USGS - science for a changing world

USGS Geoscience Data Catalog

Presentations by Peter Schweitzer

Most of these presentations focus on scientific data management and the concomitant problems faced by organizations that seek to make scientific information available to the public.

Understanding Metadata
Originally presented at the ESRI International Conference on GIS in Health Sciences in October of 2001, this introductory material has been used in a number of additional settings, most recently at the Northeast and Southeast Regional meeting of the Geological Society of America in 2004. An annotated version provides additional commentary.
Reviewing and editing geospatial metadata
Presentation 7 September 2005 in Shepherdstown, WV to the Association of Earth Science Editors
Metadata structure and keywords in online data catalogs
Given 23 April 2002 in St. Petersburg, FL at the meeting Building a National Knowledge Bank for the USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program. Discusses the clearinghouse of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) and its need for consistency in cataloging and indexing using controlled vocabularies
Metadata tips and tricks
Presented at Digital Mapping Techniques 2000. An assortment of updates and advice regarding practical metadata work.
National Spatial Data Clearinghouse: The real story
Presented at Digital Mapping Techniques 2003. A detailed analysis of the methods by which people find and get metadata from one NSDI clearinghouse node leads me to reject its Z39.50-based architecture in favor of simpler navigational systems using standard web tools and search strategies.
Dynamic web applications: PHP with MySQL and Java Servlets
Brief presentation of a technical nature describing two different methods of creating dynamic web applications, PHP scripting and Java servlets, particularly with reference to database operations, using MySQL databases. Talk given 19 May 2004 at USGS in Reston VA.
Publications and the usability of scientific data
Presented at the USGS Information Technology Exchange Meeting in Chicago in June of 2000, this presentation discussed the similarity in concerns between public information providers such as USGS and software developers. A key topic is the conceptual rationale given by members of the organization as justification for limiting interaction with the users of the organization's information products.
Metadata in the distributed scientific enterprise
Presented at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution 25-May-2005. Relates the shift in organizational roles resulting from the rising utility of digital data products to the practical issue of creating and organizing metadata in scientific organizations whose work is diverse in subject and loosely connected.
Organizing USGS information with consistent vocabulary
Included as part of the short course "Designing information for the worldwide web" presented at USGS Publications 2003 and later to another group of USGS web developers in Menlo Park, CA. This presentation outlines the proposed use of controlled vocabularies within the USGS web in order to make it easier for people to find information that USGS makes available.
Hands-on metadata
Presented at the USGS GIS workshop 2004 in Denver, CO. An introduction to the details of geospatial metadata, describing the manner in which metadata is encoded in digital files, how to verify that the structure of a metadata record is compatible with the FGDC standard, and a number of examples showing what mistakes to look for and to avoid.
Not everything is a map: Browsing geography by place name
Presented at the USGS GIS workshop 2008 in Denver, CO. Techniques of topical browse interfaces applied to geographic reference data to support finding information on the web.

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