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“I say ‘avocado’, you say ‘aguacate’…or do you say ‘palta’?” The urgent need and opportunity for LAC countries to expand a vocabulary of agricultural terminology for the Americas” Tesauro Agrícola . Lori J. Finch Thesaurus Coordinator National Agricultural Library 10301 Baltimore Avenue
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“I say ‘avocado’, you say ‘aguacate’…or do you say ‘palta’?” The urgent need and opportunity for LAC countries to expand a vocabulary of agricultural terminology for the Americas”Tesauro Agrícola Lori J. Finch Thesaurus Coordinator National Agricultural Library 10301 Baltimore Avenue Beltsville, MD 20705 USA Lori.Finch@ars.usda.gov SIDALC 10th Anniversary Orton Memorial Library Turrialba, Costa Rica 25 September 2009
¿Como llamarías a estas figuras? What words describe these pictures? ¿Puerco? ¿Chancho? Pig? ¿Cerdo? ¿Porcino? Swine? ¿Sus scrofa domestica? ¿Palta? Avocado? ¿Aguacate? ¿Persea americana? Problem: Searcher must think of ALL terms to find all pertinent information.
Need for a Spanish language thesaurus… • Where is the thesaurus that accommodates terminology used in the Americas? • Local Terminology applied by catalogers • Could we use the NAL Agricultural Thesaurus as basis for a Latin American thesaurus?
Tesauro Agrícola • 2006: Translation of NAL Thesaurus • 2007: Spanish edition is on Internet, with downloadable files, and CD • 2008 edition: Spanish language user interface and glossary of 2400 terms • Sept 2008: Visit to Orton to plan on how to work together • Thanks to Marta Abarca for Kathya and Matilde for collaboration
2009 Tesauro Agrícola WIKI • Wiki is a collaborative tool for sharing ideas and exchanging information over the web. • NAL and IICA developed a wiki for the ongoing maintenance of the thesaurus which serves as a “white board” for • supporting documentation • proposals for additions and changes to the thesaurus.
2009 WIKI • Kathya and Matilde contributing proposals • Some proposals from the Inaforesta WIKI project that identifies agroforestry terms • Videoconferences to discuss proposals
Today: 2009 Tesauro Agrícola • http://agclass.nal.usda.gov/agt_es.shtml • 2009 edition contains ~ 70,000 terms • Organized into 17 categories for browsing • Updated annually • Web site search • Downloadable in 2 eye-readable formats (PDF, TXT) and 3 machine-readable formats (XML, MARC, SKOS) • English and Spanish web interfaces
Challenges of Tesauro Agrícola • Original translation done in Chile and does not represent all dialects • Needs editing and correction • Dynamic – must be enriched to be useful • Communication over distance • Requires subject knowledge of agricultural concepts • How to grow it and maintain it so that it is useful to searchers of information?
“It takes a village…” Goal of a QUALITY thesaurus cannot be accomplished by one or two groups, needs to be a collaboration across LAC countries. • Needs diversity of contributors so that a variety of dialects are represented • Needs subject experts in agriculture • Needs Librarians / Catalogers …Needs SIDALC partners
Benefits to contribution • Direct impact on content • Regional terms • Special interest terms • Guidance needed and welcomed • Acknowledgement of contribution • Tool for future applications • Benefits of controlled vocabulary over use of local terms
Next Steps • Evaluation of the proposal process • Evaluation of the WIKI • Ideas for improvement of communication over long distance • Development of training materials for those who wish to contribute • Process for identifying gaps and weaknesses in the thesaurus and experts who can aid in development
Next Steps….more • Ideas for other formats needed, including CD product • What future applications are planned that could benefit from terminology? • Brainstorm …which of these can we do? • Planning and prioritizing work to fit with human resources
Gracias por su atención Thank you for your attention Lori J. Finch Thesaurus Coordinator Lori.Finch@ars.usda.gov La Biblioteca Nacional de Agricultura de los Estados Unidos avanzando el acceso a la información global para la agricultura.