Dublin Core DCMIType Chooser

Some users of Dublin Core choose not to use the DCMIType vocabulary. I find the DCMIType vocabulary deeply integral to good description using the Dublin Core framework. It adds a distinct way to orient the is-ness of the object within the capable description of items via the Dublin Core framework. I admit that it can be confusing at times. For example, I have found some resources which are hard to categorize. I have placed some of these in the following table. The description of the resource is on the left while the ambigious possibilities appear in the right two columns.1

Object DCMIType 1 DCMIType 2
Picture made from words Text Image
Rosetta Stone Text PhysicalObject
Cassette Tape Sound PhysicalObject
Moon Rock PhysicalObject (I actually
think this one is pretty clear)
Spatula PhysicalObject InteractiveResource
Board Game InteractiveResource PhysicalObject
Uncompiled code Text Software
Video Game MovingImage InteractiveResource
ChatBot Software InteractiveResource
Song on YouTube with just lyrics presented MovingImage Collection
 Reinhard Döhl, “Apfel” (1965)

A picture made of words. Reinhard Döhl, “Apfel” (1965). Note that Arabic art also contains many images constructed of text. Credit: Reinhard Döhl

If we follow the 1-to-1 principle in Dublin Core then only one qualified DCMIType should be applied to any specific record. So which one? I have created the following flowchart to guide a person through the process of selecting the most appropriate DCMIType term. Clicking the diagram opens it up within the mermaid editor where the text can be more easily read.

  1. The definition of note of the DCMIType for Text states: “Examples include books, letters, dissertations, poems, newspapers, articles, archives of mailing lists. Note that facsimiles or images of texts are still of the genre Text.” So I understand that the apple and the worm image would be classified as text. ↩︎

Hugh Paterson III
Hugh Paterson III
Collaborative Scholar

My research interests include typological patterns in articulatory phonetics; User Experience design in language tools; and graph theory applied to language and linguistic resource discovery.