Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

The Sum Of Knowledge -- Online And Accessible, No Less

Date:
September 29, 2009
Source:
ICT Results
Summary:
European researchers are creating new technology that could, ultimately, make accessible the sum of humankind's knowledge. Hundreds of organisations and millions of documents are already linked to this "United Nations of knowledge". The EU-funded DRIVER project's key result is a technological breakthrough that enables institutions to link repositories of knowledge together into one huge, networked online 'library of libraries'.

European researchers are creating new technology that could, ultimately, make accessible the sum of humankind’s knowledge. Hundreds of organisations and millions of documents are already linked to this “United Nations of knowledge”.

The EU-funded DRIVER project’s key result is a technological breakthrough that enables institutions to link repositories of knowledge together into one huge, networked online ‘library of libraries’.

The researchers have created software, called D-NET, that can link information collected on diverse computer platforms, using legacy software which can still ‘talk’ or work with older systems in more than 25 European languages!

The technological breakthrough achieved in DRIVER was key, according to the project’s coordinator, Professor Yannis Ioannidis, but another fundamental aim was to oversee the integration of various repositories scattered across the continent.

One million documents, and counting

So far, over 240 institutions from 27 European countries speaking 25 languages have been linked together, creating the DRIVER Search Portal, the door to European Open Access research. It regularly harvests journal articles, books, dissertations, lectures and reports. The portal is located at: http://search.driver.research-infrastructures.eu.

Today, there are about 1 million documents available to search. This number looks set to grow, as more and more institutions realise how simple and fast it is to register their online repositories as well, suggests Ioannidis.

The search portal also acts as a powerful demonstration of the D-NET software, an open source application created so that anyone can access and work with it.

United Nations of knowledge?

DRIVER’s work could transform the way we manage or organise precious data not just across systems but also borders – something like a United Nations (UN) for keeping knowledge safe.

Unusual as this sounds, the foundations have already been laid for this potential scenario. It began with an inventory of Europe’s repositories, tracing those who make up Europe’s ‘Open Access’ community. A technology watch – to track the latest developments in information science and repository management – was created and has been very active in setting standards in this field.

One important output of DRIVER’s towards this was the Guidelines for Repository Managers, a key document that establishes the rules for creating interoperability between different systems.

The DRIVER search portal, for instance, is something of a working demonstration of this vision, and the Guidelines are the major engine for realising that vision. Then, over time, repositories across the world could develop and adapt their content format to be compatible with the DRIVER platform and guidelines.

It’s a bit of a dream scenario, but DRIVER is taking it seriously, creating an online tool that can validate repositories according to the standards set by the project. A further effort in this direction is the DRIVER confederation, a network of content providers and digital repository/library stakeholders, which, among others, aims to advance DRIVER from a testbed project to a fully functional international organisation.

Does a UN body for the sum of civilisation’s knowledge still sound so far-fetched?

Interest in the work

The project’s work has received intense interest internationally, with repositories from China, India, South America and elsewhere making contact with the DRIVER partners and developing plans for their own deployment. The Chinese Academy of Science is currently evaluating D-NET for its national repository.

The Academy is just one of many interested parties. So far, there have been more than 800 downloads of the D-NET open source code.

In the medium to long term, too, there is scope for commercialisation of the D-NET platform. “D-NET is a powerful system [like a content management system], so there is commercial potential for [it],” reveals Ioannidis. But the current priorities for DRIVER are to get the system up and running, and get more institutions using the platform.

“Our next task is to extend the system, so that it goes beyond text documents and can handle any type of media. But certainly it is available to commercial enterprises, and anybody else, under the open source licence.”

The DRIVER technology, which is rapidly becoming a standard in Europe and across the world, nonetheless offers enormous potential to private content providers, allowing them to easily link repositories together, or to link their data with other organisations.

In all, DRIVER represents a concerted and ongoing effort to bind together the wealth of knowledge and research in Europe, and indeed the world.

The DRIVER project received funding from the Research Infrastructure priority of the EU’s Sixth Framework Programme for research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by ICT Results. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

ICT Results. "The Sum Of Knowledge -- Online And Accessible, No Less." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090925102101.htm>.
ICT Results. (2009, September 29). The Sum Of Knowledge -- Online And Accessible, No Less. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090925102101.htm
ICT Results. "The Sum Of Knowledge -- Online And Accessible, No Less." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090925102101.htm (accessed September 20, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

What This MIT Sensor Could Mean For The Future Of Robotics

What This MIT Sensor Could Mean For The Future Of Robotics

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) MIT researchers developed a light-based sensor that gives robots 100 times the sensitivity of a human finger, allowing for "unprecedented dexterity." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How To Protect Your Data In The Still-Vulnerable iOS 8

How To Protect Your Data In The Still-Vulnerable iOS 8

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) One security researcher says despite Apple's efforts to increase security in iOS 8, it's still vulnerable to law enforcement data-transfer techniques. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Much Privacy Protection Will Google's Android L Provide?

How Much Privacy Protection Will Google's Android L Provide?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) Google's local encryption will make it harder for law enforcement or malicious actors to access the contents of devices running Android L. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Virtual Reality Headsets Unveiled at Tokyo Game Show

Virtual Reality Headsets Unveiled at Tokyo Game Show

AFP (Sep. 18, 2014) Several companies unveiled virtual reality headsets at the Tokyo Game Show, Asia's largest digital entertainment exhibition. Duration: 00:48 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins