Thinking about the foundations of resource description

I enjoyed reading the D-Lib Magazine article on the foundations of Dublin Core, especially in light of my classmate Tonya’s post from a couple of days ago. I think that 20+ years of experience and practice with DC have influenced a lot of professionals’ and users’ opinions of the schema, and of course hindsight is always 20/20 and inevitably something will emerge that was under prepared for. Therefore the DC origins reading from 1995 really got my attention as it offered for me a fresh perspective on the subject, and I think it has helped me better appreciate how this all began and the rational and practical thought process of the innovators of systematized metadata. But I liked my classmate Tonya’s musings on why can’t all the schemas that have since developed to suit more particular needs be combined into one superpower schema? I guess it seems to me now that this was  how Dublin Core was originated, or at least it was initiated to describe as wide a range of electronic records as possible. Thinking back to my own limited experience dealing with DC in last semester’s Digital Libraries course I see now that through adding qualifiers I was able to make my metadata become very specific very fast, and this was both in the context of sports photos and images of digitized artwork and ephemera. I don’t really feel seasoned enough yet in this realm to say if this means that I’m a defender of DC as Tonya’s fantasy schema, but let it suffice that I have a clearer understanding and appreciation for the intention behind the schema.


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