A 3-Year Implementation Plan for the U.S. Geoscience Information Network
1. Agreement on open-source standards and common protocols through the use of Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) standards.
2. A data exchange model utilizing the geoscience mark-up language GeoSciML.
3. Prototype data discovery tools (National Data Catalogue developing under the National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program, and National Geologic Map Database)
4. Data integration tools developed by independent projects.
During the next three years, NSF funding will enable basic network operation by establishing service definitions, standard protocols, and best practices through community workshops, and implementation of the architecture via a series of test bed systems. The first test bed will address serving interpreted geospatial features (for example, a geologic map), implemented in the context of the IUGS-CGI Interoperability Working Group third GeoSciML test bed. The second test bed will explore serving observation data recorded at point locations (for example, samples, chemical analyses, or boreholes). The third test bed will link Earthchem, a large international, complex data system of nearly 600K points, into the network, as a prototype for extending network access across the earth science community.
The GIN is being defined by collections of service definitions, interchange formats, and vocabularies established independent of any particular hardware, operating system, or lower-level network protocols. Adoption of new technology will only require implementation of network elements in a new environment, ideally with no change to any network service definitions or protocols.