We performed a user experiment in which museum professionals used vocabularies from the Web for annotating the subject matter of museum objects. We study the requirements on the underlying RDF dataset, search algorithms and user interface design in a real world setting. We identify the advantages of reusing vocabularies from the Web and discuss how and to what extent the disadvantages can be overcome. The study is performed at the Print Room of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, where currently a large collection of prints, photographs and drawings is being catalogued. We report on the analysis of the current practice of professional cataloguers, the iterative design of an annotation tool and a qualitative evaluation of this tool with a user experiment in a realistic annotation environment. We discuss our findings in terms of their impact on the RDF data, the semantic search functionality and the user interface.

Heterogeneous data, data integration and reuse, semantic annotation, cultural heritage
User Interfaces (acm H.5.2), Information Search and Retrieval (acm H.3.3)
Information (theme 2)
Academic Press
International Journal of Human-Computer Studies
E-Culture
Human-centered Data Analysis

Hildebrand, M, van Ossenbruggen, J.R, Hardman, L, & Jacobs, G. (2009). Supporting subject matter annotation using heterogeneous thesauri, a user study in Web data reuse. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 67(10), 888–903.