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Explain it Why your Research deserves good documentation and metadata
Why create documentation? • Creating documentation can seem like a waste of time • Good documentation will include a lot of information that might seem obvious www.flickr.com/photos/smutjespickles/2434418686/
Make material understandable MAKE SURE YOU CAN UNDERSTAND IT LATER What’s obvious now might not be in a few months, years, decades… Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/archer10/5692813531/
Make material verifiable • Detailing your methods helps people understand what you did • Explaining your algorithms, search methods etc makes your work reproducible • Conclusions can be verified Image by woodleywonderworks on flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwworks/4588700881/
Make material reusable • Material may be re-used by someone in a different discipline • Provide context to minimise the risk of it being misunderstood or misused
Documentation & Metadata • Metadata are: • Machine readable • Written according to standards “I guess it makes sense for a robot to read an e-book ” by brianjmatis on flickr
Make material findable • Comprehensive descriptive metadata allows relevant material to be discovered more easily • Related materials (eg other files) can be located
What to include (I) • Who created it, when and why • Include: • Description of the item • Methodology • Units of measurement • References to related data ? www.texample.net M. Farinelli et al. (2012) PLoSONE 7(3): e34047 description n. A set of characteristics by which something can be recognised
What to include (II) • Define jargon, acronyms and code CC Gavin Llewellyn http://www.flickr.com/photos/gavinjllewellyn/6826303487/ • Provide technicalinformation about the file • (may be generated automatically)
Explain it • Create documentation to make data: • Understandable • Findable (and searchable) • Verifiable • Re-usable • Explain: • Who created it, when and why • Methodologies and analysis techniques • Jargon, acronyms and code
Open Access Teaching Materials for Digital PreservationProduced by Anna Collins (2012) for the JISC-funded PrePARe project This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales License.