2005 Salt Lake City Annual Meeting (October 16–19, 2005)

Paper No. 7
Presentation Time: 9:30 AM


STEINMETZ, John C., Indiana Geological Survey, Indiana University, 611 North Walnut Grove, Bloomington, IN 47405 and HILL, Richard T., Indiana Geol Survey, Indiana University, 611 N. Walnut Grove, Bloomington, IN 47405, jsteinm@indiana.edu

The acquisition of geoscience data, whether collected in the field or the laboratory, is expensive. The cost of reacquiring data is even higher, if, in fact, it can be recollected. Once acquired, the cost of preservation is small by comparison. In order to realize an ongoing benefit of this investment, data must be preserved for future use and catalogued for easy access.

The Indiana Geological Survey (IGS) has implemented a policy to inventory its entire collection of samples and data and to make a catalog readily available to its staff. Because the data have a geospatial component, GIS and its associated metadata can be used for cataloguing and access.

All staff have been trained to write metadata that is compliant with Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) standards, and the IGS Intranet hosts an ESRI®-metadata service for its inventory and metadata records. These data are stored in a relational database management system using ESRI's Spatial Database Engine (SDE) software. Staff can search the database using a Web interface by filename, originator, areas of interest, or keyword. Inventory records are written as a minimally compliant subset of the FGDC standard.

The data inventory process is designed for staff to easily enter information such as citation, description, time period, status, spatial domain, keyword, data set credit, native data set environment, cross references, and references. A Web-based form is being developed for staff to enter inventory records. The form outputs a text file ready for review and formatted to import into the SDE database.

A single database will store all of the IGS's inventory and metadata. A single Web-based search tool will allow staff to query and locate digital data sets or physical records and samples, thereby more effectively managing access to nearly all the records in the institute.