Wikiframe VG

Welcome to wikiframeVG (Wikiframe Visual Graph), an open-source community initiative and tool aimed to help Wikidata editors and users explore knowledge generated from organized Wikidata sprints. wikiframeVG adopts a community driven, SPARQL template-based approach toward Wikidata graph exploration.

The application interacts with Wikidata's SPARQL query service and provides users with point-and-click tools to search and filter information. No SPARQL or other coding knowledge will be required to retrieve data linked across the Wikidata knowledge graph.

What is Wikidata?

Wikidata is a free and open knowledge base that can be read and edited by both humans and machines. Wikidata acts as central storage for the structured data of its Wikimedia sister projects including Wikipedia. Wikidata is collaboratively edited by a global community of users and the content of Wikidata is available under a free license, exported using standard formats, and can be interlinked to other open data sets on the linked data web.

Galleries, libraries, archives and museums contribute to Wikidata to better encourage discovery and use of their unique materials. Contributions can take the form of data, code and technical tools, or participation in community governance of the knowledge base. Increasingly, organizations like UNLV Special Collections and Archives are prioritizing specific projects to surface underrepresented collections and histories of marginalized identities.

Multiple communities including virtual assistant technologies have embraced Wikidata as a credible, public, global source of information and persistent identifier hub. As a widely used source of structured data, Wikidata offers a platform to publish, link, and enrich special collections metadata, and UNLV has undertaken several data “sprints” with target goals to expose specific data in Wikidata. The contributed data is a smaller subset of Special Collections data made publicly available online elsewhere such as in the Special Collections and Archives portal. To see the types of Special Collections added to Wikidata, review the UNLV Wikidata Dashboard Sprint section.

UNLV has been an early adopter of investigations into transforming Special Collections data into linked data for use on the Semantic Web. A sample of pilot efforts includes: work to transform metadata from CONTENTdm into a Virtuoso triplestore, analysis of large-scale automated reconciliation processes using OpenRefine, and the creation of a linked data visualization tool called, Navigator. Today’s work builds on this foundation with the advent of Wikidata providing new opportunities and a more sustainable model for large-scale linked data development including: easy (no coding required) access for anyone to become a linked data creator; a free, non-profit, and centralized location to store and share code and tools online; and an active global community of discipline-specific contributors, collaborators, developers, and advisors.

Why this Application?

Wikiframe VG (Visual Graph) provides a search capability for Special Collections data stored on Wikidata ( It currently retrieves any data entered by UNLV staff as part of the Library of Congress’s Program For Cooperative Cataloging pilot.

Wikiframe shows results in both list and visual graph form for any search. Currently, users begin by performing a keyword search in one of four areas: People, Corporate Bodies, Collections, and Oral Histories. Users can then perform different keyword searches or begin to use the graph view to select nodes and run new searches based on those selections. Users can see details about any result in the Details page (hyperlinked in the list) or when hovering the mouse pointer over a node in the graph. Some detail properties are hyperlinked and take the user to external locations, such as the UNLV Special Collections portal. For the first time, Wikiframe allows users to graphically explore things in Wikidata and the relationships between them; no programming experience required and no need to write specialized code (SPARQL queries). While the application is currently running on top of UNLV Wikidata, it can work with any set of Wikidata specified. The code is meant to be openly shared and easily adaptable for other knowledge domains. It is hoped that wider testing and adoption by the Wikidata community will result in extensions of the current application.

Acknowledgements and Future Work

This application was funded by the UNLV Libraries Dean’s Leadership Circle and through special projects funding. The project was active during March 2023- June 2023 and funding supported the employment of one part-time Wikidata developer. Two UNLV Digital Collections staff members proposed and led the project as a part of their research activity. The University of Nevada, Las Vegas Project Team included:

In the future, we plan to build on this work in the following ways:

Please contact Darnelle Melvin ( if you would like to share feedback on the application.

UNLV Wikidata Stats