The Digital Media Project


Philip Merrill


Preliminary categorisation of Abstract Functions





Philip Merrill

Affiliation/additional information:

Active Contributor, Pasadena, California

Date submitted:



The following is my personal preliminary categorisation of the abstract functions at Doc#76, of course very influenced by Martin Springer's contribution at Doc#83. I call attention to Martin's a-g categories, which followed Leonardo's "suggestion" contained in a May 6 e-mail to the value-chain reflector. These are indicated below in brackets after each entry. I also call attention to Rick/DMPstudent's e-mail to the reflector earlier today, which contains many helpful insights that are not yet integrated with what I have below.

The categories I ended up with are as follows...and I hope that these will be plastic and flexible so as to enable superior categories to be developed:

As I expressed in an e-mail to the value-chain reflector in the past 24 hours, I believe we are starting to see our baby emerge and that this calls for not only born-digital categories but born-DMP categories. I am not at all satisfied with the sorting/classification elaborated below. I believe the issue of interface-selection, performed at the level of a universal or generic interface, is fundamental to the born-DMP approach to analogue-world "relationships". I also presume that the issue of security will apply throughout every aspect and so have grouped almost all of these together. To all of you, and especially Rick whose further efforts I look forward to - please mess with what I have here and transform it into something better. If we start sorting based on underlying-logic classifications, this will make it much easier for us to see what functions we are missing. (note also, I really didn't know where to put "marketer")

Device-User Interface

Fundamental Data Transfer and Storage Support

Fundamental Metadata Support

Metadata Assignment & Association

Interactions with Descriptors

Usage data

Rules and Terms, inc. contracts

Value-expressions & Remuneration

Interface Selection/Negotiation

(protecting value-chain players) [b.]

Inventions & Manufacturing