Evaluation of Ontologic Registration of Earth Science Data

March 10 & 11, 2006
San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), University of California, San Diego (UCSD)


At a recent meeting on semantic registration of earth science data, geologists and information technologists highlighted some necessary research steps towards making registration both simple and rapid. The most significant need identified by the group was for GEON researchers to develop methods to register data from Excel files commonly used by geologists to store their data. Formats of Excel files used by geoscientists vary significantly, and it was recommended that GEON researchers provide a limited number of templates for “simple format” where column headers would identify the content of the data in rows. IT research would also be conducted for registering data from files that contained text within the Excel file, such as subheadings for names of rock formation, as well as symbols and text embedded in rows e.g. >, <, “b.d.”, “dl”, or “n.d.”. It was also considered important for GEON researchers to provide geologists the capability to register location data in formats such as UTM and Township and Range with proper projections. It was apparent that availability of commonly used tools in petrology, geochemistry and statistics through the GEON portal would allow more opportunities for the science community to share their data and tools for research and would provide incentive to register data at the item level. The participants agreed that registration of geochemical and isotopic data would be facilitated by having access to a drop down menu for instruments that are commonly used to gather petrologic data. Use of internationally accepted abbreviations for mineral names (e.g. Kretz) would simplify semantic registration of data to higher level concepts. A schedule for registration of data agreed upon by the participating geologists would require uploading of selected data by early April, so that GEON researchers would be able to provide timely support towards full registration of datasets into the GEON system.

Facilitators:
A.K.Sinha, Virginia Tech, and Kai Lin, U.C.San Diego

Participants:
Cal Barnes, Texas Tech; Carol Frost, Univ. Wyoming; Mike Williams, Univ. Massachusetts; Melanie Barnes, Texas Tech; Barry Hanan, San Diego State University; Dogan Seber, U.C.San Diego; Shawn Bowers, U.C.Davis; Ullas Nambiar, U.C.Davis; Lynne Davis, UCAR, Boulder; Bertram Ludaescher, U.C.Davis;