Category:Documentation Cluster

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Metadata Dialects
We dissect nature along lines laid down by our native language. Language is not simply a reporting device for experience but a defining framework for it.” Benjamin Lee Whorf

The ESIP Community is made up of scientists and informatics experts from a wide variety of disciplines and backgrounds. They come together at ESIP because they realize that they share common needs and hope that they can find others that can help them address those needs. For example, many ESIP members make observations and process them into datasets and products or run models that "predict" data in the past, present, or future. We all want to share those products with a variety of users and, more importantly, we want to make sure those users can discover, use, and understand those products.

A dialect is a "variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group". In the context of data sharing in ESIP, the ways that different groups document their data and products (i.e. metadata standards) are great examples of dialects. They are varieties of the over-arching language of documentation that are used by particular groups in ESIP and other partners in the global environmental community. The Figure on the right illustrates this idea with a few commonly used dialects.

The Documentation Cluster is in the process of emerging from the CF Cluster that was started by Rob Raskin and focused on the Climate-Forecast Conventions that are commonly used by netCDF and related tools. The CF Conventions are an important metadata dialect used by a number of ESIP members and their partners. At the same time, evolving the CF Cluster into the Documentation Cluster helps us keep in mind that the CF Conventions are only one of many dialects used by different ESIP groups.

While Eskimos (and people that live in Colorado) have many words for what others call snow, and surfers have many words for what others call waves, ESIP members have many words for documentation. The goal of the Documentation Cluster is to improve understanding, utilization and integration of all of the dialects shown in this Figure and others used in the global environmental community. Equally important, we will work in the spaces between these dialects to build understanding from the similarities and differences between them.

The group is co-chaired by Ted Habermann, NGDC and Ed Armstrong, JPL and welcomes participation of all ESIP members.

Email List

Join the list for this group to receive meeting notifications and other information.

Next Teleconference

The next documentation cluster will be Wednesday March 20 at noon EST.

Agenda [link to commons]:

  • attributes in the NASA flavor (Ted)
  • Action Items

To join the online portion of the meeting:

Meeting Password: 23138379

Call-in toll-free number (US/Canada): 1-877-668-4493 Attendee access code: 23138379

Meeting Minutes

February Telecon
File:February Documentation Telecon 2013.docx
Meeting Recording (Streaming)
Meeting Recording (Download)
link to notes on commons]

Winter Meeting (Jan 2013)
CF Unleashed on commons
New Developments in IsoLand on commons

December Telecon
File:December Documentation Telecon 2012.docx
Meeting Recording (Streaming)
Meeting Recording (Download)
link to notes on commons]

November Telecon
File:November Documentation Telecon 2012.docx
Meeting Recording (Streaming)
Meeting Recording (Download)
link to notes on commons]

October Telecon
File:October Documentation Telecon 2012.docx
Meeting Recording (Streaming)
Meeting Recording (Download)
link to notes on commons]

September Telecon
File:September Documentation Telecon 2012.docx
Meeting Recording (Streaming)
Meeting Recording (Download)
notes on commons

August Telecon
File:August Documentation Telecon.docx
Meeting Recording(streaming)
Meeting Recording(download)
notes on commons

July Telecon
File:Documentation Cluster July 2012 Meeting.docx
Meeting Recording
notes on commons

Summer meeting 2012 - Documenting Data in Multiple Dialects
Summary, notes, and recordings


This category has the following 6 subcategories, out of 6 total.

Media in category "Documentation Cluster"

This category contains only the following file.

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