Re: [cf-pointobsconvention] Should Z Coordinates be required?

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Jonathan Gregory wrote:
Dear John
Usually z is useful, but I don't think we should insist on providing something 
which is not really useful just to fill a slot which has been mandated. Also I 
don't think we should confuse the z of the quantity being measured with the z 
of the platform which is measuring it.

John C suggests people may be prompted to supply info if the CF checker or some 
other such device points out it is missing. That may be more effective than 
laying down laws, which people may ignore. (Another argument is that an 
effective convention such as CF should contain things which people will agree 
to do - albeit a bit reluctantly - as they see the value of it, but should be 
careful not to prescribe excessive burdens that they will ignore as they don't 
see the use of them.) So if a rule can be given (in terms of something that a 
file-checker can apply) for when a z coordinate would usefully be present, this 
can be made a recommendation, and the CF checker can issue a warning if the z 
coord is missing. It gives warnings for unsatisfied recommendations (when that 
can be detected) and errors for unsatisfied requirements.

Another great "pull" for encouraging data writers to include as
much metadata as possible is an application that won't load the
data unless that important piece of information is provided.  Of
course, like the CF checker the application would clearly report
what is missing as a help to the data writer.

Question for Don: How would IDV show an XY field that has no Z
value specified?


Mike McCann
Software Engineer
Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
7700 Sandholdt Road
Moss Landing, CA 95039-9644
Voice: 831.775.1769  Fax: 831.775.1736

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