CSDS – Exploring Semantic Web Collections

Introduction

The Semantic Web focuses on producing a Web of linked data. The technologies used in the Semantic Web enables people to produce vocabularies and define specific rules of how such vocabularies are meant to be used. These rules will then help the computer produce inferences of how such data is linked, thus producing more accurate datasets. A growing number of Cultural Heritage organisations are now the new standards of linked data as the main infrastructure to support their collections. There is a wide range of data models or vocabularies such as CIDOC CRM, Dublin Core and Europeana Data Model (EDM). In this workshop we will focus on exploring collections under the Europeana repository and the EDM. Europeana currently holds billions of records from over 4,000 heritage organisations such as galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAM) among others. There are many challenges of how such collections are meant to be explored, such as the use of SPARQL querying languages. This workshop will introduce participants to the Semantic Web, and how to query such Linked Data collections. Finally, this session will use Europeana’s API to produce query interfaces to explore those collections, using the data model and producing some visualisations.

Timetable

10.30: Welcome and Introductions

11.00-11.45: Introduction to the Semantic Web. New Challenges in Cultural Heritage

11.45-12.15: Coffee Break

12.15: Understanding Data Models (open taster lesson)

Querying the Semantic Web (Heritage)

The Europeana Data Model through SPARQL

1.30-2.30: Lunch

2.30: Querying through APIs (Europeana)

Advanced API Queries (bonus lesson)

* Interaction Development

Developing Interfaces for Exploring Information through APIs

* Further Visualising the Data

Introduction to JQuery UI

Implementing JQuery UI

4.00-4.30: Coffee Break

4.30-5.30: Interaction and Exploration (Tangible User Interfaces) — Potential

Final Output TUIO//Europeana

08. Introduction to TUIO

09. TUIO First Query

10. Final Build

 

Requirements

Most of the work we will produce uses Open Source tools, and it does not require much computer resources.

To test some API calls you can download Postman.

https://www.getpostman.com/

We will be working with data from Europeana. Make sure you register for an API Key here:

https://pro.europeana.eu/get-api

You will need to work with some HTML, CSS and JavaScript (JQuery), therefore a nice scripting/programming text editor can be handy. On MacOSX, I use TextMate (https://macromates.com/), for Windows or Linux many people use SublimeText (https://www.sublimetext.com/).

Finally, we are going to build some quick Tangible queries using ReactiVision (http://reactivision.sourceforge.net/), you will need a webcam for this. If your computer already has one, that will work fine. Otherwise, any USB webcam will work fine as well. ReactiVision also provides an emulator that we can also use to prototype interfaces. Finally, we are going to be testing some of these tools on the Web in a non-standard way. For the sake of the experiment, you will need to install a legacy version of Firefox. This is because Firefox has currently disabled the option of installing plugins, that enables us to connect to ReactiVision. Please go to https://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/firefox/releases/ and scroll down to Dir 48.0.1 (Firefox 48) and install that version on your Mac or PC computer. Finally, make sure you can have access to the Web on the computer you are going to use.

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Designing some Internet of Things – The Town Light

I have been experimenting lately with some Internet of Things (IoT) object. Some time ago, I attended a workshop at the MadLab at Manchester. Adrian McEwen presented his Bubblino, an Arduino bot that makes bubbles triggered by a Twitter message. He has written a book about designing IoT things. Based on all these examples I started experimenting myself. Working with some IoT myself, I started planning how user interfaces (UI) might affect how do we use the data that is streamed on the Web.

The Night Light Town

This is an experiment that reads the amount of light. The light data is sent to a server, which then is returned. Once the data is sent back, the Arduino reads the value and depending on the intensity, it turns on or off a LED.

To set up this you need:

  • Arduino
  • Arduino Ethernet/WiFi Shield
  • Photocell
  • 1k Ohm Resistor
  • 220 Ohm Resistor
  • A Breadboard

Here is the layout. You can use Fritzing to check more in detail how to set it up.

light_bb

Fritz File

Alternatively you can download the Fritzing File:

Using Xively to Monitor Data

 Xively is a service that allows you to monitor data and then make other services or object react. In this case I use it to dump the light data to it and then get it to send it back to me. I followed the basic tutorial from the Xively website. Nevertheless, they provided the code for the WiFi Arduino Shield, so I had to make some basic modifications. This final script was based on the ones provided by Xively and Paul Bellamy.

Here is MY final code. (Make sure you include the libraries)

The Deity Collector

The Deity Collector

A Downloadable Tangible User Interface for Constructivist Museums

Now that I have started my PhD in Web Science, I wanted to talk about my MSc research project. I managed to produce a comparative study in between three tangible user interfaces (TUI). I was under the supervision of Dr. Enrico Costanza and Dr. Leif Isaksen. I learned a lot about Constructivism for museums and for educational theory. On the other hand I realised how much I still have to learn, or how little I actually know about Physical Computing and Human Computer Interaction (HCI). This was a very nice eye opener and motivating to carry on with my research pathway.

This post is more about where this is taking me, instead of the actual research method. If you would like to know more, I recommend you to go to my research blog .

My research poster

This is my poster from my MSc research project.

poster

MSc Javier Pereda

I would like to thank PixEden for the characters kit from my poster. They produced a manga characters kit (Vector Based) completely free. I strongly recommend checking their work and their freebies! Here is the link for the characters: http://www.pixeden.com/vector-characters/vector-manga-avatar-faces

 

Some nice events

I have been presenting the project in some conferences and academic events. I have been getting very good feedback.

This video is an interview from the DigiFest, where I presented my poster for the first time.

 

I also presented in the Digital Transformations Moot in London. This is a video where Nicole Beale and Dr. Gareth Beale were interviewed and presented some of the work that we are doing in the areas of Web Science and Digital Humanities at the University of Southampton.