Re: OpenGIS meets Unidata, DLESE, and THREDDS

----- Original Message -----

> This time is fine. I would ask perhaps some background on " Unidata,
> and THREDDS" so that I can orient my comments accordingly. In general, I
> do an overview of the OGC and the process, provide an overview of the
> membership, and then dive into the OGC Interoperability Program
> (collaborative testbeds and pilots) and how organizations work together to
> develop interface specifications in support of geospatial data, service,
> application interoperability. I will also give a short overview of the
> current OGC Interoperability Initiatives. Also, how much time will I
> Thanks
> Carl

Hi Carl:

Heres an attempt at describing where "Unidata, DLESE, and THREDDS" are at
and why we are interested in GIS at this point.

One of Unidata's primary missions has been to provide software and other
kinds of technical support to scientific data providers. DLESE is creating a
digital library to support earth science education, focusing on K-12.
THREDDS is a Unidata project to add scientific datasets to digital libraries
such as DLESE. So THREDDS is trying to marry the expertise that Unidata has
about scientific data and how to access it, with the expertise that DLESE
has about digital libraries.  More broadly, THREDDS is trying to find ways
to connect the "scientific data provider community" and the "digital library
community". These 2 communities have different ontologies and different
technology bases.

There are deep questions about how to represent scientific data within and
between these 2 communities. Since thats a hard problem, we thought we
should complicate matters by adding in the "GIS community" to the mixture
;^}  Seriously, there is much interest in GIS per se, and also in the data
models that the GIS community is developing. So before we take too many
steps forward, we hope to understand where THREDDS might also connect to GIS
efforts. Specifically, we are asking ourselves how much we can build on the
OGC and/or ISO9115(?) data models. We are especially interested in the
possibility of using XML representations for data interchange.

> From the outside, and here I am just stating my own personal opinion, it
looks like much of the OGC metadata work, in particular georeferencing, may
be useful. Its not as clear what to do about the data itself; scientific
datasets are often very large, and various client/server protocols have
evolved to handle that problem as efficiently as possible. Typically
application design is driven by this need. It appears that the GIS community
(as well as the W3C XML work) has not focused on these large binary datasets
too much. Perhaps the data provider community can make a contribution here.

I'd like to encourage anyone else on the thredds maillist to add their
perspectives on how these 3 communities (data provider, digital library,
GIS) can connect.

John Caron

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