I think the readings for this week on linked data were a good way to end the class. Now that we know about some of the DH resources out there, and how those resources can make information more readily available, we’re learning about how all this information can be linked and connected. The creation of the “global data space” (1) that Bizer, Heath, and Berners-Lee are talking about is something I’ve never really thought about before. This project is so massive and involved that I’m not even sure you can really call it a project. The ultimate goal, according to the authors, is “being able to use the Web like a single global database” (17). It requires world-wide cooperation and overcoming the various research challenges that the authors outline. They state that “If the research challenges highlighted above can be adequately addressed, we expect that Linked Data will enable a significant evolutionary step in leading the Web to its full potential” (20). This seems to me like a very big “if.” They detail seven different challenges, all of which seem if not insurmountable, at least very difficult to accomplish. Maintaining the quality of this kind of global database, or even maintaining the database itself, seems particularly problematic. I also wonder about the scale of this project in terms of time. Are there specific goals, or rather, do the authors have specific expectations for what will be happening in five, ten, twenty, or fifty years? Perhaps I shouldn’t even think in terms of “project,” but rather in terms of progress toward an ideal that may never actually be achievable.