FOSS tool to validate linked data

An announcement from the W3C, July 17, 2008 (thanks to Pete Johnston):

We’re glad to announce Vapour 2.0, a validator for Linked Data and RDF vocabularies. An effort has been made to widen the scope of the validation to cover any kind of Linked Data (Vapour 1.0 was specifically targeted to RDF vocabularies). This new release contains a number of new exciting features, such as checking for meaningful triples in the response documents, links to popular semantic web browsers, and conclusions on the type of the resources per httpRange-14. Moreover, the input form is now simpler, and the reports are even more eye-catching than before.

Validate your linked data! Use our online service

Source code and further details

PS:  For background, see Tim Berners-Lee’s description of Linked Data (July 2006).

OA workshops in Georgia, Ukraine, and Moldova

The July/August issue of the eIFL.net Newsletter is now online.  Excerpt:

Open Access Awareness Raising workshop in Georgia

On May 14-15, the Georgian Integrated Library & Information System Consortium (GILISC) and eIFL.net jointly organised the workshop â??Open Access: New Models for Scholarly Communicationâ?. Hosted by the Ilia Chavchavadze State University, the workshop addressed Open Access policies and recommendations and highlighted the benefits of Open Access journals and Open repositories. As a result, workshop participants have created a National Open Access working group. More information and presentations from the workshop are available [here].

Study visit of repository managers to Ukraine

On June 18-21, Informatio Consortium, National University â??Kyiv-Mohyla Academyâ? and eIFL.net organised a study visit of repository managers from Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan to Ukraine. Together with their Ukrainian colleagues they discussed strategies for securing faculty and administration support, management, copyright and interoperability issues, etc. Additional details can be viewed [here].

Open Access: Exploring Scholarly Communication â?? a workshop in Moldova

On June 23-24, Consortium eIFL Direct Moldova and eIFL.net organised a workshop Open Access: Exploring Scholarly Communication at the Moldova Economics Academy premises in Chisinau. Librarians, scholars and researchers discussed the benefits of Open Access journals and Open repositories, agreed on the need for better promotion of existing Moldavian OA journals and open repository of Moldavian dissertations and decided to work on Open Access declaration and pilot OAI-compliant repository projects. More information and presentations from the workshop are available [here].

Debating the OASPA membership rules

Gunther Eysenbach, Creating an organization for open access publishers – but should we let big publishers dominate?  Gunther Eysenbach’s Random Research Rants, July 15, 2008.  (Thanks to Charles Bailey.)  Excerpt:

Dave Solomon has published a draft of possible By-laws for the proposed Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA)….

My personal interest in being possibly one of the founding members of this organization (which also may include BioMed Central, Copernicus, Co?Action Publishing, Hindawi, Medical Education Online, Journal of Medical Internet Research, PLoS, and presumably others) is the recognition that some sort of organization is needed to set, promote and enforce professional and ethical standards and OA publishing practices….

But it is important that such an organization is set up and run not to primarily defend the commercial interests of large commercial publishers, but to act as much as possible in the interest of scholarly communication (these are not mutually exclusive goals – but they are not always aligned….)

More specifically, [OASPA is] contemplating the following rules:

Each publisher gets one voting member and an additional voting member for every additional 250 OA manuscripts published in the previous calendar year up to a maximum of 10.

In other words, this will ensure that large publishers have 10 times more votes than small publishers….

Also see Dave Solomon’s response to Gunther’s concern, and Gunther’s reply.

PS:  See my own comments on the draft OASPA bylaws.

More on the Stanford OA mandate

Debra Viadero, Stanford Opens Access to All Its Education Studies, Education Week, July 18, 2008.  Excerpt:

Faculty members at Stanford Universityâ??s school of education have voted to make scholarly articles available to the public for free, a policy change that the university says makes Stanfordâ??s education school the first such school in the nation to join the growing â??open accessâ? movement in academia.

â??We think itâ??s a huge gain in terms of public access, professional access, policymaker access, and lawmaker access,â? said John M. Willinsky, the education professor who proposed the idea to his colleagues at the California university….

â??We think [university OA mandates] will become commonplace before too long,â? said Mr. Willinsky, who has been active for years in efforts to create software and other tools to support the â??open accessâ? movement….

Under Stanfordâ??s new policy, only the authorâ??s final, peer-reviewed copy of the article would be posted online â??in some cases, potentially months before the printed version becomes available….

By early fall, the education school plans to have a Web site in place where the articles will be posted and archived in a searchable database. With approximately 50 scholars on Stanfordâ??s education school faculty, the site could accumulate as many as 100 articles a year, by Mr. Willinskyâ??s estimate.

Publishers, however, would retain the rights to the published version of the articles….

Mr. Willinsky said the policy also includes a waiver so that nontenured faculty, who face the most pressure to â??publish or perish,â? could ask to opt out of posting their articles online if a potential publisher insists on exclusive publishing rights….

â??I think itâ??s important for Harvard and Stanford to do this, to use our weight to take the stand and give publishers pause before saying, â??Weâ??re not accepting any articles from Harvard or Stanford,â?? â? Mr. Willinsky said….

PS:  Good article until the last two paragraphs (omitted here).  The BOAI is from Budapest, not Bulgaria, and FRPAA has not yet been adopted.

OAD launches the Bibliography of open access

The Open Access Directory (OAD) is very pleased to announce the Bibliography of open access.

The bibliography is based on Charles Bailey‘s definitive Open Access Bibliography: Liberating Scholarly Literature with E-Prints and Open Access Journals (ARL, 2005).  We are very grateful to Charles and the ARL for their willingness to move the bibliography to OAD for community updating and revision.  Here’s how Charles described the launch on his blog this morning:

…With my permission and the agreement of ARL, most of the Open Access Bibliography has been converted to the MediaWiki format to form the basis of the Bibliography of Open Access. The new bibliography will be authored by registered Open Access Directory users, who can add or edit references. It is under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

The initial version of new bibliography has live links; however, they were last updated in August 2004, when the text of the Open Access Bibliography was frozen for print publication preparation. These links can now be updated by registered users.

The Open Access Bibliography, which contains textual sections not found in the Bibliography of Open Access, remains freely available in HTML and PDF formats at Digital Scholarship and as a printed book….

The OAD bibliography couldn’t have a better foundation for future development.  It includes all the citations in Charles’ original work and omits only his Preface, Acknowledgements, and introductory essay, Key Open Access Concepts.

Remember that OAD is a wiki.  We appreciate your help in keeping its lists comprehensive, accurate, and up to date.

Victorian govt considering OA for PSI and publicly-funded research

Inquiry into Improving Access to Victorian Public Sector Information and Data, a discussion paper from the Economic Development and
Infrastructure Committee of the Victorian Parliament, July 2008.  (Thanks to Tom Worthington.)  Excerpt:

…Question 2: How can improved access to and re-use of PSI [public sector information] drive economic growth, employment opportunities and new commercial ventures? …

Question 4: If the Victorian public sector is to provide increased access to information, what kind of information would provide the greatest opportunities to improve or develop: …b) social, medical and scientific research? …

2.1.1… Emerging evidence suggests that in some cases improved access to and re-use of PSI can increase net returns on investment by government, particularly when access to publicly funded research is improved [citing the important study from Houghton et al, 2006] ….

2.1.1.1… Enhanced access to research may potentially increase the efficiency of R&D investment within scholarly and research communities by reducing duplication of research, and by increasing primary data and information available to researchers. In particular, improved access to R&D research could reduce the number of scientific studies that repeat â??failedâ?? research hypotheses. The DEST report also suggested that wider access to PSI would encourage open scientific inquiry and collective learning; allow closer interrogation of research findings and conclusions; and provide researchers with increased opportunities to identify and explore issues not considered in original research briefs, through a re-examination of primary research data….

2.1.1.2… Another argument for enhanced access to PSI is that it would increase and broaden opportunities for commercial exploitation of research data. Improved access to government research data and information could also potentially benefit the private sector by allowing it to draw on government knowledge and experiences to improve the quality of services, and thereby increase the productivity of the private sector in the economy.

2.1.1.3… The general community can potentially benefit through the development of informed citizens and informed consumers, who by having greater access to research publications and government information would better equip themselves to make efficient use of public and private sector services. An informed community could also, potentially, contribute more actively to the development of effective, efficient, and productive public policy….

Comment.  The committee is soliciting public comments on the paper, which are due by August 22, 2008.  (See the submission details here and on p. ix of the report.)  After digesting the comments, the committee will report back to Parliament by June 30, 2009.  I urge Australians, and especially Victorians, to submit comments to the committee in support of OA for publicly-funded research.