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Topic Maps Portals for the Real Life

Presentation, was published by Lutz Maicher at 2007-03-21

This presentation is about a students project at the University of Leipzig.

External Link: download slides

In the context of a master module “Content and Knowledge Management” at University of Leipzig students had to participate in a practical course. The topic of this course was building Topic Maps portals. All students were completely new to the concept of Topic Maps. The course started with an introduction of Topic Maps and all relevant technologies (6 hours). The focus of the conceptual introduction was the emphasis of the linking and network effects which can be gained in topic maps. Inspired by the introduction all students had to develop a Topic Maps portal about a theme of their own choice within 10 weeks. All implementations base on the Ontopia OKS.

These portals will be presented shortly. All students had to decide whether they want to implement the portals with a content management focus or with a knowledge management focus. From the first perspective, clearly defined editorial processes have to be defined and implemented. From the second perspective, the systems should look like Web 2.0 tool, where all users can modify and assess the linked knowledge base in a collaborative fashion.

The implemented portals are:

  • Nightwish – a fan webpage for a finish heavy metal band
  • Uni4Students – showing the links at the university from the students’ perspective
  • .Net– disclosing the dependencies in the .NET framework
  • ASV – rebuilding the website of one university department as Topic Maps portal
  • Australia – documenting travels and adventures in Australia
  • Course Material – organising course material subject-centric

Besides presenting the portals, a second, very interesting issue should be discussed in the talk. All master students were completely new to Topic Maps and learned the concept from scratch (very fast). From this situation we can learn, how to inspire people from the idea of Topic Maps (what does people fascinate on Topic Maps) and what common pitfalls are, newcomers usually tap in (what have to be introduced carefully and with lot of examples).

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Topic Maps 2007

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The First International Topic Maps Users Conference took place at the Oslo Conference Centre in Norway on March 20-21 2007. Attendees experienced …

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maiana

Topic Maps is an excellent paradigm to support human thinking and to visualize networked information. As part of my PhD project, I therefore chose Topic Maps as the conceptual foundation for designing and implementing a software prototype for semantic knowledge retrieval.

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Stefan Smolnik
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