It doesn’t matter how you call it: Semantic Web, Web 3.0, Web of Data, or Internet of Things. Some of them may be synonyms, some of them may be differ in tiny meanings, but all of them are build on resources, their reachable identifiers and relations between those resources: Linked Data. If you put this data into the public space, making it accessible to everyone, you got Linked Open Data, and probably 1 mio ways how people use and combine it, creating new possibilities and advantages.
Europeana has created a video explaining Linked Open Data and its benefits. Europeana utilizes Linked Data for its goals:
Europeana is Europe’s multilingual digital library, museum and archive. It gives people free access to millions of books, paintings, films, sounds, museum objects and archives that have been digitised throughout Europe. Visit europeana.eu and see what you can discover from the collections of over 1,500 organisations, including major international organisations like the Louvre and the British Museum. (Europeana @ Vimeo)
Europeana built up a Linked Open Data space containing
open (licensed under CC0 Public Domain Dedication) metadata on 2.4 million texts, images, videos and sounds gathered by Europeana. These objects come from data providers who have reacted early and positively to Europeana’s initiative of promoting more open data and new data exchange agreements. These collections come from 8 direct Europeana providers encompassing over 200 cultural institutions from 15 countries. (Europeana Linked Open Data)
Based on this data Europeana provides a professional knowledge-sharing platform, as well as a simple search interface to dig deep into all the collected items. One of the items is a matchbox, a piece of the story about Bernard Darley and Otto Arndt, happened during World War One. Europeana created a new project related to WW1, collecting all small items and pieces across Europe to create a bigger picture, even on a personal level like that one of Darley and Arndt:
During World War One, two soldiers became friends. One was German, the other English. This film – ‘Otto & Bernard’ – tells their story. It also features the modern quest of a young German student, trying to discover if she is related to Otto.
The movie itself reminds me a little bit on bad daily soap TV shows but it is a good demonstration how Linked Open Data can affect lives. Without publicly access, Luisa Arndt would never known anything about the matchbox. Even if the story of the movie would be 100% constructed it plots a real world example. The Europeana blog provides some additional info about the movie. The Remix version of that movie makes use of visually inserted links for almost everything (e.g. pictures) in the movie. If you can imagine that a meta description of that movie could contain time codes and relations to all that used images (and the depictured things itself) you now know what Linked Data is.