tutorials and books, videos and podcasts, events, standards, sites for vocabularies, projects, data sources, software and web-based tools, and more…) of interest to the library, archive and museum community.

Chelcie Rowell of the DLF is overseeing the progress of this site, and a group from the ALA Linked Library Data Interest Group (Laura Akerman, Nicole Colovos, Kevin Clair, Corey Harper and Karen Coyle) have been working to seed it with some useful material (just a taste – we know there’s more out there!), and figure out some basic organization to start.

Is your linked-data-related article, project, tutorial, vocabulary, or the software you’re using or wrote in there?  If not, please add it!

Particularly valuable would be information about tools (web-based and software), including your own notes about your experience if you’re using something.    Keeping up with the “good stuff” is more than one individual or even a small group could manage, but we hope that this can become a “go to” site for  information of particular interest and usefulness to us, and it will be, if we can all share.

Much like a wiki, anybody can see, but to contribute, you do have to have to create a login (and join the Group).  Use of the Zotero client or plugin isn’t required, but recommended.  When you find something useful on the web, it’s easy to grab it and add it.  Nicole and the group prepared a guide for Zotero Group newbies:

If you have thoughts or experience problems, we want to hear from you and have set up an email address to contact:

Spread the word and the information.

Laura Akerman

Free Your Metadata/Google Refine

I just found out about the fabulous Free Your Metadata project this week, and am very excited to see these kinds of actionable workshops popping up around the world–and big ups to these guys for developing screencasts that show how people can use free and open source tools to create Linked Data from library, archive and museum metadata now!

Seb Chan posted an interview with Seth van Hooland with the catchy title: Things clever people do with your data #65535: Introducing ‘Free Your Metadata’ which is well worth a read.