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ETB is building an active network for transfer and exchange of educational resource. The network connects existing national repositories and uses a new approach based on the tried and trusted NNTP protocol (Network News Transfer Protocol).

by Clive Best

ETB is building an active network for transfer and exchange of educational resource metadata in Europe.

The network connects existing national repositories and uses a new approach based on the tried and trusted NNTP protocol (Network News Transfer Protocol). Metadata records are posted and transfered through a 'News Feed'. Each National repository has full editorial control over the submission and acceptance of entries, and will maintain the local formats and conventions.

Technical Developments
This poses technical challenges to the software development. ETB will use the resource description framework (RDF) to address the issues of cross-walking and mapping. A major added feature offered by ETB will be the integration of a multilingual thesaurus for classification. This thesaurus will also be encoded in RDF format. EUN will operate one central repository which processes and indexes all records submitted on the news feed. It is the responsibility of WP10 to design and build this repository.

There will be two components:
1. An efficient thesaurus driven search client allowing accesses to any metadata record.
2. A submission and moderation interface allowing teachers and other professionals to submit entries directly through EUN.

Progress so far in WP10 is as follows:
1. An RDF parser has been written to decode the incoming metadata records and thesaurus data. These will be stored in and efficient back end database for fast searching. The connections to the NNTP network are being tested.
2. A prototype version of the data entry and moderation interface has been written and is under testing.

A first version of the full system is on schedule for the beginning of 2001.


Information:
Author: Clive Best
Web Editor: Robert Whelan
Published: Monday, 23 Oct 2000
Last changed: Tuesday, 31 Jul 2001
Keywords: etb, metadata, research technology development