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For example: by itself, a database containing several numbers, all 13 digits long could be the results of calculations or a list of numbers to plug into an equation - without any other context, the numbers themselves can be perceived as the data.
But if given the context that this database is a log of a book collection, those 13-digit numbers may now be identified as ISBNs - information that refers to the book, but is not itself the information within the book.
The term "metadata" was coined in 1968 by Philip Bagley, in his book "Extension of Programming Language Concepts" where it is clear that he uses the term in the ISO 11179 "traditional" sense, which is "structural metadata" i.e.
"data about the containers of data"; rather than the alternate sense "content about individual instances of data content" or metacontent, the type of data usually found in library catalogues.
While this is the generally accepted definition, various disciplines have adopted their own more specific explanation and uses of the term.
While the metadata application is manifold, covering a large variety of fields, there are specialized and well-accepted models to specify types of metadata.
This data is used for the purposes of traffic analysis and can be used for mass surveillance.An additional type of metadata beginning to be more developed is accessibility metadata.Accessibility metadata is not a new concept to libraries; however, advances in universal design have raised its profile.A text document's metadata may contain information about how long the document is, who the author is, when the document was written, and a short summary of the document.Metadata within web pages can also contain descriptions of page content, as well as key words linked to the content.
Guide metadata helps humans find specific items and are usually expressed as a set of keywords in a natural language.