CultureSampo - Finnish Culture on the Semantic Web 2.0
What is CultureSampo?
CultureSampo (Kulttuurisampo in Finnish) a semantic web 2.0 portal and a publication channel for Finnish cultural heritage based on semantic web and Web 2.0 technologies. The system consists of three components:
Cross-domain contents from over 20 Memory Organizations and Web 2.0 Sources
The contents of the portal first public version come from over 20 different Finnish museums, libraries, archives and other source, as well as from the Getty Foundation, Wikipedia, Geonames, and Panoramio. The system aggregates cross-domain content of various kinds including
artifacts, paintings, scuplture, drawings, abstract art, novels, comics, web pages, folklore and runes of different kinds, fictive persons and places, folk music, photos, aerial photos, persons, organizations, biographies, historical events, cultural processes, handicfraft skills, videos, buildings, and cultural sites.
CultureSampo generalizes MuseumFinland in many ways:
Dealing with cross-domain heterogeneous contents. The portal
contains not only artfacts, as MuseumFinland, but cultural heritage contents of virtually
Event-based knowledge representation. From the knowledge representation viewpoint,
the major new idea in CultureSampo is to use event-based modeling for representing implicit knowledge embedded in the various metadata schemas of the content types, for more detailed annotations of e.g. images, narrative stories, and historical events, and for making all this metadata mutually interoperable on the semantic level.
New forms of semantic search. For content accessing, two semantic search paradigms have been developed: Faceted search paradigm is being extented e.g. to dealing with heterogeneous metadata formats and for "automatic exhibition generation" for viewing search results in two orthogonal dimensions. In addition, "relational search" where associations between search objects are being searched is being developed to answer questions such as "How is Picasso related to Paris".
New forms of semantic browsing. New methods for creating automatically semantic recommendation links are being developed in CultureSampo. These methods utilize the rich event-based knowledge representation scheme in use in the portal.
Visualization and mash-ups. The results are visualised using mash-ups and graphics. CultureSampo uses e.g. Google maps that may be layered dynamically with old historical maps. Timelines are used for projecting contents along the time dimension, and graphs fo visualizing semantic relations between e.g. different artists.
Web 2.0 Content Creation. Content can be created in a collaborative Web 2.0 fashion.
Figure. Nine semantic perspectives to cultural heritage available in CultureSampo:
Maps and historical places, relational search, faceted domain-centric browsing, collections, Finnish history, cultural processes and skills, biographies, semantic Kalevala, and Carelia.
Public Portal On the Web
CultureSampo portal prototype was published on September 25, 2008, at a
publication event at the National Museum of Finland.
CultureSampo portal can be used by not only people but by other portals (machines) on the web, based on our floatlet widget technology.
For example, to include contents from CultureSampo services on this very page you can write a search word in the input field below:
Type in a search word here
and you get related results with semantic links to CultureSampo below:
Dr Eetu Mäkelä
Helsinki University of Technology, Department of Media Technology
first.last [ at ] tkk.fi
Professor Eero Hyvönen
Helsinki University of Technology, Department of Media Technology and University of Helsinki
first.last [ at ] tkk.fi
Participating Cultural Organizations
The content of CultureSampo is based on collections of several Finnish museums, libraries, and archives. See the Collections view in the portal for more details. In addition, various International repositories such as Wikipedia, Geonames. Panoramio, and the Universal List of Artists Names (ULAN) of the Getty Foundation are used for content.
Work on CultureSampo is funded by the following organizations:
The National Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation (Tekes)
This paper presents the CultureSampo system for publishing heterogeneous linked data as a service. Discussed are the problems of converting legacy data into linked data, as well as the challenge of making the massively heterogeneous yet interlinked cultural heritage content interoperable on a semantic level. Novel user interface concepts for then utilizing the content are also presented. In the approach described, the data is published not only for human use, but also as intelligent services for other computer systems that can then provide interfaces of their own for the linked data. As a concrete use case of using CultureSampo as a service, the BookSampo system for publishing Finnish fiction literature on the semantic web is presented.
BookSampo is a semantic portal in use, covering metadata about practically all Finnish fiction literature of Finnish public libraries on a work level. The system introduces a variety of semantic web novelties deployed into practise: The underlying data model is based on the emerging functional, content-centered metadata indexing paradigm using RDF. Linked Data (LD) principles are used for mapping the metadata with tens of interlinked ontologies in the national FinnONTO ontology infrastructure. The contents are also linked with the large LD metadata repository of related cultural heritage content of CultureSampo. BookSampo is actually based on using CultureSampo as a semantic web service, demonstrating the idea of re-using semantic content from multiple perspectives without the need for modifications. Most of the content has been transformed automatically from existing databases, with the help of ontologies derived from thesauri in use in Finland, but in addtion tens of volunteered librarians have participated in a Web 2.0 fashion in annotating and correcting the metadata, especially regarding older litarature. For this purpose, semantic web editing tools and public ONKI ontology services were created and used. The paper focuses on lessons learned in the process of creating the semantic web basis of BookSampo.
Purpose – Library Director Jarmo Saarti introduced a wide or ideal model for fiction in literature in his dissertation, published in 1999. It introduces those aspects that should be included in an information system for fiction. Such aspects include literary prose and its intertextual references to other works, the writer, readers and critics receptions of the work as well as a researcher s view. It is also important to note how libraries approach a literary work by means of inventory, classification and content description. The most ambiguous of the aspects relates to that context in cultural history, which the work reflects and is a part of. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – Since the model consists of several components which are not found in present library information systems and cannot be implemented by them, a new way had to be found to produce, save, process and present fiction‐related metadata. The Semantic Computing Research Group of Aalto University has developed several Semantic Web services for use in the field of culture, so cooperation with it and the use of Semantic Web tools were a natural starting point for the construction of the new service. Kirjasampo will be based on the Semantic Web RDF data model. The model enables a flexible linking of metadata derived from different sources, and it can be used to build a Semantic Web that can be approached contextually from different angles. Findings – The “semantically enriched” ideal model for fiction has hence been realised, at least to some extent: Kirjasampo supports literature‐related metadata that is more varied than earlier and aims to account for different contexts within literature and connections with regard to other cultural phenomena. It also includes contemporary reviews of works and, as such, readers receptions as well. Modern readers can share their views on works, once the user interface of the server is completed. It will include several features from the Kirjasto 2.0‐application, which enables the evaluation, description and recommendations of works. The service should be online by the end of Spring 2011. Research limitations/implications – The project involves novel collaboration between a public library and a computer science research unit, and utilises a novel approach to the description of fiction. Practical implications – The system encourages user participation in the description of fiction and is of practical benefit to librarians in understanding both how fiction is organised and how users interpret the same. Originality/value – Upon completion, the service will be the first Finnish information system for libraries built with the tools of the Semantic Web which offers a completely new user environment and application for data produced by libraries. It also strives to create a new model for saving and producing data, available to both library professionals and readers. The aim is to save, accumulate and distribute literary knowledge, experiences and silent information.
Lyndon Nixon, Stamatia Dasiopoulou, Jean-Pierre Evain, Eero Hyvönen, Ioannis Kompatsiaris and Raphael Troncy: Multimedia, Broadcasting and eCulture. Handbook of Semantic Web Technologies (John Domingue, Dieter Fensel and James Hendler (eds.)), Springer-Verlag, January, 2011. biblink
People frequently need to find knowledge related to places when they plan a leisure trip, when they are executing that plan in a certain place, or when they want to virtually explore a place they have visited in the past. In this chapter we present and discuss a set of methods for searching and browsing spatiotemporally referenced knowledge related to cultural objects, e.g. artifacts, photographs and visiting sites. These methods have been implemented in the semantic cultural heritage portal CULTURESAMPO that offers map-based interfaces for a user to explore hundreds of thousands of content objects and points of interest in Finland. Our goal is to develop and demonstrate novel ways to help the user 1) to decide where to go for a trip, and 2) to learn more about the neighborhoods and points of interest during the visit.
This thesis explores the possibilities of using the view-based search paradigm to create intelligent user interfaces on the Semantic Web. After surveying several semantic search techniques, the view-based search paradigm is explained, and argued to fit in a valuable niche in the field. To test the argument, numerous portals with different user interfaces and data were built using the paradigm. Based on the results of these experiments, this thesis argues that the paradigm provides a strong, extendable and flexible base on which to built semantic user interfaces. Designing the actual systems to be as adaptable as possible is also discussed.
Semantic web techniques can be used to relate two things together. However, usually this relation is not accompanied with a measure that would tell how interesting the relation is. Data mining tradition provides interestingness measures; it is natural to try and fit semantic web and data mining traditions together. In this paper we use support and confidence values provided by association rule mining as interestingness measures for relations. The presented method is tailored to location ontologies in order to find out what interesting mutual relations two places have based on annotations in the cultural heritage domain. The method also uses ontology-based reasoning to group places together. We present tests of running the method against a set of over 60,000 annotations in order to find out cultural heritage connections between places.
Eero Hyvönen, Eetu Mäkelä, Tomi Kauppinen, Olli Alm, Jussi Kurki, Tuukka Ruotsalo, Katri Seppälä, Joeli Takala, Kimmo Puputti, Heini Kuittinen, Kim Viljanen, Jouni Tuominen, Tuomas Palonen, Matias Frosterus, Reetta Sinkkilä, Panu Paakkarinen, Joonas Laitio, Katariina Nyberg: CultureSampo - A National Publication System of Cultural Heritage on the Semantic Web 2.0. Proceedings of the 6th European Semantic Web Conference (ESWC2009), Heraklion, Greece, May 31 - June 4, 2009. Springer-Verlag. bibpdf
CULTURESAMPO is an application demonstration of a national level publication system of cultural heritage contents on the Web, based on ideas and technologies of the Semantic (Web and) Web 2.0. On the semantic side, the system presents new solutions to interoperability problems of dealing with multiple ontologies of different domains, and to problems of integrating multiple metadata schemas and cross-domain content into a homogeneous semantic portal. A novelty of the system is to use semantic models based on events and narrative process descriptions for modeling and visualizing cultural phenomena, and for semantic recommendations. On the Web 2.0 side, CULTURESAMPO proposes and demonstrates a content creation process for collaborative, distributed ontology and content development including different memory organizations and citizens. The system provides the cultural heritage contents to end-users in a new way through multiple (nine) thematic perspectives, based on semantic visualizations. Furthermore, CULTURESAMPO services are available for external web-applications to use through semantic AJAX widgets.
We present an overview of CultureSampo, an ambitious system for creating a collective semantic memory of the cultural heritage of a nation on the Semantic Web 2.0, combining ideas underlying the Semantic Web and the Web 2.0. The system addresses the semantic web challenge of aggregating highly heterogeneous, cross-domain cultural heritage collections and other contents into a semantically rich intelligent system for human and machine users. At the same time, CultureSampo is an approach to solve the social and practical Web 2.0 challenge of organizing the underlying collaborative ontology development and content creation work of memory organizations and citizens. This paper focuses on CultureSampo’s search, recommendation, and visualization services for the end-users. The key idea here is to access cultural heritage on the Semantic Web through nine “thematic perspectives”, such as places on the maps, the social network of cultural persons, timelines, and narrative texts, e.g. biographies and literary works.
Eero Hyvönen, Eetu Mäkelä, Tomi Kauppinen, Olli Alm, Jussi Kurki, Tuukka Ruotsalo, Katri Seppälä, Joeli Takala, Kimmo Puputti, Heini Kuittinen, Kim Viljanen, Jouni Tuominen, Tuomas Palonen, Matias Frosterus, Reetta Sinkkilä, Panu Paakkarinen, Joonas Laitio, Katariina Nyberg: CultureSampo - Finnish Cultural Heritage Collections on the Semantic Web 2.0. Proceedings of the 1st International Symposium on Digital Humanities for Japanese Arts and Cultures (DH-JAC-2009), Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, Japan, March, 2009. bibpdf
This paper presents an overview of the SemanticWeb 2.0 application CultureSampo, an ambitious system for creating a collective semantic memory of the cultural heritage of a nation on the Semantic Web 2.0, combining ideas underlying the Semantic Web and the Web 2.0. The system addresses the semantic web challenge of aggregating highly heterogeneous, cross-domain cultural heritage content into a semantically rich intelligent system for human and machine users. At the same time, CultureSampo is an approach to solve the social and practical Web 2.0 challenge of organizing the underlying collaborative ontology development and content creation work of memory organizations and citizens.
Ontologies aim to capture knowledge about things and their relationships. Publishing ontologies on the Semantic Web enables people and organizations to use shared ontologies in annotating e.g. photographs, videos, music, and other types of cultural objects. Search engines also use relationships provided by ontologies in semantic search, e.g. for query expansion or for view-based search. However, building ontologies is a time-consuming process, and it should be helped by automatic finding of interesting, possible relationships. Finding the correct concept for annotation purposes is helped by subsumption and partonomy hierarchies and associative relationships. In this paper we show how an analysis of co-occurrences of concepts in annotations can be used to provide interesting relationships for enriching ontological structures. We use association rule mining techniques and test the idea using a set of annotations of cultural objects in CULTURESAMPO portal and the Finnish General Upper Ontology YSO. The results are visualized in the ONKI SKOS browser to give an additional layer on top of the original relationships of the YSO ontology. An analysis shows that best ranked relationships should also be included in the ontology as subclassof or associative relationships.
This paper presents the Semantic Web 2.0 application CULTURESAMPO, an ambitious system of creating a collective semantic memory of the cultural heritage of a nation on the Semantic Web 2.0, combining ideas underlying the Semantic Web and the Web 2.0. The system addresses the semantic challenge of aggregating highly heterogeneous, cross-domain cultural heritage into a semantically rich intelligent system for human and machine users. At the same time, CULTURESAMPO is an approach to solve the social and practical Web 2.0 challenge of organizing the underlying collaborative ontology development and content creation work of memory organizations and citizens.
Content annotations in semantic cultural heritage portals commonly make spatiotemporal references to historical regions and places using names whose meanings are different in different times. For example, historical administrational regions such as countries, municipalities, and cities have been renamed, merged together, split into parts, and annexed or moved to and from other regions. Even if the names of the regions remain the same (e.g., “Germany”), the underlying regions and their relationships to other regions may change (e.g., the regional coverage of “Germany” at different times). As a result, representing and finding the right ontological meanings for historical geographical names on the semantic web creates severe problems both when annotating contents and during information retrieval. This paper presents a model for representing the meaning of changing geospatial resources. Our aim is to enable precise annotation with temporal geospatial resources and to enable semantic search and browsing using related names from other historical time periods. A simple model and metadata schema is presented for representing and maintaining geospatial changes from which an explicit time series of temporal part-of ontologies can be created automatically. The model has been applied successfully to representing the complete change history of municipalities in Finland during 1865–2007, and the resulting ontology time series is used in the semantic cultural heritage portal CULTURESAMPO to support faceted semantic search of contents and to visualizing historical regions on overlaying maps originating from different historical eras.
Tomi Kauppinen, Riikka Henriksson, Reetta Sinkkilä, Robin Lindroos, Jari Väätäinen and Eero Hyvönen: Ontology-based Disambiguation of Spatiotemporal Locations. Proceedings of the 1st international workshop on Identity and Reference on the Semantic Web (IRSW2008), 5th European Semantic Web Conference 2008 (ESWC 2008), CEUR Workshop Proceedings, ISSN 1613-0073, June 1-5, 2008. bibpdf
Geographic place names are semantically often highly ambiguous. For example, there are 491 places in Finland sharing the same name ”Isosaari” (great island) that are instances of several geographical classes, such as Island, Forest, Peninsula, Inhabited area, etc. Referencing unambiguously to a particular ”Isosaari”, either when annotating content or during information retrieval, can be quite problematic and requires usage of advanced search methods and maps for semantic disambiguation. Historical places introduce even more challenges, since historical metadata commonly make spatiotemporal references to historical regions and places using names whose meanings are non-existing or different in different times. This paper presents how these problems have been addressed in a large Finnish place ontology SUO and a historical geo-ontology SAPO. A location ontology server ONKI-Geo has been created for publishing the ontologies and utilizing them as mashup services. To demonstrate the usability of our ontologies, two case applications in the cultural heritage domain are presented.
Eero Hyvönen, Eetu Mäkelä, Tuukka Ruotsalo, Tomi Kauppinen, Olli Alm, Jussi Kurki, Joeli Takala, Kimmo Puputti and Heini Kuittinen: CultureSampo-Finnish Culture on the Semantic Web. Posters of the 5th European Semantic Web Conference 2008 (ESWC 2008), Tenerife, Spain, June 1-5, 2008. bibpdf
This paper presents the semantic portal CULTURESAMPO---Finnish Culture on the Semantic Web . The portal provides memory organizations and other cultural content publishers with a national, shared semantic publication channel for heteroge- nous cultural contents. The content comes from over ten organizations and is annotated using various ontologies of the FinnONTO infrastructure. For the end-user, intel- ligent semantic search, recommendation, and visualization services for accessing and learning about cultural heritage are provided.
We argue that an ontology of historical events is needed in semantic portals for cultural heritage due to three reasons. First, ontological identifiers (URIs) of events, such as the World War II or coronation of Napoleon, are needed in order to make collection metadata mutually interoperable in terms of related events---in the vein as identifiers are needed for identifying artifact types, persons, and geolocations when annotating collection items. Second, events are of central importance in creating semantic links between cultural contents in applications such as recommendation systems. Third, historical events are important as content items of their own, forming the backbone of chronological histories.
In this paper, we argue for a need to shift focus in semantic search from the items themselves to using them as lenses to wider topics. A system for doing this in the cultural heritage domain is presented, duplicating on the web the way exhibitions in the real world are organized. An interface for specifying such exhibitions is presented, combining a general narrative pattern with semantic autocompletion and the novel concept of domain-centric view-based search. This also solves a number of problems view-based search has previously encountered in the cultural heritage domain. Presented also are multiple visualizations for the exhibition, supporting the user in making sense of the data and in doing exploratory search.
Eetu Mäkelä, Tuukka Ruotsalo and Eero Hyvönen: Domain-Centric View-Based Search. Poster proceedings of the 6th International Semantic Web Conference, Busan, Korea, November 11-15, 2007. bibpdf
In current Semantic Web view-based search systems views are formed by selecting properties and enumerating all their values as selections. This approach breaks down with multiple content types, such as in the cultural heritage domain, because the number of differing properties, and therefore views becomes unmanageable. We propose a novel solution termed Domain-Centric View-Based Search, in which views are created based on common property ranges and domain ontologies.
This paper presents a method for making metadata conforming to heterogeneous schemas semantically interoperable. The idea is to make the knowledge embedded in the schema structures interoperable and explicit by transforming the schemas into a shared, event-based representation of knowledge about the real world. This enables and simplifies accurate reasoning services such as cross-domain semantic search, browsing, and recommending. A case study of transforming three different schemas and datasets is presented. An implemented knowledge-based recommender system utilizing the results in the semantic portal \CS\ was found useful in a preliminary user study.
This paper concerns the idea of publishing heterogenous cultural content on the Semantic Web. By heterogenous content we mean metadata describing potentially any kind of cultural objects, including artifacts, photos, paintings, videos, folklore, cultural sites, cultural process descriptions, biographies, history etc. The metadata schemas used are different and the metadata may be represented at different levels of semantic granularity. This work is an extension to previous research on semantic cultural portals, such as MuseumFinland, that are usually based on a shared homogeneous schema, such as Dublin Core, and focus on content of similar kinds, such as artifacts. Our experiences suggest that a semantically richer event-based knowledge representation scheme than traditional metadata schemas is needed in order to support reasoning when performing semantic search and browsing. The new key idea is to transform different forms of metadata into event-based knowledge about the entities and events that take place in the world or in fiction. This approach facilitates semantic interoperability and reasoning about the world and stories at the same time, which enables implementation of intelligent services for the end-user. These ideas are addressed by presenting the vision and solution approaches taken in two prototype implementations of a new kind of cross-domain semantic cultural portal “CULTURESAMPO—Finnish Culture on the Semantic Web”.
An event-based approach is presented for annotating events and narrative structures underlying texts and stories semantically. The idea is applied to using the Finnish national epic Kalevala for accessing related cultural contents, such as artifacts, paintings etc. in a semantic portal.
This paper concerns the idea of publishing heterogenous cultural content on the Semantic Web. By heterogenous content we mean metadata describing potentially any kind of cultural objects, including artifacts, photos, paintings, videos, folklore, cultural sites, cultural process descriptions, biographies, history etc. The metadata schemas used are different and the metadata may be represented at different levels of semantic granularity. This work is an extension to previous research on semantic cultural portals, such as MuseumFinland, that are usually based on a shared homogeneous schema, such as Dublin Core, and focus on content of similar kinds, such as artifacts. Our experiences suggest that a semantically richer event-based knowledge representation scheme than traditional metadata schemas is needed in order to support reasoning when performing semantic search and browsing. The new key idea is to transform different forms of metadata into event-based knowledge about the entities and events that take place in the world or in fiction. This approach facilitates semantic interoperability and reasoning about the world and stories at the same time, which enables implementation of intelligent services for the end-user. These ideas are addressed by presenting the vision and solution approaches taken in two prototype implementations of a new kind of cross-domain semantic cultural portal “CULTURESAMPO—Finnish Culture on the Semantic Web”