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Athena Salaba's picture

Midwinter 2014 - Presentation - FAST: Subject Headings for the Semantic Web. Presented by Ed O'Neill, OCLC.

Program Summary:
Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST) is a new subject vocabulary derived from the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH). FAST was developed as an enumerative post-coordinate system for the Semantic Web jointly by OCLC and the Library of Congress. It uses a simplified faceted syntax but retains LCSH's rich vocabulary. LCSH’s complex syntax, rules for constructing headings, and its dependence on MARC have restricted its application beyond traditional library catalogs. Recent trends, driven to a large extent by the rapid growth of the Web, are forcing changes in bibliographic control systems to make them easier to use, understand, and apply, and subject headings are no exception. The presentation will review to the origins and development of FAST, explain its structure and syntax, look at the differences and similarities between FAST and LCSH, explore FAST's potential for improving discovery, discuss its use as open access linked data, examine how FAST is being applied, and describe how WorldCat is being enriched with FAST headings.

Edward T. O’Neill is a Senior Research Scientist at OCLC Research. He did his undergraduate work at Albion College and his doctoral work at Purdue University in Industrial Engineering doing research focused the application of operations research techniques to libraries. In 1968, he accepted a joint appointment in the Department of Industrial Engineering and the School of Information and Library Studies at the University at Buffalo. In 1978-1979, he spent a sabbatical year as OCLC’s first Visiting Distinguished Scholar. He was appointed as Dean of the Matthew A. Baxter School of Library and Information Science at Case Western Reserve University in 1980 where he stayed until returning to OCLC in 1983 as research scientist. His research interests include authority control, subject analysis, database quality, collection management, and bibliographic relationships.

FASTatSAC.pdf1.15 MB