Last week we held the first workshop of the SNAP:DRGN (Standards for Networking Ancient Prosopographies: Data and Relations in Greco-roman Names) project, here in King’s College London.
As announced in our press release the SNAP:DRGN project aims to recommend standards for linking together basic identities and information about the entities in various person-databases relating to the ancient world, with a view to facilitating the production of a federated network including millions of ancient person-records, compatible with the Linked Ancient World Data graph. At this workshop (see Workshop slides and recap) we presented our preliminary proposals, data models and ontology for feedback to a representative group of scholars from both the classical prosopography/onomaastics and Linked Open Data communities. We also spoke to several people with large datasets that might be contributed to the SNAP graph.
It was decided that SNAP:DRGN will attempt to address recommendations to five key use-cases of networked prosopographical data:
- Putting prosopographical data online, including stable URIs and openly-accessible data and metadata in standard formats (not defined by us).
- Contibuting a summary of said data, including identifiers for all persons and a simplifed subset of core identifying information about each entity, to the SNAP graph to that it can be built upon and referred to by other projects.
- Annotating SNAP entities to establish alignment and identify co-references between related datasets.
- Marking-up online documents to identify personal names within them to persons identified in the SNAP graph and its constituent databases.
- Adding relationships between persons, both within and between databases: person X is the daughter of person Y; person A in one database was killed in battle by person B in another database.
The SNAP:DRGN project will continue to work on the “Cookbook“, the summary of recommendations and examples for these five use-cases, over the coming months, in the run-up to adding several new datasets to the graph. We are also experimenting in a modest way with tool and implementations for working with the vast graph of ancient persons created: named entity recognition (NER) workflows for finding new personal names in texts; co-reference resolution for finding overlap and links between datasets; search and browse tools and APIs. This work will be reported on the SNAP:DRGN blog, and in conferences and seminars throughout the year.