O. M. Wilbertz
(Niedersächsisches Landesamt für Denkmalpflege, Hannover, Deutschland)

In the development of archaeological research, a system of concepts has been growing, which enables archaeologists to carry out their work in a conventional way. As a consequence of the increasing use of electronic media for documentation and presentation of results, archaeologists – whatever their mother language and whatever the legal framework, under which they work – are confronted with the necessity to question the concepts which they have become accustomed to in the past.
To date each individual and each group of scientists have worked for themselves and then presented the results. Subsequently the archaeologists started to employ data bases to run vast quantities of information and began to introduce standards. Results have gradually been interchanged per internet.
In order to be able to interchange the contents of different data bases and to carry out further operations like mapping, statistics etc. – preferably per internet – further clarification of concepts is necessary. In this context, it is not the primary aim to develop or change lists of applicable terms. Even more important is the definition of independent objects and attributes, correlation of information and the contents of the terms, e.g. what is a site? A place where ancient people previously lived and/or worked? A place where modern man has done his research? Or a place where both are applicable? Which attributes must a site have to be a site? It is assumed that mapping sites is only possible, if these questions have been answered – intentionally or unintentionally.
If all archaeologists deal intentionally with these questions in the same way, only then can the results be seriously compared and further applied. The complex of questions presented herein should only be understood as an example. On the whole, there are a number of such semantic questions to be answered.
The poster should serve as an invitation to participate in defining the objects and attributes and the clarification of the relationships between the objects. The aim at the end could be something like an Archaeological Markup Language.