[TSC-announce] Citation Elements public drafts

Richard Smith rsmith at fhiso.org
Thu Jun 29 17:29:16 CDT 2017

When the tsc-public mailing list was last active in May 2016, the 
consensus of the technical discussion was that there was a need for a 
citation element vocabulary for encoding the information about 
genealogical sources that normally appears in citations, complete with 
bindings to both GEDCOM and GEDCOM-X.  Various issues faced the 
implementation of these ideas, including:

*  The difficulty of presenting structured information in a flat
   dictionary of key:value pairs, which GEDCOM-X appeared to require.
*  The unmaintained character of GEDCOM and its ad hoc extension
*  Limited people interested in the nitty-gritty details of drafting
   potential policy documents.
*  Easy distractions when ideas were floated without grounding in
   potential standards.

In the intervening year, the Technical Standing Committee began working 
on hammering out these issues and creating drafts that might encourage 
more focused public comment.  The drafting process went on in the open 
on <http://github.com/fhiso> but without extensive email conversation 
outside of those working on the drafts.

We are happy to announce that several drafts have reached the point 
where we would like broader comments, similar to the creator name draft 
we circulated a little over a year ago.

Citation Elements: General Concepts

Presents the relationship between formatted citations and citation 
elements; presents a model for layered citations; presents a solution 
for replicated data in different languages or scripts; discusses 
subtyping, extensions, constraints, and cardinality; describes 
preservation of structure in list-flattening formats; provides all 
needed information for creating serialization formats and data model 


Citation Elements: Bindings for RDFa

Presents a data model binding and serialization as RDFa attributes in 
HTML or XML, and thus for semantic markup of a formatted citation in 
HTML. An example of a list-flattening format and proof of concept that 
the concepts document is sufficient to define a data model binding.


Extended Legacy Format (ELF)

Because GEDCOM is unmaintained and has only an ad hoc extension 
mechanism, we are developing ELF, a document model and file format that 
is fully compatible with current uses of GEDCOM 5.5.1, but with the 
addition of a structured extensibility mechanism.  It will also clarify 
ambiguities in GEDCOM and documenting best current practice.  This suite 
of standards will pave the way for binding citation elements (and, 
later, other FHISO specifications) to GEDCOM.

A list of current drafts can be accessed at 
<http://tech.fhiso.org/drafts/>.  We welcome any and all comments on 
these on the tsc-public mailing list <http://tech.fhiso.org/tsc-public>, 
and as always invite anyone who would like to be more directly involved 
in writing and revising documents to let the TSC know.

Richard Smith,                       FHISO   <http://fhiso.org/>
FHISO Technical Co-Coordinator       One Community, One Standard

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