Friday, 9 March 2012

Technical and legal issues related to apps and widgets

I said in my last post that I'd report on  technical and legal issues raised by  repsondents to our questionnaire. I'm going to delay reporting on requirements for apps  because I've still got a couple of things to clarify, but hope to be able to publish something about Pelagios apps next week. In the meantime, here's a few points about technical and legal issues.
Technical requests included the following.
  • That the data should be exposed via  a Linked data/SPARQL endpoint (i.e. the data should not be available only via an API);
  • Atom feeds for sharing updates about resources associated with a given Pleiades place.
  • Well documented REST based APIs for all services, and more specifically, ‘JSON data via a nice RESTful API’. It would also be good to have an API from Pelagios (or at least a way of getting solely data) so that the 'widget' front end could look however you wish. Ideally the widget would be able to be styled in whatever format is needed;
  • that the apps and widgets should reuse and support open standards.
Legal issues raised
Copyright, Course Materials and YOU!
Thanks to gforsythe for the picture

Legal points made included the following suggestions and concerns.
  •  That the license structures adopted in the first phase of the Pelagios project  are adequate.
  •  That  licensing conditions should be "flagged up" - e.g. with some an icon, tool tip or other means that are visible but do not dominate the information provided
  • If people are adding their own data then there needs to be some discussion of the licensing of that data. Should it go into the "big pot for everyone to use, or can they choose to CC license it, etc, keep it private, etc?  If this is an option, licensing will have to be worked out".

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