How USGIN Works

Free and Open Source Data Delivery

Interoperable Data Framework

USGIN provides the means to make your interoperable data available for research and product development. It provides a framework for self-managed, distributed web-based data-sharing networks. The framework is designed with a comprehensive and flexible suite of standards, practices, and management tools for organizations to efficiently collect, connect, and open earth science data.

Use Free and Open Source Software

USGIN Objectives

  • Facilitate public access to interoperable digital earth science data
  • Reduce the cost of online data publication and digitization
  • Preserve ownership, credit, and control of existing data
  • Distribute the logistical overhead associated with sharing digital information
  • Minimize reliance on proprietary software application

Rather than relying on proprietary or specific software, USGIN packages data so that it can be accessible through a broad array of open-source software and applications. USGIN data-sharing networks are designed to interact with other data exchange systems and connect information.

OGC Services for Distributed Data

The USGIN specifications help you build distributed data networks. Since USGIN does not rely on a centralized repository, you can host data locally and use standardized metadata records in a central catalog to expose your data for discovery and access by anyone.

Metadata Records Expose your Data

To get started, we will help you create and publish metadata records describing any web-accessible data you wish to share. To maximize interoperability, we will also help you map your data and metadata to interchange formats supported by USGIN.

Publish a Metadata Catalog

Dataset metadata is aggregated to form a web-accessible metadata catalog; this catalog is used to find and access USGIN data resources. You can establish new catalogs to meet the needs of a specific user community and you can also set up servers to host data belonging to other users.

Metadata records are the key to opening your data and making it interoperable. Metadata records provide information that facilitates access to the data resources they describe. Each metadata record is used to create an entry in the USGIN metadata catalog, which can be searched by keyword, author, subject, or geographic location. Medadata describing a data resource that appears in the search interface will contain information on how to locate and access the resource.

View and Share Your Data

The current search interface offers two options for the easy location of metadata records. Users can perform a traditional “library” search using keyword, author, or subject, and refine that search with filters. Or, users can draw a bounding box on a map interface to search for data records within geographic parameters. For detailed specifications visit tech.usgin.org.

A search brings up a listing of available data resources, their formats, and links to their information. Users can then download or open data using a program of their choice.

A search brings up a listing of available data resources, their formats, and links to their information. Users can then download or open data using a program of their choice.