Problem statement: The majority of digital collections at the FSIs (Federal Scientific Institutions) still have (meta)data issues affecting the exploration, interpretation and exploitation of their content. The coherence between the collection items and their searchability is rather limited, which sometimes makes it difficult to generate scientific value out of it. The current metadata scope of the photo archives, for example, is too narrow and too high-level to allow easy and adequate exploration of the collection data.

Goal: The UGESCO project will develop geo-temporal (meta)data extraction and enrichment tools to extend and link the existing collection items and facilitate spatio-temporal collection mapping for interactive querying. In order to optimize the quality of the temporal and spatial annotations that are retrieved by our automatic enrichment tools, the UGESCO project will also investigate the added value of microtask crowdsourcing in validating and improving the generated metadata. Finally, to ensure optimal exploitation of the generated content, metadata management/filtering techniques will be investigated to optimize the quality and usability of all this metadata and geo-temporal mapping services will be developed to visualize and query the data in an end user-oriented way. These mappings allow cross-collection analysis in time and space facilitating scientific interpretation of collection items in a broader sense.

Technological Challenges:

(1) Improving spatio-temporal metadata extraction by textual analysis, e.g., named entity recognition (NER) of geo-locations / timestamps, and image clustering with computer vision techniques, such as convolutional neural networks (CNN).

(2) To develop crowdsourced microtasks to validate and collect geo-temporal metadata.

(3) To optimize metadata management and filtering, and to provide tools for geo-temporal similarity detection.

(4) Geo-temporal mapping of collection items using GIS tools and an innovative approach for temporal data exploration based on triangular models.

UGESCO will create opportunities for the federal scientific institutions, the research partners, the end-users and the collection items itself: a win for all!