Appendix B: Glossary of Terms

Actionable [Machine]: An object is said to be machine actionable when it is in a form that allows a computer to interact with it in some automated manner.

Application Programming Interface (API): An application programming interface (API) is a set of communication protocols that provide a clearly defined method of communication between various software components, programs, or network services.

BIBFRAME: Short for Bibliographic Framework—a data model created for bibliographic description. The design of BIBFRAME began in 2011 through a partnership between the Library of Congress and Zepheira. BIBFRAME’s goals include the replacement of MARC encoding standards with methods that integrate Linked Data principles in order to make bibliographic data more useful both within the library professional community and to the world at large.

Crosswalk: The process of migration data from one serialized form to another.

Disambiguate: A process directed at distinguishing between distinct entities.

Graph: A graph is a data arrangement that consists of nodes (objects) connected to each other via edges (relationships). A family tree is a common example of a graph where the persons represent nodes (John, Jane, etc.) and relationships represent edges (child, parent, etc.).

International Resource Identifier (IRI): An IRI is a version of a URI that is encoded in a form that can render international characters.

Linked Data: According to the W3C the term Linked Data refers to a set of best practices for publishing structured data on the Web that includes the use Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs) as names for things, the use of HTTP URIs so that people can look up those names, insuring that when someone looks up a URI, provide useful information, and including links to other URIs so that users can discover more things. Additionally, Linked Data describes a semantic data structure based on collections of n-triples preferably (but not necessarily) serialized as RDF. See

LD4L: Acronym for Linked Data for Libraries, a Mellon funded initiative focused on examining a variety of issues surrounding Linked Data implementation in libraries. See

LD4P: Acronym for Linked Data for Production. An extension of the LD4L project. See
n-triple: An n-triple is the fundamental structure of Linked Data graphs, wherein relationships between objects are described through “subject::predicate::object” statements. For example, “John::hasMother::Sarah” is an n-triple.
Resource Description Framework (RDF): A standard model by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) for expressing Linked Data on the Web. See “Resource Description Framework (RDF) Model and Syntax Specification”. 22 Feb 1999. Accessed August 1, 2015. REC-rdf-syntax-19990222/.

Serialization: Serialization is the process of representing data in a particular form. In the Linked Data universe, this refers to the one of many forms that can be used to represent n-triples. Examples of such formats include RFD, Turtle, JASON, etc. A non-technical way to understand serialization is to think of it as the way a triple is formatted. A Linked Data standard ontology implemented by most major search engines. See
Thin [MARC, Record, or Graph]: A thin information is a sparse collection of data that describes only the minimum necessary depth of information for a particular context as opposed to the full range of information that may be known about the object.

Traversable: When a person or computer follows the chain of relationships represented by a data graph, moving from one related node to the next, she/he/it is said to traverse the graph.

Uniform Resource Identifier (URI): In information technology, a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) is a string of characters used to identify a resource. Such identification enables interaction with representations of the resource over a network using specific protocols. In practical terms, to human readers URIs look like the URLs used to navigate the World Wide Web. URIs, however, by convention, are intended to be permanent identifiers for a resource, regardless of it might live (or move to) on the network. In other words, an item’s URL could change, if, for example, a web-based resource moved to another hosting environment, but its URI would not and any person or machine that traverses the URI would be directed to the current URL for the resource.

Workflow: The steps involved in completing a defined task.

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