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Metadata in Digital Libraries, DELOS meeting, Riga, Latvia, 16 April 2003

Exercise 1: Using DC-dot, a tool to generate/edit
Dublin Core metadata


This exercises provides some familiarisation with DC-dot. It also introduces the Dublin Core metadata element set.

Task 1 : Getting Started

In your Web browser load the DC-dot home page <URL:>.

Task 2 : Generate a DC metadata record

Use DC-dot to create some metadata for a Web page, such as your organisational home page

Enter the URL of the page in the text box provided, and click Submit.

After a few moments, a new page will be displayed containing some example Dublin Core metadata about your page, generated from the content of the document and from information about the document returned by the HTTP server. By default, the metadata is presented in the form suitable for embedding in the header of an XHTML document.

Task 3 : Enhance the generated DC metadata record

Add some additional metadata or amend some of the generated values.

For example, you might add the name of the page author into the Creator box. Unless your page already has embedded metadata, the generated DC.subject META tag is likely to contain some unusual values! You do not have to complete all the fields.

You can obtain help information on the semantics and usage of DC elements, by clicking the Help button.

When you have added some values, click Resubmit to refresh the display at the top of page.

Task 4 : Save the DC metadata record

You can simply copy-and-paste the metadata from the screen and embed it into an XHTML document.

DC-dot will also generate other representations of the same metadata. You can do this in one of two ways:

  • Select a display format from the drop-down list at the right of the screen. The display should refresh, showing the selected format
  • Click the Other formats button. A new window opens, offerring an extended list of formats via the drop-down list. Select a format and click the Create button. Depending on how your Web browser is configured, you will probably receive a prompt asking you how you wish to process the generated file. Save the file to disk and view it with a text editor like Notepad.

Don't bother generating all the formats available, but try to view at least the XML and RDF record formats.

Optional task: Remember that the RDF/XML form is a representation of a set of RDF statements or triples. You can use the W3C online RDF validator to generate a view of your metadata record as a series of triples and as a graph. Open the validator submission form at <URL:>. Copy-and-paste your RDF/XML output from DC-dot into the textbox, and click the "Parse RDF" button. The validator should generate a set of triples and a graphical representation for your DC metadata record.

Task 5: Non-textual resources

Try generating metadata for a non-textual resource (e.g. an image - like the UKOLN logo at <URL:>.

Task 6: Further help : DC-assist

Load the DC-assist home page <URL:>.

Explore the information available on the three "application profiles" of Dublin Core described there.

(DCMES version 1.1, or simple/unqualified DC, corresponds to the metadata which must be supplied for the OAI-PMH).

Questions to consider

  • Would this approach be suitable for the creation of metadata for large numbers of resources?
  • How manageable is the metadata generated in this way? How could you update, say, a statement of rights (as values of the dc:rights element) for a large number of resources?