Frequently Asked Questions

The Encyclopedia is “Open Access”. What does this mean?

“Open Access” is commonly understood to be unrestricted online access to scholarly publications. Therefore, all the content readers find in 1914-1918-online is accessible free of charge or other limitations. Nevertheless, for purposes of copying and distributing articles some rules do apply. These rules are described in the terms of the Creative Commons License.

All articles are published under the Creative Commons License (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Germany-CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). What does this mean?

The Creative Commons (CC) License (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Germany-CC BY-NC-ND 3.0) allows you to share and distribute material for non-commercial purposes, as long as the material is not modified in any form and the source is appropriately cited. For more information on CC-licensing, please visit this site.

Are articles in “1914-1918-Online” fully citable as academic publications?

Each article in “1914-1918-online” is a self-contained publication. All articles are labelled with a recommended form of citation and are fully citable as scholarly publications. The Bavarian State Library guarantees the long-term, error-free storage of the digital information in the encyclopedia. All authors receive full recognition.

All articles are subject to a full two-staged academic review. During the first stage, manuscripts are reviewed by the responsible Section Editor. During the second stage, manuscripts are assessed by one of the General Editors or an External Referee.

The Encyclopedia uses the “Semantic MediaWiki” software. What is this?

Semantic MediaWiki (SMW) is an extension of the popular open source wiki software MediaWiki, well known as the technical platform for Wikipedia. SMW allows you to store and query additional data simply by editing the wiki page. Semantic MediaWiki is also a full-fledged framework that works in conjunction with spinoff extensions that can turn a wiki into a powerful and flexible knowledge management system. All data created within SMW can easily be published via the Semantic Web, allowing other systems to use this data seamlessly. In terms of this encyclopedia, we are using SMW as an editing system in the backend, within which we can connect all metadata added. Soon, we will also provide an API (application programming interface).

What are the Subjects listed in the Metadata?

The encyclopedia’s Subjects consist of a set of more than 200 keywords on the First World War. They are listed in a three-level-taxonomy and were compiled specifically for the encyclopedia. All articles in the encyclopedia are tagged with Subjects. Clicking on a Subject allows you to view other articles that are tagged with the same Subject, showing you thematic connections to articles you might not have expected.

What are Key Locations listed in the Metadata?

Key Locations are places mentioned in each article that are relevant to its content. They are shown on the map next to the article and are listed in the Metadata below the article. Clicking on a Key Location, either in the map or in the metadata, allows you to view other articles that mention the same place. This geographical vantage point opens new navigational routes through the encyclopedia and introduces you to articles you may otherwise not have come across.

What does the Classification Group in the Metadata mean?

The Classification Group categorizes the article. There are a number of possible classification groups, including “Person”, “Event”, “Survey Article (Regional)” or “Regional Thematic Article”. For more information on the different types of articles in the encyclopedia, please see the Introduction, written by the General Editors.

Every article has GND subject headings in its metadata. What does this mean?

GND (Gemeinsame Norm Datei) is a controlled keyword vocabulary that is used in all research libraries in Germany. These keywords guarantee correct intellectual semantic indexing and therefore enable you to find relevant literature about the same topics in various German-speaking libraries. We provide links to the most important library-catalogs on every article of this encyclopedia. Searching with GND keywords is the most reliable search method, because it unites synonyms in one expression (e.g. "First World War" and "Great War") and includes books that have metaphoric titles such as "In Europa gehen die Lichter aus" (“The Lights go off in Europe”) or "All Quiet on the Western Front". At the same time the use of controlled vocabularies facilitates automatic or manual cross-linking from other online resources to relevant articles in this encyclopedia.

Every article has Library of Congress subject headings in its metadata. What does this mean?

LC Subject Headings (Library of Congress Subject Headings, or LCSH) is a controlled keyword vocabulary for English speaking libraries that is also applied internationally. Library of Congress Subject Headings have a different structure than the German GND, often combining fixed blocks of semantically linked subject headings such as "World War, 1914-1918--Great Britain" or "World War, 1914-1918--Medical care--France". Searching with LCSH has the same advantages as described above for GND keywords, uniting synonyms and including metaphoric titles. We also provide links to the most important English speaking and international library-catalogs using LCSH (e.g. Library of Congress or WorldCat, which unites catalogs of various libraries containing approximately 2 billion bibliographical entries in 470 languages).

Every article has Rameau subject headings in its metadata. What does this mean?

Rameau (Répertoire d'autorité-matière encyclopédique et alphabétique unifié) is a controlled keyword vocabulary for French speaking libraries that is also applied in the francophone world. The structure of Rameau keywords is very similar to that of LCSH and features the same advantages as described above. We provide links to the BnF (Bibliothèque nationale de France) and use Rameau in addition to GND and LCSH in our automated searches in catalogs such as WorldCat in order to supply you with comprehensive international literature on the topic you have been reading about in our encyclopedia. Additionally, we guide you to the actual catalogs so that you can not only view the bibliographical information, but also actually access the books, either electronically - if available - or order them directly at your nearest library.

Which Interface does the Encyclopedia offer?

The encyclopedia provides an interface enabling the download of metadata using Linked Open Data, which is a key component of the Semantic Web. The datasets are available for download in the RDF/XML format. For more information on Linked Data, please visit this website.

The Encyclopedia's Linked Data is “Open”. What does this mean?

All metadata available in the encyclopedia is licensed under the CC0 Public Domain Dedication. The Creative Commons (CC) License (“No Rights Reserved”) allows you to enhance and reuse the metadata for any purposes without restriction. For more information on CC0-licensing, please visit this site.

The datasets can be downloaded in the RDF/XML format? What is this?

The RDF/XML format expresses an RDF graph as an XML text-document. More information about the RDF/XML syntax is available at W3C. The Resource Description Framework (RDF) is a framework for representing information on the World Wide Web.

Which datasets are available and where can I download them?

The following metadata datasets are available for download:

Moreover, each individual article features an RDF/XML download.

1914-1918-online requests that full acknowledgement is made to the origin of the metadata accompanied by a link to 1914-1918-online’s webpage.

The Encyclopedia provides a BEACON Index. What is this?

All key persons listed in the encyclopedia’s index have been allocated a Gemeinsame Normdatei (GND) number. The names, along with the numbers, can be downloaded in the format of a BEACON Index.