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Re: IDD participation

Hi Theirry,

I have included answers to your questions below. Overall, I think we need to know if (1) our data will meet your needs, (2) your mission involves research and/or education. If you think that our data is indeed useful to you, please provide us with a description of your mission and how you would use the data. This will help us evaluate what kind of data we might be able to provide to you.

Please see below for more information.

Thierry BENOIST wrote:
Dear Anne, Thank you for your answer.

I understand the LDM is freely available, but as access to the IDD is to the
best of my knowledge restricted, I assumed that you could download LDM to
set up your own "instance" of IDD, if you know what I mean, and access to
the IDD was not to be taken for granted, even though you could have LDM

Yes, that is correct that you can do what you like with the LDM but are not guaranteed IDD participation.

IDD access depends on a couple of things. The most siginficant issue is that we are somewhat constrained on relaying international data by WMO Resolution 40, see http://my.unidata.ucar.edu/content/data/data_usage.html#data and http://www.nws.noaa.gov/tg/control.html. However, WMO Resolution 40 allows redistribution for the purpose of education or research. For example, degree-granting institutions are granted exceptions to this constraint. We need to know if research and/or education is within your mission.

Other than that, IDD participation would depend on finding a site in our community that is willing to feed you data. That, in turn, would depend somewhat on what type of data you want or how much data you want to get. It would help if you could make a compelling case for how you plan to use the data.

The software that drives our IDD network is the LDM. The LDM code is freely available - anyone can get it and use it. However, you must be a member of our community to get official support.

That's interesting, what does it take to become a member ?

Let's break down the term "member" into two parts: participation in the IDD, and getting support. I addressed participating in the IDD above. Regarding getting support, from our Participation Policy page at http://my.unidata.ucar.edu/content/legal/participation.html:

"Unidata provides direct support via email for its software packages to institutions offering college-level courses for credit, and to non-profit institutions with education or research missions."

I understand that you are a non-profit organization. Again, do you have either an education or a research mission?

We have these requirements because we are funded by the National Science Foundation, http://www.nsf.gov/, and thus must follow their rules.

Also, in general, it is our expectation that once IDD participants get up and running then they can support themselves for the most part or get support through the community venues. This is because we are a relatively small group with limited resources. We do, however, have a strong community with members who support each other well, so that is a very viable resource.

There are also some other sources that might be able to help you install and support the software such as the on-line documentation and the ldm-users email list. Please see our Participation Policy for more information regarding the software license and support: http://my.unidata.ucar.edu/content/legal/participation.html.

Do you just want to use the LDM software to relay your own data, or is it the case that you want to participate in our IDD network and get some of that data? If it's the latter, which data sets are you interested in?

At first, we would use the LDM to gather some data. However, we do not
exclude to relay data on the IDD at some point in the future.
We are interested in any GIS data related directly or indirectly to natural
disasters. For instance, we're always after meteorological data, satellite imagery,
sismologic data, and the like.

The IDD does not currently relay any GIS data per se. (By "GIS data" I'm thinking of ESRI shapefiles, for example.) Generally our data is either raw or processed for visualization in a variety of packages designed for atmospheric analysis. It may be the case that you would have to significantly process (or reprocess) the data in order to make it displayable on your maps. Would this work for you? Note that the LDM provides a generic way to process data, but you would have to provide the actual processing tool yourself.

Kind regards,


I hope this information is helpful. Please let me know if you have any other questions or comments.



Anne Wilson                     UCAR Unidata Program            
address@hidden                 P.O. Box 3000
                                  Boulder, CO  80307
Unidata WWW server       http://my.unidata.ucar.edu/

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