Namibian Indigenous Knowledge sharing using semantic web

By Cherley M. Haingura (Completed October 2013)

Cherly3

Indigenous Traditional Knowledge (ITK) seems to be slowly dying out and if we lose that type of knowledge then there is no where we can retrieve it back. Therefore we are privileged to make us of modern technology to help us preserve our valuable ITK which is only known by the elders in rural communities who may pass away without having the opportunity to preserve their knowledge for the current and future generations.

Currently there is no platform whereby the ITK can be preserved; by making use of modern technology we can achieve the goal of preserving the ITK with the use of a web enabled solution which incorporates the use of Semantic Web Technology (SWT) which deals with linking of related metadata on the web. With the use of SWT the young and future generation can learn more about their ITK by using modern technology like computers, smart-phones and tablets to access the ITK which will be accessible to them at any given time. It will also be a great benefit to people elsewhere in the world to have access to the ITK, especially for those who are studying out of the country or in towns are unable to come visit their elders to learn the ITK that is commonly shared around the fire place in the evening.During the workshops that were held we have discovered that Otjiherero speaking participants came up with better meaningful ontology designs compared to the English ontology designs from the same given stories. In both workshops the English participants had a bit of a challenge with the structure of the stories, because they were directly translated line by line from the Otjiherero language. Protégé was the tool that was used to create the ontology files while other open source tools such as OBO-Edit and Swoop had some limitations with functionalities like saving and adding relations.

 

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