About RUcore: The Data Model

Table of Contents

The data model is the heart of the RUcore architecture. The data model provides for the basic description of information so that it can be effectively discovered and used. A good data model should be:

The RUcore Data Model

RUcore tracks lifecycle and ecology of the data.
The life cycle of information is the interaction of the information object with place (place of creation, place of storage, etc.) and agent (the person(s) or organization(s) responsible for creating,describing, managing or using the information). When the object interacts with place or agent at a specific point of time, an event in the lifecycle of the information is said to occur. Events provide context for information use. For example, a piece of sculpture may be created by a sculptor ("agent") during her impressionist period in Paris ("place") in 1963. This is one event in the life of the sculpture. That same piece of sculpture may be purchased by the head curator ("agent") for permanent display in the garden of a New York museum ("place") in 1978. This is another event in the lifecycle of the data.

A data model should be designed to meet the user's core information needs, as identified by the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) [1] :

An event-based data model can meet these core information needs without overloading the object with context specific to one type of scholar or one field of study. A researcher looking for works that demonstrate the influence of impressionism on the artist would discover this work, as would the high school art teacher planning a field trip to view the artist's work in situ. Each user finds the information she needs by discovering a different "event" in the lifecycle of the data.

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