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MetadataWikipedia,thefreeencyclopedia

Metadata
FromWikipedia,thefreeencyclopedia

Metadatais"dataaboutdata".Therearetwo"metadatatypes"structuralmetadata,aboutthedesignand
specificationofdatastructuresor"dataaboutthecontainersofdata"anddescriptivemetadataabout
individualinstancesofapplicationdataorthedatacontent.
Metadatawastraditionallyinthecardcatalogsoflibraries.Asinformationhasbecomeincreasinglydigital,
metadataarealsousedtodescribedigitaldatausingmetadatastandardsspecifictoaparticulardiscipline.
Bydescribingthecontentsandcontextofdatafiles,theusefulnessoftheoriginaldata/filesisgreatly
increased.Forexample,awebpagemayincludemetadataspecifyingwhatlanguageitiswrittenin,what
toolswereusedtocreateit,andwheretogoformoreonthesubject,allowingbrowserstoautomatically
improvetheexperienceofusers.Wikipediaencouragestheuseofmetadatabyaskingeditorstoadd
categorynamestoarticles,andtoincludeinformationwithcitationssuchastitle,sourceandaccessdate.
Themainpurposeofmetadataistofacilitateinthediscoveryofrelevantinformation,moreoftenclassified
asresourcediscovery.Metadataalsohelpsorganizeelectronicresources,providedigitalidentification,and
helpssupportarchivingandpreservationoftheresource.Metadataassistsinresourcediscoveryby
"allowingresourcestobefoundbyrelevantcriteria,identifyingresources,bringingsimilarresources
together,distinguishingdissimilarresources,andgivinglocationinformation."[1]

Contents
1Definition
1.1Libraries
1.2Photographs
1.3Video
1.4Webpages
1.5Creationofmetadata
2Metadatatypes
3Metadatastructures
3.1Metadatasyntax
3.2Hierarchical,linearandplanarschemata
3.3Metadatahypermapping
3.4Granularity
4Metadatastandards
5Metadatausage
5.1Datavirtualization
5.2Statisticsandcensusservices
5.3Libraryandinformationscience
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5.4Metadataandthelaw
5.4.1UnitedStatesofAmerica
5.5Metadatainhealthcare
5.6Metadataanddatawarehousing
5.7MetadataontheInternet
5.8Metadatainthebroadcastindustry
5.9Geospatialmetadata
5.10Ecologicalandenvironmentalmetadata
5.11Digitalmusic
5.12Cloudapplications
6Metadataadministrationandmanagement
6.1Metadatastorage
6.2Databasemanagement
7Seealso
8References
9Externallinks

Definition
Metadata(metacontent)isdefinedasthedataprovidinginformationaboutoneormoreaspectsofthedata,
suchas:
Meansofcreationofthedata
Purposeofthedata
Timeanddateofcreation
Creatororauthorofthedata
Locationonacomputernetworkwherethedatawascreated
Standardsused
Forexample,adigitalimagemayincludemetadatathatdescribehowlargethepictureis,thecolordepth,
theimageresolution,whentheimagewascreated,andotherdata.[2]Atextdocument'smetadatamay
containinformationabouthowlongthedocumentis,whotheauthoris,whenthedocumentwaswritten,
andashortsummaryofthedocument.
Metadataisdata.Assuch,metadatacanbestoredandmanagedinadatabase,oftencalledametadata
registryormetadatarepository.[3]However,withoutcontextandapointofreference,itmightbeimpossible
toidentifymetadatajustbylookingatthem.[4]Forexample:byitself,adatabasecontainingseveral
numbers,all13digitslongcouldbetheresultsofcalculationsoralistofnumberstoplugintoanequation
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withoutanyothercontext,thenumbersthemselvescanbeperceivedasthedata.Butifgiventhecontext
thatthisdatabaseisalogofabookcollection,those13digitnumbersmaynowbeidentifiedasISBNs
informationthatreferstothebook,butisnotitselftheinformationwithinthebook.
Theterm"metadata"wascoinedin1968byPhilipBagley,inhisbook"Extensionofprogramming
languageconcepts"whereitisclearthatheusesthetermintheISO11179"traditional"sense,whichis
"structuralmetadata"i.e."dataaboutthecontainersofdata"ratherthanthealternatesense"contentabout
individualinstancesofdatacontent"ormetacontent,thetypeofdatausuallyfoundinlibrary
catalogues.[5][6]Sincethenthefieldsofinformationmanagement,informationscience,information
technology,librarianship,andGIShavewidelyadoptedtheterm.Inthesefieldsthewordmetadatais
definedas"dataaboutdata".[7]Whilethisisthegenerallyaccepteddefinition,variousdisciplineshave
adoptedtheirownmorespecificexplanationandusesoftheterm.

Libraries
Metadatahasbeenusedinvariousformsasameansofcatalogingarchivedinformation.TheDewey
DecimalSystememployedbylibrariesfortheclassificationoflibrarymaterialsbysubjectisanearly
exampleofmetadatausage.Librarycataloguesused3x5inchcardstodisplayabook'stitle,author,subject
matter,andabriefplotsynopsisalongwithanabbreviatedalphanumericidentificationsystemwhich
indicatedthephysicallocationofthebookwithinthelibrary'sshelves.Suchdatahelpclassify,aggregate,
identify,andlocateaparticularbook.AnotherformofoldermetadatacollectionistheusebyUSCensus
Bureauofwhatisknownasthe"LongForm."TheLongFormasksquestionsthatareusedtocreate
demographicdatatofindpatternsofdistribution.[8]

Photographs
Metadatamaybewrittenintoadigitalphotofilethatwillidentifywhoownsit,copyrightandcontact
information,whatcameracreatedthefile,alongwithexposureinformationanddescriptiveinformation
suchaskeywordsaboutthephoto,makingthefilesearchableonthecomputerand/ortheInternet.Some
metadataiswrittenbythecameraandsomeisinputbythephotographerand/orsoftwareafterdownloading
toacomputer.Mostdigitalcameraswritemetadata,andsomeenableyoutoeditit[9]thisfunctionalityhas
beenavailableonmostNikonDSLRssincetheNikonD3andonmostnewCanoncamerassincetheCanon
EOS7D.
PhotographicMetadataStandardsaregovernedbyorganizationsthatdevelopthefollowingstandards.They
include,butarenotlimitedto:
IPTCInformationInterchangeModelIIM(InternationalPressTelecommunicationsCouncil),
IPTCCoreSchemaforXMP
XMPExtensibleMetadataPlatform(anISOstandard)
ExifExchangeableimagefileformat,MaintainedbyCIPA(Camera&ImagingProducts
Association)andpublishedbyJEITA(JapanElectronicsandInformationTechnologyIndustries
Association)
DublinCore(DublinCoreMetadataInitiativeDCMI)
PLUS(PictureLicensingUniversalSystem).
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Video
Metadataisparticularlyusefulinvideo,whereinformationaboutitscontents(suchastranscriptsof
conversationsandtextdescriptionsofitsscenes)isnotdirectlyunderstandablebyacomputer,butwhere
efficientsearchisdesirable.

Webpages
Webpagesoftenincludemetadataintheformofmetatags.Descriptionandkeywordsinmetatagsare
commonlyusedtodescribetheWebpage'scontent.Mostsearchenginesusethesedatawhenaddingpages
totheirsearchindex.

Creationofmetadata
Metadatacanbecreatedeitherbyautomatedinformationprocessingorbymanualwork.Elementary
metadatacapturedbycomputerscanincludeinformationaboutwhenanobjectwascreated,whocreatedit,
whenitwaslastupdated,filesize,andfileextension.
Forthepurposesofthisarticle,an"object"referstoanyofthefollowing:
Aphysicalitemsuchasabook,CD,DVD,map,chair,table,flowerpot,etc.
Anelectronicfilesuchasadigitalimage,digitalphoto,document,programfile,databasetable,etc.

Metadatatypes
Themetadataapplicationismanyfoldcoveringalargevarietyoffieldsofapplicationtherearenothingbut
specialisedandwellacceptedmodelstospecifytypesofmetadata.Bretheron&Singley(1994)distinguish
betweentwodistinctclasses:structural/controlmetadataandguidemetadata.[10]Structuralmetadatais
usedtodescribethestructureofdatabaseobjectssuchastables,columns,keysandindexes.Guide
metadataisusedtohelphumansfindspecificitemsandisusuallyexpressedasasetofkeywordsina
naturallanguage.AccordingtoRalphKimballmetadatacanbedividedinto2similarcategories:technical
metadataandbusinessmetadata.Technicalmetadatacorrespondtointernalmetadata,andbusiness
metadatacorrespondtoexternalmetadata.Kimballaddsathirdcategorynamedprocessmetadata.Onthe
otherhand,NISOdistinguishesamongthreetypesofmetadata:descriptive,structural,andadministrative.[7]
Descriptivemetadataistypicallyusedfordiscoveryandidentification,asinformationusedtosearchand
locateanobjectsuchastitle,author,subjects,keywords,publisher.Structuralmetadatagiveadescription
ofhowthecomponentsofanobjectareorganized.Anexampleofstructuralmetadatawouldbehowpages
areorderedtoformchaptersofabook.Finally,administrativemetadatagiveinformationtohelpmanage
thesource.Theyrefertothetechnicalinformationincludingfiletypeorwhenandhowthefilewascreated.
Twosubtypesofadministrativemetadataarerightsmanagementmetadataandpreservationmetadata.
Rightsmanagementmetadataexplainintellectualpropertyrights,whilepreservationmetadatacontain
informationthatisneededtopreserveandsavearesource.[1]

Metadatastructures
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Metadata(metacontent),ormorecorrectly,thevocabulariesusedtoassemblemetadata(metacontent)
statements,aretypicallystructuredaccordingtoastandardizedconceptusingawelldefinedmetadata
scheme,including:metadatastandardsandmetadatamodels.Toolssuchascontrolledvocabularies,
taxonomies,thesauri,datadictionaries,andmetadataregistriescanbeusedtoapplyfurtherstandardization
tothemetadata.Structuralmetadatacommonalityisalsoofparamountimportanceindatamodel
developmentandindatabasedesign.

Metadatasyntax
Metadata(metacontent)syntaxreferstotherulescreatedtostructurethefieldsorelementsofmetadata
(metacontent).[11]Asinglemetadataschememaybeexpressedinanumberofdifferentmarkupor
programminglanguages,eachofwhichrequiresadifferentsyntax.Forexample,DublinCoremaybe
expressedinplaintext,HTML,XML,andRDF.[12]
Acommonexampleof(guide)metacontentisthebibliographicclassification,thesubject,theDewey
Decimalclassnumber.Thereisalwaysanimpliedstatementinany"classification"ofsomeobject.To
classifyanobjectas,forexample,Deweyclassnumber514(Topology)(i.e.bookshavingthenumber514
ontheirspine)theimpliedstatementis:"<book><subjectheading><514>.Thisisasubjectpredicate
objecttriple,ormoreimportantly,aclassattributevaluetriple.Thefirsttwoelementsofthetriple(class,
attribute)arepiecesofsomestructuralmetadatahavingadefinedsemantic.Thethirdelementisavalue,
preferablyfromsomecontrolledvocabulary,somereference(master)data.Thecombinationofthe
metadataandmasterdataelementsresultsinastatementwhichisametacontentstatementi.e."metacontent
=metadata+masterdata".Alltheseelementscanbethoughtofas"vocabulary".Bothmetadataandmaster
dataarevocabularieswhichcanbeassembledintometacontentstatements.Therearemanysourcesofthese
vocabularies,bothmetaandmasterdata:UML,EDIFACT,XSD,Dewey/UDC/LoC,SKOS,ISO25964,
Pantone,LinnaeanBinomialNomenclature,etc.Usingcontrolledvocabulariesforthecomponentsof
metacontentstatements,whetherforindexingorfinding,isendorsedbyISO25964(http://www
personal.umich.edu/~kdow/ISO_CD_259641(E).pdf):"Ifboththeindexerandthesearcherareguidedto
choosethesametermforthesameconcept,thenrelevantdocumentswillberetrieved."Thisisparticularly
relevantwhenconsideringthebehemothoftheinternet,Google.Itsimplyindexespagesthenmatchestext
stringsusingitscomplexalgorithm,thereisnointelligenceor"inferencing"occurring.Justtheillusion
thereof.

Hierarchical,linearandplanarschemata
Metadataschemacanbehierarchicalinnaturewhererelationshipsexistbetweenmetadataelementsand
elementsarenestedsothatparentchildrelationshipsexistbetweentheelements.Anexampleofa
hierarchicalmetadataschemaistheIEEELOMschemawheremetadataelementsmaybelongtoaparent
metadataelement.Metadataschemacanalsobeonedimensional,orlinear,whereeachelementis
completelydiscretefromotherelementsandclassifiedaccordingtoonedimensiononly.Anexampleofa
linearmetadataschemaisDublinCoreschemawhichisonedimensional.Metadataschemaareoftentwo
dimensional,orplanar,whereeachelementiscompletelydiscretefromotherelementsbutclassified
accordingtotwoorthogonaldimensions.[13]

Metadatahypermapping

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metadata

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